Buying Options

Kindle Price: $12.99

These promotions will be applied to this item:

Some promotions may be combined; others are not eligible to be combined with other offers. For details, please see the Terms & Conditions associated with these promotions.

You've subscribed to ! We will preorder your items within 24 hours of when they become available. When new books are released, we'll charge your default payment method for the lowest price available during the pre-order period.
Update your device or payment method, cancel individual pre-orders or your subscription at
Your Memberships & Subscriptions

Buy for others

Give as a gift or purchase for a team or group.
Learn more

Buying and sending eBooks to others

Select quantity
Buy and send eBooks
Recipients can read on any device

Additional gift options are available when buying one eBook at a time.  Learn more

These ebooks can only be redeemed by recipients in the US. Redemption links and eBooks cannot be resold.

Kindle app logo image

Download the free Kindle app and start reading Kindle books instantly on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required. Learn more

Read instantly on your browser with Kindle Cloud Reader.

Using your mobile phone camera - scan the code below and download the Kindle app.

QR code to download the Kindle App

Loading your book clubs
There was a problem loading your book clubs. Please try again.
Not in a club? Learn more
Amazon book clubs early access

Join or create book clubs

Choose books together

Track your books
Bring your club to Amazon Book Clubs, start a new book club and invite your friends to join, or find a club that’s right for you for free.
One Way Out: The Inside History of the Allman Brothers Band by [Alan Paul, Butch Trucks, Jaimoe]

Follow the Author

Something went wrong. Please try your request again later.

One Way Out: The Inside History of the Allman Brothers Band Kindle Edition

4.8 out of 5 stars 760 ratings

New from Used from

Always the perfect gift

Editorial Reviews

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

One Way Out

The Inside History of the Allman Brothers Band

By Alan Paul

St. Martin's Press

Copyright © 2014 Alan Paul
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-1-250-04050-3


Title Page,
Copyright Notice,
Author's Note,
Cast of Characters,
Photo Credits,
About the Author,
Praise for One Way Out,



Phil Walden intended Duane's new band to be the centerpiece artists on his new Atlantic-distributed label, Capricorn Records. He also signed Allman to a management contract. Duane now had a record label and a manager wrapped up in one charismatic figure.

The first member of his new band was the drummer born in Ocean Springs, Mississippi, as Johnie Lee Johnson, then calling himself Jai Johanny Johanson and soon to be known by a single name: Jaimoe.

JAIMOE: I had been playing with rhythm and blues artists like Clarence Carter, Percy Sledge, and Arthur Conley and I was done with that whole scene. The people who became stars treated their musicians just like they were treated—like dogs. I decided that if I'm going to starve to death, at least I'm going to do it playing what I love: jazz music. I was moving to New York City.

I had played on a songwriting demo of songs written by my friend Jackie Avery, and he got them to Duane to consider, having heard he had signed with Phil and was putting together a band.

JACKIE AVERY JR.,songwriter: I went to Muscle Shoals during a Wilson Pickett session and Duane was sitting in Studio B playing a dobro, with his legs crossed, one leg way up on the other kneecap, wearing big cowboy boots. I was struck by how different he was; he was a free spirit who just didn't give a damn. I played him this demo, with Johnny Jenkins singing "Voodoo in You" and two other songs.

He listened to the whole thing, then spit in a cup—I think he had some snuff—and all he asked was, "Who's the drummer?"

I went back to Georgia and Jai was playing at some roadhouse in the woods with [blues guitarist] Eddie Kirkwood and I told him that I thought he should get over to Muscle Shoals, that I thought this guy was going to be something.

JAIMOE: Avery said, "I ain't never heard nobody play guitar the way Duane does" and he had seen Guitar Slim and many other great ones, so that convinced me to go talk to Duane before going to New York and starving to death.

AVERY: Jaimoe packed up his drums and he and I scraped together $28 for a bus ticket and put those drums on a bus and off he went.

