Billboard May Revisit Decision to Remove “Old Town Road” From Country Chart
Lil Nas X’s “Old Town Road” is a certified hit. The song is currently at No. 15 on the Billboard Hot 100 after being removed from their Hot Country Songs chart late last month. Since then, the single has gotten a wealth of media coverage, in part thanks to a new remix of the song featuring Billy Ray Cyrus. In a new statement shared with Rolling Stone and confirmed by Spin, Billboard says that there’s a chance they could revisit their decision to remove “Old Town Road” from the Hot Country Songs chart.
“Billboard welcomes the excitement created by genre-blending tracks such as Lil Nas X’s ‘Old Town Road’ and will continue to monitor how it is marketed and how fans respond,” the statement reads. “Our initial decision to remove ‘Old Town Road’ from the Hot Country Songs chart could be revisited as these factors evolve.”
Though Billboard seems understandably unsure how to classify the single, others like Billy Ray Cyrus have since endorsed the hit. With the release of his remix, Cyrus took to Twitter last night to say why he thinks “Old Town Road” obviously counts as a country song. “It was so obvious to me after hearing the song just one time, he wrote on Twitter. “I was thinking, what’s not country about it? What’s the rudimentary element of a country and western song? Then I thought, it’s honest, humble, and has an infectious hook, and a banjo. What the hell more do ya need?”
Read Billboard’s full statement below.
Billboard offers category-specific charts simply as a tool for people in the music business to better gauge the success of songs relative to others in a given format. We are often times faced with difficult categorization choices.
Determining which chart a song lives on is an ongoing process that depends on a number of factors, most notably the song’s musical composition, but also how the song is marketed and promoted, the musical history of the artist, airplay the song receives and how the song is platformed on streaming services.
Billboard welcomes the excitement created by genre-blending tracks such as Lil Nas X’s “Old Town Road” and will continue to monitor how it is marketed and how fans respond.
Our initial decision to remove “Old Town Road” from the Hot Country Songs chart could be revisited as these factors evolve.