MUSIC

Lil Nas X Continues His Reign as Meme-Lord with Latest "Old Town Road" Remix

Lil Nas X is racking up innovative, delightful remixes of "Old Town Road" like Thanos collected Infinity Stones.

Lil Nas X latest remix has taken meme culture to new heights.

Columbia Records

Milking the summer hit "Old Town Road" for all it's worth, Lil Nas X is out here dominating the charts and the motherf***ing Internet.

After trolling with Gordon Ramsay following "Panini"'s release, Lil Nas X has taken meme culture to new heights with his new "Old Town Road" remix featuring Young Thug and Mason Ramsey (of Walmart yodeling fame). Just when you'd think Lil Nas X is running out of steam, he drops a new song (or a version of a song). Currently on its 14th-week as #1, "Old Town Road" is close to breaking a significant record: the longest running number one single. Whether he's releasing a new remix to stir up more conversation or maintain the anthem's #1 spot, we're here for it.

Young Thug and Mason Ramsey were genius choices for the song's third remix. Young Thug began the campaign to bring cowboy aesthetics to rap music. The Atlanta grown, charismatic artist has also pushed against perpetuated gender norms in the black and hip-hop community. Pairing Young Thug with Mason Ramsey packs a one-two punch. The imaginative rapper sets up the Twitter viral yodeler for a slam dunk on the concluding verse. Unsurprisingly, it's easy to start questioning your life and taste when Mason Ramsey outperforms Young Thug. Lil Nas X, Billy Ray Cyrus, and Mason Ramsey fit together like puzzle pieces. Unfortunately, Young Thug is an audible outlier on the quick, less than three-minute track, with his misplaced, but versatile vocal performance. Mason Ramsey's meme-ability prevails alongside Lil Nas X's.

Nowadays, mainstream artists infest their singles and albums with more and more features than ever to increase their audience and streaming numbers. The obvious tactic has grown tired. With four performers on the new remix, one would think it'd be oppressive to the light nature of a hit like "Old Town Road." Instead, the features elevate the song's potential— it's even more of a gosh darn bop. The success of the song's remixes prove its singular ability for artists to hop on the track and make it their own.

Today, Lil Nas X is racking up innovative, delightful remixes of "Old Town Road" like Thanos collected Infinity Stones. The only difference: People are actually rooting for Lil Nas X. Undoubtedly, this version will push the first "Old Town Road" remix to the record-breaking finish line. His EP, 7, may not have not proved who he is as an artist, but the latest remix will extend his shelf life in the public consciousness before his debut album.

Lil Nas X & Billy Ray Cyrus feat. Young Thug & Mason Ramsey - Old Town Road (Remix) [Lyric Video] www.youtube.com

MUSIC

The Identity Crisis Behind Lil Nas X's Debut EP "7"

The EP is fun, but confirms that Lil Nas X doesn't quite know what to do.

By now, we all know the story. As told by The New York Times, NPR, Complex, Teen Vogue, Fader, Rolling Stone, and Time Magazine, 20-year-old Montero Lamar Hall, otherwise known as Lil Nas X, is from Atlanta, Georgia, and he's currently (and unexpectedly) the biggest pop star in the country.

We all know he got his start online, curating 15-second musical quips, one of which would grow into the beast that is "Old Town Road." Hall had been pushing his music on Soundcloud for months, but none of it took until he tapped into the micro-niche of meme culture with "Old Town Road." By flooding the internet with witty and unique memes to promote the song, the curiosity of internet-culture-obsessed teen's grew quickly, with Hall remaining mum on any further details of the song. The quip caught national attention after social media influencer nicemichael used the track in one of his trendy dance videos on Tik Tok.

But, frankly, Lil Nas X could have gotten there on his own. "Old Town Road" was born for the internet. The song's quick length, simple beat, and earworm of a chorus made it perfect for sampling online in an abundance of hilarious ways. Throw in Hall's internet savvy personality, unique marketing creativity, and embrace of the already growing "YeeHaw Agenda," and the song was destined to take over the world with or without nicemichael's steady fanbase. Billboard's racism definitely helped, too!

