With the recent announcement that guitarists Warren Haynes and Derek Trucks will be leaving The Allman Brothers Band at the end of the year, the group faces an uncertain future. In a recent interview with Relix, frontman Gregg Allman said the band — which is celebrating its 45th anniversary this year — will retire from the road after 2014, and in a new conversation with ABC News Radio, Haynes seems to echo that sentiment.
“Most everybody in the band agrees that the 45th is a good time to stop doing this, and then if we decide to do it some more in the future, so be it,” says Warren. “But, we’ll see.”
He adds, “This band isn’t big on communication, so it’s hard to read everybody, but we have had several discussions about it over the last few years, and everybody is pretty much in a similar situation to where Derek and I [are] as far as thinking this would be a good high note to go out on.”
About his 25-year tenure in the Allman Brothers, Haynes says, “I’m grateful that I’ve had this opportunity,” while noting that he never expected to play with the group for as long as he has.
“When I joined the band, it was for a reunion tour that was going to be one year,” Warren reveals. “It went very well so we did it a second year, then a third, then a fourth, and here it is 25 years later.”
He says Gregg Allman actually told him that he has a similar feeling about his own time in the band. “He’s like, ‘Wow, I can’t believe it’s been 45 years,’” notes Haynes, “and I think he feels like 45 years is a good quitting point as well.”
Warren explains that he and Derek both felt ready to move on, and decided to exit the group at the same time.
“[Derek has] talked about the fact that he wouldn’t want to do it without me and I wouldn’t want to do it without him, so we kind of agreed to make a pact,” Haynes explains.
In addition, he feels that the band reached “a very, very special” place during the 14 years he and Derek were part of the group together, and believes that a new incarnation would have a hard time competing with what they achieved as a unit.
One Allman Brothers Band member who isn’t convinced that the group is necessarily over and done is founding drummer Butch Trucks. He tells ABC News Radio that he and his band mates “still have some issues to settle,” adding, “It’s not a done deal that this is the last year.”
Butch maintains, “We’ve got some talking to do, some things to go through, and then we’ll decide. It may be, and it may not be [the end of the group]. We’ll just wait and see.”
He also suggests that Haynes could have a change of heart about departing the band.
“With Warren it was always been, ‘If Derek leaves, I leave.’ It’s not, ‘I’m leaving,’” he notes. “So, I think that the door is still open for Warren to stick around, but that’s up to him.”
The Allman Brothers Band currently is in the middle of its annual series of March concerts at the Beacon Theatre in New York City. After the residency winds down on March 29, the group has appearances lined up at several festivals through early September. Check out the Allman’s full itinerary at AllmanBrothersBand.com.
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio