What is the ‘Zanzibar’ dance? Billy Joel makes a comeback on TikTok

This next TikTok challenge might actually impress your dad.

The Billy Joel “Zanzibar” challenge pays homage to the superstar singer-songwriter, fondly known as the “Piano Man” by his fans. The dance is fun and simple so you won’t need any pro-level skills for this one. 

What is the “Zanzibar Billy Joel” challenge? 


why did i hit that shit so hard. #zanzibar #billyjoel

♬ Zanzibar – Billy Joel

The user @maxmith_ is credited as the originator. In the TikTok, she dances to Joel’s hit song “Zanzibar” in her kitchen

The simple routine only requires jazz hands, throwing up a few middle fingers and playing some air guitar with the music. The dance isn’t as rigid as other TikTok challenges. You can just pull from the arsenal of moves and make your own routine. 

The video racked up 264,00 views and a trend was born. The hashtag #zanzibar currently has over 122.2 million views. 

Some examples of the “Zanzibar Billy Joel” challenge. 

The user @iminlovewithjohnmulaney submitted her upbeat version of the challenge. 

Meanwhile, Gabriella Valdes whipped out a ’70s suit and retro sunglasses for the challenge. 

“Where my Billy Joel stans at?” one user wrote

“Billy Joel song but with giving off Elton John Vibes,” another said


a cocky spiderthem performing THE zanzibar (@maxmith_) #spiderthem #spiderman #marvel #fyp #zanzibar

♬ Zanzibar – Billy Joel

Another TikToker @gorillasoap gave it “Zanzibar” her best Spiderman.

Let the spirit of Billy Joel flow through you and give the simple dance your own twist!

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If you enjoyed this story, read more about how Ed Sheeran’s TikTok duet challenge did not go as planned.

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