Music: The Allman Brothers Band

One of the progenitors of Southern Rock music, The Allman Brothers Band originally consisted of the brothers Duane and Gregg Allman, guitarist Dickey Betts, bassist Berry Oakley and drummers Butch Trucks and Jai Johanny 'Jaimoe' Johanson. Founded in Jacksonville in 1969, they went two years in their original incarnation until Duane Allman was tragically killed in a motorcycle accident on October 29, 1971. Remaining lead guitarist Dickey Betts filled in for Duane and the group remained together, eventually adding pianist Chuck Leavell, but about a year later, they lost another member, bassist Berry Oakley, also to a motorcycle accident.

The band limped through a few years fueled by drug scandals (including the arrest of Gregg Allman, though he avoided trial by testifying against some of his friends and colleagues). Afterward, the band broke up for a short time, only to reform in 1978 with a new album and a few new members.

Though the faces in the band changed over the years, The Allman Brothers always delivered strong southern rock, heavily influenced by the blues. The band recently celebrated its 40th anniversary and is still active and touring today. Their associated acts include Gov't Mule (Warren Haynes' band) and The Derek Trucks Band / Tedeschi Trucks Band (the former focusing more on World Music and African influences, while the latter is slightly more bluesy and allows the married Tedeschi and Trucks to tour together.) Their notable songs include "Ramblin' Man" and "Midnight Rider," among others.

The group announced their separation at the end of 2014.

They/Their work feature the tropes:

  • Badass Mustache: Duane Allman's mustache was so awesome it needed the support of muttonchops to contain its mighty power.
  • The Band Minus the Face: After Duane died in 1971, there was some speculation that the band would break up or suffer, but they continued on until 2014.
  • Cliffhanger: A rare musical example. After the end of "Whipping Post" on At Fillmore East, we hear the band move into the first chords of "Mountain Jam" as the album fades out, a cliffhanger that wouldn't be resolved until a year later, when Eat a Peach came out with the remainder of the Fillmore East live tracks and some new studio material.
  • Downer Ending: A common trope amongst many a Southern Rock band. Sadly, The Allman Brothers Band was no exception. Although that said, it wasn't an ending for the band.
  • Epic Instrumental Opener: "Don't Want You No More" (see Siamese Twin Songs); within a single song, "Les Brers in A Minor" is a nine-minute instrumental piece with about three minutes of progressively epic false starts before the song actually gets going.
  • Epic Rocking:
    • The 23-minute version of "Whipping Post" off of At Fillmore East is their earliest, taking up a full side of the double LP. The 33-minute version of "Mountain Jam" (based on Donovan's two-minute long(!) "There is a Mountain") from Eat a Peach also qualifies, powering through "There is a Mountain", "Third Stone From the Sun", and "May the Circle Be Unbroken", over two sides of an LP, featuring extended soloing and duelling between every band member, and reportedly fuelled by a bottle of whisky each.
  • Gratuitous French: "Les Brers in A Minor". Dickey Betts confirms it's "bad French for 'less brothers'".
  • Greatest Hits Album
  • Instant Birth, Just Add Water: Implied in "Ramblin' Man": "I was born in the backseat of a Greyhound bus rollin' down Highway 41."
  • Instrumentals: Usually one or two per album, with "In Memory of Elizabeth Reed" or "Mountain Jam" the most famous. (Or perhaps "Jessica", now better known thanks to Top Gear.)
  • Live Album: On top of the main releases, the band instituted an "Instant Live" gimmick in the early 2000s, recording every concert and making them available to those in attendance, effectively flooding the market with live material - right at the same time they started releasing older concerts featuring Duane as well. Their discography is a mess.
  • The Namesake: Current guitar player Derek Trucks was named for Derek And The Dominos.
  • Real Song Theme Tune: "Jessica" is now the theme for Top Gear
  • Revolving Door Band: Though not to the same extent as, say, The Grateful Dead.
  • Sex, Drugs and Rock & Roll: Gregg Allman had several very public scandals involving drugs, and even flipped on his friends, bodyguards, and a manager to avoid jailtime.
  • Shout-Out: "Free Bird" by Lynyrd Skynyrd was one for Duane. "In Memory Of Elizabeth Reed" (allegedly) was written after Dickey Betts noticed a headstone at a cemetery the band used as a rehearsal spot. Duane Allman and Berry Oakley would later be buried in the same cemetery grounds.
  • Siamese Twin Songs: The first two songs on their first album, in fact: a cover of Spencer Davis' "Don't Want You No More" followed by Gregg's "It's Not My Cross to Bear", a medley that has shown up in countless concerts since.
  • Suspiciously Similar Substitute: Averted; though Dickey Betts filled in for Duane after his death, he never occupied the same prominence and didn't take over all his duties.
    • Warren Haynes took the Duane role in The '80s. Slide guitar prodigy Derek Trucks (drummer Butch Trucks' nephew) replaced Warren, then Warren later on returned and replaced Betts!
  • Surprisingly Gentle Song: Gregg meant to save "Melissa" for his solo albums, considering it too light a song for the band before deciding to record it on Eat A Peach in tribute to Duane. It falls even more into this trope as the years go by, since the Derek Trucks/Warren Haynes lineup plays heavier than their predecessors.
  • Uncommon Time: The Epic Riff from "Whipping Post" is in 11/4. Gregg Allman wasn't actually thinking about the time signature when he wrote it, just whether it sounded cool. Duane had to explain to him what 11/4 was.
  • Vocal Tag Team: Gregg Allman is the main singer, but Dickey Betts and Warren Haynes have taken on lead duties for specific songs.