Lil Nas X hesitated before introducing his bottoming banger “Montero (Call Me By Your Name)” to the world in case its lyrics “alienated” his straight fans.
The star put his sexuality front and centre in the chart-topping global hit which includes explicit references to gay sex, not to mention a sinful Satanic lap dance.
While he anticipated the pearl-clutching panic from religious conservatives, he also had to factor in the reaction from his fans outside the LGBT+ community.
“At first I was really afraid of alienating any of my straight fans,” he said in an interview with Entertainment Weekly.
“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.”
That sudden realisation gave Lil Nas X the freedom to create a masterpiece straight from the fiery pits of hell itself – and his true fans couldn’t get enough.
“Once you show the world more of yourself,” he said, “they can relate more.”
Going forward, the “Old Town Road” singer says he’s done tiptoeing around how to act in public.
“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,” he said. “I hope to do that at all times.”
With that in mind, Twitter trolls can expect a lot more of Lil Nas X’s iconic clapbacks in future.
“I’m very much a ‘chaotic good’ person – I almost never want to start shooting at somebody who didn’t bring it to my doorstep, you know? But I kind of live for when somebody tries to get me and I’m ready to throw it back at them tenfold,” he admitted.
“Do I feel bad about it sometimes? Every now and then, but I feel less bad knowing that I didn’t start it. I try to never throw stones, but if somebody throws one at me, I’m throwing an entire house.”