One Way Out: The Inside History of the Allman Brothers Band

BOOK: One Way Out: The Inside History of the Allman Brothers Band
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To my brother David, who handed me
Eat a Peach,
then let me sit on that yellow shag carpet listening
to his stereo for hours on end.

And to Jacob, Eli, Anna, and Rebecca, of course.

 

CONTENTS

Endpaper

Title Page

Copyright Notice

Dedication

Author’s Note

Cast of Characters

FOREWORD BY BUTCH TRUCKS

PROLOGUE

Photo of Duane and Gregg Allman, Seabreeze High

Photo of Wilson Pickett and Duane Allman

1. BEGINNINGS

2. PLAYING IN THE BAND

Photo of the ABB on stage, with Dickey and Duane on guitar

3. GEORGIA ON A FAST TRAIN

Photo of the band at the H and H restaurant, 1969

Photo of the band at Macon, Georgia, spring 1969

Photo of Butch Trucks

4. DREAMS

Photo of Duane Allman and Dickey Betts, on guitar

SIDEBAR: DOUBLE TROUBLE

5. ONE MORE TRY

Photo of Gregg Allman with his guitar

SIDEBAR: BLUE SUEDE

6. KEEP ON GROWING

7. LIVING ON THE OPEN ROAD

Photo of Idlewild South

Photo of Dickey Betts behind the lines, at Tulane University, 1970

Photo of Jaimoe and Duane Allman at the Thunderbird Bird Motel, Miami, 1970

Photo of ABB life on the road, early 1970

Photo of Phil Walden (left) and Jonny Podell at a Capricorn picnic

Photo of Thom Doucette (left) and the ABB, Skidmore College, May 15, 1971

Photo of tour manager Willie Perkins

8. LIVE ALIVE

Photo of Bill Graham introducing the ABB

Photo of Big Brother Berry Oakley

Photo of Berry Oakley after the Alabama bust

Photo of (top) Butch Trucks after the Alabama bust

Photo of (bottom) Dickey Betts after Alabama bust

Photo of Duane Allman after the Alabama bust

Photo of Gregg Allman after the Alabama bust

9. PUSH PUSH

10. SWEET LULLABY

Photo of Dickey Betts at his wedding

11. MEAN OLD WORLD

Photo of Duane Allman

12. WILL THE CIRCLE BE UNBROKEN?

13. AIN’T WASTING TIME NO MORE

Photo of the five-man band promo shot

Photo of “The Farm” (from left) Kim Payne, Dickey Betts, Buffalo Evans, Tuffy Phillips. Betts’ father is standing behind him

Photo of Gregg Allman playing an acoustic guitar

SIDEBAR: SWEET MELISSA

14. DRUNKEN HEARTED BOY

Photo of Dickey Betts and Berry Oakely at The Warehouse, New Orleans, 1971

Photo of Dickey Betts, driving near the Juliette farm

Photo of Berry Oakley

Photo of Duane Allman’s and Berry Oakley’s graves

Photo of The Big House, Macon, Georgia

SIDEBAR: THE BIG HOUSE

15. GOIN’ DOWN THE ROAD FEELING BAD

Photo of Lamar Williams, 1973

Photo of Lamar Williams (left) and Chuck Leavell at the Farm

Photo of Dickey Betts and his daughter, Jessica

Photo of Dickey Betts at home, late 1973

16. DEMONS

Photo of Jaimoe and Dickey Betts, JFK Stadium, June 1973

17. MOUNTAIN JAM

Photo of Jerry Garcia and Dickey Betts, Cow Palace, San Francisco, 1973

18. SHINE IT ON

Photo of Dickey Betts onstage with various musicians

SIDEBAR: SOUTHERN MEN

19. END OF THE LINE

Photo of Twiggs Lyndon

SIDEBAR: ORGANIZATION MAN

20. CAN’T SPEND WHAT YOU AIN’T GOT

Photo of “Dangerous” Dan Toler, 1986

Photo of Butch Trucks, 1979

Photo of Dickey Betts and David “Rook” Goldflies

Photo of Mike Lawler, 1981

Photo of Frankie Toler

Photo of the Allman Brothers’ mothers: Mrs. Allman (left) and Mrs. Johnson

21. IT WAS TWENTY YEARS AGO TODAY

Photo of Gregg Allman and Dickey Betts, joint solo tour, 1986

Photo of the ABB in 1990 (from left) Dickey Betts, Warren Haynes, Gregg Allman, Butch Trucks, Allen Woody, Jaimoe, Johnny Neel

