Blues News

The Allman Brothers at the 1971 Jubilee

This week’s photo of the week is a still shot from the Allman Brothers Band at the 1971 Jubilee concert held on Navy Field at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

From 1963 to 1971, the end of the spring semester at UNC was marked by Jubilee. From a small series of concerts started by the student union, to the immense production it became in its later years, Jubilee saw plenty of blues musicians grace its stage.

The early years of Jubilee saw mostly student groups and local bands performing, but in this last edition, along with the Allman Brothers were Chuck Berry, Muddy Waters, the J. Geils Band, and Tom Rush, among others. The 1971 concert series was also the only one notably memorialized in film thanks to the university’s student union. Many believe this to be one of the last live performances of Duane Allman captured on film.

The Jubilee of 1971 was by far the biggest and loudest, and consequently the last one held. Just on May 1st, 1971, the Saturday night the Allman Brothers performed, there were about 23,000 concertgoers in attendance, including many who had cut through holes in the fence to make their way in.

A week after the concerts, the university’s Student Union Activities Group decided the event should be discontinued. They recommended that the money be used to increase programming throughout the entire year, as the multi-day event had become too big, too expensive, and too difficult to manage. In recent years, however, there has been a resurgence of these concerts, but luckily we still have some memories of these classics.


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