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Author: Subject: Butch Trucks interview.

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  posted on 3/26/2015 at 04:59 PM
Words By: Scott Horowitz

:: Interview - Butch Trucks ::
2014 was the last year The Allman Brothers Band headlined the Wanee Music Festival at the Spirit of the Suwanee Music Park in Live Oak Florida. Since that time the legendary band closed the door on a historic 45 year career, performing their final show at the Beacon Theatre in October 2014. Founding ABB member, drummer Butch Trucks, will appear with his band -- billed as Butch Trucks & Very Special Friends -- at the 2015 Wanee Music Festival taking place April 16 -- 18.



Trucks’ group is one of several bands affiliated with The Allman Brothers Band slated for the festival, with Greg Allman, Widespread Panic, Gov’t Mule and Jaimoe’s Jasssz Band also on the bill. In an interview with JamBase, Trucks discussed a March with no Beacon shows, the formation and future of The Allman Brothers Band, the Roots Rock Revival music teaching camp and all things Wanee.

Scott Horowitz: How do you feel about Wanee Music Festival?

Butch Trucks: One of the best feelings I’ve ever had was the second or third year when we had around 15,000-16,000 people attend. I don't know if you know it or not, but, Wanee was my idea.

Ten years ago I knew the day was coming when Derek [Trucks] and Warren [Haynes], Derek especially, would take off on their own. So, i figured what the hell, instead of doing long tours, why not just do three or four festivals. So, I brought it up and we started talking about it. But when Dickey [Betts] was in the band he said he ain't doing it because if was my idea, Dickey wouldn’t do it. Jon Stoll from Fantasma productions showed me this place that was set up to do bluegrass festivals called The Spirit of The Suwannee.

So that second or third year, just to walk up there and look around at it, I just felt this huge burst of pride that just felt so good. You know, like "Butch, you did this!" and it was a pretty cool feeling. A really cool feeling!

Scott Horowitz: Where does the Spirit of The Suwannee rank with you as far as it being a favorite place to play?

Butch Trucks: I'll say playing at the Beacon is my favorite place to play. We got it down to a science as far as how to make every seat in the house have the best sound. It reminds me of the Fillmore. But, as far as just a place to be for three days and listen to music for three days, the Spirit of The Suwannee is definitely my favorite. I mean what a venue. Jesus. And I love that mushroom stage. Its such a great place and is where my band will be playing on Saturday afternoon at Wanee.

Scott Horowitz: Tell us more about the Very Special Friends performing with you at Wanee this year.

Butch Trucks: I'm rounding up some friends. Oteil Burbridge, my son Vaylor Trucks, and Oteil is bringing down a guitar player from Wanee who is really really killer. I don't know his name. Oteil just says "Hey, I got a guy and am bringing with me, and trust me he'll knock your socks off.” I know enough about Oteil to know if he says it is so, then it is usually so. It should be a really nice jam. Bruce Katz is going to play keyboards with us. Marc Quinones on percussion. And i'm working hard on getting an old friend of mine who is a singer, Jimmy Hall. If I don't get Jimmy there then we'll have 90 minutes of jamming and maybe Oteil will sing, but if I do get Jimmy there then it will be a full band with all the singing and everything else. Either way it will be fun as hell with that lineup and it should be pretty damn good.


Scott Horowitz: Is it weird for you with it being March and not having plans to be in New York City for gigs at the Beacon?

Butch Trucks: Yeah, you know, I do miss it. The Beacon has become my favorite venue to play. But, it is what it is, and all things do eventually come to an end. As of today it has come to an end but as far as what happens in the future, God only knows, and he's got doubts.

Scott Horowitz: And now that the end was announced with that final Beacon run last year, looking back on it all, is it a pretty picture in the rear view mirror?

Butch Trucks I don't know. All I can say is shoot, 45 years with The Allman Brothers, 25 years at the Beacon, Jesus Christ, I've been pretty damn lucky. It’s been a real good run and it ain't over for me yet. That last show we played lasted six hours and felt like a half an hour, and maybe was the strongest set I’ve ever played in my life -- and i'm 67 years old. I'm not hanging 'em up yet, I've got five or six irons in the fire now so we'll see which one heats up first. We shall see.