Photo of Johnny Neel, 1990

22. REVIVAL

Photo of Dickey Betts with his Navajo spiritual mentor, Stuart Etsitty

Photo of Derek Trucks, 1991

Photo of the ABB, Memphis, 1991, during the
Shades of Two Worlds
sessions

Photo of the marquee outside the Beacon Theater, New York City

SIDEBAR: MARCH MADNESS

23. SECOND SET

Photo of the
Shades of Two Worlds
sessions, Ardent Studio, Memphis. Tom Dowd is on the right

Photo of Warren Haynes and Dickey Betts

Photo of Blues giant Albert King and Dickey Betts, Memphis, 1991

Photo of Gregg Allman and Dickey Betts in the
Late Show with David Letterman
dressing room

24. STAND BACK

Photo of Jack Pearson, 1998

Photo of the ABB, 1997–99, with Jack Pearson and Oteil Burbridge

Photo of Allen Woody, Matt Abts, and Warren Haynes, Macon, Georgia, 1994

SIDEBAR: KICKIN’ ASS

25. LAY YOUR BURDEN DOWN

Photo of manager Bert Holman (center) with Dickey Betts and Gregg Allman

26. WALK ON GILDED SPLINTERS

Photo of Jimmy Herring

Photo of “The Allman Rescue Unit,” 2000: Butch Trucks, Jimmy Herring, Oteil Burbridge

27. ONE MORE RIDE

Photo of Allen Woody

Photo of Warren Haynes

Photo of Derek Trucks, playing with Warren Haynes

Photo of Jaimoe playing the drums

Photo of the ABB frontline since 2001: Derek Trucks, Warren Haynes, Oteil Burbridge

Photo of Gregg Allman and his keyboard

Photo of Susan Tedeschi and Derek Trucks

SIDEBAR: YOUNGER BROTHER

28. HITTIN’ THE NOTE

Photo of the ABB in Gregg Allman’s Georgia backyard, 2003

Photo of Warren Haynes and Gregg Allman, rehearsal at the Beacon Theater, New York City, 2009

Photo of Derek and Butch Trucks

29. THE ROAD GOES ON FOREVER

Photo of Gregg Allman and B. B. King, Apollo Theater, Harlem

Photo of Eric Clapton with the ABB, Beacon Theater, New York City, 2009

Photo of the ABB, 2009

Photo of Warren Haynes

Photo of Duane Allman

AFTERWORD BY JAIMOE

Acknowledgments

APPENDIX: A HIGHLY OPINIONATED ABB DISCOGRAPHY

Index

Photos

About the Author

Copyright

Endpaper

 

Author’s Note

One Way Out
is the culmination of thirty years trying to untangle the myths and legends surrounding the Allman Brothers Band. I have interviewed the members hundreds of times, shared meals, ridden buses, quietly watched rehearsals, and attended countless shows. Through it all, I have never lost sight of why this story matters: the music.

Any access I have gained has been in the service of trying to understand how this exotic brew came to be. I have viewed everything with the eyes and ears of a journalist but the heart and soul of a fan. The Allman Brothers Band, I believe, has no equal.

The original six-piece band, with Duane and Gregg Allman, Dickey Betts, Berry Oakley, Butch Trucks, and Jaimoe created inspired, utterly unique magic. From their remarkable self-titled debut album in 1969, the band succeeded in reinventing blues-based music in a way that was both visionary and true to the original material.

Their music was the result of true group collaboration. Butch Trucks and Jaimoe’s pulsating drive provided unique depth and jazz swing. Dickey Betts and Duane Allman’s guitar work expanded the blues melodically and harmonically, setting a new standard for touch and tone without ever lapsing into overplaying. Berry Oakley’s bass wove between the other instruments, playing melodic lines that tied the music together into one cohesive package. Gregg’s funky organ seasoned the mix, while his vocals sounded both ancient and modern, singing the blues in a legit fashion his peers could only fantasize about.

The instrumental majesty would not have meant much without a magnificent set of songs, written by Gregg Allman and Betts: “Whipping Post,” “Dreams,” “Midnight Rider,” “Blue Sky,” “Melissa,” “In Memory of Elizabeth Reed,” and “Jessica” are both timeless and wildly diverse with clear echoes of country, jazz, blues, and rock.

BOOK: One Way Out: The Inside History of the Allman Brothers Band
4.07Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
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