My Cross To Bear – Gregg Allman’s Book

This one was so good, I almost started it right over again.

After losing his dad as a very young kid (a senseless murder victim, no less), and then his brother, legendary slide guitarist Duane Allman in 1971 (when Gregg was just 23), Gregg persevered and carried on the musical torch – taking the Allman Brothers Band to greater heights as well as embarking on a successful solo career.

It hasn’t been easy, obviously. Gregg writes openly about his struggles with drugs and alcohol, his many failed marriages (that’s 6, folks), among them the one and only Cher.

But it’s all about the music, and thanks to the book, I’m diving deep into Gregg’s solo stuff and some of the deeper Allman Brothers Band cuts. Gregg’s 1973 debut, ‘Laid Back,’ is stellar, as is the The Gregg Allman Tour record, which was recorded on the Laid Back tour in 1974.

By the way, Mati Klarwein created that trippy Laid Back cover. He also painted the covers for Miles Davis’ Bitches Brew and Santana’s Abraxas records, among a bunch more.

Great rock n’ roll read. Pick it up…

Amazon: My Cross to Bear

Brandi Carlile – “Oh Dear”

Oh dear. A rush of goosebumps, the welling of tears in the eyes. That moment when you become aware of a special connection between you and a song, and all external noises and worries go quiet. That moment when every ounce of focus – heart, soul and mind – is between you and the song, and you have the sublime pleasure of reveling in its beauty.

This a capella performance of “Oh Dear” by Brandi Carlile and her band worked that magic on me when I watched this ACL performance sometime last year. Everything about it is perfect to me: all the harmony parts, the placement of each character in the group, Brandi’s animated expressions… and – her VOICE. Oh dear oh dear. The pristine falsetto, the inflections, and the purity.

This simply knocked me out.