American rapper Lil Nas X continues to make history, after recently coming out as gay, by holding the longest-running No. 1 single ever on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.
This week, the 20-year-old rapper, singer and songwriter broke the 23-year-old record previously held by Mariah Carey and Boyz II Men’s song One Sweet Day.
That track held the top spot for 16 weeks back in 1995 and 1996 but Lil Nas X’s country-inspired Old Town Road, featuring Billy Ray Cyrus, has now maintained the top spot for the 17th consecutive week.
Carey graciously congratulated the young artist on his achievement via an Instagram post.
“Sending love & congrats to @lilnasx on breaking one of the longest running records in music history!” she wrote. “We’ve been blessed to hold this record with a song that means a great deal to @BoyzIIMen and myself and has touched so many. Keep living your best life! ”
Lil Nas X earlier broke new ground when he came out at the end of June, celebrated as Pride month; becoming the first artist to do so while topping the American charts.
On 30 June, he tweeted that his fans should listen to his track c7osure which deals with embracing oneself. “Some of y’all already know, some of y’all don’t care, some of y’all not gone fwm no more. but before this month ends i want y’all to listen closely to c7osure,” he said, adding a rainbow emoji.
In an interview a few days later on BBC Breakfast he confirmed that he is gay. While his coming out was applauded by many, the star also faced a homophobic backlash. “I feel like opening the doors for more people,” he said. “Because it’s not really accepted in either [the country music community or the rap community].”
The independently produced Old Town Road first became a viral sensation on the social video sharing app TikTok before debuting at number 83 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. Lil Nas X was signed with Columbia Records in March after an “intense bidding war.”