Southern Rock Icon Gregg Allman Dead at 69

Allman Brothers Band co-founder and Southern rock pioneer Greg Allman died today at the age of 69. While the exact cause of death is currently unknown, Allman had suffered from a string of health issues over the years and underwent a liver transplant in 2010.

Along with older brother Duane, Gregg formed the Allman Brothers Band in 1969 with Dickey Betts, Berry Oakley, Butch Trucks, and Jai Johanny "Jaimoe" Johanson completing the lineup. Though Duane perished in a motorcycle crash in in 1971, Greg and the other members continued the band through a string of successful albums including Eat a Peach in 1972 and Brothers and Sisters in 1973.

Allman — who also played keys — was known for his soulful voice that was at home with a ballad like "Melissa" as it was with a dirtier blues track like "Whipping Post" as heard on the Allman's landmark live record, At Fillmore East from 1971.

Following their original run in the '70s, the Allmans reunited and toured through different eras and lineup changes. Greg and original drummer Butch Trucks remained the only constant members through the band's five decades of touring, forming the very center of their much-loved sound.

Allman was also known for his solo career which began with the release of Laid Back in 1973 and continued through the release of Low Country Blues in 2011.

Allman is survived by three sons and two daughters, four of whom are professional musicians. According to a statement on the Allman Brothers website, "the family suggests that tributes to Gregg can be made to the Gregg Allman Scholarship Fund at The University of Georgia or the Allman/Lehman Endowed Scholarship at Syracuse University."

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