That time Dickey Betts told me that the Allman Brothers transcend generations

By Steve Newton Allman Brothers Band fans (and guitar freaks in general) seem to really enjoy the audio excerpts I’ve been posting from my four interviews with Dickey Betts over the years, so here’s another one. Back in July of ’92 I did my third interview with Dickey, after the band had released its live album … Continue reading That time Dickey Betts told me that the Allman Brothers transcend generations

That time I asked Dickey Betts why the Allmans weren’t playing “Ramblin’ Man” live in ’92

kirk west photo By Steve Newton As I’ve said before on my other posts about Dickey Betts, I just like hearing the dude’s voice. If you do too, here’s another audio excerpt from my interview with the guitar legend from July of 1992, which–for those who struggle with the math–was over a quarter-century ago. At … Continue reading That time I asked Dickey Betts why the Allmans weren’t playing “Ramblin’ Man” live in ’92

That time I asked Dickey Betts if it was tough picking tunes for the Allman Brothers’ live album of ’92

kirk west photo By Steve Newton If you’re a dedicated fan of the Allman Brothers Band, you no doubt own a copy of their historic 1971 live album, At Fillmore East. Of course, that double disc was highlighted by the amazing slide-guitar talents of Duane Allman, who died in a motorcycle crash three months after its … Continue reading That time I asked Dickey Betts if it was tough picking tunes for the Allman Brothers’ live album of ’92

That time I called Dickey Betts to talk about the Allman Brothers’ new live album and a lady said he wasn’t home

kirk west photo By Steve Newton I’ve interviewed Allman Brothers guitarist Dickey Betts four times, which is pretty cool, since he was one of my main guitar heroes in the seventies. Over the last year or so I’ve been posting audio excerpts from my 1991 interview with Dickey, when the Allmans were touring behind their … Continue reading That time I called Dickey Betts to talk about the Allman Brothers’ new live album and a lady said he wasn’t home

That time Dickey Betts told me that the Allmans had “a good old time” on that porch from the Shades of Two Worlds cover

By Steve Newton When I interviewed Dickey Betts back on July 18, 1991, it was just two weeks since the Allman Brothers had released their 10th studio album, Shades of Two Worlds. That was very much “a Dickey album”, since he’d written or co-written (with fellow guitarist Warren Haynes) five of the album’s eight tracks, and also … Continue reading That time Dickey Betts told me that the Allmans had “a good old time” on that porch from the Shades of Two Worlds cover

Dickey Betts ponders an Allman Brothers reunion and wonders what Duane would think of the music scene in 1989

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, MARCH 31, 1989 By Steve Newton Southern rock. The raw bite of the blues tempered by a free-wheelin’, down-home country feel. Gruff, unencumbered vocals and soaring, twin lead guitars. Songs about ramblin’ men, poison whiskey, and Saturday night specials. You have no choice: ya gotta like it. Unfortunately, in … Continue reading Dickey Betts ponders an Allman Brothers reunion and wonders what Duane would think of the music scene in 1989

That time I asked Dickey Betts what his fave tune was on the new Allman Brothers album

By Steve Newton When I interviewed Dickey Betts back in July of 1991, the Allman Brothers Band had just released its tenth studio album, Shades of Two Worlds, the second to feature the amazing Warren Haynes from Gov’t Mule as co-guitarist. Betts and Haynes wrote four of the eight songs on Shades together, while Betts composed … Continue reading That time I asked Dickey Betts what his fave tune was on the new Allman Brothers album

That time I asked Allman Brothers guitarist Dickey Betts what he’d been listening to in his spare time

By Steve Newton Regular readers of Ear of Newt may have noticed that I, the Newt, really like posting excerpts from my four interviews with Dickey Betts. It’s not just because he’s a guitar legend. Or because he was in the freakin’ Allman Brothers. Though that’s part of it. But I also just like listening … Continue reading That time I asked Allman Brothers guitarist Dickey Betts what he’d been listening to in his spare time

That time Dickey Betts told me about Gregg Allman’s writer’s block

By Steve Newton When I interviewed Allman Brothers guitarist Dickey Betts back in July of 1991, the band had just released its Shades of Two Worlds album, its second to feature the amazing Warren Haynes as a fully fledged member. As on the previous year’s Seven Turns album, Betts and Haynes had written or cowritten the vast … Continue reading That time Dickey Betts told me about Gregg Allman’s writer’s block

