Chilly Gonzales Uses Music Theory To Show How “Old Town Road” Relates To “Purple Haze” And “Wonderwall”

Pianist, composer, and professional music explainer Chilly Gonzales has shared another Pop Music Masterclass video, in which he deconstructs the music theory behind pop hits for interested laymen. His latest subject is Lil Nas X’s 2019 country-rap smash “Old Town Road,” which he argues gets its “country” style from a classic blues major-minor juxtaposition — Lil Nas X’s minor key vocal melody on top of a major chord. Jimi Hendrix’s “Purple Haze” does a similar thing, and, as Gonzales says, “country music is basically blues for white people.” He then goes on to dissect the “90’s feeling” of the song, playing it on the piano to show how it uses the same chords as Oasis’ “Wonderwall.” Watch and listen below.