The catchy ‘Pen-Pineapple-Apple-Pen’ (PPAP) had made Japanese artist Piko-Taro enter the Guinness World Records after it became the shortest song ever to make it into the Billboard Hot 100, helped by an endorsement from Justin Bieber.
The nonsensical song lasts just 45 seconds and has only half a dozen words, but its catchy tune is now lodged inside the heads of millions of fans in Japan and across Asia, and has spawned countless cover versions.
Piko-Taro is the alter ego of 43-year-old comedian and DJ Daimaou Kosaka.
The song – which some interpret as a gentle dig at the way English is taught in 23schools – first caught the attention of junior high school pupils after its YouTube release at the end of August.
It went viral after Bieber told his 89 million Twitter followers that PPAP was his “favorite video on the internet” – a comment that generated 65,000 retweets and 120,000 likes.
“I have the ‘Justin effect’ to thank, and I would love to see him do a cover,” Piko-Taro said after performing a longer version of his hit for the Japanese and international media in Tokyo.
The official YouTube video has been watched over 67m times on the website and received a total of 400m online views.
Earlier this month, Piko-Taro became the first Japanese artist to enter the Billboard Hot 100 since Seiko Matsuda reached No 54 in 1990 with The Right Combination.
On Friday, he announced record deals that will see PPAP released digitally across Asia and in parts of Europe.