See the ABB co-founder help lead the band through a scorching set at Woodstock’s 25th anniversary celebration.
Allman Brothers Band co-founding drummer Jaimoe turns 78 today. To celebrate, JamBase takes a look at Jaimoe’s musical journey as well as ABB’s set from Woodstock ’94 for this edition of Full show Friday.
Born John Lee Johnson in Ocean Springs, Mississippi, on July 8, 1944, Jai Johanny Johanson or Jaimoe as the drummer would come to be known, began his career as a member of Otis Redding’s touring band and also performed with Sam & Dave. Legendary soul/rhythm and blues bands have been breaking records at the famous FAME Studio in Muscle Shoals, Alabama. This put Jaimoe on the radar of studio ace session guitarist Duane Allman.
Duane and Jaimoe began laying the groundwork for what would become The Allman Brothers Band in February 1969 with fellow founding members bassist Berry Oakley, guitarist Dickey Betts, keyboardist Gregg Allman and drummer Butch Trucks joining to found ABB a months later. Jaimoe and Trucks quickly became one of the greatest drumming tandems of all time and provided the perfect foils for each other with Butch delivering his “freight train” style of playing and Jaimoe providing the bells. and whistles to extend the metaphor. Although steeped in R&B playing with Redding, Sam & Dave and many others, Jaimoe’s first love was jazz.
“I wanted to be the greatest jazz drummer in the world, and I thought rock or funk was too easy – so I got a chance and I couldn’t play what needed to be played,” Jaimoe recalled in an interview in 2020 with The Wall Street Journal. “I had to learn, and music was everything to me.”
The drummer also said in the interview, “Music is music, and there’s no jazz or rock ‘n’ roll.” Jaimoe began to develop this ethos at ABB and in turn helped develop the band’s signature sound, blurring the lines between powerhouse 3-minute rock and the improvisational landscape of jazz. This combination would later underpin what is now called jam music.
In 1994, when the jam scene was in its infancy, The Allman Brothers Band performed at Woodstock’s 25th anniversary celebration on August 14, 1994 in upstate New York. The lineup at the time included founding members Jaimoe, Gregg, Butch and Betts along with guitarist Warren Haynes, bassist Allen Woody and percussionist Marc Quinones, the latter adding to the rhythmic landscape of Trucks and Jaimoe.
Woodstock ’94 saw the band deliver a scorching set with Haynes ripping straight into “Statesboro Blues” to start things off followed by big solos from Gregg and Dickey all driven by the three-pronged percussive attack from Jaimoe, Trucks and Quiñones. Dickey then led the band through his ABB classic “Blue Sky” before welcoming his 16-year-old son Duane Betts on Willie Dixon’s “The Same Thing” and Warren Haynes’ “Soulshine”, which appears on the originally on Allman’s album at the time. , where it all begins.
Next, Gregg typically dons his acoustic guitar for “Midnight Rider” before ABB’s classic instrumental adventurer “Jessica” which always gives the percussionists a chance to shine. After Dickey’s “No One To Run With” and “Back Where It All Begins”, ABB closed the set with “One Way Out”, featuring its percussive cast of Jaimoe, Trucks and Quiñones before Betts, Haynes and finally Gregg n ‘bring the song. residence. The group returns in encore with a fiery “Whipping Post”.
To celebrate Jaimoe’s birthday, watch The Allman Brothers Band perform at Woodstock ’94 below:
The Allman Brothers group at Winston Farm
- Statesboro Blues
- Blue sky
- The same thing
- Soul Shard
- Midnight Rider
- Nobody to run with
- Back to where it all began