The Allman Brothers Band are celebrating their 45th year with another Beacon Theatre run in March, but Gregg Allman is also keeping busy as an executive producer of his biopic Midnight Rider. Production starts in February, with All American Rejects frontman Tyson Ritter cast as Allman and Wyatt Russell playing Duane Allman. “They’re nice guys,” says Allman, adding he isn’t leaving anything to chance. “It’s time consuming and tedious work to get it all right. I don’t know firsthand because it hasn’t started yet, but I know I need to be there every single day if I want it done right.”
Allman, 66, admits he had some issues with the script, written by Randall Miller (who is also directing) and Jody Savin. “The first script they handed me just wasn’t us,” he says. “They had me and [Duane] talking at one point and it was too many ‘fuck you’s’ in there and there shouldn’t have been any. But they’re working on it, and it’ll be changed as we go along.”
“It will damn sure change, because I have veto rights over everything,” Allman adds of the script. “Think about it, man. If you had them doing your life story on the big screen, wouldn’t you want to be able to erase anything out of there that you didn’t want? I can pull the plug on it any time.”
Allman is also busy with his solo career, with several southern solo dates set for this month (he plans to expand his band with two additional horn players soon) and two solo albums. “The one I’m working on is to be titled All Compositions By, and then my name. I’ve been putting this together since probably since I was about 30.” Allman is also working on a follow up to 2011’s Low Country Blues, produced by T. Bone Burnett. “It’ll be another string of old, obscure, ancient blues songs that nobody’s ever heard kind of reconditioned and updated and made my own.”
Allman also adds there’s a chance the Allman Brothers Band will make their first studio album since 2003’s Hittin’ the Note. “I would love to see that, especially if it came out real, real good. I just gotta wave some songs at them.”
First, Allman is heading to Atlanta’s Fox Theatre on January 10th for the tribute All My Friends: Celebrating the Songs and Voice of Gregg Allman, with acts including Vince Gill, Dr. John, Jackson Browne, Eric Church, Sam Moore, Widespread Panic, Taj Mahal, and more set to perform.