Charlie Daniels, ‘The Devil Went Down to Georgia’ Singer, Dies at 83

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - JUNE 21: Charlie Daniels performs during FOX News Channel's "FOX & Friends" All-American Summer Concert Series on June 21, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Gary Gershoff/Getty Images)

Charlie Daniels, the musician whose biggest hit is “The Devil Went Down to Georgia,” has died at the age of 83, SPIN has confirmed.

The country star celebrated an over 60-year career and was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 2016. In 2008, he became a member of the Grand Ole Opry.

Daniels died from a hemorrhagic stroke on Monday morning at a hospital in Hermitage, Tennessee.

Born on Oct. 25, 1938, Daniels is widely known as one of the greatest fiddle players. Daniels’ early years were spent penning music for Elvis Presley, and he appeared as an instrumentalist on three Bob Dylan albums between 1969 and 1970, including Nashville Skyline, New Morning, and Self Portrait, and on various Leonard Cohen recordings.

Daniels won a Grammy in 1979 for Best Country Vocal Performance for “The Devil Went Down To Georgia.” That song, which was off 1979’s Million Mile Reflections, was a huge hit, landing on country and rock radio, and was popularized by its placement in 1980’s Urban Cowboy. It can still be heard on both radio formats today. Over the years, the song was frequently covered, most notably by Primus.

In addition to his music career, Daniels appeared in film and television roles including Murder, She Wrote, King of the HillSaturday Night Live as a musical guest, and of course, Urban Cowboy. Daniels also performed at the Super Bowl XXXIX pregame show with Gretchen Wilson.

Daniels’ final album, Night Hawk, which was released in 2016. Prior to that, Daniels released an album of Dylan covers.

For the better part of the past decade, Daniels had been battling health issues. In January 2010, Daniels suffered a mild stroke and had a heart pacemaker implanted in 2013. Despite that, he continued to perform regularly.

An outspoken conservative, Daniels tweeted about 9/11, Benghazi, abortion and the Illuminati up until literally his final day.

Funeral arrangements will be announced in the coming days.

As the news of Daniels’ news broke, tributes from the music world began to pour in.


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