Charlie Daniels condemns the game featuring his song
Charlie Daniels, writer of the song ‘The Devil Went Down To Georgia’, has slammed the makers of ‘Guitar Hero III’ after the song was used in the game.
He has publicly stated that he would have refused permission for the song to be used if he had the power, claiming that the “very essence” of the song had been “violated”.
Daniels, who wrote the song in 1979 while a member of The Charlie Daniels Band, lost the rights to the song in a past settlement.
He explained on his blog: “The song, ‘The Devil Went Down To Georgia’, which I wrote, is supposed to be a lighthearted novelty about a fiddling contest between a country boy and the devil and the devil always loses.
“I would never grant permission for some company to create a video game version of a song I wrote in which the devil wins a contest.”
Expressing his upset at the devil character who challenges players in
the game, he added: “I’m sorely disappointed with the company who owns the copyright for not policing the situation. As it is they have allowed these people to violate the very essence of the song.
“At this time I don’t know if I have any legal recourse, probably not, but I wanted you folks to know that I vehemently disagree with what has been done to a piece of my work.
“And I would like to pass along a little advice to parents of young children. This game looks innocent enough but if you have a child who is playing it, take the time to sit with him or her while they’re playing along and take a serious look at the images on the screen.”
‘The Devil Went Down To Georgia’ was Daniels‘ biggest hit, charting at Number Three in the US singles chart.
It has since been covered by the likes of Primus, The Levellers and Jerry Reed, and Rednex.
The song has had an impact outside of the world of music, too, with comedian Jim Davidson performing it as part of a comedy tour in 2002 and WWE wrestler The Rock singing it on US TV in 2003.
You can hear the song as it appears in Guitar Hero III by clicking below.