Michael Jackson’s Smooth Criminal was one of his most popular hits and it is a staple of buskers worldwide. However, Shin Yechan, a former member of the Korean band Ganeungdong has gone viral with an unbelievable version played on the violin.
When the video starts, Shin Yechan is in the middle of a busy Korean street busking. He is accompanied by a drummer and guitarist too although their names are not mentioned, in English anyway. The band has already gathered a small crowd watching them play and as they break into the immensely popular song more people are drawn in.
Smooth criminal is already a fast song but these guys kick up the tempo even further. It’s amazing they can play it so well without making mistakes at that speed. About a minute in the drummer and guitarist continue to play but their sound seems to fade into the background a little as Shin Yechan ramps up the sound from his violin. The sound is so pure that it almost feels like it’s singing and is amazing to listen to.
What is even more amazing is the tempo, his bow honestly seems to blur and you almost expect to smoke start to rise from the friction. Shin Yechan moves with the music, his head bobbing and his body swaying as he walks back and forth. He’s dressed very simply in black trousers and a white shirt so he stands out, even against all the people walking past.
After a couple of minutes of dazzlingly fast playing, he pauses briefly while the rest of the band continues. It’s hardly a surprise he may need a rest. Soon, though, he’s back at it, moving towards his bandmates so that they once again seem like an ensemble. They build up to the end in a magnificent crescendo and the watching crowd goes wild. It’s an amazing spectacle and we’re so lucky it was captured for YouTubers to enjoy worldwide.
In the last three years, this video has been watched 14.6 million times and received 178,000 likes so take a few minutes and see what all the fuss is about.
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