Scott Horowitz: I know you’re proud of your involvement with the Roots Rock Revival Experience, which features artists like Luther and Cody Dickinson, who are performing with The Word at Wanee this year.

Butch Trucks: It’s in the Catskills and is a great time. We have great players that are great teachers. Cody Dickinson really kind of blows me away. He makes me feel a little bit humble, and humility is not one of my great assets. And Luther Dickinson has such a passion for music and teaching -- he's amazing. And because of guys like that kids who come to the camp leave knowing a whole lot more than they knew when they got there. Anybody who wants to check it out should go to RootsRockRevival.com, sign up, and get their asses up there. They will not regret it.


Scott Horowitz: Many people will fly into Jacksonville on their way to Wanee, and that's a place where The Allman Brothers began connecting the dots for itself. What are highlights in your memory from that time spent in Jacksonville?

Butch Trucks: Oh, **** , every moment of every day was a highlight of my memory. I mean Jesus Christ, the first time i played with Jaimoe it was like the day you meet your wife. I've never played before or since with another drummer I could play with like that. It was all just amazing, and continues to be so. But back then Jacksonville was nothing but insurance salesmen, poor people, and the Navy and that was about it. So, when Duane said we're packing it up and heading to Macon, I was fine with that.

Scott Horowitz: I've noticed you wearing a Barcelona FC jersey on stage before. How do you like the team's chances to go all the way in their current UEFA champions league run?

Butch Trucks: I don't know. I only wear their jersey because it looks cool. I wore it for quite a long time before I even knew what it was. And it also dries real fast so that way I can wear it three or four gigs and not have to carry so much luggage on the road.

 
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A Peach Supreme



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  posted on 3/26/2015 at 06:22 PM
quote:
I don't know if you know it or not, but, Wanee was my idea......So, I brought it up and we started talking about it. But when Dickey [Betts] was in the band he said he ain't doing it because if was my idea, Dickey wouldn’t do it.



Oh FFS!!

Actually, what he says makes no sense because Warren, Derek and Dickey weren't - obviously - around at the same time.

And to say that he foresaw Derek not fitting in time to tour with the ABB when, at the time, he was a callow kid is pure 20/20 hindsight.







[Edited on 3/26/2015 by Shavian]

 

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  posted on 3/26/2015 at 06:45 PM
quote:
I don't know if you know it or not, but, Wanee was my idea......So, I brought it up and we started talking about it. But when Dickey [Betts] was in the band he said he ain't doing it because if was my idea, Dickey wouldn’t do it.

As far as I made it....

 

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Well 30 years of heart and soul,lord we took it further than rock and roll.
We stood together thru thick and thin,yeah we made the best of it all back then.
Then I guess time took it's toll,cut me deep,cut me cold.
Brother against brother....

 

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  posted on 3/27/2015 at 09:15 AM
I was excited to see that Vaylor is going to be playing in the Wanee gig and I'm looking forward to it.

 

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  posted on 3/27/2015 at 09:39 AM
Was this written by The Onion???

 

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  posted on 3/27/2015 at 11:46 AM
Gosh Butch, please put Dickey in your past, it would be healthy!

 

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  posted on 3/27/2015 at 12:17 PM
quote:
Gosh Butch, please put Dickey in your past, it would be healthy!


I was going to say that when you let someone become an obsession to you like this they have entered and taken control of your psyche. Butch, you won the battle but Dickey's winning the war. Let it go, man.

 

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  posted on 3/27/2015 at 02:04 PM
quote:
Cody Dickinson really kind of blows me away. He makes me feel a little bit humble, and humility is not one of my great assets.


 

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  posted on 3/27/2015 at 02:05 PM
When I get older give me days to fritter
And the blue sky morns that come and go
But Lord don't let me wind up bitter
And if I am I'll try not to let it show.......

 

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  posted on 3/27/2015 at 02:38 PM
quote:
When I get older give me days to fritter
And the blue sky morns that come and go
But Lord don't let me wind up bitter
And if I am I'll try not to let it show.......

When I grow up, I want to be like George Burns.

