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Dickey Betts passes away after cancer battle

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Dickey Betts

, the acclaimed guitarist and co-founder of the Allman Brothers Band, has passed away at the age of 80 after

battling cancer

, as confirmed by his family. Betts, known for his significant contributions to Southern rock, left an indelible mark on the music industry.
In a statement shared with CNN by his longtime manager, Betts’ family announced his peaceful passing at his home in Osprey, FL, surrounded by loved ones.

Describing Betts as a “legendary performer, songwriter, bandleader, and family patriarch,” the family requested prayers and privacy during this time.

Born in West Palm Beach, Florida, Betts was influenced by various musical genres, including bluegrass, country, and rock and roll. Alongside Gregg and Duane Allman, Betts co-founded the Allman Brothers Band in 1969, contributing significantly to shaping the sound of Southern rock.

Betts’ songwriting prowess and musical talents were evident in the band’s hits like ‘Ramblin Man,’ which he wrote and sang, becoming one of their most iconic tracks. Initially intended for Johnny Cash, the song’s universal appeal led to its inclusion in the band’s repertoire.

In addition to ‘Ramblin’ Man,’ Betts penned other notable Allman Brothers hits such as ‘Blue Sky’ and ‘Jessica,’ further solidifying his legacy in the music world. However, the band faced tragedy with the deaths of Duane Allman and bassist Berry Oakley, leading to Betts and Gregg Allman assuming leadership roles amidst creative differences and substance abuse struggles.

Despite the band’s tumultuous journey, Betts’ musical contributions remain timeless, influencing generations of musicians. His legacy as a Southern rock pioneer and virtuoso guitarist endures, leaving a profound impact on the music industry.

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