Warren Haynes is the acclaimed guitarist for both Government Mule and the Allman Brothers, yet the Southern Rock guitar king lives in New York City! Haynes has also recorded and toured extensively with the Grateful Dead, stepping into Jerry Garcia’s big shoes, and with the Dave Matthews Band.
Growing up in Asheville, North Carolina, Haynes heard gospel on the radio and was raised by a father who loved Merle Haggard and Bill Monroe, but he also had two older brothers who turned him on to jazz (Miles Davis, John Coltrane), blues (Muddy Waters, Howlin’ Wolf) and the folk-rock of Bob Dylan and Van Morrison. Haynes picked up the guitar at age 12, and became a big Eric Clapton and Jimi Hendrix fan.
By age 20, Haynes gained the attention of country singer/songwriter David Allan Coe. Haynes appeared on nine of Coe’s albums and toured with Coe for four years. When Coe’s band opened for The Allman Brothers Band at Atlanta’s Fox Theater in 1981, Dickey Betts joined them for a few songs. A few years later in 1986, Betts and Haynes met again in Nashville, and in 1987 Betts Betts called on Haynes to work on Betts’s solo album Pattern Disruptive.
Haynes became a full-fledged Allman Brother in 1989 for the band’s Reunion Tour. He has been key in the production of four studio albums, three live albums and two DVDs — co-writing all the original songs for HIttin’ The Note. As a member of the Allmans, Haynes has earned five Grammy nominations, including a Best Rock Instrumental win for “Jessica” in 1995.
In 1994 Allmans bassist Allen Woody and Haynes hatched a plan to bring the power trio structure back to rock and Gov’t Mule was born. The thunderous threesome had released four studio and numerous live CDs by 2000, when Woody passed away suddenly. He’s since been replaced by former Black Crowes bassist Andy Hess.