JAIMOE: I got to Muscle Shoals and rattling around my head was something my friend Honeyboy Otis had told me: "If you want to make some money, go play with those white boys. They'll pay you." I saw the guys getting ready to go to work. I knew them all from being there with Percy Sledge and I asked, "Hey, where's Skyman?"

"Oh, he's in Studio B getting ready to do a session."

I walk in and see this skinny little white boy hippie with long straight hair, and I said, "Excuse me, you must be the guy they call Skyman." He looked at me and said, "Yep, and you're Jai Johanny Johanson," and we shook hands. He went to do a session and I set up my drums in a little studio, playing along to albums on headphones. When Duane was free he rolled that [Fender] Twin in, cranked that bad boy up, and that was it, man. As soon as we played together I forgot all about moving to New York City. I moved into Duane's place on the Tennessee River and we just played constantly. Then Berry came and joined us.

Berry Oakley was the bassist in the popular Jacksonville band Second Coming, with a unique, melodic style; his wife-to-be Linda had introduced Berry and Duane in a Jacksonville club. The pair quickly became fast friends and musical admirers of each other. Allman invited Oakley to Muscle Shoals to jam with him and Jaimoe and test the chemistry of his potential rhythm section.

JAIMOE: I was excited when I started playing with Duane and more so when Berry joined us. As soon as the three of us played together, it was just, "Shit. This is all over with." It was like I had found the bass player I had been searching for since my friend Lamar [Williams] had joined the Army. We were playing some wild stuff.

JOHN HAMMOND JR.,guitarist/singer: I asked Duane how he got so good and he said, "I took speed every day for three years and played every night all night." I think this was partly true and partly apocryphal but he really couldn't get enough. He was just phenomenal.

JAIMOE: Honestly, at the time, there were only a few white people I thought could play music: guys like Stan Getz and Buddy Rich. The biggest problem white musicians had was they were trying to imitate this or that person instead of letting themselves come out. Berry and Duane were themselves and they had strong voices.

It's been said that Duane was at first going to put together a power trio like Jimi Hendrix or Cream, but I would never have been the right guy for that—I was never a power drummer, and that's not what Duane was thinking. Duane had the idea for a different band right away. He was talking about two guitars and two drummers from the start. It was about finding the right guys. Berry was going back and forth between Muscle Shoals and Jacksonville.

SANDLIN: I didn't understand the two-drummer thing and I didn't want to do it. Jaimoe was there when we recorded those original sides for Rick, but I was playing, probably just because Duane and I had the history together and it was easier at that point to do things quickly, but Duane was talking about Jaimoe being in his band and me possibly as well.

JAIMOE: I was there when Duane cut those solo sides, and the reason Johnny played instead of me was simple: he knew how to make a record and I didn't. Johnny didn't really improvise; he learned parts and songs and he played them really well. I could not keep a straight beat and could not play a song exactly the same multiple times in a row.

One day, Duane said to me, "We're leaving. I'm sick of this. Pack up your stuff." We went to St. Louis for a few days so he could see his girlfriend. [Donna Roosmann, who was soon to be the mother of Duane's daughter, Galadrielle.] Then we made a beeline to Jacksonville. Duane drove straight through. We got there at two or three in the morning and Duane went around waking people up. People just had to hear that Duane was in town and they started coming around like termites in the spring.


Playing in the Band

Duane's vision quickly began to be realized after he and Jaimoe arrived in Jacksonville during the first week of March 1969. The next two additions to his band were guitarist Dickey Betts, who played with Oakley in Second Coming, and Butch Trucks, the drummer whose group Duane and Gregg had recorded demos with less than a year earlier. With Gregg still in Los Angeles, the Second Coming's Reese Wynans, who would eventually join Stevie Ray Vaughan's Double Trouble, played keyboards. Duane, Oakley, and Betts handled most of the vocals.

JAIMOE: Duane had been telling me about a lot of people he knew and thought would be good for the band and most of them were there, except Gregory. The whole thing was just about playing music—no agenda, no egos—and it was good.

