Lil Nas X scored a viral hit with his country-trap track “Old Town Road,” which shot up the Billboard Hot Country chart, debuting at No. 19. The song also made history by being the first song to appear on the Billboard Hot 100, Hot Country and Hot R&B/Hip Hop Songs charts.
Despite its obvious crossover success, Lil Nas X’s song was taken off of the country chart because they don’t believe it’s country enough. In a statement to Rolling Stone, Billboard stated, “Upon further review, it was determined that ‘Old Town Road’ by Lil Nas X does not currently merit inclusion on Billboard‘s country charts. When determining genres, a few factors are examined, but first and foremost is musical composition. While ‘Old Town Road’ incorporates references to country and cowboy imagery, it does not embrace enough elements of today’s country music to chart in its current version.”
Billboard also spoke to Genius, adding, “Billboard’s decision to take the song off of the country chart had absolutely nothing to do with the race of the artist.”
Lil Nas X responded to the decision on Instagram, stating that he is “extremely disappointed” in Billboard’s decision.
Source: Rolling Stone