Oliver Anthony will perform LIVE at Rapides Parish Coliseum on Friday, March 8 at 8 PM. Tickets go on sale to the public on Friday, November 17 at 10 AM.
Country singer-songwriter Oliver Anthony made music history this year by becoming the first artist in history to debut at No. 1 on the Billboard charts without previously having a song on the charts. He is also the first living male songwriter to chart 13 songs simultaneously in Billboard’s Top 50 Digital Song Sales.
A musical poet of the people, Anthony became an overnight national sensation with the release of “Rich Men North of Richmond,” which has been dubbed the nation’s “blue-collar anthem.” But it resonates powerfully with Americans from all walks of life around the world.
The song has been streamed more than 77 million times on YouTube and more than 115 million across streaming platforms. Five of his other songs have made iTunes’ Top 10, with “I’ve Got to Get Sober” reaching No. 3. “Ain’t Got a Dollar” claimed the No. 1 spot on Spotify’s Viral 50 list and No. 2 on ITunes.
Anthony is quickly changing the way musical artists release music and engage with their fans. He speaks directly to his fans through videos shot in his truck or surrounded by his dogs whenever the mood strikes. He doesn’t rely on others to tell his story or interpret his intentions.
Earning comparisons to Bob Dylan, he is a truly authentic artist who speaks the truth for those who don’t have a platform to reveal their struggles.
His passionate voice, featuring a unique and emotional rasp shaped by his personal battles, captures the despair of those living without hope, especially those who live in small-town or rural America. His songs address the nation’s wealth gap, suicide rate, high taxes, and imbalance and abuse of power. Variety says, “It almost seems as if Oliver Anthony hadn’t come along, someone would have had to invent him.”
“Rich Men North of Richmond” has been embraced by people on both sides of the political aisles. For instance, “Rich Men North of Richmond” was recently played at the beginning of the first Republican presidential debate, which was ironic given that some of the people onstage were the same people Anthony addressed in the song.
“‘Rich Men North of Richmond’ touches on my time in Western North Carolina working in the factory. It talks about some people that live north of Richmond, Virginia, who I’m sure you’re very aware of, who make life a little more difficult than it should be,” he said.
Of course, he knows of which he writes and sings. Anthony, 31, lives off the grid in a camper in Farmville, Va., with his wife and two children (with another one on the way in November). He’s been public about overcoming addiction and depression.
He dropped out of school at age 17 and later earned a G.E.D. before working industrial jobs in Virginia and North Carolina. He was unable to work for about six months in 2013 after an accident at a North Carolina paper mill fractured his skull. More recently, he worked in outside sales in manufacturing before his music career exploded.
“I found an outlet in this music,” adding that he “started getting messages from people saying how much the music was helping them with their struggles in their lives.”
Location: Rapides Parish Coliseum ADDRESS: 5600 Coliseum Blvd Alexandria