Billy Ray Cyrus has announced the release date for his new album! The SnakeDoctor Circus will be released on May 24 on BMG Records, which might include the controversial "Old Town Road" collaboration with Lil Nas X.
"Life is a series of adjustments," Cyrus said in a statement. "I've been working on this album, The SnakeDoctor Circus, for more than two years now. In January this year, my label, BMG, had planned and scheduled the release of this album May 24. Twenty-seven days ago, I heard a song from Lil Nas X and felt the injustice of the way he was being treated.
"You just don't pull the rug out from under someone like that," Cyrus continued. "He impacted a worldwide psyche and touched a universal harmony. That's when I made the adjustment in my schedule, went to the studio, wrote a new verse and sang on 'Old Town Road' with Lil Nas X."
The "Old Town Road" remix includes a new verse by Cyrus, which had lines like, "Hat down, crosstown, living like a rockstar, spend a lot of money on my brand new guitar." The song began to make its way up the country charts, but was later pulled.
“Upon further review, it was determined that ‘Old Town Road’ by Lil Nas X does not currently merit inclusion on Billboard‘s country charts," Billboard said in a statement, via Rolling Stone. "When determining genres, a few factors are examined, but first and foremost is musical composition. While ‘Old Town Road’ incorporates references to country and cowboy imagery, it does not embrace enough elements of today’s country music to chart in its current version.”
Cyrus later defended his participation in "Old Town Road" on social media.
"It was so obvious to me after hearing the song just one time," Cyrus wrote on Twitter Friday. "I was thinking, what's not country about it? What's the rudimentary element of a country and western song? Then I thought, it's honest, humble, and has an infectious hook, and a banjo. What the hell more do ya need?"
It was so obvious to me after hearing the song just one time. I was thinking, what’s not country about it? What’s the rudimentary element of a country and western song? Then I thought, it’s honest, humble, and has an infectious hook, and a banjo. What the hell more do ya need?— Billy Ray Cyrus (@billyraycyrus) April 5, 2019
"A few days passed and I went to the studio to do vocals," Cyrus continued in a second tweet. "When I finished the pass, I whistled at the end of the song. Thats when the engineer stood up and said, 'that s— is fire.' We're keeping that! Glad you guys are diggin' the tune, love seeing all your meme's [sic]."0comments
"Old Town Road" is currently the No. 1 song, across all streaming platforms. Pre-order The SnakeDoctor Circus at BillyRayCyrus.com.
Photo Credit: LOWFIELD