Earlier this year, the rock world was rocked when Gregg Allman, the leader of the mighty southern rock outfit the Allman Brothers Band succumbed to liver cancer. Nearly up to his dying day however, he stayed doing what he loved, writing and recording music, and today, his record label has shared a brand new single from his upcoming final album Southern Blood.
Titled “My Only True Friend,” Gregg’s original composition is an emotional reflection on life, death and family. “You and I both know / This river will surely flow to an end / Keep me in your heart / Keep your soul on the mend,” he sings. “I hope you’re haunted by the music of my soul / When I’m gone, please don’t fly away / And find you a new love / I can’t face living this life alone / I can’t bear to think that this might be the end.”
While it’s easy to read this as a final farewell, as co-writer Scott Sharrad told Rolling Stone, the song is actually sung from the perspective of Gregg’s brother, and one of the greatest guitarists of all-time Duane Allman, who died back in 1971. “I never told him because I didn’t want to spook him, since his brother was such an important figure in his life.”
Southern Blood is scheduled to drop next month on September 8. You can check out the single “My Only True Friend” above.