Monday, June 17, 2024

Oliver Anthony, Last Year’s Million Selling Sensation, Has Almost No Sales This Year — But He Thinks It’s Funny


Last year in August, Oliver Anthony’s “Rich Men North of Richmond,” became a chart sensation.

Anthony’s backwater redneck songs — all released independently — became an overnight sensation, especially among country music fans.

Suddenly, everyone wanted to know who Oliver Anthony was — and to exploit him. Even Donald Trump tried to co-opt Anthony, but the singer shied away eventually.

(Anthony had said yet if he still supports the convicted 34 time felon.)

Anthony went on to sell millions of records in 2023.

This year alone, to date, “Rich Men” has sold the streaming equivalent of 660,000 copies.

But like any fad, Oliver Anthony went the way of all things. He refused to play ball with record companies, and eventually the spotlight turned away from him.

Now Anthony is spoofing himself with an Instagram post. He says he’s signed with a major label in a video. The camera pulls away to reveal it’s all a joke, and that his new label chief is his very cute dog, dressed in a suit.

All joking aside, however, Anthony will have to live on last year’s sales forever. His current album, his only album, called “Hymnal of a Troubled Man’s Mind,” has been a dud. Luminate reports that the album, released in March, has sold just 2,777 copies in hard sales. Including streaming, the number bulks up to 105K. Anthony is a contrarian, and obviously doesn’t care. He just plays his gigs to his fans and he’s happy with that result. In a way, it sounds like a good life. His staff is composed of his dog, and he looks happy.

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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