DICKEY BETTS: It was fun and exciting, and the band just sort of happened. It was supposed to be a three-piece with Duane, Berry, and Jaimoe. Duane had no idea that he would end up with this very different thing, but he was open to seeing what happened. I was playing with Berry, and Duane and Jaimoe kept coming and sitting in with us and exciting stuff started happening really quickly and naturally. We all felt like we had discovered the very thing that we'd been looking for, even if we didn't know it beforehand. We all knew that something very, very good was happening.

REESE WYNANS,Second Coming keyboardist: I had never heard anything like Duane Allman and his slide guitar. He played it like a violin or saxophone. It was just the weirdest instrument and most unbelievable sound and his phrasing was impeccable and his ideas were over the top. When he sat in with us it lifted the whole thing up and I had an immediate, extremely positive reaction, as did everyone else.

JAIMOE: He was always on and up and pulling everyone along.

WYNANS: Sometimes when someone comes and sits in and they're hot shit, they get an attitude. Duane didn't have any of that; there was none of that diva attitude. He was one of us immediately. It became obvious in the jam sessions that something special was going on. We would play for hours and it was incredible. He was a really positive guy—outgoing, giving, and always handing out a lot of really positive thoughts and comments. Just hanging around him was exciting.

HALL: Duane always was an upper. He never had anything but praise for everybody. He was totally confident, but he also always had that little boy, down-home modesty about him. He was a good, good guy, which is why in time the musicians down here all fell in love with him, despite being leery at first.

HAMMOND: Duane was a phenomenal player, but the opposite of a headcutter. He wanted to include everyone and make him sound better. He had supreme confidence but he loved the music more than anything and was not on any kind of ego trip.

THOM DOUCETTE,harmonica player, Duane confidant, and unofficial member of the ABB: Duane had his arms wide open, and he was so fucking magnetic. This was a connected guy—connected to the higher order of the world. Just incredibly tuned in, and with absolute self-confidence but no ego. None. It was never about "me." That combination of total self-confidence and lack of ego with that kind of talent and fire is unheard of.

JAIMOE: The day after we got to Jacksonville, Duane took me over to meet Butch and said, "Butch, this is my new drummer, Jai Johanny Johanson. We're gonna jam tonight. Anyone who can be here, be there."

BUTCH TRUCKS: Duane called me when he came back to Jacksonville and was jamming with lots of different people. We played and it just worked and Jaimoe told Duane I was the guy they needed, because he wanted two drummers like James Brown had.

JAIMOE: I asked Duane why he wanted two drummers and he said, "Because Otis Redding and James Brown have two," and I never asked again.

BETTS: Jaimoe was a real good drummer, but more of a pocket guy, and once we all got in there, it was bigger and he wasn't really able to handle the power. It just wasn't his style and the drummer from Second Coming wasn't right. His name was "Nasty Lord John" [Meeks] and he played like Ginger Baker, hardly ever playing a straight beat. We needed Butch, who had that drive and strength, freight train, meat-and-potatoes thing. It set Jaimoe up perfectly.

RICHARD PRICE,Florida bassist; played with Betts and Oakley and was there for the Jacksonville jams that birthed the Allman Brothers Band: Jaimoe was always a great drummer in Duane's mind and that was clear from the minute they arrived together in Jacksonville. Butch was well known as a strong in-the-pocket player, while Jaimoe was more of an embellisher. He had great stick control and jazz chops and could do outside-the-box tempos up against the pocket.

AVERY: Duane loved Jai and Jai loved Duane. They were brothers first and more than anyone else.

PRICE: We had these big jams with a lot of drummers coming and going, but things started happening with Jaimoe and Butch as soon as they played together. Butch was doing the really strong foot/snare thing driving the beat and Jaimoe would do all these strange swells and fills in the open spaces that Butch left. They're not that similar and they could hear where to complement one another, which is what made them a great rhythm section. Right out of the box they listened really close to each other and tried to stay out of each other's way. They formed this strange symbiotic thing and melded into a terrific unit. Over a series of nights you could see something very substantial developing there.

