Fans mourn the passing of their beloved country singer, Gregg Allman.
According to the statement released on his official website, it was revealed that Allman had been battling several health issues for many years. He experienced numerous alcohol and drug-related illnesses and led the artist to cancel many of his tours. In 1999, he was even diagnosed with hepatitis C and Allman had to go through a liver transplant in 2010. The only thing that kept his body and soul empowered was music. Playing music on the road with his brothers and for his dear eased his suffering and tremendously cheered him up.
The 69-Year-Old artist was found in his home in Savannah, Georgia. He was born Gregory LeNoir Allman on December 8, 1847, in Nashville. Together with his older brother, Duane, they were raised by their mom after their father was killed by a hitchhiker in 1949.
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Allman first discovered his deep love for music during a Jackie Wilson concert back in 1960. There, B.B. King, Otis Redding, and Pattie LaBelle were performing. Another instance in his life that influenced Allman to pursue music was taking guitar playing lessons from one of his grandmother’s neighbors.
After forming various bands with his brother, Gregg played the keyboards and was also on vocals while Duane became an ace guitarist. Before they finally settled on a band as the Allman Brothers in Macon, Georgia, they previously formed two other bands—Allman Joys and Hour Glass. They were signed to Capricorn Records and released three albums, The Allman Brothers Band (1969), Idlewild South (1970), and At Fillmore East (1971). Their career was going well until Duane’s life was taken in a motorcycle accident. He died on Oct. 29, 1971.
Allman Brothers Band had only one radio hit, Ramblin Man. It earned the top 2 spot on the 1973 pop charts. Being left to keep the band going was not easy. Gregg would often go solo, and despite the band’s fame as a performing band, they had hardly any airplay. In the same year of his brother’s death, Gregg recorded and released his first solo album, Laid Back. He did it mid-way through ABB’s recording of Brothers and Sisters, their fourth studio album. Throughout the 1970’s the Allman Brothers Band gained excellent commercial and touring success. However, massive drug use and internal opposition among band members constantly left their band’s image and popularity in shambles. The most controversial one ever took place when Allman testified against one of his band’s roadies in a drug case. The roadie was then sentenced to a 75-year prison term but was overturned later on.
The band continued to face many hurdles, with a repetitive streak of reuniting and disbanding once again due to massive drug use and intense tension among its members. Gregg turned to alcohol, consuming up to five bottles of vodka while he lived with his friends in Sarasota, Florida. He remotely did anything related to music. His alcohol addiction got so bad that during the Allman Brothers Band was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1995, Gregg was too drunk and incoherent to finish his acceptance speech. Upon watching a tape of his disastrous speech, Gregg was embarrassed and humiliated and decided to take action to resolve his alcoholism.
Had it not been for his declining health, Gregg would have still lived to continue the impending release of his latest album, Southern Blood.