Pulling in to Nazareth

...In 1971, UNC put on a free day long live music extravaganza called Jubilee. I was fortunate to be a student at a time when colleges spent big bucks for entertainment. Chuck Berry and the J. Geils Band played in the afternoon, with the Allman’s headlining at night.

Color slides were expensive to shoot and process, so I only shot black and white at this show. I was on a college student’s budget. I spent about fifteen minutes camped out less than an arm’s length from Duane during a classic Allman Brothers set. He didn’t seem to mind my invasion of his personal space. He never moved back, and he never gave me a look indicating I had moved too close. He just kept playing. I had never heard a truly virtuoso guitarist before, and the Allman Brothers had two. (Chuck Berry played earlier in the day, and he was no slouch either.) It was an experience I’ll never forget, both musically and photographically.
— John Gellman

I had no intention of recreating John's shot of Duane, but I can admit that I've always wondered what it would have felt like to be at the University of North Carolina, standing where John stood in 1971.

44 years later, I walked into The Ryman Auditorium with John's image of Duane somewhere in my subconscious.  Southern hospitality was on my side that night, as it always seems to be.  Guests in the front row willingly gave up their seats for me and I took full advantage.  For two hours I shot the entire show from the best spots in the house.  I left knowing I had experienced something great and hoped that my photos could reflect the way it made me feel.

Derek Trucks brings us closer to Duane than anything ever will.  On February 12th, 2015 he brought me and Duane's hometown crowd of Nashville, TN.

Philip Macias