Our yee-yee juice sipping king has broken the Billboard Hot 100 record, as ‘Old Town Road’ tops for the 17th week in a row.
The genre-blending hit has defied the haters with catchy cowboy goodness that’s hard to be mad at even if you’ve heard it on the radio for the thirtieth time in an hour (don’t check my math on that).
However, the success of Lil Nas X has invoked the righteous fury of pop stans around the world by assassinating Mariah Carey’s ‘One Sweet Day’ to get there.
It would be easy to say move over Mariah, you’ve had your time in the spotlight, but is that really a fair assertion considering all she’s done for us as a society? By comparison Nas hasn’t even begun to prove himself – like, okay cowboy you’ve got some horses but have you compete with that vocal range?
And let’s talk about success. Sure, the ‘7’ EP performed well, especially when you consider the fact that Nas is practically a baby of the industry still. But with ‘Panini’ peaking at number 16, it’s not exactly the sort of follow-up that’ll be spoken of in legends for decades to come, leading some to theorise that Lil Nas X is a *gasp* one hit wonder. Maybe come talk to us when you’ve released enough number ones to do a whole compilation album.
Then there’s overall memeworthiness to consider. Nas makes for a solid rival – he’s a digital native, owes some commercial success to TikTok of all places, and he can riff on memes as easily as breathing. His whole music video for the OTR remix will be analysed by historians in a hundred years for the richness of its allusions to internet culture.
Mariah, on the other hand, has consistency and original content to offer us. She’s gifted us the ‘I can’t read’ and ‘I don’t know her’ reaction gifs, and has continued to pull iconic stunts like that time she started subway couture.
By most metrics, Mariah’s reputation is worth defending, but really no-one is questioning her status as music royalty. After all, beyond a time-traveller rewriting history there’s nothing that could take Mariah Carey’s chart-topping accomplishments away from her.
The old adage is true – just because someone else succeeds doesn’t mean you’ve failed. Carey’s fans should be lifting up Nas, and vice versa. After all, the two artists have a lot more in common than all the saltiness would suggest.
First off, the pair have bantered back and forth on Twitter, and Mariah has even gone so far as to virtually pass the torch, while Nas suggested he’d send her a bunch of roses to declare his love. There is no bad blood at all if their public personas are anything to go by, so it’s a shame that their supporters can’t be equally as humble.
Besides, due to their lack of imagination they’re missing out on the most groundbreaking, Internet-shattering concept of all time: a collab. It makes total sense – both artists are fluent in hip-hop, know their way around a collaboration, and both know how to stoke the flames of sensation.
Even a joke about a Mariah OTR remix gained almost 20,000 retweets from the adoring public, so imagine what would happen if they released an original song together? It would destroy us. They’re too powerful. The world would never be the same. I’m not saying it will happen, the point is that it could if y’all would just behave.