 

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Well 30 years of heart and soul,lord we took it further than rock and roll.
We stood together thru thick and thin,yeah we made the best of it all back then.
Then I guess time took it's toll,cut me deep,cut me cold.
Brother against brother....

 

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  posted on 3/27/2015 at 02:45 PM
Let's see. Dickey had become such a negative factor in the band, including years of insisting the band be run his way, that Warren had soured on being in the band by 1995 but hung in as he just couldn't jump ship on being in such a famous band (Warren wasn't willing to name Dickey as THE reason he thought about leaving but just all the negative fighting and lack of communication between Gregg and Dickey and being put in the middle so often), but when Dickey punched Allen Woody while trying to get to Butch Trucks in a physical way in 1996(I can't remember the year Dickey punched Butch in the nose and broke it), Warren and Woody decided to concentrate on Gov't Mule full time and left after the Beacon run in 1997. . Then in 1999 Jack Pearson left the band because Dickey's volume was killing his ears and Dickey refused to turn down. So enter Derek Trucks. Derek has stated he and Dickey got along well with no problems and same for Otiel and Dickey. But by 2000 Butch had reached a point where he refused to play with Dickey anymore. And Butch informed his wife he was going to quit and not do the summer tour. His wife told Gregg's then wife and found out Gregg also was leaving the band as he was done working with Dickey too. Butch's wife told Butch Gregg was leaving too so he called Gregg and they decided to have a conference call with Jaimoe who refused to vote with them to put Dickey out. But to save the band and the summer tour and to give Dickey a chance to get straighten out and for Gregg and Butch to cool off, Jaimoe did agree to suspend Dickey for the summer tour and Gregg and Butch decided to go along. So next came the infamous FAX! At this juncture if Gregg was not intending on leaving the band too, obviously Butch would have quit and been replaced and the band would have done the summer tour without Butch. All of this line of events is accurate as I followed all the news and Butch's postings on the fan site carefully. But I've often wondered how long would the band have made it after 2000. And with the band soon retreating from recording and introducing much new material coupled with how different the band sounded for an old fan such as myself without Dickey's sound even when he was not up to par due to drinking or coke or whatever, (old fans saw Gregg too screwed up to play and sing too more times than we would like to count), sometimes I wonder if the band should have ended in 2000 until things cooled off for everybody. And I think Dickey would have been allowed to come back eventually out of respect to the original line up if he had not sued the band and won an arbitration of over 1 million dollars. When that happened Gregg and especially Butch were so fed up with Dickey that the only way the ABB would continue would be without Dickey. And on the other hand, I now feel Dickey was done with Gregg and Butch then too. Voting him out of the band was unforgivable to Dickey who believes it was himself who was responsible for the band to continue and get even bigger after Duane died and it is true Dickey's contribution to the band post Duane was key to their continued success especially with song writing. After Eat A Peach, it was Dickey who was doing most of the writing on all the latter albums. If you're a Dickey fan, you should feel good that Dickey, according to a website which tracks famous people's net worth, is worth more money than Gregg and Butch combined. But I don't know if Gregg has moved closer to Dickey's net wealth as Gregg apparently has been in a position to make more money than Dickey since 2000. And the fact that Dickey is a multi-millionaire off of the Allman Brothers may be one of the reasons Butch is still ill about Betts. Yes Butch is a millionaire too but no where close to the money Dickey has. Dickey is loaded and hasn't needed to work in decades. It's clear when Dickey was in the band he ran the band and nobody told him what to do. Jeff Beck is like that too and Beck admitted that it's best for him to be a solo act. Being just one vote of many doesn't work.
 

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  posted on 3/27/2015 at 02:57 PM



I'll share mine...

















 

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Well 30 years of heart and soul,lord we took it further than rock and roll.
We stood together thru thick and thin,yeah we made the best of it all back then.
Then I guess time took it's toll,cut me deep,cut me cold.
Brother against brother....

 

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  posted on 3/27/2015 at 03:02 PM
quote:
Butch Trucks: Oh, ****, every moment of every day was a highlight of my memory.


 

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  posted on 3/27/2015 at 05:14 PM
Paragraphs.

They work.

