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LIL NAS X
Viral phenomenon Lil Nas X is the voice behind “Old TownRoad”, a single which, in the words of WIRED Magazine, “encapsulates more ofpop culture in 2019 than anything else released this year.” The track, whichhas reached No 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 and the UK Singles Chartsimultaneously while commanding the No 1 spot on Apple Music charts in 21 othercountries, has amassed over 200 million streams since rising to prominence throughthe next-gen social media platform TikTok, leading the artist to ink amajor-label deal with Columbia Records. Having been featured in Pitchfork, NYT, and NPR while inspiring a near-endless stream of memes, videos and general uproar across all corners of the internet, it’s safe to say that “Old Town Road” has defined 2019 while remaining indefinable. Its inexplicably catchy blend of hip-hop, pop, trap and country can’t be easily categorised (though Lil Nas X has tried, labelling it “country trap”) and has prompted critics to proclaim it as a shining example of the unprecedented fluidity of genre in the modern musical era a disruptive symbol of change proving that in 2019, an artist can define themselves however they please, without catering to the narrow expectations of music executives or record labels. Before enjoying the astronomical rise that followed the releaseof “Old Town Road”, Lil Nas X was a social media savant with a considerableTwitter following. In recording his debut single, he repurposed his talent for creatingviral moments that capture the hearts and minds of Gen Z by crafting one of theyear’s most brilliantly innovative and instantly accessible songs. It’s not clearwhat exactly the future holds for the 19-year-old artist, but there’s no doubtthat whatever his next move is, it’ll be a bold one.
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