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Charlie Daniels

A talented and showy fiddler, Charlie Daniels and his band fuse hardcore country with a hard-edged Southern rock, boogie, and blues. The group -- which has had a rotating cast of musicians over the years -- has always been known for its instrumental dexterity, but Daniels and company were also notorious for their down-home, good-old-boy attitude; in the early '80s, they became a virtual symbol of conservative country values. Daniels and his band experienced the height of their popularity at the end of the '70s and early '80s, but they remained a popular concert attraction well into the '90s.

Daniels was born and raised in North Carolina, playing fiddle and guitar in several bands during his teenage years. At the age of 21, he decided become a professional musician, assembling an instrumental rock & roll combo called the Jaguars. The group landed a recording session for Epic Records in 1959 with Bob Johnson, who would later become Columbia Records' leading folk and country producer. The record didn't receive much attention, but the band continued to play and Daniels continued to write songs. One of his originals, "It Hurts Me," was recorded by Elvis Presley in 1963. By the late '60s, it had become clear that the Jaguars weren't going to hit the big time, so Johnson recommended to Daniels that he move to Nashville to become a session musician. Daniels followed the advice and became one of the most popular fiddlers in Nashville. He played on several Bob Dylan albums -- Nashville Skyline, Self Portrait, New Morning, and Dylan -- as well as Ringo Starr's 1970 record Beaucoups of Blues. He also became part of Leonard Cohen's touring band in the late '60s and produced the Youngbloods' Elephant Mountain album around the same time.

Daniels cut an album for Capitol Records in the early '70s that was ignored. In 1972, he formed the Charlie Daniels Band, using the Southern rock of the Allman Brothers as a blueprint. The band was comprised of Daniels (lead guitar, vocals, fiddle), lead guitarist Don Murray, bassist Charlie Hayward, drummer James W. Marshall, and keyboardist Joe DiGregorio. The formula worked, and in 1973 they had a minor hit with "Uneasy Rider," which was released on Kama Sutra Records. In 1974, they released Fire on the Mountain, which became a gold record within months of its release; the album would eventually go platinum. Its successor, 1975's Nightrider, did even better, thanks to the Top 40 country hit "Texas." Saddle Tramp, released in 1976, became his first country Top Ten album, going gold.

Throughout the mid-'70s, the Charlie Daniels Band pursued a Southern rock direction. They were moderately successful, but they never had a breakthrough hit either on the pop or country charts. By the late '70s, Daniels sensed that the audience for Southern rock was evaporating, so he refashioned the band as a more straightforward country band. The change paid off in 1979 when the single "The Devil Went Down to Georgia" became a number one hit, crossing over into the pop charts, where it hit number three. The song was named the Country Music Association's Single of the Year and helped its accompanying album, Million Mile Reflections, become a multi-platinum success.

Daniels wasn't able to follow "The Devil Went Down to Georgia" with another blockbuster single on the country charts but, ironically, he had several rock crossover successes in the years following the success of Million Mile Reflections: Full Moon (1980) went platinum and Windows (1982) went gold. Although he continued to sell respectably throughout the '80s, he didn't have a big hit until 1989's Simple Man, which went gold. In the '90s, his records failed to chart well, although he remained a popular concert draw, a trend that continued through into the 21st century.

During the first decade of the new millennium, Daniels quietly transitioned from major labels to independents, releasing records on Blue Hat and Audium, garnering some headlines in 2003 with his pro-Iraq War anthem “This Ain’t No Rag, It’s a Flag,” a song popular enough to launch a spinoff book Ain’t No Rag. Two years later, Daniels established a long-running relationship with Koch in 2005 with Songs from the Longleaf Pines. Daniels’ albums for Koch ran the gamut from bluegrass to bluesy country-rock, punctuated with holiday collections and live records, or thematic compilations like 2010’s patriotic The Land That I Love. Daniels was inducted into the Grand Ole Opry in 2007. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine, Rovi
full bio

Selected Discography

Comments

Basically describes me except I ain't got long hair
A little less talk and a little more action and a few more rednecks is what we need
Best
Charlie Daniels kicks a**!!!
Devil went down to Georgia...an d he never left. Please lord Jesus Christ be w/ us
love this song soooooooo much cx
Yo dodea48 shut the f**k up
kevin.helfen d
I saw Charlie play on Saturday night. The man is 78 years old and he can still rock it!
True country man right here
Bill0605 charlie wouldn't be what he is today if he didn't quit smoking pot of he ever did
The devil went down to Georgia is the best song ever made
Dodea48 you actually need to listen to the songs and know what the words mean and what his point is in the song, you are just jealous of him and all that he is, I've liked his music since I was 8 years old you just need to listen and pay attention, and eye for and eye and a tooth for a tooth mean that you are gonna give them what they gave you right back, you need to learn what something means before you say anything about it, and all this stuff you are saying about charlie daniels, you wont eve
Dodea ease up.
dodea48
Patriotism and Christianity are opposities -- read the Gospels My kingdom is not of this Earth
dodea48
Beating up gay people, vigilante justice and lynching are not Christian activities. Too bad Fat Charlie doesn't know that
dodea48
South's Gonna Do It Again -- just for clarificatio n the song is about music and the new Southern Rock movement --- not about bringing back Jim Crow
Uneasy Rider is a fun song. Too bad he changed. Should have kept smoking pot and staying mellow.
If you ever go back in the wooley swamp .Better not go at night
Kiss hand 5x
Post on 2 other songs
Look under pillow
mcclainslm
Everyone goes through change in life, Charlie turned into one of the most pro American pro Christian artist in the Country music arena. Hard work and mental fortitude was a big part of it and one of the things America has lost due to our P.C,.society . God Bless; Charlie.
dodea48
The song he wrote about how great smoking pot is was a much better song than the one he wrote about lynching drug dealers. Charlie: forgiveness is Christian and respecting the law is American, lynching is neither
dodea48
He was so great before the I am a Christian American here is a list of the people I want to kill stuff
I love Charlie Daniels is the best
His music saids it all!!!
Hell of a storyteller almost as good as the man in black!
Don't read this because it actually works. You will be kissed on the nearest possible FRIDAY by the love of your life. However if you don't read this in 2 days then you will die. Now that you've started reading this don't stop. This is so scary. Put this on five songs in the next 143 min. When your done press F6 an your loves name will pop up on your screen in bigg letters. Trust me it works.
BEST ARTIST EVER!
Charlie Daniels is amazing country singer.
Love their song called The Devil Went Down to Georgia
Devil went down to Georgia!!!!
Charlie is a damn good singer
I love this song
Good christian man too!
infinititomb o m b
This be da cut!! 10/10
a fiddle a gold you say? hmm......... . . . . . . d e a l !
3frankd
that s the best with no extra s thank you f daniels
Mine to YEYE!
This guy is awesome! Ain't no rag it's a flag
" was it 26 "
Simple Man:

Amen!!!!!!!!

Amen.
Say iPhone 5times
Pick a color
Post this on 5 other songs
Look under your pillow
bobnascar88
The best ever all good
I met him when I worked on base sometime between 1997-2003 and he was really nice!
Saw CDB in the early 80's. Love this song, and living in Richmond, VA make it SPECIAL!
Happy 78th Charlie....
The best
mhero5
This song is asome
Makes u wanna dance
Bad a** song!!! Haha!!
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