Original Song: Chinese New Year by SALES
If you have not heard the song before, the first link is the original song. And then check out some of the memes. AND THEN, answer some questions below 🙂
Were you a fan of the song before the meme?
Shane Mulligan (Music Director): Of course! Who do you think I am?!
Ryan White (MD): Yes duh!
Jett Vreeman (Indie Music Director): I enjoyed the song before the meme. SALES is pretty cool overall, the meme however…
Ryan Tattershall (IMD): I’m gonna be honest, I was in the dark on this one until Shane brought it up in our last directors meeting. Pretty cool track though, it’s pretty catchy and not too lengthy so it’s fun to listen to.
Flint Lidar (Music Director and Group Punching Bag): Despite the retaliation I’m likely to receive from my peers for outing myself, I had not heard of SALES until Shane showed me this meme… That being said, I can’t say I’m a huge fan of the song outside of the context of the meme. It’s good, but I wouldn’t put it on any of my playlists.
Mari Lozano (Loud Rock Music Director/Constantly out of the Loop): Nope, I had no idea idea who this band even was…please don’t hurt me.
Derek Henderson (Indie Music Director): Sort of. It’s a great song, but I had a roommate that would play Sales so often that at this point, I’m pretty tired of them. Although I still love some of their songs, like Getting It On and Ivy.
Caroline Lasko (MD): I was blissfully oblivious to the meme, but I do like SALES as a band.
Are you a fan of the meme?
Shane Mulligan (Music Director): Part of me really wants to hate the meme. Like it’s the smallest drop in a song you could possibly achieve. And I don’t ever want to be a part of Tik Tok. But seeing some of these videos from people are funny. And I love the creativity some people are taking from this to make it their own. Meme culture is both simple and complex at the same time. Which makes me want to like the meme.
Ryan W.: Only when Flint does it. I’m not a huge fan of all the dance trend things that go around. I never liked the harlem shake or any of the Tik Tok dance trends, maybe I’m just an old geezer and I need to lighten up. But I don’t hate it because it makes people happy to make the videos so why bash on it too hard.
Jett Vreeman (Indie Music Director): I can’t hate it completely because it gives SALES a lot more attention. I’ve never been too big into dancing vids and/or TikTok nor do I ever plan on being involved with either of those things, but hey whatever makes the people happy or something. Some of them are kind of funny I suppose, but I think the meme is now at a point where the only thing funny that can come about it is pissing people off around you.
Ryan Tattershall (IMD): I think it’s pretty stupid and funny at the same time, all dance trend memes are. It’s cool if you’re into it and it’s cool if you aren’t. The one of the girl on the horse was pretty cool not gonna lie and made me go “wait what the f*** did I just watch?”. However, I’m starting to understand why my order at the drive through takes longer sometimes…
Flint Lidar (Music Director and Meme Connoisseur): As someone who appreciates memes, good music and dumb dance moves, I think that this is something I can definitely get behind. As pointed out by my colleagues, I myself have dabbled in the dumb dance (and freakin’ kill it every time – don’t @ me Ryan). I’m happy that this song is giving attention to the band, and that it inspires content creators on social media to push boundaries and provide us with entertainment.
Mari Lozano (Loud Music Director/Grandmother): Honestly like the song I had no idea that this meme was even a thing. Maybe I get out more because I act and feel like I’m one hundred year old. Follow KZUU’s socials and we’ll create our own version of the meme ;).
Derek Henderson (Indie Music Director): I had actually never seen this meme before. But I think it’s a pretty good twist on the Harlem Shake. I’m not sure about how much I like it as a meme since it’s just the same thing over and over again. For me it was really only good the first time I saw it because it caught me off guard. I think it’s a little weird that it grew so much because the main reason I thought it was funny was that the fact that there was a meme about Sales was surprising.
Caroline Lasko (MD): With my complete lack of knowledge on TikTok and what goes on there, it’s a harmless trend as far as viral videos go. A dance trend, a catchy song, let people have fun. Props to the girl on the horse.
Is this just a rip off of the harlem shake?
