The unexpected release of Lil Nas X’s “Old Town Road” remix with one-hit wonder Billy Ray Cyrus has given rise to a flurry of memes that shows little sign of slowing down. Before the post-millennials added their own context to his legacy, Billy Ray was best known as the purveyor of “Achy Breaky Heart,” a fun-loving entry in the Pop-Country canon. Cyrus next great hit arrived within the same year: the birth of his first child Hannah Montana.
Whether or not you designate “Old Town Road” a country song or not, Lil Nas X will happily ride this moment out a Cowboy. The decision to add Billy Ray Cyrus, a Pop-leaning singer, might as well go down as yet another bastardization of Country, in the eyes of the Nashville massive. Then again, social media doesn’t feel so inclined, namely the hooples who’ve generated a compendium of memes associated with the remix.
Below, I’ve grouped together the best of the best “Lil Nas X – Billy Ray Cyrus” memes to arise from this collaboration. My personal favorite is the Twitter post it’s implied that Billy Ray has surpassed his daughter in terms of hip-hop credibility. As much as I love a good sociocultural debate, I’ve only signed up for the memes, not the gong show. But that could change any minute now if Minister Farrakhan blows the horn, or Dolly lays down her power of veto.