Move over, Kendrick Lamar. The man responsible for the hottest hip hop track burning up the Internet is Ko Wen-je of Taiwan. Defying stereotype, this rapper is 59-years-old. Not only that, but he’s also the mayor of Taipei. In the video he just dropped, Ko encourages viewers to “Do Things Right.”
Catchy Campaign Tactics
Set to a beat known in hip hop as “trap music,” the video opens with dramatic shots of government buildings, including a hall in the municipal building and a conference room.
Let’s just assume Ko did not hire a stylist for the shoot. He sports a pair of high waisted trousers, glasses, and a simple button down with a pen in the pocket. In English he raps, “do the right thing, do things right,” while later, repeats, “guai guai de,” which means, “strange.”
Cue the Guest Star
We are not treated to an entire production of Ko’s rhymes. Early on he’s joined by Chunyan, a rapper famous in Taiwan’s underground hip hop scene. Chunyan, dancing while wearing what appears to be a very full backpack — is he carrying groceries, or maybe bricks? — takes over, rapping, “Don’t steal chickens or pet the dog,” slang expressions for engaging in petty crime.
The idea is: be a good person. Be the best you can be.
A Viral Sensation
Ko has a reputation for doing things a bit differently. Considered an outsider to Tawain politics, the former trauma surgeon once dressed up as an anime character. He has a knack for using social media to connect to young people in Tawain.
And it seems to be working. In less than a day, Do The Right Thing garnered 4000 comments on YouTube. As Ko’s popularity increases, rumors circulate of a run for president.
Guai guai de, indeed. Pretty catchy, right?