Trent Reznor describes “Old Town Road” sampling as “strange at first”
The Lil Nas X hit that gained massive popularity this year features a short banjo section that comes from the Nine Inch Nails record Ghost I-IV.
Reznor was both realistic and vulnerable with his response to hearing the song."At first, when you hear your stuff turned into something else, it always feels awkward because it’s something that intimately came from you in some way,” Reznor tells Rolling Stone. “You feel a little bit violated, you know?” he laughs. “And then you get over that, and you realize it has become something else, and the Johnny Cash thing is incredible. It’s very flattering.
About Johnny Cash, Reznor is referring to Cash's cover of the Nine Inch Nails' song "Hurt" that released in 2002, a year before Cash's death. Reznor explains how intimate and personal the song is.
"The music from Ghosts that turned into ‘Old Town Road’ certainly didn’t come from as intimate a place as the song ‘Hurt’ did, but it’s still something that I remember what I was thinking about when we did it and then you hear it turned into this other thing — it feels strange at first,” he continues. “But I thought he did a good job with that.”
Reznor states that his agent called him panicked and he told him to not be a roadblock to the situation. That he knows how these things go. He then continues to say that the song is "undeniably hooky."
"Old Town Road" officially released in Dec. 2018 so why the silence for so long?
“The reason I haven’t stepped in to comment anything about it is, I don’t feel it’s my place to play any kind of social critic to that,” he says. “It was a material that was used in a significant way and it turned into something that became something else, and those guys should be the ones the spotlight is on…. They asked if I wanted to do a cameo in the video, and it was flattering, and I don’t mean to be disrespectful, but I don’t feel like it’s my place to shine a light on me for that. I say that with complete respect.”
Ultimately, the Nine Inch Nails frontman has nothing but appreciation and respect for both Lil Nas X and "Old Town Road."
“Having been listed on the credits of the all-time, Number One whatever-the-fuck-it-is wasn’t something…I didn’t see that one coming,” he says. “But the world is full of weird things that happen like that. It’s flattering. But I don’t feel it’s for me to step in there and pat myself on the back for that.”
In case you haven't had enough of it this year, you can watch and listen to Lil Nas X's "Old Town Road" below.
How do you feel about Trent Reznor's reaction? Let us know below!
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