Lil Nas X and his inescapable hit “Old Town Road” broke chart history on Monday, having spent a previously unprecedented 17 weeks at the top of the Billboard Hot 100. To that I must say: yee haw!
Billboard reports that, at 16 weeks on the top of the chart, “Old Town Road” was in a three-way tie for the record with Mariah Carey and Boyz II Men (“One Sweet Day” in 1995), as well as Luis Fonsi, Daddy Yankee, and Justin Bieber (2017's “Despacito.) That’s old history now, as Lil Nas X has beat both of them for a new record. (A dispatch from Jezebel’s Rich Juzwiak: “I’m totally at peace with Lil Nas X breaking Mariah’s record, thanks for all the kind messages.”)
Ever since “Old Town Road” was released, Lil Nas X has been adding collaborators (including Billy Ray Cyrus and k-pop kings BTS) and remixing the song, with critics arguing that Lil Nas X is trying to game the charts, considering every new remix counts towards the original’s overall plays. A narrative has bubbled up suggesting that Lil Nas X is “blocking” pop peers from a No. 1 spot, including Taylor Swift, whose new singles haven’t been able to pierce Lil Nas X’s success.
Just add more horses to the back of your tracks, everyone.