BETTS: All of a sudden the trio had five pieces. We all were smart enough to say, "This guy's special" about one another.

AVERY: I'm agnostic, so I don't think I can call it the hand of God, but these people were meant to be together. I don't know how that all happened, but it had to happen.

DOUCETTE: You take any one of the guys out and the whole thing doesn't exist.

TRUCKS: I don't think Duane wanted me in the band. I fit musically but I was a bundle of insecurity and he didn't want that. He was such a strong person—very confident and totally sure of himself—and that's the kind of people he wanted around him.

BETTS: It says a lot that Duane's hero was Muhammad Ali. He had Ali's type of supreme confidence. If you weren't involved in what he thought was the big picture, he didn't have time for you. A lot of people really didn't like him for that. It's not that he was aggressive; it was more a super-positive, straight-ahead, I've-got-work-to-do kind of thing. If you didn't get it, see you later. He always seemed like he was charging ahead and it took a lot of energy to be with him.

DOUCETTE: I couldn't get enough of that Duane energy. If Duane put out his hand, you had a hand. There was no bullshit about him at all. None.

GREGG ALLMAN: My brother was a real pistol. He was a hell of a person ... a firecracker. He knew how to push people's buttons and bring out the best.

SANDLIN: He was a personality you only see once in a lifetime. He could inspire you and challenge you, with eye contact, smiles ... little things. It would just make you better and I think anyone who ever played with him would tell you the same thing. You knew he had your back, and that was the best feeling in the world.

TRUCKS: One day we were jamming on a shuffle going nowhere so I started pulling back and Duane whipped around, looked me in the eyes, and played this lick way up the neck like a challenge. My first reaction was to back up, but he kept doing it, which had everyone looking at me like the whole flaccid nature of this jam was my fault. The third time I got really angry and started pounding the drums like I was hitting him upside his head and the jam took off and I forgot about being self-conscious and started playing music, and he smiled at me, as if to say, "Now that's more like it."

It was like he reached inside me and flipped a switch and I've never been insecure about my drumming again. It was an absolute epiphany; it hit me like a ton of bricks. I swear if that moment had not happened I would probably have spent the past thirty years as a teacher. Duane was capable of reaching inside people and pulling out the best. He made us all realize that music will never be great if everyone doesn't give it all they have, and we all took on that attitude: Why bother to play if you're not going all in?

WYNANS: Dickey was the hottest guitar player in the area, the guy that everyone looked up to and wanted to emulate. Then Duane came and started sitting in with us and he was more mature and more fully formed, with total confidence, an incredible tone and that unearthly slide playing. But he and Dickey complemented each other—they didn't try to outgun one another—and the chemistry was obvious right away. It was just amazing that the two best lead guitarists around were teaming up. They were both willing to take chances rather than returning to parts they knew they could nail, and everything they tried worked.

PRICE: Dickey was already considered one of the hottest guitar players in the state of Florida. He was smoking in the Second Coming and always had a great ability to arrange.

WYNANS: I remember one time Duane came up to me with this sense of wonder and said, "Reese, I just learned how to play the highest note in the world. You put the slide on the harmonic and slide it up and all of a sudden it's birds chirping." And, of course, that became his famous "bird call." He was always playing and pushing and sharing his ideas and passions.

JAIMOE: Duane had talked about a lot of guitar players and when I heard some of them I said, "That dude can't tote your guitar case" and he was surprised. He loved jamming with everyone.

(Continues...)Excerpted from One Way Out by Alan Paul. Copyright © 2014 Alan Paul. Excerpted by permission of St. Martin's Press.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

--This text refers to the paperback edition.


