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The 25 Best Songs: The Allman Brothers Band

by Michael Buffalo Smith

They were the the first, and many consider them the best, band of the Southern Rock era. The fiery slide guitar of Duane Allman, the country meets Django guitar and decidedly country vocals of Dickey Betts, the mournful B-3 and soulful vocals of Gregg Allman, the in the pocket bass of Berry Oakley and the amazing double drum kits of Butch Trucks and Jaimoe combined to create one of the most unique and excellent sounds in all of rock and roll history. We have attempted to list the 25 Best Songs of The Allman Brothers Band. Not an easy task, given their whopping 40-year run. Here’s our list. Please let us know what you think.

1. Whipping Post
    I’ll never ever forget the first time I heard this song. It was summer and I was in Myrtle Beach, and one of our friends brought his stereo and set it up in the motel room. He had two albums. Fillmore East, and Layla. Oddly enough, my personal all time favorite records. From Berry’s bass line to Gregg’s powerful blues vocal, you could feel this one deep down in your gut.

2. Ramblin’ Man
    Back in’73, Dickey just burned up the radio with this one. I never get tired of this song, with Chuck Leavell’s amazing piano and Dickey’s prime guitar work.

3. Melissa
    I always thought this was the most beautiful song I had ever heard. Gregg Allman sings straight from the heart.

4. Blue Sky
    “Goin’ to Carolina, won’t be long ‘til I’ll be there.” You go brother Betts.

5. Midnight Rider
    I love the band version and Gregg’s solo version equally. A classic.

6. Revival
    Les Brers go to church. “People can you feel it? Love is everywhere.” A hippie anthem.

7. Jessica
    Hand’s down, the best instrumental ever. Again, Chuck Leavell plays a major role.

8. One Way Out
    The guitar trade off between Dickey and Duane makes me crazy. Turn it to eleven.

9. Mountain Jam
    I have heard so many excellent versions, and they always knock it out of the park. Obviously the Fillmore version is the gold standard, but I have heard Warren Haynes, Derek Trucks and Dickey do most excellent versions throughout the course of ABB history.

10. Hot ‘Lanta
      Just an amazing song live.

11. Dreams
     Sure, I like Molly Hatchet’s version too, but the original, with it’s odd ball time signature is a moody blues for the ages.

12. Trouble No More
      More of Duane’s classic guitar ripping.

13. Southbound
      Another Dickey favorite. My favorite version was on The Midnight Special, Great Southern with Elvin Bishop, Bonnie Bramlett and Charlie Daniels. That’s what I’m talkin’ about.

14. You Don’t Love Me
      What a groove, brother’s and sisters. What a groove.

15. Soulshine
      One of Warren’s greatest compositions, and Gregg sang the chitlin’s out of it.

16. Seven Turns
     Dickey’s Native American buddy inspired this one, and I could hear it a couple of times a day. I love it.

17. Good Clean Fun
      Rockin’ wide open with Woody and Warren.

18. In Memory of Elizabeth Reed
      Moody and brilliant, just like the writer.

19. Back to Where it All Begins
      This one really got me going. It came on like an autobiographical wompus. Stll get a thrill when I hear it, It was my ring tone during 2005-2007, for goodness sakes.

20. High Falls
      Another truly great Dickey instrumental, named for a favorite wooded area near Macon. A Grammy nominated track.

21. Come and Go Blues
      I dearly loved Brothers and Sisters, and this tune holds particularly fond memories.

22. Stormy Monday
      A classic blues tune kicked up twenty notches at the hands of the Brothers. “The eagle flies on Friday (payday), and Saturday I go out to play.” That’s a working’ man talking right there..

23. Crazy Love
      A downright fun rocking tune featuring Bonnie Bramlett singing along. 

24. Statesborro Blues
      The opening tune from Fillmore East, written by Blind Willie McTell. Duane Allman slides into first base before bringing ‘em all into home.

25. End of the Line
     Another classic Warren Haynes tune. :Life ain’t what it seems on the boulevard of broken dreams.” You can say that again, Warren. Have I told y’all lately how much I love me some Allman Brothers?

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