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OPINION

Anthony's Blue Collar Anthem Hits Home and Number One

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Shoreline Sightseeing Job Fair: Chicago, Illinois. A job seeker during the fair at the Navy Pier on April 11, 2023 in Chicago. The current U.S. unemployment rate currently stands at 3.5%. (Scott Olson/Getty Images)

James Hirsen By Monday, 14 August 2023 04:53 PM EDT Current | Bio | Archive

Truths, especially those that have been suppressed, often have a way of emerging in the form of a song.

With one finger on an instrument and another on the pulse of a culture, a gifted songwriter is able to capture a moment, compose melody, and pen lyrics.

With the luck of the draw, the creation may even become a musical soundtrack for its times.

This just happened in the life of former factory worker and off-the-grid farmer Oliver Anthony.

He performed an original song for an audience comprised of his dogs.

The instant the video was uploaded to the web, Oliver’s world changed forever.

Just days ago the Virginia singer-songwriter was unknown to the general public. Now he has the number one song on iTunes. It’s called "Rich Men North of Richmond."

It turns out that Oliver writes his songs from a 90-acre piece of land in Farmville, about an hour outside of Richmond, the place that he and his trio of canines call home.

A performance video of "Rich Men North of Richmond," which was posted by radiowv, currently has more than 8.4 million YouTube views. By the time you read this, it's likely that number will be 10 mllion, if not appreciably higher! 

The footage shows him singing while strumming an acoustic guitar.

His song is blue-collar music at its best, twangy, bluesy, and soul-stirring.

The distinctive country tune speaks the language of average folks and puts into words their feelings of frustration with those who are running the country.

It opens with the following lines:

"I’ve been selling my soul

"Working all day

"Overtime hours

"For bull***t pay."

Reflecting the discontent with the present economic reality and the fallout from unjust governmental policies, Oliver goes on to sing, "Lord, it’s a damn shame what the world’s gotten to for people like me and people like you."

One of the most compelling lines in the song points to the surreal nature of life these days, with the words, "Wish I could wake up and it not be true, but it is, oh it is. Living in the new world with an old soul."

In a separate YouTube introduction video that he posted, Oliver shares that the performance video of "Rich Men North of Richmond" is "the first song to get out there that’s been recorded on a real microphone and a real camera, and not just on my cell phone."

He also shares that prior to finding his musical mission he had "wasted a lot of nights getting high and getting drunk, and I had sort of gotten to a point in my life where even things that I did care about didn’t mean anything to me anymore."

Invoking a famed TV psychologist, he adds, "This is certainly no Dr. Phil episode, but I found an outlet in this music. I started uploading a couple of songs."

He voices his concerns about the difficulties folks face in having to pay high taxes while experiencing the falling dollar.

"No matter how hard they push and how much effort they put into whatever it is they're doing, they just quite can't get ahead because the dollar’s not worth enough, it’s being over-taxed," he states.

He draws attention to the horrific situation in the world involving our precious children.

"One of the worst things a human being can do is take advantage of a child," he says.

"I think I drew the line on being quiet when I started to see that becoming normalized. And I’ll leave that at that."

He explains that "in the last part of the song, it touches on suicide rates and really on mental health and depression."

He goes on to express that "there’s no reason why young men or women in this country should be committing suicide. There’s obviously a problem. People talk about epidemics in this country — the homelessness and the drug use and the lack of skilled labor. . . ." 

He also notes that he sits "pretty dead center down the aisle on politics" and that "it seems like both sides serve the same master — and that master is not someone of any good to the people of this country."

Kari Lake shared her love of Oliver’s song on Twitter/X, posting, "I can’t listen to Oliver Anthony's 'Rich Men North of Richmond' without getting chills."

She added, "It's raw, it's true, & it's touching the hearts of men & women across this great nation."

Country music singer-songwriter John Rich actually made a recent offer to produce Oliver’s album.

Meanwhile, left-leaning media are trying to sully the song.

For example, Rolling Stone published a piece titled "Right-Wing Influencers Just Found Their Favorite New Country Song," characterizing the tune as a "passionate screed against the state of the country."

News bulletin: His song is music to the ears of millions of Americans whose voices have been suppressed and who have simply been suffering in silence.

8.4 million views and counting is the exclamation point, and a fine one at that.

James Hirsen, J.D., M.A., in media psychology, is a New York Times best-selling author, media analyst, and law professor. Visit Newsmax TV Hollywood. Read James Hirsen's Reports — More Here.

© 2024 Newsmax. All rights reserved.


JamesHirsen
With one finger on an instrument and another on the pulse of a culture, a gifted songwriter is able to capture a moment, compose melody, and pen lyrics.
influencers, lake, rich
867
2023-53-14
Monday, 14 August 2023 04:53 PM
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