That time Dickey Betts told me the secret of the Allman Brothers’ longevity

By Steve Newton It’s been a sad week for fans of the Allman Brothers Band, following the news of original drummer Butch Trucks’ death at the age of 69. I never got the opportunity to interview Trucks–although I have chatted with his nephew, Derek, and fellow ABB founding members Gregg Allman and Dickey Betts. During … Continue reading That time Dickey Betts told me the secret of the Allman Brothers’ longevity

That time I asked Dickey Betts if the Allman Brothers were the originators of “southern rock”

By Steve Newton I’ve been a big fan of “southern rock” since I first heard the Allman Brothers Band‘s version of “One Way Out” on the Eat a Peach album back in high school. Some of my other fave bands in the seventies were Lynyrd Skynyrd, the Outlaws, Molly Hatchet, and Blackfoot. So when I … Continue reading That time I asked Dickey Betts if the Allman Brothers were the originators of “southern rock”

That time Greg Lake told me that what attracted diehard Emerson, Lake & Palmer fans to the band was “music”

By Steve Newton I was a big Emerson, Lake & Palmer fan back in the day. Actually, I was mostly a big Brain Salad Surgery fan back in the day, that day being sometime back in 1973. I didn’t own a lot of other ELP albums, mainly because I was too busy buying albums with … Continue reading That time Greg Lake told me that what attracted diehard Emerson, Lake & Palmer fans to the band was “music”

That time I asked Dickey Betts what song Duane Allman and the Skynyrd boys might be playing in heaven

By Steve Newton If you think I got into journalism at the age of 23–first at my hometown’s Chilliwack Progress and then, for the last 34 years, at Vancouver’s Georgia Straight–mainly so I could interview guitar heroes like Dickey Betts, you’re damn rights. I’ve loved Dickey ever since I heard him and Duane on Eat a … Continue reading That time I asked Dickey Betts what song Duane Allman and the Skynyrd boys might be playing in heaven

That time I asked 18-year-old Derek Trucks if he got tired of the Duane Allman comparisons

By Steve Newton When slide-guitar master Derek Trucks was only 18 I called him up at his place in Jacksonville, Florida, and we chatted for a while. This was five months after the release of the Derek Trucks Band’s self-titled debut album, and already his playing style was being compared a lot to that of … Continue reading That time I asked 18-year-old Derek Trucks if he got tired of the Duane Allman comparisons

Graham Bonnet was bandmates with Ritchie Blackmore, Michael Schenker, and Yngwie Malmsteen, but called Gary Moore his hero

By Steve Newton When I interviewed Graham Bonnet back in 1984 he was fronting a hard-rock/metal band called Alcatrazz that featured an unknown guitarist named Yngwie Malmsteen, who would not stay unknown for long. Two years earlier Bonnet had been a member of the Michael Schenker Group, which also boasted an amazing guitar player, a guy … Continue reading Graham Bonnet was bandmates with Ritchie Blackmore, Michael Schenker, and Yngwie Malmsteen, but called Gary Moore his hero

Duane Allman and Berry Oakley’s motorcycle deaths couldn’t keep the Midnight Rider off his bike

By Steve Newton I’ve been on a bit of an Allman Brothers bender of late. It started a while back when Gregg had to cancel some shows due to a “serious illness”. He’s feeling much better now, I’ve heard, but I still wanted to send good thoughts while continuously cranking out the four-CD Dreams box … Continue reading Duane Allman and Berry Oakley’s motorcycle deaths couldn’t keep the Midnight Rider off his bike

Ever wonder why the Allman Brothers look so damn happy on the cover of At Fillmore East?

By Steve Newton The Allman Brothers’ At Fillmore East is widely recognized as one of the greatest live albums in rock history. And you won’t get any arguments about that from me. The band was at its peak, guitarists Duane Allman and Dickey Betts trading the type of inspired licks that would make future ABB … Continue reading Ever wonder why the Allman Brothers look so damn happy on the cover of At Fillmore East?