Inevitably, as "Old Town Road" catapulted into the spotlight, so did the 20-year-old college dropout. To his credit, Hall embraced the black cowboy aesthetic in an amazingly authentic way. He struck up a deal with Wrangler jeans that left racist country fans reeling, and in almost every conceivable public appearance he wore a sophisticated yet unique take on cowboy attire. Then came "Old Town Road's" Billy Ray remix, and then the Diplo remix; with each new rendition being promoted as a standalone project, they revitalized a song that could have easily lost buoyancy after a few weeks in the spotlight. But at some point, Lil Nas X was going to run out of road, and Montero Lamar Hall was going to have to show people who he was.

During an appearance on Deus and Mero, he was introduced by the hosts as the "King of Country." "Wait, wait, wait, I don't want to say that," Hall chimed in. "I don't agree with that last one." In an interview with Complex, Hall was asked to explain who he was: "I'm from Atlanta, but I don't really consider myself an 'Atlanta rapper.'" So the question remained: Who was Montero Lamar Hall, and why was he so resistant to embrace a definition? On 7, Hall's messy but charming debut EP as Lil Nas X, he shows us that he's still on that journey, navigating the cesspool that is internet culture in the hopes of finding his next hit and an identity more authentic than a meme.

Yesterday, Lil Nas X released "Panini," an equally silly earworm that borrows almost nothing from the country-pop influence of "Old Town Road." The rapper credited Kurt Cobain as a songwriter, borrowing the song's melody from Nirvana's "In Bloom." On "F9mily (You & Me)," Lil Nas X worked alongside Blink-182's Travis Barker to craft a pop-punk track that Barker admits was initially meant for his band. On "Kick It," Lil Nas X experiments with lo-fi Jazzhop; on "Bring You Down," he plays around with Garage Rock. Almost every song is its own experiment, with Lil Nas X seemingly waiting to see which vibe people enjoy most.

"Yeah I'm going to talk about everything in my music," he told Complex. "[In the past] I was making music more that I thought people would want to hear." This sentiment has left critics like Pitchfork feeling duped. "We don't learn a single thing about Lil Nas X on 7 other than he might have actually been born in a Reddit test tube in 2018." But what is there to know? He's confirmed hundreds of times that he's just a kid from Atlanta who stumbled into fame completely by accident. His music isn't born out of personal emotional turmoil or a form of creative catharsis; its sole purpose is to be consumed by the masses as lighthearted entertainment. He rhymed "Panini" with "meanie," "teeny" and "genie," for god's sake!

Montero Lamar Hall doesn't pretend to know what he wants Lil Nas X to be, and 7 proves that he frankly still has no idea. It's impossible not to admire his willingness to experiment and share his identity crisis with fans, even if the result isn't a necessarily cohesive or groundbreaking album. It's enjoyable for now, but even Hall, who has openly struggled with anxiety, admits this simply can't go on forever. "Why's it always what you like?" he sings cryptically to the masses on "C7osure (You Like)": "Ain't no more actin' / man that forecast say I should just let me grow." The track offers a poignant moment of vulnerability. Lil Nas X has been backed into a corner thanks to his viral success, and while it's all fun and games for now, it's clear that the rapper doesn't know how to turn his trending goofiness into the respected, bona fide rap career he's strived for since the beginning. Lil Nas X has arrived thanks to the power of social media, but the question still remains: Now what?

That Amy’s Baking Company dude who showed off his mad crazy anger management issues on Kitchen Nightmares way back when, went totally POSTAL on a customer Saturday.

Samy Bouzalgo, went after the guy with a knife outside his restaurant—and Popdust has the insane video.

According to TMZ it all went down after Samy’s wife, Amy Bouzaglo, got pissed at a drunk patron and ordered him to leave the Scottsdale restaurant—which he did.

However, Samy wasn’t going to let it end that easily—of course not—did you never see his legendary fights with Gordon Ramsay?!!!

And, sure enough, he promptly chased after the customer, waving a knife and screaming like a banshee. Amy is seen trying to restrain her irate hubby—which eventually she succeeds in doing, and the customer walks off into the night—to write up a really epic Yelp review probably..

Meanwhile, best part of all is that the Bouzaglos insisted to TMZ that Samy was NOT waving a knife, it was in fact just a pen—seriously? A big knife shaped pen presumably?!!!

The curse of Gordon Ramsay's Kitchen Nightmares seems to be like a pretty real deal.

Ramsay is a multifaceted man. And in his 47 years, he's managed to fulfill so many different roles.

Television personality. Restauranteur. Chef. Ginger-head troll?

At least according to restaurant-owner Amy Bouzaglo.

