Beginnings [Remastered] Original recording reissued, Original recording remastered
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Audio CD, Original recording reissued, Original recording remastered, October 14, 1997
Vinyl, Original recording, Double LP, January 1, 1973
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Top Customer Reviews
The first half of the disc begins with the jazzy instrumental "Don't Want You No More" featuring an excellent organ solo from Gregg Allman and a very tasty guitar solo from Duane Allman before flowing into the slow blues of "It's Not My Cross To Bear." Gregg's vocals are fantastic, already possessing one of the best blues voices ever, which is amazing considering he was just 21 when they recorded this album. This is clearly one of his best collections of songs as his compositions "Dreams" and "Whipping Post" have become blues classics with the latter taken to new heights on their live album At Fillmore East. The other tracks, "Every Hungry Woman", the percussion heavy "Black Hearted Woman", and their killer version of Muddy Waters' "Trouble No More" are all fantastic. The fact that they still play every one of these songs live attest to the excellent material here.
The second half of the disc is best known as the emergence of guitarist Dickey Betts as a composer. His two contributions are among his best work. "Revival" with its memorable melody and its hippie lyrics has become one of their most popular songs. The jazz instrumental "In Memory Of Elizabeth Reed" is perhaps the best instrumental track released in modern rock music. This track, written as a tribute to Miles Davis, also lead to Betts contributing several other instrumental tracks in their career such as "Jessica.Read more ›
What I wasn't expecting was that the contents of the first album have been remixed here. (Idlewild South does not appear to have been remixed.) The albums themselves are both five stars in my book. However, I must "ding" this release at least one star for being a remix but not advertised as such.
Among the differences between the original "ABB mix" and the "Beginnings mix" are:
--Intro to "Every Hungry Woman": Original mix has the guitar in the left channel and a faint hi-hat pedal stomp counting out the beat in the right. The remix has the guitar more or less centered, and the hi-hat deleted.
--End of "Whipping Post" fades out in the remix, as opposed to a "cold" end in the original mix. The fade out cuts off the snare drum shots that close out the original mix.
--On several tracks, bass guitar has been moved from center to the left channel and increased substantially. This mimics the approach used on several "Idlewild South" tracks, suggesting that this remix may have been an attempt to apply the "Idlewild South" mixing strategy and lessons learned to the "ABB" session tapes.
--On several tracks, especially where two lead guitar parts play note-for-note harmonies, the positions of the two guitars (one panned 100% left, the other panned 100% right) have been reversed in the remix, while drums and percussion have their positions unchanged (e.g maraccas panned 100% left).
--Vocals in the remix tend to seem a bit "cleaner" and more forward as opposed to the original mix.Read more ›
"Black Hearted Woman" rocks along with Gregg's angry lyrics and guitar solos that skip boisterously ahead of the rest of the band. "Trouble No More," their studio version of Muddy Waters's song, shuffles and hesitates while Duane shows his slide guitar call-and-reply style against Gregg's vocals. "Every Hungry Woman" opens with a gust of guitar and B-3 Hammond organ layering the track, and Gregg's accusing comments and voice are painted with cynicism and contempt.
"Dreams" is one of the band's masterpieces, as Duane mixes slide and lead guitar. The drummers coil and release with refrained shots of snare drum and cymbal rides, and Gregg's organ takes the song to a hazy, etheric state. His grievous, intense singing provides the setting for Duane's soaring, spiraling solo. Skydog's mid-way switch to bottleneck lifts the piece right out of the stratosphere, and sets up the infamous, earth-shattering "Whipping Post." Berry starts off with dark and frightening warfare bass lines, the band reaches a frenzy behind Gregg's confrontation of his misery, and the guitars ring out their defiance.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Good quality sound. Great that Duane Allman guitar is present.Published 1 month ago by Konreid Etheredge
Awesome LP! More or less a street kid back then (a children's home off Monroe dr) you could wake up and hear the very loud music from Piedmont. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Fradzz
the LP was pristine and it was everything they said it was.Published 8 months ago by Amazon Customer
Brings back wonderful memories. Great performance by a band which helped to define and shape 1960's music - a blend of southern rock and blues with some jazz.Published 9 months ago by Stephen P. Ford