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Gregg Allman Regrets His Final Conversation with Duane

Duane and Gregg Allman
Hulton Archives / Rick Diamond, Getty Images

Gregg Allman has been sober for years, but even though he’s left his bad habits behind, he’s still troubled by some memories of the old days — including the final conversation he had with his brother and bandmate Duane, the morning before a motorcycle accident took the legendary guitarist’s life at the young age of 24.

Gregg relives the conversation in the pages of his new memoir, ‘My Cross to Bear,’ released May 1. As he tells it, he’d given Duane some money to buy some drugs, but when they failed to materialize, he decided to let himself into Duane’s house, helped himself to his cocaine stash, and “poured out about half a gram and snorted it up.”

Duane, of course, noticed the missing drugs, and accused Gregg of stealing them — an accusation Gregg flatly denied. “That last thing I ever said to my brother was a f—ing lie, man: ‘No, I did not,’ I told him.” Duane apologized, telling him, “I sure do love ya, baybrah.”

It’s a conversation that still haunts Allman, who confesses that he has “thought of that lie every day of my life, and I just keep recrucifying myself for it. I know that’s not what he would want – well, not for long anyway. I know he lied to me about the blow in the first place. But the thing is, I never got the chance to tell him the truth.”

The drug-fueled spiral that led to the Allman Brothers Band‘s first breakup in 1976 has long been a matter of public record, but Allman has understandably avoided discussing those days in interviews over the last couple of decades. Based on this excerpt — along with one released last month which details the events leading up to their split — it looks like ‘My Cross to Bear’ lives up to its title with unflinching honestly.

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