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Hittin' the Note #85 - 2015

Greetings everyone,

      My good friend and HTN Editor John Lynskey was kind enough to loan me this space to put down some of my musings about the current issue you now hold in your hand. Over the twenty-three years that we have been publishing Hittin' the Note magazine, I have seen and heard some of the best musicians in the world. The Allman Brothers Band, which is the very reason this magazine is in existence, has deeply moved my soul over this time, but it is our journey with Derek Trucks that has been the most rewarding for me. Seeing and filming Derek's first Atlanta appearance at the Cavern in 1991 with fellow HTN founders Bill Ector and Ron Currens; watching the evolution of his talents over countless performances in his teens and twenties; and now, the fact that Derek is headlining major amphitheaters is something worth celebrating! And celebrating is what we are doing with this issue.
      Derek first appeared in our magazine in issue #9 and then again in #13. After that, he was pretty much a regular - show reviews, CD releases, guest spots with other artists, interviews, etc., all found their way into our publication. Early on we knew that his talents were special and that the future was going to be much more interesting with him in the mix. All of our staff felt strongly that his development needed to be documented, and Hittin' the Note was the perfect way to share it with the world.
      In 1999 Derek met Susan Tedeschi and brought her into the nucleus of bands that were so essential to the appetite of our readers the Allman Brothers Band, Gov't Mule and the Derek Tucks Band - now, we had Susan. What a pleasure it was to have some estrogen along with all that abundant testosterone on stage. At first, there was the Derek Trucks Band and the Susan Tedeschi Band, which evolved into the Soul Stew Revival for special occasions. This combustible combination and the needs of a growing family led to the formation of the Tedeschi Trucks Band.
      Our first feature article is one written specifically for this issue, as it will catch you up on what is currently happening with the Tedeschi Trucks Band. It is followed by our two most recent articles on the TTB, which covered the CD releases of Revelator and Made Up Mind. Then we jump back in time to HTN #18, which had a review of the first Derek Trucks Band CD. It marked an important time in Derek's burgeoning career, as he evolved from blues and rock to jazz and jazz fusion, with interpretations of compositions by Miles Davis, Wayne Shorter and John Coltrane. That is followed by an article from #25 that has an in-depth biography of Derek from age nine to twenty. Another feature article in HTN #25 was our first interview with the lovely Susan Tedeschi by Pete Sienkiewicz, our publisher at the time. It is a great look back at her beginnings and where her head was at during those early days of her collaboration with Derek.
      The piece included from #34 covers the beginnings of Derek and Susan's life as a married couple. Each of them were in the process of recording new albums and they were excited about the upcoming birth of their first child. The images that accompany this article give a sweet peak into their very special wedding day. HTN #47 included an interview with Susan about her third release, Hope and Desire - a very strong follow-up to the Grammy-nominated Just Won't Burn and Wait For Me. In #48, we were honored to have an article written by DTB vocalist Mike Mattison that gave us an inside look at the makings of the DTB CD Songlines. Mike's talents as a wordsmith and composer are clearly visible in the lyrics and songs he helps write for the band, and are backed up by his degree in English from Harvard. #55 had features on both Derek and Susan; the Derek article covered his time touring with Eric Clapton, playing at Clapton's Crossroads Festival and his perspective on the ABB's inspiring 2007 tour. Susan's interview focused on her sitting in with the Allman Brothers, the creation of Soul Stew Revival, as well as Farm Aid and Crossroads. HTN #62 contained an especially insightful interview with Derek by John Lynskey that got down to the heart of the matter on a number of subjects. We wrap up this wonderful issue with a look back on the personal impact Derek had on Ron Currens, HTN's Founding Editor.
      The past two editions of Hittin' the Note covered two decades of Gov't Mule, while this current double-issue takes an in-depth look at Derek Trucks and Susan Tedeschi through the years. Our next installment will be another special issue focusing on Gregg Allman and the Allman Brothers Band. The journey truly has been the reward - thanks for being along for the ride. Enjoy every word!

                                                                                                     Until After Then,
                                                                                                     John Lynskey
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