Happy Birthday Jaimoe: Performing Live With The Allman Brothers Band In 1970

The crispy recording of The Allman Brothers Band's July 26, 1970 is available on YouTube.

By Nate Todd Jul 8, 2021 11:17 am PDT

Correction: The audio originally embedded in this article was recorded at SUNY Stonybrook on July 26, 1970, not at the Whiskey A-Go-Go on January 24, 1970. The article has been changed to reflect the correct date and location and includes a different YouTube embed featuring the same recording.

The Allman Brothers Band drummer Jai Johanny Johanson, also know as Jaimoe, celebrates his 77th birthday today. Born Johnny Lee Johnson in Ocean Springs, Mississippi on July 8, 1944, Jaimoe began his musical career with notable artists like Otis Redding and Sam & Dave before helping to found The Allman Brothers Band in 1969 with guitarists Duane Allman and Dickey Betts, keyboardist Gregg Allman, bassist Berry Oakley and fellow drummer Butch Trucks.

It was the double drum attack of Jaimoe and Trucks that drove ABB’s live sound, which was quickly becoming renowned throughout the U.S. Just over a year after ABB was founded, the band delivered a stellar performance at SUNY Stony Brook in Stony Brook, New York. The show took place on July 26, 1970 and audio can be streamed via YouTube.

The set kicks off with “Don’t Keep Me Wonderin’.” The song, and indeed the whole set, featured the aforementioned locomotive-like driving beat from Jaimoe and Trucks. The steady and yet complex rhythm not only provided a foundation for The Allman Brothers Band’s guitar players, but also something to play off of. The bluesy “Stormy Monday” followed ahead of the group’s classic instrumental “In Memory Of Elizabeth Reed,” which saw Butch and Jaimoe weaving a web of rhythm underneath the melodic elements of the band. The riff-driven “You Don’t Love Me” came next and featured a more straightforward rock ‘n’ roll backbeat. Another ABB classic, “Dreams,” followed ahead of “Mountain Jam” which, as it often did, stretched to over 30 minutes.

To celebrate Jaimoe’s birthday, listen to The Allman Brothers Band perform at SUNY Stonybrook on July 26, 1970 below:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qw-P1Z7Y9oQ

Setlist

Set: Don’t Keep Me Wonderin’, Stormy Monday, In Memory Of Elizabeth Reed, You Don’t Love Me, Dreams, Mountain Jam

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