I'm watching a music DVD I got from Netflix that features the Allman Brothers Band and it struck me that this is music as American as it gets. It mixes rock, blues, country, and even a little R&B & gospel into a seamless blend.
I particularly like Midnight Rider, but it's being abused in TV advertising so much lately that there's none of the pleasure that comes from hearing a great song anew after not hearing it for a while.
And isn't Whipping Post one of the best song titles ever?
What would the world music scene be like, I wonder, if the U.S. had never existed?
I will let you know in a little over 2 hours time man. :-)
Duane Allman is arguably one of the greatest guitar players in rock-n-roll history. Only Hendrix can be considered more gifted. Allman could stand on his session work alone. Clapton had respect and, some say, envy at his talent.
I am biased when I say the time period from the late sixties to the late seventies produced an incredible amount of gifted musicians in both the US and Britain.
But then again you have the 16 year old phenom Quinn Sullivan of today who plays Hendrix and blues so well it is almost indistinquishable from the original artist. Unbelievably talented.
Without the blues as a founding source for rock n roll I am not sure what the Rolling Stones and others outside the US would of referenced for developing the genre. Perhaps Indian music would be more prevalent.
Don't forget gospel music's contribution, which derives from african roots.
The Allman brothers were known as the Allman Joys when they lived in Sommerville, Alabama. Greg was a total drug head even then, brought the first LSD to north Alabama (it was still legal).
Another group that could be considered "the most American band" would be The Band, even though they are 4 fifths Canadian. Nothing seems as steeped in Americana as their self titled album (AKA The Brown Album).
I would put them in the same category. The northern border is very porous when it comes to culture and, musically, are pretty much a single unit, though most of the original inspiration came from the Southern half of the US and from poor Southern blacks.
I love not only The Band but Robbie Robertson's music in general since disbanding The Band. Storyville is one of my Top 5. Anyone who doesn't have it in their collection (assuming anyone collects rather than using Grooveshark or Pandora anymore), must not have heard it.
I don't often say this about music albums, but Storyville is fucking wonderful and Robbie gets to display his unique style of guitar which reminds me, occasionally, of the jazz guitarist Gabor Szabo.
Very very few albums are perfect. Storyville is one.