Charlie Daniels Band Performed ‘In America’ at Halftime of Dolphins-Steelers Game, 40 Years Ago Today

by Clayton Edwards
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Earlier today, the official Charlie Daniels Band Instagram account made a post celebrating the 40th anniversary of their performance at the Dolphins-Steelers game. The band performed their hit single “In America” to a packed house at the Three Rivers Auditorium in Pittsburgh.

Charlie Daniels Band Gave a Nod to the Steelers

When the band recorded “In America,” the Steelers were hot. They had taken home three Super Bowl wins in five years. When the band played their halftime show, Pittsburgh was well on their way to another Super Bowl victory later in the season.

The song, which celebrates the strength of a united American population, gives a lyrical nod to the Steelers. Pittsburgh was in the middle of their dynasty. They were one of the most popular teams in the NFL. So when Charlie warned outsiders of the danger of laying a hand on a “Pittsburgh Steelers Fan,” he covered a wide base.

“In America” Is a Cold War Anthem

The track was released on the band’s eleventh studio album titled “Full Moon.” When it was released in 1980, the United States had been locked in the Cold War with the Soviet Union and its allies for over three decades. The song was written in response to the Iran Hostage Crisis of 1979.

As part of the Iranian Revolution, a group of radicalized and armed college students overtook the American Embassy in Tehran. When it was all said and done, they took fifty-two Americans hostage. They remained in captivity until January of 1981.

This context adds extra depth to what would otherwise be just a fun southern rock tune about the greatness of American unity.

Charlie Daniels Band on Instagram

Even after the passing of their frontman earlier this year, the Charlie Daniels Band has very active social media accounts. Their Instagram is full of throwback posts, like this one, as well as quotes from Charlie Daniels’ lyrics.

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