The Road Goes on Forever: Fifty Years of Allman Brothers Band Music utilizes history, personal interviews and many collected documents to aid in the telling of the story of the humble beginnings and half-century career of the original southern rock band on this, the fiftieth anniversary of their formation.
Author Michael Buffalo Smith personally spoke with former Allman Brothers members including Gregg Allman, Dickey Betts, Butch Trucks. Warren Haynes, and Allen Woody, as well as producers, engineers, roadies and fans to create a tribute to Macon, Georgia’s greatest rock and roll export. Smith takes us inside the Big House on Vineville Avenue in Macon where the band lived during their peak years and into Capricorn Studios where they recorded all of their original albums.
The albums are each given the spotlight as well, including Gregg and Dickey’s solo projects, and the book explores the exhaustive list of recording credits accumulated by Duane Allman during his far too short career. There is a complete review of the unprecedented 40th anniversary Beacon Theatre residency in 2009 that found the band joined onstage by a veritable who’s who of contemporary music greats. More than just a history of the greatest southern band of all time, The Road Goes on Forever is a reference manual for fans of the band, a book filled with ramblin’ men, blue skies, Georgia peaches, and great music. Foreword by former band member and current Rolling Stones band leader, Chuck Leavell.
“This is truly the “Bible” of the Allman Brothers Band.”
-Chuck Leavell musical director and keyboardist for the Rolling Stones. Former member of the Allman Brothers band.)
“Great job Michael, all the research and details show that you put your heart into this book.”
- Jack Pearson (Guitarist, former member of the Allman Brothers Band)
“Michael Buffalo Smith, the dean of southern rock chroniclers and historians, has done it again. His new book, The Road Goes On Forever, is an absolutely comprehensive history of the Allman Brothers Band. This is a must read for serious or casual fans of the Southern rock genre.”
-Willie Perkins (Former Road Manager for the Allman Brothers Band, Author of No Saints, No Saviors)
“It’s easy to be an Allman Brothers fan, it’s hard to explain exactly why they changed the lives of so many of us Southern boys who dreamed of capturing lightning in a bottle. Michael Buffalo Smith helps by putting this book together. Here we get to hear from the people who were there, and hear from the horse's mouths why it changed them. Great insight and cool stories.”
-Billy Bob Thornton (Oscar and Golden Globe Winning Actor, Producer, Screenwriter and Musician)
"Michael Buffalo Smith has done it again! Just when you think you’ve read everything
there is to know about Southern Rockers, here he comes again with a wealth of info
on the fathers of the genre—The Allman Brothers Band! This is a “must read!”
-Paul Hornsby (Record Producer, Keyboardist, founding member of Hourglass with Duane and Gregg Allman)
"There is really only one person who could put together such a monumental task as this, Michael Buffalo Smith is that person. His research, love, and talents for all things Allman Brothers and music come together to give life to the intricate, beautiful and complex history of the greatest "Southern Rock" band the world will likely ever see/hear."
-Tommy Talton (Cowboy, Gregg Allman, Solo)
“Michael Buffalo Smith is an informative, honest journalist with a profound appreciation for Southern music and music in general. He always has a very unique perspective and a fascinating story to tell.”
-Duane Betts (The Allman Betts Band)
“I’ve had the pleasure of knowing Michael B. for a long time. On a personal note, I love and appreciate his work, especially about the music and friends that have been such a blessing in my life all of these years. Thank you Michael Buffalo.”
-Paul T. Riddle (Founding drummer of the Marshall Tucker band and frequent fill-in drummer for the ABB)
“The Road Goes On Forever: Fifty Years of The Allman Brothers Band Music, by Michael Buffalo Smith, is one of those rare works that is able to capture moments in time, and to remind us all why those moments are worth remembering. This book took me back to those long summer nights spent listening to low-watt FM stations, trying in vain to duplicate the distinctive opening notes of “Whipping Post;” it took me back to rainy afternoons pouring over every square inch of the album cover to At Fillmore East as if it were a sacred text; reminded me of the sense of loss I felt each and every time one of the legends who belonged to this iconic band rode the midnight train. Michael Buffalo Smith puts a human face on the band that in so many ways invented the genre that came to be called Southern Rock.”
