Psy and Other Artists We Shouldn't Really Call One-Hit Wonders

(Getty Images)Don't call Psy a one-hit wonder.

The international pop sensation is clearly a little miffed by the immediate dismissal he faced as the hoopla over "Gangnam Style" died down earlier this year. In an interview with radio station 92.3 NOW, he explained that the "one-hit wonder" label is completely unfair, considering the success he's had in his native Korea for over a decade.

"After ‘Gangnam Style,’ I hesitated to answer the question ‘What’s next?’” he recalled. “Literally, right after that short period of hesitation they started calling me one-hit wonder all over the world. I was like, ‘What do you mean one-hit wonder?’ I’ve already been in this industry in my country for 12 years.”

"When I do some jobs for 12 years and then you’re called one-hit wonder, that feels really great,” he added sarcastically.

At least Psy can take comfort in the fact that he's not the only artist unfairly branded with the "one-hit" label. Quite a few musicians who've only scored one memorable hit in the United States have had lengthy and lucrative careers elsewhere in the globe.

Like, for example:

The Cardigans
Stateside, The Cardigans are best known for "Lovefool," the sublime pop hit featured on the Romeo + Juliet soundtrack. Gran Turismo, the follow-up to the band's smash hit The First Band on the Moon, only reached number 151 on the United State Billboard 200, but it hit the top ten in the UK, New Zealand, Norway, and of course the band's native Sweden, where it scored the top spot. The band's subsequent albums Long Gone Before Daylight and Super Extra Gravity also hit number 1 in Sweden, and the band has sold approximately 15 million albums worldwide.

Though Vengaboys only pulled off one Top 40 hit in the U.S. with "We Like to Party," they were actually the biggest Eurodance group in the world, selling over 15 million albums. They also had a string of Top 10 hits in the UK and Canada, including the cleverly titled "Boom Boom Boom Boom."

Contrary to popular opinion, there was more to the Divinyls than their ode to self-love "I Touch Myself." In their native Australia, four out of the band's five albums reached the top 10. The band had scored its first major Aussie hit almost a decade before with "Science Fiction," which was later named one of the Top 30 Australian songs of all time by the Australasian Performing Right Association.
Take That
Boyband fever had yet to fully take in the United States when Take That stormed the charts with their lone hit, "Back for Good." But the band had staying power across the pond, charting 16 top 5 singles in their native UK alone — 11 of which took the top slot. The group also spawned international superstar Robbie Williams, who has sold over 70 million albums worldwide without ever having charted a hit in the States.

Soft Cell
Ask any average American to name a Soft Cell song other than "Tainted Love" and you're bound for disappointment. But in the UK, the band actually had ten Top 10 hits and four Top 20 albums before they amicably split in 1984. A 2002 reunion album called Cruelty Without Beauty failed to do quite so well, however.

The Proclaimers
The Proclaimers have only charted one album in the United States, but each of their releases has done well in the UK. The band's 2012 album Like Comedy hit number 31 on the UK charts, although the lead single "Spinning Around in the Air" didn't quite get off the ground.

Macy Gray
Macy Gray is something of an anomaly on this list, in that she's actually had more success outside of her native country. Though Gray's lone hit in the United States remains "I Try," her sophomore album The Id actually outperformed her debut On How Life Is in most countries in Europe on the strength of her single "Sweet Baby."

Pseudo-lesbian schoolgirls t.A.T.u. had no staying power in the United States, but they were bonafide superstars in Russia. The duo represented their country in the 2003 Eurovision song contest, placing third, and their sophomore English-language album Dangerous and Moving hit the top of the charts in Russia, Mexico, and Taiwan.

I'm the former Zimbio Music Editor. Into music, cats, karaoke, and shiny things. Follow me: Google