It’s a sad day for fans of arguably the best rock band of all time: the Allman Brothers Band.
Gregg Allman passed away today at his home in Savannah, Georgia. He had been suffering from ill health in recent years, dealing with a respiratory infection, a liver transplant, and an irregular heartbeat.
He was 69 years old.
The Allman Brothers Band were known for a progressive blend of blues, jazz, country, and southern-rock stylings, and hit albums like At Fillmore East, Eat a Peach, and Brothers and Sisters.
Some of the songs Gregg Allman was famous for writing and singing with the band were "Midnight Rider", "Ain't Wasting Time No More", "Melissa", and "Whipping Post".
The group's history was marked by tragedy, as guitarist and group leader Duane Allman--Gregg's older brother--died in a motorcycle accident in 1971 at the age of 24. The band's founding bassist, Berry Oakley, died in a motorcycle crash the following year. He was 24 as well.
I got to interview Gregg Allman once, back in 1998 when he was coming to Vancouver for a show at the Vogue Theatre. He was 50, and trying to turn his previously drug-addled life around with the solo album Searching For Simplicity.
“Now that the chemical thing is gone, it makes each day a little more precious,” he told me.
Allman will be buried at Rose Hill cemetery in Macon, Georgia, where his brother and Oakley have been laid to rest.
He is survived by his seventh wife, Shannon Williams, five children (sons Devon, Elijah Blue, and Michael, and daughters Delilah Island and Layla Brooklyn), and three grandchildren.