30 Jul 2019

Yeehaw: 'Old Town Road' breaks Billboard record for longest running #1 hit

1:38 pm on 30 July 2019

Lil Nas X's country-rap earworm 'Old Town Road' has become the longest-standing #1 hit on the Billboard Hot 100 in the chart's 60 year history.

Lil Nas X and Billy Ray Cyrus in the video for 'Old Town Road'.

Lil Nas X and Billy Ray Cyrus in the video for 'Old Town Road'. Photo: Screenshot from YouTube/Lil Nas X

As reported by Billboard, the catchy track featuring country legend Billy Ray Cyrus has spent an unprecedented 17 weeks at the top, knocking off previous record holders Mariah Carey/Boyz II Men collab 'One Sweet Day' and 2017 dance floor banger 'Despacito' by Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee.

The story behind the smash hit is a fascinating one, beginning with the original version (sans Billy Ray Cyrus) emerging on social media platform TikTok late 2018, where it became the background music to a string of hee-haw themed meme videos.

From there, the song made its way up the Billboard Hot Country Songs, reaching number 19 on the chart before being booted off for not being country enough, sparking a worldwide debate about genre.

After losing its place on the country chart, 'Achy-Break Heart' hitmaker Billy Ray came to the song's rescue, and hit the studio in early April to record a verse for a remixed version that catapulted to the top of the Hot 100 charts.

'Old Town Road' has since topped singles charts worldwide including reaching #1 in New Zealand.

It has also been subject to several other official remixes, the latest of which is 'Seoul Town Road' featuring South Korean rapper RM of boyband BTS.

To celebrate his triumph, Lil Nas X shared a emoji-laden tweet telling how 'Old Town Road' came together.

Since the release of 'Old Town Road', the Georgia-born rapper has released his debut EP, simple titled '7'.

Longest standing songs on Billboard's Hot 100:

  • 'Old Town Road' by Lil Nas X feat. Billy Ray Cyrus (2019) - 17 weeks
  • 'Despacito' by Luis Fonsi & Daddy Yankee feat. Justin Bieber (2017) - 16 weeks
  • 'One Sweet Day' by Mariah Carey & Boyz II Men (1995) - 16 weeks
  • 'Uptown Funk!' by Mark Ronson feat. Bruno Mars (2015) - 14 weeks
  • 'I Gotta Feeling' by The Black Eyed Peas (2009) - 14 weeks
  • 'We Belong Together' - Mariah Carey (2005) - 14 weeks
  • 'Candle in the Wind 1997'/'Something About the Way You Look Tonight' by Elton John, (1997) - 14 weeks
  • 'Macarena (Bayside Boys Mix)' by Los Del Rio (1996) - 14 weeks
  • 'I'll Make Love to You' by Boyz II Men (1994) - 14 weeks
  • 'I Will Always Love You' by Whitney Houston (1992) - 14 weeks

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