Well, the Allman Bros Band conquered the world again last nite! Or at least slapped me in the face and woke me up big time!
After the Toledo and Cleveland shows, that were good, but not really *magic*, I was reminded of something last night here in Columbus. I remembered why I go to all these shows year after year, why I trade for so many cd’s, why I come by Hittin’ so often. The search doesn’t always turn up the goal, but last night….. WOW!
I was telling my wife when she picked me up that it was a religious experience, or a spiritual experience, whatever. Time melted away, the people around me disappeared, there was only music.
I got to talk to Joe Bell, good to meet you Joe, before the show at the Hittin’ the Note booth. Of course you know what we were talking about. I finally told Joe that I just didn’t think Derek and Warren take the space, or maybe aren’t given the space, it really “go somewhere” anymore. The 21st century ABB is a powerful, musically fluent, very accomplished blues band, that’s really jams maybe twice a show.
At least for last night, I was sooooo dead wrong. This one was a diamond, just so special from the Mountain Jam opener to One Way Out. I really think Warren makes all the difference. Derek is almost always ready to make the journey, but when Warren can string things together it becomes epic. When he starts fanning too much, or hits a bunch of big chords in the middle of a solo, or starts with the 8 and 16 bar trade-offs, instead of really creating something, it can crash and burn. Last night, he played inspired guitar. He took the entire solo in Dreams, like Duane did early on in the original band. Just a constant building from unhurried lyrical phrases with that big fat tone, to the stratospheric slide finish. Then BOOM into the Liz Reed intro, with Derek squeezing out swooping notes. Did I already say WOW once? OK, I’ve gushed long enough. One more show to go this summer, Cincinnati next Wednesday. Still haven’t gotten a Whipping Post yet this summer. Maybe that one and Rocking Horse next week? Maybe throw in one of the Derek and the Dominos covers? Just begging, hah. See ya in Cincy.

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