DICKEY BETTS & GREAT SOUTHERN at the Crofoot Ballroom

TUESDAY MARCH 17, 2009
doors at 7pm
tickets: $25 in advance (buy tickets)

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Born in West Palm Beach, Florida, Betts's early experience was leading a band called The Second Coming, before he and other Florida area musicians met, jammed, and formed The Allman Brothers Band in 1969. Betts was the band's second lead guitarist, behind Duane Allman, and contributed significantly to their trademark dual lead guitar sound. He also wrote songs including "In Memory of Elizabeth Reed" and "Blue Sky" that became radio and concert staples.

After the death of Duane Allman in late 1971, Betts became the band's sole guitarist, and also took on a greater singing and leadership role. He went on to write such Southern Rock classics as "Jessica", and the Allmans' biggest commercial hit, "Ramblin' Man".

Jessica was inspired by his daughter, Jessica Betts, who was born on May 14, 1972 to Sandy Bluesky Wabegijig, a Native American whom Betts married in 1973. Sandy was his first wife. They were divorced in 1975 and Betts married his second wife, Paulette, who is a close friend and personal assistant of singer and actress Cher.

Betts's first solo album, Highway Call, was released in 1974, and featured the late fiddle player Vassar Clements. After the Allmans fell apart in 1976, Betts released more albums, starting with Dickey Betts & Great Southern in 1977, which featured the hit "Bougainvillea," which he co-wrote with actor Don Johnson , with whom he had worked earlier on with the song Ramblin' Man from the Brothers and Sisters album. In 1978 he released an album entitled "Atlanta's Burning Down".

The Allman Brothers reformed in 1979 for the album "Enlightened Rogues" with a new guitar player (Dan Toler) and a new bassist (David Goldflies). Several albums would follow in the 80s with various personnel changes. The reunion brought Betts back together with founding Allman Brothers members Gregg Allman, Butch Trucks, and Jai "Jaimoe" Johanny Johanson. The band was augmented in the late 80s by Warren Haynes, as slide guitarist and lead guitarist, Allen Woody on bass and Johnny Neel on keyboards, (though Neel left after several tours). This lineup of the band went on to release three acclaimed studio albums, with Betts, Allman and Haynes serving as the primary songwriters, as well as several popular live albums throughout the early 1990s.

 

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