As of late, industry headlines seem to indicate that Ford is committed to the proposition of reinventing themselves as a truly innovative automaker. From the announcement that they would be phasing out their current car lineup to make way for more evolved options, to the resurrection of such iconic offerings as the Bronco, Ford seems to have realized that they can’t continue to thrive on the merits of the beloved F-Series and Mustang, alone.

To-date, Ford’s reinvigorated sense of innovation might be most evident in the captivating Ford Raptor, which infuses the best-selling F-150 with a sense of aggression, reinventing it for an entirely new demographic. And this sense of reinvention seems contagious, empowering its owners to explore new and exciting aspects to their own personalities.

Meet Zaxx Raptor (the artist formerly known as Zach Billings). Having recently acquired the 2018 Ford Raptor which he had specially ordered six months prior, Zaxx underwent an almost immediate transformation, from industry-leading automotive SEO specialist to enigmatic self-financed musical frontman.

In a world where music-based user sites like ReverbNation allow unsigned musicians to share their craft with a global audience, there seems to be a near-endless supply of unheard music. Some is good. Some is bad. And judging by Zaxx Raptor’s 10-track playlist, some is just plain confusing.

Listed as the ‘visionary frontman of Stupid Long Horse’ Raptor’s profile paints the picture of a successful lead singer, who has left a beloved band in order to pursue a solo career. But no-one has ever heard of “Stupid Long Horse”, leading people to wonder if (like “Zaxx Raptor” himself) the band had ever actually existed.

A co-worker (by the name of Ashley Kheti) who asked to remain anonymous, shares, “Stupid long horse is just another name for giraffe, that someone on the internet came up with. It’s like how you call a raccoon ‘trash panda’. But Zach loves giraffes. I mean, what other man in his late twenties has a giant stuffed giraffe in his bedroom? So, the name of this imaginary band doesn’t surprise me…I just never knew that Zach was musical.”

But is he? According to his younger brother Josh, he isn’t at all.

In fact, a quick listen to Zaxx Raptor’s playlist presents a disturbing realization. While all tracks have distinctive names like “Suck it, Jeep” or “Goodbye, Xterra” pushing play on any (and all) of them reveal little more than a three-track recording of him revving the engine of his new truck, mixed with gunshots and Kenny Loggins ‘Top Gun’ anthem ‘Danger Zone’.

So what’s the point?

According to his friends and family, your guess is good as theirs. This sudden change of identity, and bizarre decision to upload non-music could be an indication of a mental breakdown. Even more strange is his decision to regrow the euro-trash (lower-back length) ponytail which defined his identity in the late 2000’s.

“We’re really worried, that a man-bun will come next,” says his brother.

We approached Zaxx Raptor for comment, but he couldn’t hear us over the blaring sound of “Danger Zone” which he had on repeat for the one hour and 14 minute span of our visit. One can only assume that Ford’s decision to reinvent themselves in bold new ways is having an influential effect on their customer base.

Do you like the direction that Ford is taking? Also, how do you feel about man buns and/or the music of Kenny Loggins? THE LEMON wants to know.


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