Various Artists

Alive Down South

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The musical history of Macon, Georgia is undeniably rooted in the R&B, Southern rock and blues that exploded from the region in the late 1960s and early '70s. Alive Down South features previously unreleased live recordings from some of Southern rock's most influential and popular artists -- the Allman Brothers Band, Wet Willie, Stillwater, the Dixie Dregs, Sea Level and Elvin Bishop. The cuts on this disc were remastered and sequenced to sound like one continuous concert, making the music showcased here bold, robust and definitely alive, like its title implies. Stillwater is captured live at the "Rebel Jam" in Atlanta in 1978 doing "Out On a Limb" and "Mind-Bender," followed by the Dixie Dregs from the same venue contributing "Take It Off the Top" and their musical tribute to the home of their label (Capricorn), "Macon Bacon." Elvin Bishop is featured on two of his good-natured tunes from an unspecified date, "Stealin' Watermelons" and "Goin' Fishin'." One of the earliest acts to sign with Capricorn, Wet Willie, are represented by a pair of tunes (Little Willie John's and Little Milton's "Grits Ain't Groceries" and "Everything That'Cha Do") recorded at the Roxy in Los Angeles in 1976. Sea Level, the offshoot project consisting of the rhythm section from the Allman Brothers Band are also captured live at the Roxy with "Take Out Some Insurance" and "Tidal Wave," a song from their first album. Following this is the Allman Brothers Band at the Nassau Coliseum in 1976 with "Statesboro Blues " (featuring a rough-as-a-cob vocal from Gregg Allman) and an uptempo version of "One Way Out" that the crowd responds quite audibly to. The disc closes out with a jam between Sea Level and the Dixie Dregs ("Hot 'Lanta Jam") that really shines as Chuck Leavell tags it with a beautiful coda, incorporating "Little Martha," the Duane Allman and Dickey Betts acoustic tune that closes the Eat a Peach album. For lovers of classic Southern rock, this disc provides a treasure trove of performances.

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