Happy Birthday Butch Trucks: The Allman Brothers Band Play Jimmy Carter Benefit In 1975

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Drummer Butch Trucks of The Allman Brothers Band was born in Jacksonville on this date in 1947. Butch was a founding member of the Roll & Roll Hall Of Famers. Just he and Gregg Allman were part of every The Allman Brothers Band lineup from their first rehearsal in 1969 until their final concert on October 28, 2014. Sadly, Butch took his own life on January 24, 2017 at the age of 69.

The Allman Brothers Band put their support behind Georgia Governor Jimmy Carter in his successful quest to win the presidency in 1976. One of the fundraisers the ABB played for Carter took place on November 25, 1975 at the Providence Civic Center in Providence, Rhode Island. Television personality Geraldo Rivera introduced Carter after calling the group “the best rock and roll band in the whole country.” Carter then asked the crowd to support his campaign before welcoming, “My friends and your friends, the ones that are going to help me get elected along with you, the Great Allman Brothers.”

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The lineup at the time of the Providence show featured Trucks and Jaimoe on drums, Gregg Allman on organ, Dickey Betts on guitar, Lamar Williams on bass and pianist Chuck Leavell. The Allman Brothers Band kicked off the first of two sets in typical fashion with the “Don’t Want You No More”/”It’s Not My Cross To Bear” pairing. “We got plenty of time, so you don’t need to make any requests because we’re going to play every damn thing we know,” Allman told the crowd before Betts introduced his own “Long Time Gone.”

An arrangement of “Midnight Rider” closer to Gregg’s solo renditions from the last decade of his life led into the group’s biggest hit, “Ramblin’ Man.” Next up was “Win, Lose Or Draw,” the title track from the band’s new album at the time. An expansive “In Memory Of Elizabeth Reed,” bluesy “Can’t Lose What You Never Had,” euphoric “One Way Out” and spot-on “High Falls” brought the first set to a close. The ABB began with the second set with their current single “Nevertheless” and then performed covers of Elmore James’ “Done Somebody Wrong” and Blind Willie McTell’s “Statesboro Blues.”

“Jessica” is a song that never sounds the same without Chuck Leavell on piano. Leavell’s solo started with a beautiful variation on his original from the studio version found on 1973’s Brothers & Sisters. He then weaved in the trademark riffs while expanding on them in glorious fashion. More blues covers were up next by way of T-Bone Walker’s “Stormy Monday” and Willie Cobbs’ “You Don’t Love Me.” The Allman Brothers Band then got down to business with a 20-minute exploration of their classic instrumental “Les Brers In A Minor.” For the finale, the sextet treated fans to “Whipping Post,” which sadly is missing from the audio below.

Listen to The Allman Brothers Band’s November 25, 1975 concert shared by MyinnerEyeMike:

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Setlist

The Allman Brothers Band at Providence Civic Center

Set I
  • Don't Want You No More  
  • It's Not My Cross to Bear
  • Long Time Gone  
  • Midnight Rider
  • Ramblin' Man
  • Win, Lose or Draw
  • In Memory of Elizabeth Reed
  • Can't Lose What You Never Had  
  • One Way Out  
  • High Falls
Set II
  • Nevertheless
  • Done Somebody Wrong  
  • Statesboro Blues  
  • Jessica
  • Call It Stormy Monday (But Tuesday Is Just as Bad)  
  • You Don't Love Me  
  • Les Brers in A Minor
  • Whipping Post
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[Originally Published: May 11, 2019]