HomeEntertainmentMusicOn This Day: Charlie Daniels Plays at Democratic President Jimmy Carter’s Inauguration in 1977

On This Day: Charlie Daniels Plays at Democratic President Jimmy Carter’s Inauguration in 1977

by Emily Morgan
(Photo By Rick Diamond/Getty Images)

While the late Charlie Daniels wasn’t exactly shy about his conservative political and social views, he put his differences aside when he performed at the inauguration of Democratic president Jimmy Carter. 

In 1976, Georgia Governor Jimmy Carter ran for commander-in-chief against Gerald Ford, who held the office of the presidency after Richard Nixon resigned in August of 1974. 

Before Carter’s inauguration, Daniels and his band headlined a benefit for Carter in Nashville that drew over 11,000 people. When Carter won the race, Daniels performed again at his inaugural ceremony on Jan. 20, 1977.

Despite being a staunch and outspoken supporter of Republican politics, Daniels believed he made the right choice in performing. 

“Jimmy Carter is a good man,” Charlie Daniels told the Tennessean in 2014. “He came along, a fresh-faced young man out of Georgia, and he spoke plainly, saying, ‘I never will tell you a lie.’ I don’t think he ever did tell us a lie. I voted for Carter the second time, too. He wasn’t part of the establishment. The town of Washington ate him alive.”

Former President Jimmy Carter & Wife Send Biden Family Well-Wishes From Home Ahead Of Innaguation

Former President Jimmy Carter and his wife of nearly 75 years, Rosalynn, are sending their well-wishes from home as President-elect Joe Biden gets sworn in as the 46th president. This is the first inauguration he has been absent from since his own in 1977. 

As a young Delaware senator, Biden supported Carter during his term in the White House.

In a statement shared with PEOPLE magazine, a spokesperson for the Carter Center said the former president, 96, and his wife, 93, “will not travel to Washington for the inauguration but have sent their best wishes to President-elect Biden and Vice President-elect Harris and look forward to a successful administration.”

In the past, Carter has been an outspoke supporter of Biden. Carter has also stayed close to home in Plains, Georgia, during the pandemic. 

The last time Carter traveled to Washington for an official event was in 2018 for former President George H.W. Bush’s funeral. 

In March 2019, Carter became the longest-lived American president, eclipsing former President George H.W. Bush, who died the previous November.

Carter survived a melanoma diagnosis that spread to his brain in 2015. Following a hip replacement surgery and numerous falls, he no longer teaches Sunday School at his local Baptist church. Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Carter participates in virtual church activities.