Over the weekend, The Allman Brothers Band hosted their second annual Peach Music Festival at Montage Mountain in Scranton, PA. The band co-headlined two of the three days at the event with founding Grateful Dead singer/guitarist Bob Weir and his band RatDog, who ABB guitarist Derek Trucks says was a perfect match for the festival.
“There’s something about the Grateful Dead camp and the Allman Brothers camp getting together,” he tells ABC News Radio. “They’re kind of the last giants from that era and they started that music, you know, the whole jam band movement. East Coast is the Allman Brothers and West Coast is…the Grateful Dead, and I feel like it’s great when you can do a festival that combines the two. It just seems like a natural fit.”
During the event, a number of surprise musical collaborations occurred. Bob Weir sat in with the Allman Brothers during Friday night’s set for “Good Morning Little Schoolgirl,” while Grace Potter joined Weir and RatDog for a cover of The Beatles’ “Dear Prudence.” The next day, ABB spinoff group Gov’t Mule -- fronted by guitarist Warren Haynes -- welcomed tenor saxophonists Karl Denson, Ron Holloway and Bill Evans for an extended version of “The Devil Likes it Slow.” Haynes notes that these kind of experimental collaborations could only happen at an event like the Peach Festival.
“It’s one of the beautiful aspects of these kind of festivals because where else are you going to see that?” he explains. “When you got this many musicians that are not only of this stature but are also friendly, that’s a rare opportunity.”
The event also featured a headlining set by The Black Crowes, a performance by Jaimoe’s Jasssz Band, featuring founding drummer Jai Johanny Johanson, and a special solo acoustic set by Weir on the fest's final day. Guitarist Trucks says that while he hopes the Peach Music Festival will continue for years to come, he’s never sure what’s next for the Allman Brothers Band.
“One thing I’ve learned from being around the Allman Brothers camp for the last 15-20 years is predicting the future with that group is a bad bet,” he notes. “I’ve counted it out about a half-dozen times and it comes roaring back and you just never know what’s going to go on.”
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