“This pot-stirring oral history reads like a backstory of how musical lightning comes to be. All of the surviving band members get to have their say.” ―Rolling Stone

“Alan has a way with narrative that just draws you in without using the single-level storyline used by other writers who have attempted telling the Allman Brothers Band’s story. He gets right to the hows and whys that give his narrative real substance. Enjoy and become enlightened.” ―Butch Trucks, the Allman Brothers Band (From the Foreword)

“No journalist knows the ins and outs of the Allman Brothers Band better than Alan Paul.” ―Warren Haynes, the Allman Brothers Band

“I learned so much reading One Way Out. If you want to know the real deal, read Alan Paul.” ―Oteil Burbridge, the Allman Brothers Band

“Allman Brothers, unvarnished . . . [Alan Paul]'s vast trove of interviews allows the band to tell its own story.” ―Atlanta Journal Constitution

“Alan Paul is one of America's foremost experts on the Allman Brothers Band. For the past twenty years, he has written informative, comprehensive articles on the band, and he truly understands the essence of their significance. It's great to see him release this chronicle.” ―E.J. Devokaitis, Curator / Archivist, Allman Brothers Band Museum at the Big House

“Alan Paul's One Way Out is a brilliantly detailed all-access pass to the Allman Brothers Band. Using his numerous personal interviews with the band members themselves--both past and present--as well as an almost endless entourage of friends, family members, roadies, managers, promoters, booking agents, record label executives, and fellow musicians, Alan Paul has successfully created the definitive ABB biography.” ―Randy Poe, author of Skydog: The Duane Allman Story

One Way Out is perhaps the most in-depth look at one of America's most beloved, but thoroughly dysfunctional ensembles. Engrossing reading . . . Alan Paul has written about the Allmans for the last 25 years, and his depth of knowledge shows. The stories are salty, unfiltered, and straight from the horse's mouth. The word 'definitive' gets tossed around so often it has lost some of its meaning, but this 400-page journey into the heart of rock and roll darkness deserves the accolade.” ―Guitar World Magazine

“No matter what you think you know about the Allman Brothers Band, One Way Out is bound to be revelatory on many levels . . . This is essential reading that strips away the myth to expose all the moving parts in vivid detail.” ―Seattle PI

“Music writer Paul catches up with the legendary band in this entertaining, compulsively readable oral history of the Allman Brothers. Duane's ghost haunts the book.” ―Publishers Weekly

“Perhaps no music journalist has written as extensively about the Allman Brothers Band as Paul, who has tracked the rock group's career for 25 years. And his deep familiarity with the band and its music shows everywhere in this fluid account. Augmented by photos and fascinating sidebars, this candid oral history has appeal beyond the Allman Brothers Band's loyal fan base.” ―Booklist, starred review

“With this fine work, Alan Paul accomplishes the admirable feat of delving the depths of the Allman Brothers, a great aggregation of talent and artistry. He puts together the sweeping picture of how these gifted individuals with their special Southern stylishness created something utterly unique to the world. Rock on.” ―Billy F Gibbons, ZZ Top

“Open this book to any page, start reading, and I dare you to stop. Alan Paul captures all the momentum and energy of the Allman Brothers' long, wild ride, which continues at a breakneck pace. One Way Out? There's no way out of this rollicking narrative until, with regret, you reach the end.” ―Anthony DeCurtis, Contributing Editor, Rolling Stone

“I was struck by the similarities between the Doors and Allman Brothers, especially in our origins--the Eureka moment of certainty amidst a jam. Alan lets the people who were actually there tell the story, and I couldn't put it down. Great read!” ―Robby Krieger, The Doors

“Like a master bandleader, Alan Paul orchestrates a bluesy, jazzy, rocking chorale of voices telling the tale of a brotherhood under stress and a band who got what they hardly realized they wanted, lost what they had and fought a decades-long struggle to get it back.” ―Charles Shaar Murray, author of Crosstown Traffic: Jimi Hendrix and Post-War Pop and Boogie Man: The Adventures of John Lee Hooker

