Allman Brothers Band

Written by on December 31, 2014

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The Inspirational Allman Brothers Band

The Allman Brothers Band was formed in 1969 by Duane Allman (guitar), Gregg Allman (vocals, organ), Dickey Betts (guitar), Berry Oakley (bass), Butch Trucks (drums), and Jai Johanny “Jaimoe” Johanson (drums). Considered as the godfathers of Southern rock, they blended elements of blues, jazz, country, and even classical influences into their music, redefining the genre with their soaring improvisations and boundary-pushing performances. The group was at the forefront of the rock n’ roll stage in the 1970s and inspired a new wave of rock groups in the ’70s, including the Marshall Tucker Band, Lynyrd Skynyrd, and Elvin Bishop Band, to name a few.

The group’s first two studio releases, The Allman Brothers Band (1969) and Idlewild South (1970), were moderately successful, but it was their third album, At Fillmore East (1971), that gained them critical acclaim. A live album of their performances at Fillmore East in New York, At Fillmore East is filled with powerful jams and extended solos. The album showcased the band’s musical virtuosity and epitomized their signature mix of blues, rock, country, and jazz. The energy of the show captivated audiences, and epitomized the band at their legendary best. Following the success of the live album, the band continued work on their next one, Eat a Peach. However, before it could be completed, Duane died in a motorcycle accident on October 29th 1971. Eat a Peach (1972) was released to commercial success, but bassist Berry Oakley also passed away from an accident a year later a block from Duane’s accident!

The band suffered significant loss, but continued releasing albums and going on tour, with a new lineup including Chuck Leavell, Lamar Williams and they played together for several years. This band actually produced the Band’s best selling album Brothers and Sisters.   By the end of 70s, however, the band started to drift apart. Some members were diverting energy to start their own solo careers. Many also had to deal with their own personal and professional problems. The band had a fallout in 1979 from a drug trial in which Gregg testified against a band employee. For most of the 1980s, the band was on a hiatus, finally reuniting again in 1989 with new members Warren Haynes (guitar) and Allen Woody (bass).

The band continued to experience change in lineups until they stabilized in 2001 with Warren Haynes (who had left in 1997 but returned) and Derek Trucks. Into the 2000s, they remained a top concert attraction, sustaining sell-out shows and continuing their signature complex improvisational style. Famous for their series of concerts in New York each spring, the band finally retired on October 29th 2014. The band was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1995, and presented with the Lifetime Achievement Award at the Grammys in 2012.  The Allman Brothers are played in many different formats with the different members every day. Every Thursday Deep Jams dedicates a couple of hours of Duane Allman’s music, the founding member of the Allman Brothers Band, at 8pm EST, listen it’s well worth it!

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