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Allman Betts Band's Bless Your Heart - further proof that you can never have enough guitarists

The sons of Gregg Allman, Dickey Betts and Berry Oakley jam on Allman Betts Band's second album Bless Your Heart

Allman Betts Band: Bless Your Heart
(Image: © BMG)

Considering that their fathers had to be separated into different bands, the sons of Gregg Allman and Dickey Betts seem to be getting along just fine. Guitarists Devon Allman and Duane Betts are joined by a third son-of-an-Allman Brother, Berry Duane Oakley, on bass in their seven-piece band, along with a third guitarist because, well, you can never have enough guitarists when it comes to southern rock. 

What could have been a cynical cash-in (they hadn’t actually played together before they recorded last year’s Down To The River) turns out to have legs. Sure, Bless Your Heart teems with Allman Brothers references and there are long, rambling instrumentals. But this is no tribute act, or covers band, come to that. 

They’ve filtered their inheritance through their own jam-band generation, and the sound is heavier, muddier at times, and Duane Allman’s ‘crying bird’ slide guitar has become more of a screaming bat.

The track that sums it up best is Magnolia Road, a glorious, live-sounding ‘take me home’ song with autobiographical snippets and a host of friends joining in.