November 20, 1901|
Denmark, South Carolina, United States
|Died||October 18, 1947
Charlotte, North Carolina, United States
|Genres||Piedmont blues, country music|
Julius Daniels (November 20, 1901 – October 18, 1947) was an American Piedmont blues musician. His song "99 Year Blues" appeared on the box set Anthology of American Folk Music and has been covered by Jim Kweskin, Chris Smither, Johnny Winter, Charlie Parr and Hot Tuna on their album Burgers. It has been often credited as a possible source for the tune "Viola Lee Blues", recorded by Cannon's Jug Stompers in the 1920s and the Grateful Dead in 1966.
Daniels was born in Denmark, South Carolina, United States. Although he only recorded a few tunes, Daniels plays an important role in the history of Piedmont blues. One of the first black artists to record in the Southeast, Daniels inspired future bluesmen with his mix of finger-picked blues, sacred and country music.
Recording for the first time, in 1927, Daniels was accompanied by the guitarist Bubba Lee Torrence, with whom he shared billing. During his second recording session, Daniels was joined by the guitarist Wilbert Andrews.
Daniels lived in Pineville, North Carolina, near Charlotte between 1912 and 1930. Relocating to Charlotte, North Carolina in 1930, he lived the rest of his life there, working in a variety of jobs, including as a firefighter. Daniels is buried at the Silver Mount Church Cemetery near Fort Mill, South Carolina.
The Historic Society of Bamberg County held the first Julius Daniels Memorial Blues Festival at the Dane Theater in Denmark, South Carolina, on October 23, 2010. Performers included Drink Small, Beverly Watkins, The Meeting Street Sheiks and Hitman. Gary Erwin was the artistic director. The second JDMBF was held on October 22, 2011, and featured Sandra Hall, Roy Roberts and The King Bees with Rob Baskerville serving as artistic director. The Historic Society moved the JDMBF to the last Saturday in February. Juke Joint Johnny and Elliot & the Untouchables performed at the 3rd Julius Daniels Memorial Blues Festival on February 25, 2012. The 4th JDMBF was on February 23, 2013 and featured Jeff Liberty and Fatback & The Groove Band. The 5th JDMBF will be held on Saturday, February 22, 2014 featuring Anthony Charles & the Blues Dolphins.