NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Country music firebrand and fiddler Charlie Daniels who had a hit with Devil Went Down to Georgia™ has died at age 83.
A statement from his publicist said the Country Music Hall of Famer died Monday at a hospital in Hermitage, Tennessee after doctors said he had a stroke.
He had suffered what was described as a mild stroke in January 2010 and had a heart pacemaker implanted in 2013 but continued to perform.
Daniels, a singer, guitarist and fiddler, started out as a session musician, even playing on Bob Dylan’s Nashville Skyline sessions. Beginning in the early 1970s, his five-piece band toured endlessly, sometimes doing 250 shows a year.
His edgy, early music raised eyebrows in Nashville, with â€œLong Haired Country Boy celebrating marijuana smoking and Uneasy Rider poking fun at rednecks. But he softened some verses in the 1990s and in 2008 joined the epitome of Nashville™s music establishment, the Grand Ole Opry.