Shane Mulligan (Music Director): Yes and no. Yes because the beat has no drop. No because I feel like this is like comparing apples to oranges. The ‘Harlem Shake’ was about going crazy versus this is doing a quirky/nerdy dance move.
Ryan W.: Dance trends like this happen all the time, so I don’t think it’s just a copy of the Harlem Shake, especially because that one was usually just about going wild and this one has some more structure.
Jett Vreeman (Indie Music Director): I feel like dancing videos that act or play on a certain blip of a song are quite popular. I don’t think it has as much relevance (when first blowing up) comparatively to the Harlem Shake… but is it a rip off? Not really.
Ryan Tattershall (IMD): Nah, if more people started to do it maybe. The Harlem Shake was iconic, I would not compare this to that at the moment.
Flint Lidar (Music Director and Veteran Harlem Shaker): It would be unfair to categorize every viral meme relating to dance moves to the Harlem Shake. Though, it is also incorrect to ignore how the Harlem Shake has influenced the way people view music as meme potential.
Mari Lozano (Loud Rock Music Director): As someone who actually participated in the Harlem Shake WAY back in the day. I have to say that these things are completely different the Harlem Shake had a different energy and vibe to this.
Derek Henderson (Indie Music Director): Nah, it seems like it’s parodying the Harlem Shake craze. And even if it was, that would be fine because memes get copied all the time.
Caroline Lasko (MD): I don’t think it’s a rip-off yet. It’s still a smaller scale, and it’s a different dance that hasn’t spread to that level yet.
If you were a musician that took on the form of a meme, would you embrace it?
Shane Mulligan (Music Director): It would probably depend on the meme for me. If I was an independent artist trying to make a break, I would definitely love the attention. But then you have to live with the idea that people are only going to know your music for the meme and like you ironically. If you are trying to take music seriously, it might be a tough pill to swallow to embrace this. That being said, you should definitely go check out Rivers Cuomo’s instagram. He embraces memes and its cringy/amazing.
Ryan W.: I mean, it’s kind of cringy but it gives you more of a following. A lot of people have gotten into more noncommercial music because of platforms like Vine or TikTok so I can’t be super mad about it. If I was a musician I would probably get a little sick of all the cringiness but honestly I would embrace it and ride the wave lol.
Jett Vreeman (Indie Music Director): If my music could get the amount of attention (positive or negative) to reach enough people in a way where they feel a meme is appropriate, I would be more than ecstatic. We all have cringeworthy moments (I hate saying that word) but to embrace them is to own them. I probably would use it to advertise or talk about my music, effectively downplaying the content and successfully living out my existence as a joke.
Ryan Tattershall (IMD): All publicity is good publicity. I didn’t know of the song until the meme was brought up; which goes to show that if the meme hadn’t existed, how big would this song have gotten without it? As an artist I would embrace the ride, and learn to laugh along the way and not get too offended.
Flint Lidar (Music Director and Former Musician): There was a time where one of my old bands participated in a few viral memes in order to promote ourselves and establish a stronger social media presence. Plus, it was a lot of fun “whipping” and doing the “nae nae”. That being said, I would appreciate any sort of attention that being a meme would give me, so long as it doesn’t become the only thing I’m known for. (Looking at you LMFAO and Kennybeats)
Mari Lozano (Loud Rock Music Director/Meme): I honestly life’s too short to take yourself seriously so if you can gain a following and have some fun it’s all on you, dude. Personally, I think it would be kind of fun in a weird way. It’s honestly just something fun to look back at laugh.
Derek Henderson (Indie Music Director): This really just depends on what the meme would be. Like the meme of pretending that 100 gecs are a good band. I’m sure that feels a little insulting. But pretty much all artists get memes made out of them, and most seem like the artist would appreciate them. And even a negative meme could be helpful to a band by giving them exposure.
Caroline Lasko (MD): I tend to think that exposure is near always beneficial, especially if you use that platform to grow your following past your meme-able music. If you handle it well/embrace the fun aspects, then you’re on the way to building a platform that will enjoy your content.