“Paul's One Way Out is a fresh, intelligently arranged, and satisfyingly complete telling of the lengthy (and unlikely) history of the group that almost singlehandedly brought rock up to a level of jazz-like sophistication and virtuosity, introducing it as a medium worthy of the soloist's art. Oral histories can be tricky things: either penetrating, delivering information and backstories that get to the heart of how timeless music was made. Or too often, they lie flat on the page, a random retelling of repeated facts and reheated yarns. I'm happy to say that Paul's is in that first category.” ―Ashley Kahn, author of A Love Supreme: The Story of John Coltrane's Signature Album

“Though enough tomes have been published about the Allmans' troubled history to deforest half of Brazil, only Paul's book gets all the principal figures assessing and confessing. However open and moving Gregg Allman's autobio from 2012 may have been, Paul's book gives a much fuller picture of the dynamics that drive every member -- including why guitarist Dickey Betts remains so vexing.” ―New York Daily News

“Paul's book presents the most complete and detailed telling of the band's still-unfolding saga to date. Elizabeth Reed, Melissa and Jessica would also probably agree.” ―Houston Press

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Product details

  • ASIN ‏ : ‎ B00F1R9E36
  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ St. Martin's Press (February 18, 2014)
  • Publication date ‏ : ‎ February 18, 2014
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • File size ‏ : ‎ 8406 KB
  • Text-to-Speech ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Screen Reader ‏ : ‎ Supported
  • Enhanced typesetting ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • X-Ray ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Word Wise ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Sticky notes ‏ : ‎ On Kindle Scribe
  • Print length ‏ : ‎ 463 pages
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.8 out of 5 stars 760 ratings

About the author

Follow authors to get new release updates, plus improved recommendations.
Brief content visible, double tap to read full content.
Full content visible, double tap to read brief content.

Alan Paul's last two books have been instant New York Times bestsellers: One Way Out: The Inside History of the Allman Brothers Band, and Texas Flood: the Inside Story of Stevie Ray Vaughan. The latter has been optioned and is being developed for both documentary and feature films. His first book, Big in China: My Unlikely Adventures Raising a Family, Playing the Blues, and Becoming a Star in Beijing, is about his experiences raising an American family, forming a band and becoming an unlikely rock star in Beijing.

He also founded Friends of the Brothers, the premier celebration of the music of the Allman Brothers Band, featuring members of the Dickey Betts, Jaimoe and Gregg Allman bands. He is a regular guest on radio shows and a frequent contributor to The Wall Street Journal, Guitar World, and other publications. He lives in New Jersey with his wife, Rebecca Blumenstein. They have three children.

Please visit or

Customer reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
4.8 out of 5
760 global ratings

Top reviews from the United States

Reviewed in the United States 🇺🇸 on November 4, 2014
One person found this helpful
Report abuse
Reviewed in the United States 🇺🇸 on May 11, 2015
23 people found this helpful
Report abuse
Reviewed in the United States 🇺🇸 on July 25, 2022
Reviewed in the United States 🇺🇸 on September 17, 2019
3 people found this helpful
Report abuse
Reviewed in the United States 🇺🇸 on May 23, 2022

Top reviews from other countries

70's rock lover!
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely brilliant
Reviewed in the United Kingdom 🇬🇧 on August 29, 2022
Red on Black
5.0 out of 5 stars The Allman Brothers Band - The Stormy History
Reviewed in the United Kingdom 🇬🇧 on March 5, 2014
12 people found this helpful
Report abuse
laurence turner
5.0 out of 5 stars At last...
Reviewed in the United Kingdom 🇬🇧 on May 10, 2014
2 people found this helpful
Report abuse
George de Albuquerque
4.0 out of 5 stars This will be enjoyed hugely by any fan
Reviewed in the United Kingdom 🇬🇧 on October 9, 2014
3 people found this helpful
Report abuse
The One
3.0 out of 5 stars Disappointed writing style
Reviewed in the United Kingdom 🇬🇧 on January 22, 2019
One person found this helpful
Report abuse
Report an issue

Does this item contain inappropriate content?
Do you believe that this item violates a copyright?
Does this item contain quality or formatting issues?