The Devil Went Down to Georgia, Looking for a Washing Machine

Depending on where you’re at in the South (Georgia, perhaps), this Charlie Daniels Band classic may as well be considered the 2nd National Anthem.  It's been covered a billion times by a million bands, the story has been animated, done with stop-motion and claymation, turned into children's books, and more.

the devil went down to georgia

Still from Primus' rendition and video

Something else that’s strong in the South is making the best out of what you have, a spirit which is exemplified in this video.  Heck, I went to school in the South.  On Monday we'd have hamburger patties, then the next day we'd have meatloaf, then we'd end up having reconstituted corndogs the next day, then we'd have chili with the same meat, then we'd have some kind of soup or sloppy joes on Friday.  No wasting!  And it was delicious each time because our lunch ladies take pride in their work and make the best out of their budget for us.  That's just how we do!  Mystery meat for the win.

devil's mystery meat

Aaron McAvoy, like many of us, has a washing machine that makes entirely too much noise. Sometimes if you’re careful, you can balance the clothes just right when you toss'em in, and stop it a few times throughout the cycle process to re-calibrate it, and it won’t be that bad.  But there’s still something unnerving about a loud washer clinging, clanging, and banging for an hour.  Especially when there's no excuse like some tennis shoes or a cinder block inside it.  The worst is when they start walking themselves across the laundry room.

Well, you can worry about that loud banging sound, or you can grab your favorite acoustic guitar (Or, ideally, a fiddle…) and make the best of it, southern style.

And that’s exactly what this guy did by producing a duet with his janky washing machine:

The original version of The Devil Went Down To Georgia was recorded under the title “Lonesome Fiddle Blues”, except it was an octave lower. Charlie Daniels played guitar on that track, and a few years later he bumped it up an octave, added words, and the rest is history.

There's phases you go through in your life in relation to this song if you live in Georgia.  You grow up liking the song, and eventually you start resisting it.  You get sick of hearing about it.  You get sick of people outside of the state making references to it.  And then, you come full circle and surrender to it.  Then the song is great again.

Did You Know?  In 1993, there was a sequel in which the devil returned to Georgia in order to challenge Johnny again? It was narrated by Johnny Cash, and featured Travis Tritt as the Devil, Marty Stewart as Johnny, and Charlie Daniels along with Mark O’Conner on violin.

If you like this track and want another similar story, check out the thousands of versions out there of Cross Road Blues (aka Crossroads) by Robert Johnson.  The Eric Clapton and the John Mayer versions are great, but the Bone Thugs N Harmony version is the best, even if it's not related to the original song.  Don't hate me for my opinion!