Singer Oliver Anthony Shares His Faith Journey on the Joe Rogan Experience Podcast
Thirty-one-year-old singer/songwriter Oliver Anthony (whose real name is Christopher Lunsford) has become an overnight sensation. His buzz-worthy song, “Rich Men North of Richmond” sits at the top of the charts and the YouTube video for the song currently has more than 50 million views. The song has become an anthem that has captured a spirit of disillusionment with contemporary politics.
Beyond the hit song, Anthony has himself become a contentious topic of conversation due to the difficulty of fitting him into a simplistic category. Initially claimed as a champion by political conservatives, Anthony was quick to express that the lyrics are aimed at politicians across the spectrum and that he has no interest in becoming a political pawn or spokesperson.
Recently, he appeared on an episode of the Joe Rogen Experience, the podcast with the biggest audience in the world. The lengthy conversation touched on various topics, including the inspiration for his music, his sudden rise to fame, and the criticisms he has faced. In perhaps the most interesting segment of the episode, he shared about his faith journey.
He explained that despite being raise in church, he “found a lot of theatrics and a lot of politics in church when I was younger, and it immediately turned me off from it.” Yet, during a period of hopelessness and anxiety, he found himself turning to the Bible for answers.
“We all have something higher than us,” he explained. “I feel like God is working inadvertently through certain people to get His point across…It talks in the Bible about being a servant…It’s about trying to use what I have as a tool vs. doing what I can in the moment to give myself whatever satisfaction it is I’m trying to get.”
At one point in the episode, he pulls out a Bible and reads directly from Proverbs, emphasizing that scripture is filled with deep wisdom and truth that he’s trying to understand and apply to his life. Anthony uses some language in the interview (and in his hit song) that might be unexpected at a traditional Sunday morning church service, but there is something captivating about the raw authenticity of his testimony. While he has resisted the external pressure to be elevated as a spokesperson or champion for any specific group—political or religious—there is undoubtedly something about his music and his story that has deeply resonated with a lot of people.
You can listen to the full interview here: