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Dickey Betts Enjoying Life After the Allmans

Of the Oakland Press

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It’s been six years since Dickey Betts was acrimoniously fi red — by fax — from the Allman Brothers Band. And in that time, he’s confident that he’s created his own story as a solo artist.

“The automatic kind of tie of, ‘Dickey Betts, well, he’s not with the Allman Brothers but they’ll get back together and he’s just doing this,’ that’s kind of gone,” says the 62-year-old guitarist and singer, who co-founded the band in 1969 and wrote some of its biggest hits, including “Ramblin’ Man,” “Blue Sky” and “Jessica.”

“I think people have realized the Allman Brothers thing, that’s over. And I’m having a great time.”

Betts’ latest version of his own band, Dickey Betts & Great Southern, is an eight-piece ensemble that includes his son Duane, named after the late Duane Allman. The group performs a combination of Betts’ Allman Brothers favorites and material from his solo albums, as well as brand new songs such as the bluegrassflavored “Rollin’ On” and the rocking “Having a Good Time.”

And, he says, there’s plenty more where those came from.

“I’d like to get in the studio,” says Betts, whose most recent releases have been live albums, including one recorded last year at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum in Cleveland. “I’ve got 10 or 12 new songs, enough to go in and do a new album.

“Having new material is not a problem for us. In fact, if I get too much new stuff, people complain if I try to play too much of it in the shows. So I just throw three or four things in a three-hour show, just to show ’em I’m keeping busy.”

Dickey Betts & Great Southern perform 8 p.m. Thursday as part of Rockin’ on the Riverfront at the Riverfront Plaza behind the GM Renaissance Center in downtown Detroit. Showtime is 8 p.m. and admission is free; seating is general admission. Visit www.wcsx

Web Site: www.wcsx.com

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