And Still More...

Rod Stewart claims to have spent most of his tenure with the Jeff Beck Group without once looking the leader in the eye. Sonny Terry and Brownie McGhee apparently loathed each other, and Sam & Dave were in much the same boat. They might have been best mates back in high school, but Simon & Garfunkel are another name duo who apparently don't see eye to eye anymore, and then there's the thorny relationship between Elvis Costello and ex-attractions bassist Bruce Thomas.

Now, in some cases, sheer economic necessity might force one or both protagonists to back down, and we might not be talking actual hardship here. If a promoter came along and made you an offer most people would have trouble refusing and you knocked it back you must really hate the other bloke's guts.

But sometimes things have reached the point where the situation is irretrievable. That was presumably the case where Dickey Betts and the Allman Brothers Band were concerned. Now, after all the ups and downs that've affected the ABB through the years you may well have assumed there'd be nothing new that could upset the apple cart but back in 2000 Gregg Allman, Butch Trucks and Jaimoe had apparently had enough.

That's not meant as a criticism, more a reminder that while you might manage to keep things going the interpersonal dynamics may well change along the way. With the passing of Duane Allman and other developments it probably came as no surprise to find Dickey Betts taking over the leader's role. Someone needs to write the set-lists, and in many cases you might prefer to leave the task to someone else.

There are two things that come out of that, however. At this point I'm exploring some of the issues relating to keeping it going after you've got it back together rather than taking a serious look at a particular set of musical circumstances.

The first issue with having someone else doing the set-list is that it also tends to put them into the spotlight. You might not necessarily have a problem with that as a concept, but you might have some objections to what he does when he gets there.


B© Ian Hughes 2012