RATINGS: A = must own B = buy it C= average D = yawn F = puke

Duane Allman – Skydog: The Duane Allman Retrospective [Encore Edition]
Rounder Records


Rating: A

Skydog was a box set that was so huge in scope that a smaller release was needed for the fan that could not fork out the sizable amount of cash needed to buy it.  The smaller version,  however,  still ended up being seven discs…seven amazing discs at that.

Duane is the founder of southern rock and the man responsible for the Allman Brothers uniqueness.  However, many people still don’t realize how many sessions he played and the other bands he was in before the Allman Brothers.  Rolling Stone named Allman the second most important guitarist of all time, behind Jimi Hendrix.  Now, this set gives a concise yet in-depth look at Duane from his glory in the Allman Brothers to the sessions he played at Muscle Shoals.  The box set also has a 72 page booklet full of rare photographs. 

This seven disc set was produced by Duane’s daughter and Bill Levenson and features 129 songs.  There are rare out of print tunes, classic songs and even live jams, including one with the Grateful Dead.  There are songs from early recordings with Gregg, his brother, to the bands The Escorts, the Allman Joys and Hour Glass as well as Derek & the Dominos.  There are sessions with Aretha Franklin, Wilson Pickett, Boz Scaggs and Delaney & Bonnie. 

At the end of the day, this set is a glimpse into the short yet prolific life of one of the greatest American guitarist to ever write a song or play a concert.  The seasoned fan will walk away from the experience with a greater respect for the man while the novice will get introduced, and get to know, a true musical legend.

By Jeb Wright