Oliver Anthony revealed why he turned down $8 million after “Rich Men North of Richmond” went viral

Photo by Tima Miroshnichenko from Pexels

Oliver Anthony became an overnight sensation last week after he posted his song “Rich Men North of Richmond” on social media.

But Anthony is not a fan of the public spotlight.

And Oliver Anthony revealed why he turned down $8 million after “Rich Men North of Richmond” went viral.

Most Americans had never heard of Oliver Anthony until last week when his song “Rich Men North of Richmond” captured the hearts of the working class and took the digital world by storm.

But within a matter of days, eight of his songs were in the Top 25 on iTunes, with “Rich Men North of Richmond” taking the number-one spot.

And while Anthony normally played in front of a few dozen people at a farmer’s market in North Carolina, on Saturday more than 1,200 people showed up at Morris Farm to hear him play his hit song.

Country music superstar Jamey Johnson even joined him on stage to play his hit song “In Color.”

On Thursday, Oliver Anthony took the time to introduce himself to his fans on a more personal level in a post on Facebook.

“I’m sitting in such a weird place in my life right now,” he wrote. “I never wanted to be a full time musician, much less sit at the top of the iTunes charts.”

“I have never taken the time to tell you who I actually am,” he added. “Here’s a formal introduction.”

He then informed his fans that his legal name is Christopher Anthony Lunsford.

“My grandfather was Oliver Anthony, and ‘Oliver Anthony Music’ is a dedication not only to him, but 1930’s Appalachia where he was born and raised,” he wrote. “Dirt floors, seven kids, hard times,” he continued, before adding that “at this point, I’ll gladly go by Oliver because everyone knows me as such.”

Lunsford then explained how he dropped out of high school at age 17, but later got his GED before working “multiple plant jobs in Western NC.”

A fall that resulted in a fractured skull forced him to move back to Virginia in 2013 where he spent six months recovering.

“From 2014 until just a few days ago, I’ve worked outside sales in the industrial manufacturing world,” he wrote. “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. I’ve spent all day, everyday, for the last 10 years hearing the same story. People are SO damn tired of being neglected, divided and manipulated.”

He currently lives “in a 27′ camper with a tarp on the roof that I got off of craigslist for $750.”

But despite these poor living conditions, he said he is not interested in tour buses, millions of dollars, and private jets.

“People in the music industry give me blank stares when I brush off 8 million dollar offers,” he wrote. “I don’t want 6 tour buses, 15 tractor trailers and a jet,” he continued, adding that “I don’t want to play stadium shows, I don’t want to be in the spotlight.”

Oliver Anthony is a breath of fresh air in a world full of fake performance artists who frequently trash their values and beliefs for a buck.

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