An unknown Virginia artist has become an overnight sensation after a video of him performing a soulful rendition of his blue-collar anthem, “Rich Men North of Richmond,” went viral, the Daily Mail reported over the weekend.
The clip, which has been viewed millions of times in just a few days, shows Oliver Anthony emotionally singing each word of his “bone-chilling” song while playing his guitar in the woods.
During that time, the song has supplanted Jason Aldean’s “Try That in a Small Town” by catapulting to No.1 on the iTunes Country chart, according to Billboard.
The title of the song apparently refers to politicians in Washington, D.C., who Anthony claims want to suck Americans dry and “have total control,” the New York Daily News reported.
The song also rails against high taxes and how difficult it is to make ends meet, as well as harshly criticizing welfare.
Anthony said of the working class, according to Billboard, “The universal thing I see is no matter how much effort they put into whatever it is they’re doing, they can’t quite get ahead because the dollar’s not worth enough, they are being overtaxed. … I want to be a voice for those people. And not just them, but humans in general.”
WATCH THE CLIP BELOW:
Thousands of people have reacted to the song, including commentator Matt Walsh, who posted on social media site X: “The main reason this song resonates with so many people isn’t political. It’s because the song is raw and authentic. We are suffocated by artificiality.”
Another listener said: “This is not a song. It’s an anthem for 80+ million Americans who have been smeared, ignored, mocked, slandered, and robbed by their own government,” the New York Daily News reported.
Someone else said, “It’s exactly how all of us are feeling! God bless the hardworking, middle-class Americans, and God bless this great country!”
The song has also received praise from Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Ga., who posted on X: “This is the anthem of the forgotten Americans who truly support this nation and unfortunately the world with their hard earned tax dollars and incredibly hard work.
“This song represents my district and the people of America I know and love. I will fight for the forgotten American every damn day.”