June 23, 2024

Lil Nas X Has Surprising Take On Beyonce & Shaboozey’s Country Music Success

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Lil Nas X‘s mainstream reign began with the rap-country crossover hit “Old Town Road,” one that feels very distinct from his career trajectory today. While this remains the longest-running No. 1 single in Billboard Hot 100 history with 19 weeks, the divisiveness that this track caused in the country and rap space was often hostile. The Georgia native faced a lot of backlash for it, a curious contrast to how other Black artists’ forays into country, namely Beyoncé’s and Shaboozey’s, got praise five years later. Speaking to BBC, he reflected on how he feels about their success when compared to his own experience with genre-blending.

“I wish this would have happened for me,” Lil Nas X told the outlet on Sunday (May 19), clarifying that he’s “happy” for Beyonce and Shaboozey regardless of his thoughts on the matter. “I wasn’t even able to experience this.” Not only that, but he also told BBC that he’s been “trying out some country [sounds] here and there over the last couple of years.” “I want to feel connected to it and not force it,” the MONTERO artist added.

Read More: Beyonce’s “Cowboy Carter” Inspires New Documentary, “Call Me Country”

Lil Nas X Performing At Coachella 2024

INDIO, CALIFORNIA – APRIL 20: (FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY) Singer Lil Nas X performs onstage during Weekend 2 – Day 2 of the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival at Empire Polo Club on April 20, 2024 in Indio, California. (Photo by Scott Dudelson/Getty Images for Coachella)

Of course, Lil Nas X went on to develop his career in many other genres, whether it’s indie or commercial stylings of pop, rock, R&B, hip-hop, and even folk. For example, his recent collaboration with Camila Cabello, “HE KNOWS,” caught pretty positive reception leading up to her upcoming pop album, so we’ll see what happens with that. Still, it’s very natural to see how “Old Town Road” simply arrived at a more difficult time for genre crossovers. Regardless of its reception and prompted debates on impact, it partially paved the way for Beyonce and Shaboozey to fully challenge the notion that Black artists should be boxed into certain musical styles.

Meanwhile, Queen Bey might be prepping a tour soon, which obviously has fans very excited. Hopefully she and Lil Nas X, along with Shaboozey, can foment more collaboration between a myriad of Black artists, especially those in country that are experiencing a lot of due acclaim right now. Would this result in an even bigger hit in the same vein as “Old Town Road,” “TEXAS HOLD ‘EM,” or “A Bar Song (Tipsy)”? Only time will tell.

Read More: Who Is Shaboozey? The Country-Hip Hop Star Featured On Beyoncé’s “Cowboy Carter”

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