Everly Brothers get legendary in Vancouver with the help of Albert Lee

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, JULY 18, 1986 By Steve Newton The Legends of Rock and Roll series, which takes place Sundays at the Expo Theatre, has had some pretty dismal moments so far. But with acts like The Ventures, Chuck Berry, and Ray Charles still to come, the token appearances of people like … Continue reading Everly Brothers get legendary in Vancouver with the help of Albert Lee

Albert Lee says that his Everly Brothers gig was a “natural”

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, JULY 11, 1986 By Steve Newton In the world of music, jolly old England is famous for a number of things. The Beatles for instance. And rock guitar heroes like Eric Clapton, Jimmy Page, and Jeff Beck. But country music is not one of Brittania’s specialties, and it never … Continue reading Albert Lee says that his Everly Brothers gig was a “natural”

.38 Special’s Donnie Van Zant on the origins of southern rock and the drive of Jacksonville bands

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, JULY 2, 1982 By Steve Newton .38 Special’s July 5 gig at the Kerrisdale Arena has been cancelled due to poor ticket sales, and according to lead singer Donnie Van Zant “it’s a real shame”. The show would have been the band’s second Vancouver appearance. Their latest album, Special … Continue reading .38 Special’s Donnie Van Zant on the origins of southern rock and the drive of Jacksonville bands

Dickey Betts says “a dirty little business deal” got him kicked out of the Allmans

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, AUG. 30, 2001 By Steve Newton On the cover of his latest CD, former Allman Brothers guitarist Dickey Betts is pictured standing in the entranceway of his Florida home, surrounded by his six bandmates, a small dog leaning against his denim-clad leg. The 57-year-old southern-rock hero looks contented in … Continue reading Dickey Betts says “a dirty little business deal” got him kicked out of the Allmans

Alvin Youngblood Hart loves Southern rock, was an Allman Brother for a night

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, MAY 25, 2000 By Steve Newton Until now, Alvin Youngblood Hart has been best-known as an acoustic folk-blues performer. His first two albums—1996’s Big Mama’s Door and 1998’s Territory—showed him carrying a traditional torch similar to that of blues revivalists Taj Mahal and Guy Davis. So it comes as … Continue reading Alvin Youngblood Hart loves Southern rock, was an Allman Brother for a night

Talking Ry Cooder, Ronnie Montrose, and the Allmans with Gov’t Mule’s Warren Haynes

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, NOV. 12, 1998 By Steve Newton Bluesman Luther Allison, folk-pop troubadour Jeff Buckley, fingerstyle-guitar innovator Michael Hedges, and jazz drummer Tony Williams might seem unlikely heroes for a southern-rock band, but they’re who Gov’t Mule’s new CD, Dose, is dedicated to. Between the time the band started recording Dose … Continue reading Talking Ry Cooder, Ronnie Montrose, and the Allmans with Gov’t Mule’s Warren Haynes

Sister Hazel’s meat-and-potatoes rock is alright by the Allman Brothers

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, AUG. 28, 1997 As bands sometimes do, Florida guitar-rockers Sister Hazel included snapshots from their youth in the booklet for their latest CD, …Somewhere More Familiar. There are photos of four little kids playing piano, violin, guitar (with a Neil Young headband!), and drums—and one of a smiling tyke … Continue reading Sister Hazel’s meat-and-potatoes rock is alright by the Allman Brothers

Buffalo Brothers pay the price for that sweet Hammond B-3 sound

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, MAY 16, 1996 The members of London, Ontario, rock quartet Buffalo Brothers come from all over the largest of the Canuck provinces. Drummer Glen Gamble grew up in Brantford, bassist Jeff Fountain hails from North Bay, keyboardist Michael Bonnell calls Sault Sainte Marie home, and singer-guitarist Shaun Sanders is … Continue reading Buffalo Brothers pay the price for that sweet Hammond B-3 sound

Yee-haw! Allman Brothers to release southern-rock masterpiece At Fillmore East as box set

By Steve Newton Southern-rock fans saddened by word that the Allman Brothers will perform their final concerts this year should brighten at the news that an historic deluxe-edition box set is on its way. Yesterday the band announced on its website that a six-disc package titled The 1971 Fillmore East Recordings will be released by … Continue reading Yee-haw! Allman Brothers to release southern-rock masterpiece At Fillmore East as box set

Warren Haynes on the Allman Brothers reunion, Dickey Betts’ signature sound, and Where It All Begins

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, OCT. 27, 1994 By Steve Newton Word on the street is that the Allman Brothers Band is playing some of the finest, most intense gigs of its illustrious career. And according to people who have seen the group recently, it’s not just the best-known members—Dickey Betts and Gregg Allman—who … Continue reading Warren Haynes on the Allman Brothers reunion, Dickey Betts’ signature sound, and Where It All Begins