After her song Texas Hold ‘Em arrived at No. 1, Beyoncé became the first Black woman to reach the top of Billboard’s Hot Country Songs chart.

The song was one of several historical firsts when the weekly chart rankings were updated on Tuesday, in a genre where Black musicians’ place has frequently proven contentious.

Beyoncé’s debut at the top of the country charts comes with Texas Hold ‘Em, which was unexpectedly released alongside the tune 16 Carriages during the Super Bowl. 

She is now the second solo female artist to debut at No. 1 (without any supporting featured musicians), following Taylor Swift, who accomplished the same feat in 2021 with her rerecordings of Love Story and All Too Well.

Since the rankings’ inception in 1958, Beyoncé has also became the first female to reach the top of both the Hot Country Songs and Hot R&B/Hip-Hip Songs lists. The only other performers who have topped both charts are Morgan Wallen, Ray Charles, Billy Ray Cyrus, and Justin Bieber.

Similar to Billboard’s main Hot 100 chart, the Hot Country Songs list is a “multi-metric” tally that incorporates US sales, streaming, and radio airplay. The charts posted on Tuesday covered the seven days that preceded February 15th. This indicates that Texas Hold ‘Em, which was released on February 11th, filled its slots after only four days of monitoring.

According to entertainment data company Luminate, it was downloaded 39,000 times and streamed 19.2 million times in the US during that period. While the superstar’s other new song, 16 Carriages, debuted at No. 38 on the Hot 100 and No. 9 on Hot Country Songs, it debuted at No. 2 on the Hot 100 list.

Beyoncé’s second instalment of her Renaissance trilogy is scheduled for release on March 29 and will feature both of these tracks.

The country chart successes follow last week’s internet backlash against Texas Hold ‘Em’s classification as a country hit. After a viral campaign on X, then known as Twitter, an Oklahoman country radio station changed its mind about playing a request for Beyoncé’s new single.

When the station got the request, they stated that they had not yet received the track’s file from Beyoncé’s label. According to Billboard, Texas Hold ‘Em is now being promoted to country radio.

Beyoncé made her debut on the Billboard Country Airplay chart with this song, which debuted at No. 54. Country Airplay solely counts radio play, in contrast to Hot Country Songs.

Discussions over Black performers and country music have frequently arisen. In a well-known instance from 2019, the number-one song on Billboard’s Hot Country Songs chart, Lil Nas X’s viral country-trap fusion, Old Town Road, was taken off the list.

Chart compilers said it wasn’t country enough, even with the banjo arrangement and the horse-riding-themed lyrics.

Billboard stated at the time that “even though Old Town Road contains references to country and cowboy imagery, it does not embrace enough elements of today’s country music to chart in its current version.”

The Recording Academy’s country music committee disqualified Beyoncé’s strongly country-influenced song Daddy Lessons in 2016, disqualifying it from consideration for a country Grammy. Later, she and the Dixie Chicks performed the song unexpectedly at the Country Music Association awards, which prompted new discussions about the politics and imprecise categorization of country music.