Gregg Allman Dead at 69
Per the statement on Allman's website, Allman "passed away peacefully at his home in Savannah, Ga." His family plans to release a statement with further information.
"Gregg struggled with many health issues over the past several years. During that time, Gregg considered being on the road playing music with his brothers and solo band for his beloved fans, essential medicine for his soul," the statement reads. "Playing music lifted him up and kept him going during the toughest of times."
Gregory Lenoir Allman, a founding member of the Allman Brothers Band, was born in Nashville on Dec. 8, 1947. Allman and his brother Duane started making music together at an early age, and began performing together as the Allman Joys in the mid-1960s. The pair moved to Los Angeles, Calif., in 1967 and renamed their act the Hour Glass; under that name, they released two albums, before relocating to Macon, Ga., in 1969 and forming the Allman Brothers Band. The group gained popularity with the release of At Fillmore East, a live album released in the early 1970s.
In 1971 and 1972, respectively, Duane Allman and Allman Brothers Band bassist Berry Oakley were both killed in motorcycle accidents. After the release of the Allman Brothers Band's Brothers and Sisters album in 1973, Gregg Allman began pursuing a solo career: He released his debut solo project, Laid Back, that same year, and the Allman Brothers Band eventually disbanded in 1975. Also in 1975, Allman married singer Cher, and the two were together through the end of the decade.
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The apex of Allman's solo career came in 1987, with the release of hit single "I'm No Angel." Over the years, the singer reunited with the Allman Brothers Band twice and released multiple solo albums, including his most recent project, Low Country Blues, in 2011; he was preparing to release a new album, Southern Blood, at the time of his death. During his lifetime, Allman was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the Georgia Music Hall of Fame; he was also awarded multiple Grammys.
Allman's health started to decline in recent years. The singer was not very public about his health issues, but in 2016, he canceled a string of concerts due to "serious health issues," which ended up being pneumonia. In November of 2016, Allman canceled all of his solo tour dates through the rest of that year, and in March of 2017, he canceled all of his tour plans for the remainder of the year. On April 24, rumors began to circulate that Allman had entered hospice care, but the singer soon made it clear that he was not in hospice, but was "resting on my doctor’s orders."
Allman is survived by his wife Shannon; his children Devon, Elijah Blue, Delilah Island, Michael Sean and Layla Brooklyn; and three grandchildren. In January of 2017, a fellow founding member of the Allman Brothers Band, Butch Trucks, committed suicide.
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