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That's right, it looks like Amy, and a bunch of other restaurant-owners who appeared on Kitchen Nightmares, are not so happy with the award-winning celebrity chef's services.

Amy, and husband Samy, were featured in the season finale of Kitchen Nightmares.

And, to say they weren't happy with Ramsay's services would be an understatement.

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The owners of Amy's Baking Company have been SLAMMING Ramsay all over social media and were so incensed during filming they suffered a number of INSANE meltdowns.

The meltdowns prompted Ramsay to walk off set and actually, for once, appear the sane, reasonable guy.

The FOX hit reality TV show sent Ramsay across the country in an attempt to help keep already-struggling restaurants above water.

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And while ratings may have been digestible (forgive the pun), the results left a lot to be desired.

Ramsay visited 21 different restaurants throughout the show's first two seasons.

Guess how many have closed down?

ALL but two of them.

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That left Ramsay with a 9.5% success rate, and a whole lot of angry reality-show participants.

Ok. We admit it. Ramsay's success rate did improve as the show went on. But, not to the point of being impressive.

Or even all that credible. Want to see the proof?

Check out some of Kitchen Nightmare's failed experiments below:

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Campania: This one's a bad one. Owner Joe sold the restaurant in September 2010 to the Campania Holding Corp and 8 days later committed suicide by jumping off the George Washington Bridge.

Lelas: Closed by the end of the episode. Apparently business was good, but not good enough to combat the owner's debts. It's now a Mediterranean restaurant named Aladdin Jr. Restaurant & Café.

Finn McCool's: Sold in 2009, but closed and boarded up by June 2012.

Sebastians: The restaurant closed in January 2008 for “family reasons." It's rumored that the former owner now runs a Tree Removal/Landscaping company.

Seascape: Sold 5 months after the show was recorded. Now, it's a J & R Steak House, and getting good reviews.

Dillons (Purnima): General Manager Martin tried to sue Gordon and prevent the episode from being aired, but the case was thrown out. While the website is still active, the restaurant has been closed and empty since 2009/2010.

Peters: Despite having replaced all the chefs in the kitchen, the restaurant closed its doors in 2008, after Gordon had revisited the place.

Jack's Waterfront: They sold the restaurant apparently back to the old owners. It then closed in December 2010 and it was sold again and renamed as Dockside Jack's in March 2011, it closed after a month. It was sold again and became Brownies on the Lake in April 2011

Hannah & Mason's: Closed in February 2010, due to less customers, the state of the economy, and Gordon's “alienating" new menu concept.

Black Pearl: Closed 4 DAYS after airing. Owner David blamed Gordon for a 50% drop in sales.

Trobiano's: The place was seized by the state for not paying taxes and was closed in October 2008.

Giuseppi's: Restaurant closed in July 2009, reportedly due to the bad economy and inability to obtain a liquor license.

Handlebar: Sold and then reopened in 2010 as Skybox Restaurant and Sports Bar, then closed again in 2011.

Fleming: Despite their “desert bar," the restaurant closed in October 2010.

Anna Vincenzo's: Went out of business by then time Gordon revisited. Probably because of its high prices and small portions.

Hot Potato Café: While restaurant has been put up for sale on Craigslist, the website has been shut down, the phone disconnected and Facebook page abandoned.

Zeke's: Closed and sold in October 2012.

Cafe Tavolini: Closed in December 2011… their answering machine had a message saying they were closing briefly for “medical reasons" but a “For Sale" sign was put in not long after.

Grasshopper Also: Closed in January of 2014.

PJ's Steakhouse: Closed a few weeks after filming in May of 2009. The owners have since returned to the construction business.

Classic American: While owners reported that business was up 35% after the show, the restaurant closed its doors in 2013.

Blackberry's: Closed in March 2013, according to owner, Shelly, “I want to say we just no longer saw room for growth."

Chappy's: Owners have publicly stated the restaurant closed because “Gordon Ramsay Wrecked My Business."

Bella Luna: Closed 3 and a half months after filming. The landlord claims the owners had not paid the lease in months. It later came out that the restaurant had been serving alcohol with an expired license.

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That's a lot of closed joints.

But the flip side is that Ramsay has also helped a lot of businesses turn themselves around.

And it has to be noted, if you've ever watched the show, you will know that a lot of these restaurants are pretty doomed to fail, no matter who comes in to intervene.

So, we have to ask...