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The Harlem Shake is back nine years after meme became iconic

The Harlem Shake is back nine years after meme became iconic

What year is it??

It's time to get out your onesies and 'swag' snapbacks, and fight your way through the unbearable final season of The US Office, because we're back in 2013, apparently.

That's the only explanation I can think of for why I'm seeing the The Harlem Shake dance trend everywhere I look.

Yes, the once beloved dance that absolutely dominated the internet nine years ago has been resurrected and has found a new home on TikTok.

If your brain needs a bit of a rejig on this one - it was almost a decade ago, after all - the Harlem Shake meme usually consisted of a group of people dancing to the 2012 song 'Harlem Shake' by DJ Baauer (aka Harry Rodrigues).

Here's a little example (it contains some strobe effects):

The viral video trend was started by popular YouTube comedians George Miller, Sonya Fetina and Filthy Frank - better known these days as the exceptional lo-fi singer Joji.

Today, the simple 35 second clip has over 66.4 million views.

In the video, each person is dressed in their own morph suit, waiting for the beat to drop before they started flailing their limbs around and pelvic thrusting.

Little did they know then that they had just created the biggest cultural phenomenon of the year.

The trend spread across the internet like wildfire, as more people filmed their own version of the original video and uploaded it to YouTube.

It wasn't long before offices, TV show casts, and celebrities got in on the action.

The original Harlem Shake video now has over 66 million views.

In February 2013, Indie rock dup Matt & Kim were presented with the Guinness World Record for the 'Largest Harlem Shake', after persuading a crowd of 3,344 people to flail around to the song at one of their gigs.

If all this information didn't make you feel old already, just this May the song's creator Baauer took to Instagram to mark ten years since he first released the tune.

"Harlem Shake turns 10 today. It feels like such a simpler time," he wrote

"I remember when it first became a meme it felt out of my control and I didn’t like it... Now I have 10 years perspective I see that it brought people together and made people happy, which is the best thing I could ask my music to do."

DJ Baauer in 2013.
ZUMA Press Inc / Alamy Stock Photo

The DJ and producer encouraged his followers to share their favourite memories of the 'Harlem Shake' in the comments.

Baauer's unexpectedly viral song ended up peaking at #1 on iTunes in the US and #2 on iTunes in the UK and Australia, which was pretty exceptional at the time.

These days, a viral song can shoot to the top of the charts with minimal effort, so if the Harlem Shake trend really does come back, you'd be doing yourself a favour if you dumped your radio.

Featured Image Credit: underdirty/TikTok

Topics: Viral, Music