1 year ago
Music’s rambling man Gregg Allman, the keyboardist and singer whose gravely voice helped scratch southern rock into the American consciousness, has died.
He was 69.
Allman “passed away peacefully at his home in Savannah, Georgia,” according to a statement on the singer’s website posted Saturday. “Gregg struggled with many health issues over the past several years. During that time, Gregg considered being on the road playing music with his brothers and solo band for his beloved fans, essential medicine for his soul.
“Playing music lifted him up and kept him going during the toughest of times.”
There was plenty of soul in his music over a career that started with the Allman Brothers Band, which he co-founded with his older brother, guitarist Duane Allman. After Duane died in a motorcycle crash in 1971 and original bassist Berry Oakley perished in a similar accident a year later, it was left up to Gregg to carry the mantle. And that he did for the better part of the next 40 years, both with the band and as a solo artist. The Allman Brothers Band was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1995.
His life, though, was also full of enough setbacks to make for the lyrics of a strong country blues song. There was the notorious drug use. A high profile marriage with Cher in 1975 ended up in divorce. Allman was diagnosed with Hepatitis C, from a dirty tattoo needle, which necessitated a liver transplant in 2010.
He had been touring prolifically up until 2016, when he was forced to cancel concert dates, citing health reasons.
See Gregg Allman perform “Good Clean Fun” below.