So here Iam, marooned! Across the dividing ocean that seperates me and my small but loyal band of brothers, fellow Allmans fans, over here in England.
Being an Allmans fan in England can be tough. For example: The Allmans NEVER gig over here (which is OK cause we can make pilgrimages over to see the Brothers). The Allmans album section in our stores is little to non-existent, a tumble weed blows through sections A to B, blank expressions being drawn from the face of the store clerk when you ask for ‘American University’ or ANY of the Brothers albums (which we have to order in on import), Britney Spears being the closest thing to Southern we can get! And it’s impossible to get cornbread and beans in Basildon, Essex!
But the worst thing is how little respected, even how little known the band are to music fans over here. ‘Jessica’ was used as a theme to a series on TV about cars and when you play it everyone laughs, saying: ‘That’s the Top Gear theme!’, ‘Top Gear’ being the programmes name. No respect! The lack of knowledge of what great music the Brothers made and make is frustrating and the lack of knowledge on Duane Allmans legacy is criminal, not just with music fans but the music press as well.
And as for Clapton fans, they don’t even know that Duane wrote the main riff to Layla! It really shakes ’em up when you tell them!
However, there are some of us over here who sip a Jack Daniels and crank up ‘Whipping Post’ in honour to the Brothers and Eric himself played a tribute to Duane at the recent Jubilee Concert, where he played on ‘Hey Jude’ with Paul McCartney and played Duanes licks from the Wilson Pickett version, a silent tribute from Mr.Clapton to say that: ‘Don’t worry, some of us still know. Some of us still remember’.
But enough bitchin’! Being an Allmans fan is a way of life. Once you hear Duane’s split second sigh of feedback on ‘Dreams’ you can never go back. Those of us over here who know will always have love for the Brothers, their music, their love, their way of life and their legend. And we’ll continue to spread the word to those with closed ears until (like the great Red Dog) they hear.
Keep on down that road and eat a peach!
From R.T. Dekko, a brother across the sea.