The Billboard Hot 100’s No. 1 singer, Oliver Anthony, who is known for his viral rise to fame over the last month, has cleared the political air regarding who is actually the subject of his song “Rich Men North of Richmond,” denying that he resides in one particular “political bucket.”
Anthony has been open about his past struggles with addiction, mental health, and religion.
“I was obviously introduced to the concept of God and religion as a kid, and I think I was turned off to it growing up,” he said. Anthony explained that the reason he was so “reluctant to accept God as God is because it meant I had to accept all those people…I falsely associated man-made religion and some of the things that go along with the concept of Jesus Christ and God in general.”
A month before Anthony’s song became a hit, he cried out to God promising that he’d get sober if God would help him follow his dream of being a musician.
In front of thousands, Anthony opened his first concert since releasing “Rich Men North of Richmond” by reading Psalm 37:12-20.
Anthony’s success attracted millions of fans and earned the independent singer a certain reputation among media outlets and politicians—a reputation he doesn’t feel fairly represents him. Anthony described the misinterpretation of him and his song as bothersome, disappointing, and aggravating.
“I feel thankful to be given this opportunity,” Anthony told his followers on YouTube. Although he has no idea what the future holds for him, Anthony says he’s not really a concerned about it because he is choosing “living in the present.”
“I just have to have the discernment to make the right decisions from here on out…I don’t want to go on some roller coaster ride and come off a different person,” he added.
“Rich Men North of Richmond” has thrust Anthony into the political arena due to the song’s anti-big government lyrics. Anthony’s song was even featured as one of the questions during last Wednesday’s Republican presidential candidate debate in Wisconsin.
In his song, the former factory worker doesn’t hold back words, even cursing at times, speaking of how he has been selling his soul by working all day and putting up with “overtime hours for bulls**t pay.”
Anthony relates to his listeners, telling them that the working class in America lives in a world where the government just wants to have “total control” by monitoring everything they do and think.