The Alan Evans Trio, nee Alan Evans' Playonbrother, were the first band to formally avail themselves of the resources of Applehead Studios for a live with studio audience session in Woodstock New York in 2013. Patterned to a great degree on Levon Helm's Midnight Rambles at his own barn, ultra contemporary facilities in a rustic setting, these events present a unique opportunity for musicians and fans alike to immerse themselves in the spontaneity of the moment even as the engineers-Michael Birnbaum, Kevin Salem and Chris Bittner-are capturing it all for posterity. Drummer Evans, guitarist Danny Mayer and keyboardist ...read more
Nothing warms the heart cockles of a late-Baby Boomer more than a discussion of music, specifically that of his or her childhood. Baby Boomers are a boisterous and opinionated bunch regarding their music, fully justified in believing that the period between mid-1950s and mid-1970s was, in the words of VH1 Executive Director Bill Flanagan, a Golden Age" in American Music. Restrict that conversation to the best live rock recordings and the dialog shifts to a high simmer, under pressure, threatening rebellion or all-out apocalypse at any moment as I was to learn with my graded publication of The Best Live ...read more
Rarely does the opportunity to interview a touring musician arrive with much advance notice. Schedules tend to be dictated by airline departure times, hotel check-out policies and sound checks. If I am lucky, I'll know of an upcoming show in town a few weeks in advance and can plan accordingly. If the artist has a few minutes to chat post-gig, I usually attempt to prep them with a few questions and follow up via phone later. Sometimes however, an opportunity literally sits down in the back seat of your car and starts a conversation. Like most generation x-ers, ...read more
In retrospect, it was inevitable; why it took so long for veteran jazz jam band Medeski, Martin & Wood to get together with Nels Cline is anybody's guess. The über-guitarist has, since joining Wilco a decade ago, managed to significantly raise his visibility, but anybody who suggests that he's been moonlighting" in the alt-country/alt-rock/alt-alt band to pay the rent hasn't been paying attention. Like keyboardist John Medeski, drummer Billy Martin and bassist Chris Wood, Cline's career has been largely associated with jazz--well, before Wilco, that is; that's all changed now--through his lengthy association with Cryptogramophone Records and albums with his ...read more
The Allman Brothers Band Beacon Theatre New York, NY March 21 & 22, 2014 Originally scheduled to be the final two shows of The Allman Brothers Band's 2014 Beacon Theatre run, those dates were subsequently superseded with the announcement of additional performances. However, the distinction returned to the Friday and Saturday shows when Gregg Allman's illness caused the rescheduling of the final four appearances. The founding member and vocalist/songwriter's absence from 3/21 and 3/22 would seem to be quite a liability in itself, yet the remaining member of the group, with some more than able ...read more
The Allman Brothers Band Live at Great Woods 1991 Legacy 2014 When The Allman Brothers Band regrouped in 1989, there were no long- term plans after the roadwork in support of the box set Dreams (Polydor, 1989). Accordingly, when the response to those concerts led to further work, including the signing to Sony/Epic Records, the support the band received, at least at first, was in keeping with the Brothers' growing (re)commitment to themselves and their loyal fanbase. Thus, a concert video filmed at one of ABB's bastions of popularity, the Great Woods ...read more
One Way Out: The Inside History of the Allman Brothers Band Alan Paul 436 Pages ISBN: #978-1-250-04049-7 St. Martin's Press 2014 Apparently the calling to go out and capture the American spirit on canvas came to Norman Rockwell at an early age. Picking up the mantel, and paintbrush, he documented boys at play, secretaries at work, housewives baking pies and other scenes brilliantly depicting various aspects of Americana. What he neglected to chronicle however, either intentionally or not, is what has come to be one of the great American settings and a ...read more
Much as the current Allman Brothers lineup had coalesced in 2003, the ensemble that came together in 1989 for the twentieth anniversary box set Dreams (Polydor, 1989) tour had tightened considerably (minus keyboardist /vocalist Johnny Neel) by the time they decided to engage in their first extended run at New York's Beacon Theatre and record themselves for a live album. Play All Night: Live At the Beacon Theatre consists of performances captured on March 10 & 11 in 1992 and over the course of its two discs, effectively supplants the concert pieces of that era captured on An Evening With ...read more
One Way Out: The Inside History of the Allman Brothers Band Alan Paul 464 pages ISBN: 1250040493 St. Martin's Press 2014 Right on the heels of Ben Fong-Torres' Willin': The Story of Little Feat (Da Capo Press, 2013) comes Guitar Player magazine writer and Allman Brothers Band historian Alan Paul's One Way Out: The Inside History Of The Allman Brothers Band. These books are evidence of the late Baby-Boomers' continued interest in and reverence for the music they grew up with. Part nostalgia, part history lesson, these books will continue to have ...read more
Song of the South: Duane Allman and The Rise of The Allman Brothers Band Chrome Dreams 2013 Song of the South: Duane Allman and The Rise of The Allman Brothers Band emphasizes the cultural impact of this iconic group and its late lamented leader. Even more so than the biography of the guitarist, Skydog, or the unauthorized story of the group, Midnight Riders (the respective authors of which, Randy Poe and Scott Freeman, appear extensively during the course of the two-hour DVD), this video balances the groundbreaking influence of ABB as role models for a new ...read more
The Doors Unhinged: Jim Morrison's Legacy Goes On TrialJohn Densmore296 pagesISBN: 1479263133CreateSpace2013Notwithstanding the all-too-genuine ambivalence that permeates The Doors Unhinged, John Densmore may not have done any favors for himself or the legacy of his band by writing the book. It's difficult, nigh impossible, to truly doubt the earnest intent at the heart of the writing, but in expanding the story of the legal and philosophical squabbles between himself and the other surviving members of the group, keyboardist Ray Manzarek and guitarist Robby Krieger, the drummer of The ...read more
With a new independent licensing agreement now in place, and the 40th anniversary package(s) of Brothers and Sisters (Capricorn, 1973) giving that title its proper due, the Allman Brothers Band may be fundamentally rethinking its approach to its recorded archive. With revelatory recordings of the original lineup limited due in large measure to a relatively finite repertoire, comparably essential titles within the iconic Southern band's legacy deserve due attention, in particular Nassau Coliseum Uniondale, NY 5-1-73. Dickey Betts had assumed a more prominent role within the Allman Brothers Band upon the death of founder and co-guitarist Duane Allman, ...read more
The Allman Brothers Band's new independent licensing agreement restores to the marketplace its most recent studio work including Hittin' the Note (Sanctuary, 2003) and the live One Way Out, Sanctuary (Sanctuary, 2004), as well as all previously released archival recordings. Among the latter reissued titles is Macon City Auditorium, Macon GA 2/11/72, one of the very few appearances the group did as a five-piece unit following the death of founding member Duane Allman the previous autumn. Although not remastered or otherwise modified in its packaging, the two-CD set deserves more than a little fanfare: it is an indispensable ...read more
The swagger that distinguished the original lineup of The Allman Brothers Band is on full display here in Don't Keep Me Wondering," but a comparable confidence permeates this entire performance captured roughly two months before the untimely death of founding member guitarist Duane Allman. Recorded August 26th 1971 at New York's A&R Studios (and broadcast live on WPLJ-FM radio), the sextet is clearly sensing the realization their hard work was beginning to come to fruition with the burgeoning success of At Fillmore East (Atlantic, 1971) released the previous month. Comprised of a setlist not all that different than ...read more
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