Oliver Anthony, the hit singer behind “Rich Men North of Richmond,” recently unveiled numerous powerful details about his life and the success he’s experienced since his song exploded and took over Twitter because of its incredible lyrics that strike a chord with average Americans.
Beginning, he noted that he’s seen a huge outpouring of support for those afflicted by the problems mentioned in the song, saying, “It’s been difficult as I browse through the 50,000+ messages and emails I’ve received in the last week. The stories that have been shared paint a brutally honest picture. Suicide, addiction, unemployment, anxiety and depression, hopelessness and the list goes on.”
Continuing, he then explained how the success is a huge surprise to him, writing, “Im sitting in such a weird place in my life right now. I never wanted to be a full time musician, much less sit at the top of the iTunes charts. Draven from RadioWv and I filmed these tunes on my land with the hope that it may hit 300k views. I still don’t quite believe what has went on since we uploaded that. It’s just strange to me.”
Then he said that he’s turned down huge offers because he doesn’t want to be commercialized or be in the spotlight, but just to sing about the problems he sees. “People in the music industry give me blank stares when I brush off 8 million dollar offers. I don’t want 6 tour buses, 15 tractor trailers and a jet. I don’t want to play stadium shows, I don’t want to be in the spotlight. I wrote the music I wrote because I was suffering with mental health and depression. These songs have connected with millions of people on such a deep level because they’re being sung by someone feeling the words in the very moment they were being sung. No editing, no agent, no bullshit. Just some idiot and his guitar. The style of music that we should have never gotten away from in the first place,” he said.
Continuing, he went on to explain his background and his family background, going back to Appalachia in the 1930s, a land of families with “Dirt floors, seven kids, hard times.” Continuing, he described what situation put him o a farm, saying, “In 2010, I dropped out of high school at age 17. I have a GED from Spruce Pine, NC. I worked multiple plant jobs in Western NC, my last being at the paper mill in McDowell county. I worked 3rd shift, 6 days a week for $14.50 an hour in a living hell. In 2013, I had a bad fall at work and fractured my skull. It forced me to move back home to Virginia. Due to complications from the injury, it took me 6 months or so before I could work again.”
Then, he got to the populist message of the post, saying that America is fading as the elites manipulate and divide Americans, “From 2014 until just a few days ago, I’ve worked outside sales in the industrial manufacturing world. My job has taken me all over Virginia and into the Carolinas, getting to know tens of thousands of other blue collar workers on job sites and in factories. Ive spent all day, everyday, for the last 10 years hearing the same story. People are SO damn tired of being neglected, divided and manipulated . . . There’s nothing special about me. I’m not a good musician, I’m not a very good person. I’ve spent the last 5 years struggling with mental health and using alcohol to drown it. I am sad to see the world in the state it’s in, with everyone fighting with each other. I have spent many nights feeling hopeless, that the greatest country on Earth is quickly fading away.”
He also wrote about the importance of free speech, saying, “When is enough, enough? When are we going to fight for what is right again? MILLIONS have died protecting the liberties we have. Freedom of speech is such a precious gift. Never in world history has the world had the freedom it currently does. Don’t let them take it away from you. Just like those once wandering in the desert, we have lost our way from God and have let false idols distract us and divide us. It’s a damn shame.”
NEW: Amid endless speculation and division, @AintGottaDollar just "introduced" himself to the world on his Facebook page.
"Just like those once wandering in the desert, we have lost our way from God and let false idols distract us and divide us." pic.twitter.com/8mXH8CQH5y
— Jason Howerton (@jason_howerton) August 17, 2023
Watch him sing the hit song here:
Rich Men North of Richmond has been uploaded to all major streaming platforms and will show up there in a few days.
Im still in a state of shock at the outpouring of love I've seen in the comments, messages and emails. I'm working to respond to everyone as quickly as possible. pic.twitter.com/iScaYp9AWQ
— Oliver Anthony (@AintGottaDollar) August 11, 2023
Featured image credit: screengrab from the embedded video
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