With Lil Nas X’s “Old Town Road,” featuring Billy Ray Cyrus, staying at the top of the Billboard Hot 100 chart for a 17th week and breaking the all-time record, some may be wondering: How did we get here?
The answer is simple: All it took was a meme.
Lil Nas X first uploaded the tune to the short-form video app TikTok in February, sparking a meme in which creators drink “Yee Yee Juice” and change into western garb in time for the song’s drop. It has since become the background music for just about anything, from backflips to baking.
TikTok U.S. General Manager Vanessa Pappas congratulated Lil Nas X in a press release Monday morning (July 29), saying: “It’s been incredible to watch ‘Old Town Road’ grow from its start on TikTok in February — as the backbone of an accessible and engaging meme that generated millions of creations and billions of views — to a record-breaking smash hit that has all walks of life listening on repeat.”
Below, watch some of the best TikToks featuring Lil Nas X’s record-breaking song.