Warren Haynes has penned a tribute to his musical hero, friend and band mate Gregg Allman following the Allman Brothers Band leader’s death Saturday.
“I am truly honored to have been fortunate enough to have written many songs with him and equally honored to have traveled the world with him while making the best music the world has ever known. I will never, ever take that for granted. And on top of all that, he was my dear friend,” Haynes wrote on Facebook.
“My fondest memories will always be of Gregg, myself, and [late Allman Brothers bassist] Allen Woody sharing a tour bus together-listening to great music and laughing our asses off mile after mile. Traveling – like life – is so much better when you’ve got friends to share the experience with. I’ve lost too many lately and this one is gonna be hard to get past. There is some comfort in knowing that millions of people all over the world feel the same way.”
In Haynes’ tribute, he writes about worshipping the Allman Brothers Band as a musician growing up in the South and how the band blended “soul, blues, rock, country, jazz-all mixed together in a way no one had ever done before.”
“Here was this group of Southern hippies with an integrated band coming out of the Deepest South with equally deep music on the heels of some extremely deep changes. We didn’t realize how heavy that was at the time but we sure realized how heavy the music was,” Haynes wrote.
“Every guitar player in every Southern town was listening to the Live at Fillmore East record and worshipping at the altar of Duane Allman and Dickey Betts. But the icing on the cake was always Gregg’s voice.”
Haynes performed with the Dickey Betts Band and co-wrote Allman’s 1988 solo song “Before the Bullets Fly” before he ultimately joined the reunited Allman Brothers Band in 1989. Haynes remained a member until 1997, when he left to focus on his and Woody’s Gov’t Mule; following Woody’s death in 2000, he rejoined the Allmans, performing with the group until their final gigs in 2014.
[Allman] wrote these amazing songs that were as natural as his voice was,” Haynes continued. “The words and melodies felt so perfectly unpretentious and, when delivered by him, made an emotional connection that only happens when music is genuine and honest. I learned an enormous amount about singing and songwriting from him—most of it before we ever met.”
Read Haynes’ entire Allman remembrance below: