Ginuwine Performs 'Pony' on 'Arsenio Hall,' & the Crowd Goes Wild (No, Really) — VIDEO
The name "Ginuwine" is bound to mean a lot of things to a lot of people — a soundtrack to which one might awkwardly faux-grind at middle school dances, the character Romeo from 2002's Juwanna Mann — but probably, to most of us, it means nodding along to the down-'n'-dirty slow groove "Pony" (AKA, the precursor to Ciara's "Ride"). As of yesterday, however, that moniker is bound to take on a whole new and glorious connotation: namely, "That time Ginuwine performed 'Pony' on Arsenio Hall ." Because put plainly, this footage is a modern-day masterpiece, for, like, a lot of reasons.
In the first place, there's the singer's little burst of "I still got it" dance flair to start off the track — plus, his leather not-quite-harem pants, on top of his hype man's consistent, even belabored encouragement, as if this is kind of the last thing Ginuwine wants to be doing right now. However, the real magic begins when, having accepted the mic, he tries to get the audience to sing for him — because how could you not know all the lyrics to "Pony," right? I mean, the poetry of those verses is unmistakable: "The things I will do to you / You and your body / Every single portion"... Still, when only a half-hearted murmur of the chorus surfaces from the crowd, Ginuwine is not to be defeated: He strides confidently all the way through the studio, corners a woman by the back-most wall, and promptly starts, well, ponying with her.
From there, it's a free-for-all, as the all-standing, all-grooving — and, notably, all-female — audience gets increasingly bold in their interactions, while his hype men watch warily from the stage and Arsenio plays on his phone. My personal favorite moment: when a woman in a floor-length tie-dye skirt steps into the aisle, grinds face to face with the singer for about 5 seconds, then stumbles back to her seat with an arm-flail that screams "What exactly just happened?" It's okay, ma'am — you just got Ginuwined.
Of course, it's important to remember that "Pony" came out in sunny 1996, making that almost 20 years since its crooner was at his riding prime. With Ginuwine now cresting a respectable 43, it's easy to imagine that his core fanbase is about the same age — which is not to discourage their pony-ready antics (far from it), but just to point out that, now, this isn't just kids' stuff. These are grown-ass women interested in jumping on his waiting saddle, and if presented the opportunity, they're going to express that accordingly. In short, I now cannot wait for the rumored Backstreet Boys / Spice Girls tour, especially if those groups take a page on audience interaction from Ginuwine's book. Read: Kevin Richardson, I am coming for you.
But really now, while we wait, let's just give Ginuwine's latest foray into the world of ponying another watch. Let's do it. Come on and get to it. (I'm sorry — I couldn't not.)
Also, I'm gonna go ahead and pop the original music video down here, too, because that open-white-shirt and fedora combo is ultimately really important: