taking pride

Lil Nas X says he worried ‘Call Me By Your Name’ might alienate straight fans

Lil Nas X
Lil Nas X (Image: Texas Isaiah for Entertainment Weekly)

Lil Nas X has talked about his career, being out in the industry and the reaction to his recent, Billboard-topping single, ‘MONTERO (Call Me By Your Name)’ to Entertainment Weekly. The rapper is among four front cover stars for the magazine’s Pride issue.

The other three cover stars are SNL’s Bowen Yang, Pose actress MJ Rodriguez, and writer, producer and director Lena Waithe.

Lil Nas X, real name Montero Lamar Hill, 22, prompted a huge reaction with the release of the video for ‘MONTERO (Call Me By Your Name)’, which found him sliding down a pole into the pit of hell and giving Satan a lap dance.

In the interview, he admits he was initially worried whether the video and lyrics might alienate some of his straight fans.

“At first I was really afraid of alienating any of my straight fans. But then it was kind of like, if they feel offended, they were never really here for me. They were here for whatever version of myself they made up in their head.”

Related: He did it: Lil Nas X takes “song about gay sex” to top of Billboard Hot 100

However, after the video racked up millions of views and the song topped the charts around the world, he knew he’d been right to be himself.

“Once you show the world more of yourself they can relate more.

“Looking back on history, the biggest icons, the biggest artists, are the ones who aren’t trying to always make everybody happy and who were doing themselves. I hope to do that at all times.”

He said he was touched and encouraged by his queer fans, particularly the ones who tell him that he inspired them to come out.

“I want to be a voice for those who pretend to be themselves, but aren’t quite there yet.”

He also said his dream collaboration would be with Drake: “He’s been able to transform himself over and over in his career, which is what I plan on doing in my own, plus he’s super fucking talented.”

Related: Lil Nas X headed to ‘SNL’…with a brand new track

Earlier this week it was revealed that Lil Nas X would be the musical guest on the final episode of this season’s Saturday Night Live on May 22. Besides performing ‘MONTERO (Call Me By Your Name)’, he is expected to debut a new track.

The Pride issue of Entertainment Weekly is out May 14. You can check out a video below in which all four cover stars talk about the meaning of Pride month, their influences and people they’d love to work with.