Hall of Famer Butch Trucks of Allman Brothers Band dies at 69
Butch Trucks, one of the founding members and drummer of The Allman Brothers Band, died on Tuesday at his home in West Palm Beach. He was 69.
Tampa Bay music fans just saw Trucks and his new band, the Freight Train, perform at a New Year's Eve party last month at Clearwater's Capitol Theatre. The show featured Bradenton native and blues guitarist Damon Fowler.
Butch Trucks and the legendary Allman Brothers were inducted into the Rock N Roll Hall Of Fame in 1995. The Allman Brothers Band, led by the guitarist Duane Allman and the keyboardist and vocalist Gregg Allman, helped define Southern rock.
In addition to Trucks, drummer Jai Johanny Johanson, known as Jaimoe, guitarist Dickey Betts and the bassist Berry Oakley formed in Jacksonville in 1969 before moving to Macon, Ga. Together, the two drummers developed a rhythmic drive that would prove crucial to the band. Trucks laid down a powerful conventional beat while the jazz-influenced Johanson added a second laminate of percussion and ad libitum cymbal flourishes, seamlessly melded into one syncopated sound.
Their big break h came in 1971 with the live album At Fillmore East, featuring an extended version of one of the band’s signature songs, Whipping Post.
Tragedy struck in 1971 when both Duane Allman and Berry Oakley died of injuries sustained in motorcycle accidents in Macon. The band continued to record and tour before breaking up in the late 1970s. Over the last 30 years, the Allman Brothers Band reformed several times with various members.
“I’ve lost another brother, and it hurts beyond words,” Gregg Allman said in a statement on Wednesday. “Butch and I knew each other since we were teenagers, and we were bandmates for over 45 years.”
His nephew Derek Trucks leads the Tedeschi Trucks Band with the singer Susan Tedeschi and was a member of the Allman Brothers Band from 1999 to 2014. Another nephew, Duane Trucks, is the drummer for the band Widespread Panic.