 
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  posted on 3/27/2015 at 05:38 PM
It seems to me like Butch Trucks is one of the most abrasive and immutable people I've ever seen. Why can't he just be happy with what he's got and shut up about blaming Dickey for everything that's ever happened? He never seems to give Dickey any credit for anything but for 14 years after they split up they couldn't seem to go one single night without playing at least a few of his songs. Not saying that DB is perfect but BT sure as hell is no better. But for the benefit of all the Butch fans I've provided a complete list of all the songs performed by the Allman Brothers Band written by Butch Trucks as follows:

1.

[Edited on 3/27/2015 by wearly89]

 

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  posted on 3/27/2015 at 05:48 PM
My sentiments exactly! Butch GET OVER IT!

 

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  posted on 3/27/2015 at 06:24 PM
quote:
Cody Dickinson really kind of blows me away. He makes me feel a little bit humble, and humility is not one of my great assets.

I guess that comes from all the great songs that he's written or the fact that anytime the Allman Brothers is mentioned Butch Trucks is the first name that comes to mind....

& with 3 weeks till Wanee Butch Trucks & Very Special Friends sounds promising:

Who's the lead guitarist?
- I don't know.

Who's singing?
- I hope Jimmy Hall.

 

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  posted on 3/27/2015 at 06:29 PM
It would be cool to see Jimmy hall sing ...
 

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  posted on 3/27/2015 at 06:40 PM
I guess they'll be playing Butch Trucks' greatest hits. Here's the setlist!

1.

 

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  posted on 3/27/2015 at 07:06 PM

"And to say that he foresaw Derek not fitting in time to tour with the ABB when, at the time, he was a callow kid is pure 20/20 hindsight."

Actually, I think it is quite realistic. Derek had his own band at that point, his own albums, and his own bag. He was not part of the birth of the ABB so why would anyone think he would stay indefinitely, playing someone else's music, even if it was well loved tunes.

Butch is no stranger to the desire of an artist to grow, change, and explore new turf. Derek was a journeyman for the band, as was Warren and every other guitar/keyboard player after Duane died.

I think it's a realistic assessment.


As for Dickey, it is his own fault he pissed off everyone. Pulling a knife on bandmates, threatening to beat up bandmates, lawsuits against bandmates, yeah, they should run to hire him again 'for old times sake'. He's a greaaaaaat guyyy.

(sarcasm, but warranted).

 

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  posted on 3/28/2015 at 06:43 AM
quote:
Paragraphs.

They work.



Heh Heh. I stopped reading after one sentence.

 

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  posted on 3/28/2015 at 07:39 AM
Is Vaylor a good player??
 

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  posted on 3/28/2015 at 08:06 AM
quote:



I'll share mine...









kind of spot on at this point

 

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  posted on 3/28/2015 at 09:21 AM
quote:

"And to say that he foresaw Derek not fitting in time to tour with the ABB when, at the time, he was a callow kid is pure 20/20 hindsight."

Actually, I think it is quite realistic. Derek had his own band at that point, his own albums, and his own bag. He was not part of the birth of the ABB so why would anyone think he would stay indefinitely, playing someone else's music, even if it was well loved tunes.

Butch is no stranger to the desire of an artist to grow, change, and explore new turf. Derek was a journeyman for the band, as was Warren and every other guitar/keyboard player after Duane died.

I think it's a realistic assessment.



Perhaps, but ten years ago, Warren had already taken off on his own so that wasn't an earth-shattering prediction.

Ten years ago, Dickey had already departed.

The first Wanee festival was in 2005 so four years after Dickey left when he could have realised his dream but didn't.

My guess is that the Dickey part of the story is pure BS or, if Dickey had objections, that they were more valid than "it was Butch's idea".





[Edited on 3/28/2015 by Shavian]

 

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  posted on 3/28/2015 at 09:57 AM
I remember reading around the 30th anniversary, Dickey saying he didn't know how long the band would stay on the road, but that a Beacon Run, A Southern Swing, and a Few Festivals were always a possibility with a reduced touring schedule.

I'm not buying that Dickey didn't like the festival idea.

Seems like that because reality after 2009.

 

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