The Allman Brothers Band Celebrates 200 Nights at the Beacon
Photos by Dino Perrucci
The Allman Brothers Band played its 200th show at New York’s Beacon Theatre last night. The performance also fell on the band’s 42nd anniversary and closed out the group’s 17th multi-night run at the historic venue. Though many fans originally thought the group’s 200th Beacon show fell on Friday night, it was revealed that one of the group’s Beacon shows was canceled in the ‘90s—making last night the group’s actual 200th performance in the room. The Beacon’s marquee congratulated the band on its 200th performance as fans entered the venue and a video screen proclaimed “there is no place like home” as the group took the stage. Warren Haynes also acknowledged the band’s Beacon milestone during the group’s first set.
Like most of the group’s Beacon shows this year, several guests sat in with the members of the Allman Brothers Band throughout the night. Halfway through the Allman Brothers Band’s first set, seminal blues guitarist Hubert Sumlin (who at age 79 had to play with the aid of an oxygen tank), harmonica ace Hook Herrera and Gregg Allman & Friends keyboardist Bruce Katz emerged for a take on Howlin’ Wolf’s “Smokestack Lightning” (Sumlin appears on Howlin’ Wolf’s classic version of the song). The musicians remained onstage as the band charged into another blues staple, “Key To The Highway.”
The evening’s first three guests then left the stage as Dr. John emerged to lead the band through one of his own songs, “I Walk On Gilded Splinter” (a song the Allman Brothers Band had already played a few times this year). Dr. John then moved from his trademark keyboard to guitar—his original instrument—for another one of his classics, “Come On (Let the Good Times Roll).” He later returned to the keyboards as Susan Tedeschi and Lettuce/Warren Haynes Band vocalist Nigel Hall emerged for a set-closing take on “Right Place, Wrong Time.”
The Allman Brothers Band opened its second set with a particularly exciting stretch of tunes that includes “Dreams,” “Black Hearted Woman” and a jam based around the Grateful Dead’s “That’s It For the Other One.” Hook Herrera—who performed at Gov’t Mule’s first show—and Bruce Katz then returned for another song associated with Howlin’ Wolf, “Who’s Been Talking.” Onetime Dixie Chicks guitarist/musical director David Grissom also emerged for Bob Dylan’s “It Takes a Lot to Laugh, It Takes a Train to Cry” and “One Way Out” while Katz helped the group close its set by playing Chuck Leavell’s original keyboard parts on “Jessica.”
The Allman Brothers Band returned to the stage without guests for this year’s first take on “Little Martha,” the only ABB song credited solely to Duane Allman. The number segued into a powerful, run-closing take on “Whipping Post.”
Though the Allman Brothers Band only plans to play a limited number of dates this year, the group will perform at the Wanee festival on April 15 and 16. The septet will confirm additional songs in the coming months.
Last night’s complete setlist can be found in our box scores section.