Gregg Allman gave this concert -- captured in his first-ever solo home video release, accompanied by a CD-only version -- on January 14, 2014, just a few months before the Allman Brothers Band said farewell with a series of concerts at the Beacon Theater in New York City. The Beacon was an unofficial home base for the Allmans -- they played over 200 shows there since 1989 -- but Macon, Georgia was their original stomping ground, so Gregg's 2014 show was something of a homecoming. Appropriately, Gregg Allman Live: Back to Macon, GA exudes relaxed warmth, a comfortable groove that allows Allman and crew to slip into solos without losing sight of the song. That's the big difference between Back to Macon, GA and an epic Allman Brothers Band show: apart from the epic encore of "One Way Out," everything is relatively concise, clocking in around the five-minute mark. This allows Allman to fit 16 songs into 90 minutes and while all the expected staples are here -- the show opens with "Statesboro Blues" and "I'm No Angel," then concludes with "Whipping Post," with "Ain't Wastin' Time No More," "Melissa," and "Midnight Rider" all making appearances along the way -- there are a few deep dives into his solo catalog that help give this show a nice dimension. More than anything, this live show is distinguished by its casualness -- there are hits, but not enough for this to be an oldies revue; there are obscurities, but they don't distract; there is virtuosity, but no showboating; there's stylistic diversity, but it feels unified -- and that's why it's worth experiencing: it's an old pro whose home is a stage, no matter where that stage is and who happens to be on it.
Share this page
AllMusic Review by Stephen Thomas Erlewine
Track Listing - Disc 1
Track Listing - Disc 2