NEW YORK • Gregg Allman, the singer-songwriter who co-founded the now-defunct Allman Brothers Band in 1969 and emerged as a pioneer of Southern rock, has died at 69.
He died at his home in Savannah, Georgia, according to a statement posted last Saturday on his website.
No cause of death was given, but it added that he had "struggled with many health issues" over the years. Allman was diagnosed with hepatitis C in 1999 and had a liver transplant in 2010, Billboard reported.
The Allman Brothers merged blues, jazz, country and rock with a meandering improvisational style that made jamming at gigs one of their trademarks. Rolling Stone magazine said the style created "a template for countless subsequent jam bands".
Their southern rock sound - popular particularly in the 1970s - is also credited with inspiring later groups such as Lynyrd Skynyrd.
Billboard said that since Nielsen Music began tracking point-of-sale music purchases in 1991, the Allman Brothers Band have sold 9.3 million albums in the United States.
Allman struggled for years with heroin addiction and substance abuse and entered rehabilitation several times before getting clean in the 1990s. As a member of the band, he was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 1995. In 2012, along with the rest of the group, he received a Grammy Award for lifetime achievement.
Yesterday, his former wife Cher tweeted a tribute using their old pet names for one another. "Words are impossible, Gui Gui," she wrote. "Forever, Chooch."