I’ve read lots of autobiographies by lots of musicians. I don’t know what it is about them that make them so “warts and all” story tellers but they are. I guess it’s in their DNA or something.
The latest tome that supports this trend is the very frank and revealing autobiography by Gregg Allman (with some help from Alan Light). I wondered why the title wasn’t I’m No Angel but that would have been too obvious of a title. After reading the book, I like My Cross to Bear better. It’s much more applicable.
Told from the perspective of one who is fully recovered from his indulgences and demons, Allman tells it like it was and is. In fact, there doesn’t seem to be any part of Mr. Allman’s life that isn’t covered – and frankly at that. Allman’s love and constant and likely daily remembrance of his late brother and mentor, Duane, is evident throughout the book. Gregg shares very openly about the lasting impact the premature and tragic death of his big brother has had on him and the band. More than that, though, is the good memories of Duane that are shared as are the fights and bickering that are natural between siblings.
Speaking of bickering, the inter-band turmoil within the Allman Brothers Band is shared in a matter-of-fact manner. I’m sure that, after the book is out and have had time to be read by those mentioned in the book, they just may want to throw in their two cents worth. Not that Allman is mean or vindictive. No, far from it. He just says what he has to say in his plain, no-nonsense manner and from his perspective. Plain and simple.
Allman shares stories about life on the road, in the studio, in his homes and in his six marriages and countless other relationships. We are also given great insight to his health problems including his liver transplant that took place in 2010.
With all that hard living, all the battles, all the turmoil, Allman has come to a place at this stage of his life where he is at peace with himself, with God and many who he has had conflict with. He goes into some detail about this in the last chapter of the book which is my most favorite chapter.
What does he say? Buy it and find out.
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