-Raymond Atkins (Author, Set List)
“There will never been enough books written about the ABB, fans just want more! Michael’s The Road Goes on Forever will join the list of must haves for everyone’s growing library. Covering 50 remarkable years, this one is packed with some great stories, interviews and, of course, Michael’s insights on recordings, events and musical connections with other artists and the musical industry. Another classic!”
-Sandy Wabegijig "Blue Sky" (Former wife of Dickey Betts, Mother of Jessica)
The Road Goes on Forever 50 Years of Allman Brothers Band Music
By Michael Buffalo Smith
(Mercer University Press)
Taking its title from a line in Gregg Allman’s Midnight Rider, Michael Buffalo Smith’s latest book The Road Goes on Forever chronicles the history and music of one of the most storied Southern Rock bands. In his new title, Michael tells the story of the Allman Brothers Band over the last 50 years, with a special emphasis on their music. Author of multiple books on Southern Rock (including Capricorn Rising: Conversations in Southern Rock, Prisoner of Southern Rock: A Memoir, From Macon to Jacksonville: More Conversations in Southern Rock, Rebel Yell: An Oral History of Southern Rock), and as a musician himself, Smith has the credentials and experience to write this book.
Smith has been a fan of the band for almost 50 years, and more importantly he has had the chance to personally interview most of the living members of the band over the last 20. The Road Goes on Forever draws on extensive personal interviews that Smith conducted with band members (Gregg Allman, Dickey Betts, Warren Haynes, Jaimoe, and more), legendary producer Tom Dowd, sidemen Paul Hornsby and Johnny Sandlin, engineers, roadies, and many more. Smith brings his own musical background and extensive experience to add new insights to the story of a band he clearly loves. The Road Goes on Forever goes beyond the usual origin story of Gregg and Duane, providing valuable insights on every artist who was a member of the band, as well as comprehensive reporting on the band’s recordings and key live performances, such as Atlanta Pop and the Fillmore East.
We learn how classic blues and R&B artists such as B.B. King, Little Milton, and Ray Charles influenced the band, as well as more contemporary and equally important musical connections with Eric Clapton and Delaney & Bonnie.
Adding color and perspective to the musical history, Smith brings us inside the Allman Brothers circle with exclusive and historic interviews with band members Dickey Betts, Dan Toler, Warren Haynes, Butch Trucks, and Southern Rock icon Tommy Talton. He takes us backstage and inside the Capricorn studios for a real behind the scenes look at Southern Rock history being made. The book also covers Duane’s extensive and influential session work, and important side projects by Gregg and Dickey, even telling the story of Gregg’s less than successful collaboration with Cher. It takes the reader through the musical highs and lows, including the lows of the Arista years and the highs of the 40th anniversary 2009 Beacon Run. The show by show and song by song narrative of the Beacon run will bring back great musical memories if you were there, or make you feel you were really there if you weren’t so lucky. While the primary focus of The Road Goes on Forever is on the music, we are also treated to colorful stories about the roadies from the golden era (who were always a very real part of the band, and featured on the back cover of At Fillmore East), the “Big House” where the band lived and rehearsed, and more. I have read every book written on the Allman Brothers Band, on Duane Allman, Gregg Allman, and other members and associates of the band, and interviewed most of the members of the band, and in his new book Michael still managed to surprise me with stories about the band that were new even to me. This book is a must read for every peach head, Southern Rock aficionado, or anyone who just loves a good story about American music and the artists who made it. The road does indeed go on forever!
-Brennan Carley (KUDZOO Magazine)
Brennan is a freelance journalist who is working on his own book on the musical origins of the Allman Brothers Band with the working title The Unbroken Circle. His web site is unbrokencircle.net
Review in Today's Deep South READ IT HERE
Review in ALL ABOUT JAZZ, October 2019 READ IT HERE
Review in LIBRARY BOOKWATCH September 2019 READ IT HERE
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About the Author: Michael Buffalo Smith has authored a total of seven books on Southern music history, this being his fifth title for Mercer University Press. He was founder and publisher of both Gritz music magazine and Kudzoo magazine, and has written countless cover stories, interviews and reviews for many publications including Rolling Stone, Mojo, Goldmine, Hittin the Note and Relix. He is also a singer/songwriter with a new album produced by Macon’s Paul Hornsby and featuring Capricorn star Tommy Talton, called Makin it Back to Macon. michaelbuffalo.net