The 'Harlem Shake' Shimmies Across the Web

By Amanda Ciccatelli February 14, 2013

The "Harlem Shake" is the newest dance to spread rapidly across office computer screens all around the nation. From the 44 million YouTube views it has received, it is clear that 2013's new dance craze is the Harlem Shake. Gangnam Style is now considered old news.

Technically, the Harlem Shake was a dance that spawned in New York's Harlem at a basketball game in 1981, according to ABC News. From there, it went on to become a hip hop dance move in music videos involving shimmies (shoulder shakes), tics (robotic starts and stops) and pops (leg spasms). The Harlem Shake consists of a 30-second video starting with one person moving to the beat. Once the beat drops, everyone starts shaking. 

The dance was referenced in various songs over the years, including one in 2011 by Brooklyn-based producer Baauer (Harry Rodrigues). Now, in 2013, the song has become the track of many viral videos.


This video claims to be the original Harlem Shake video, uploaded to YouTube on January 30th. According to YouTube Trends Manager Kevin Allocca, as of February 11th, there have been over 12,000 Harlem Shake videos. Now, he says, as you can see in the chart below, “over 4,000 of these videos are being uploaded per day and that number is still likely on the rise.”

Image via

It hasn't just been YouTube stars uploading these videos as a lot of media companies and corporate offices have jumped on the trend. In fact, Buzzfeed, Now This News, College Humor and more have uploaded hilarious dance videos. Later came video recordings of the Harlem Shake from West Point, the Coast Guard Academy and the Air Force Academy.

Now the craze has offices, sports teams and other “shakers” across the globe trying the Harlem Shake for themselves.  Here are some of my personal favorite renditions that have contributed to this YouTube explosion:

Do you want record a video of you and your friends or coworkers doing the Harlem Shake too? To learn how to shake it, click here

Edited by Jamie Epstein

TechZone360 Web Editor

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