Charlie Daniels is dead. Just a shade over three years ago, I wrote this piece in honor of his birthday. The South has lost one of its greatest bards, and Dixie is worse for it.
Daniels recorded arguably his best album, Fire on the Mountain, at Capricorn studios, the Peach State’s famous recording studio in Macon. Unlike FAME or Muscle Shoals in Alabama, Capricorn focused mostly on Southern rock. Daniels understood what was at stake, even in 1974. He was once interviewed about Capricorn and its mission in preserving an authentic Southern sound. He spit in his dip cup and said while important, it might not amount to much.
At the time, that might have been an understatement, but in the current climate of American stupidity, Daniels was probably right. When “Dixie” means “racism,” the entire fabric of American society is being torn to shreds. We’ve already added several Charlie Daniels tunes in this series, and there are a few more in the piece I linked above, so here are eighteen more great Charlie Daniels Band songs to pass the time and remember when. God speed Charlie, and I hope the angels played Dixie as you died.
The Devil Went Down to Georgia: The most famous Charlie Daniels tune but not his best.
The Legend of Wooley Swamp: A boot stompin’ tune with an authentic Southern message.
Georgia: A great song of a people and place and of what it means to be a Southern man.
Simple Man: A conservative Southern manifesto with real grit.
I’ve Been Down: A real Southern jam from one of his earlier albums.
Everything is Kinda All Right: Fitting for the day after.
Carolina I Hear You Callin’: The less conspicuous Charlie Daniels tune about the great Carolinas. “Carolina, I hear you callin’…”
Caballo Diablo: A live performance that shows why the CDB owned the stage.
Riding with Jesse James: An epic but little known Charlie Daniels tune.
Tommorw’s Gonna Be Another Day: Gonna sit and fish all day, ’cause tomorrow’s gonna be another day.
Billy the Kid: A tune that explains why “Western” was in reality “Southern.”
Trapped in the City: Anyone that followed Charlie Daniels knows he loved the country and the agrarian life.
Lonesome Boy From Dixie: A great rockin’ with a fantastic in your face pro-Southern theme.
Was It 26? Chris Stapleton covered this song recently, but Charlie Daniels wrote it, and what man doesn’t have this story in his life?
Carolina (I Remember You): One of the most touching songs any Southerner wrote.
Turned My Head Around: A great song about being a man.
Still in Saigon: Daniels lived and wrote during the Vietnam era and like many at that time was affected by the conflict. This song exemplifies the martial tradition in the South and the heavy cost of war.
Amazing Grace: Charlie does this song well, and it’s a great way to finish the list.