Photography was a lot different in the '60s and '70s. It took a lot more work to get really good shots.
Gilbert Lee has photographed a lot of big names and lives in Macon. He says hanging with the Allmans was quite the experience as they were just getting started.
Lee's living room resembles a museum of southern rock. He says the secret to getting some of these shots was timing.
"They weren't big yet," he recalled. "They all knew me so they just began to ignore me, which is exactly what you want."
And persistence paid off, too, for the young photographer.
"Nobody had a picture of the new band with Lamar and Chuck in it, so I went to the warehouse where they were rehearsing, and it took me two weeks to get the picture," he said with a smile.
Other moments happened in a flash.
"He was getting in the car to come to rehearsal, and I always thought he was going, 'Shush,'" Lee said while talking about a picture hanging in the Big House.
Lee says he will never forget two weeks when Allman himself and some other folks hung out together on the West Coast, and he's got some rare Polaroids to document it all.
"It was during that period when Gregg was in Hollywood and he and Cher were not getting along, so we roamed around Hollywood," he said. "I was just snapping and we were running around all over town and seeing everybody meeting musicians. Two weeks I was with him then, and I don't think we stayed in the same place twice."
But Allman did cut a once in a lifetime deal.
"He didn't have any clothes when he left Cher's house, so he traded me this suit for two pairs of Levi's," he said.
It's the kind of stuff that will live on in black and white and in the memories.
Lee says he ate dinner with Gregg and Cher, and he said Cher was a good cook. She taught him how to eat an artichoke.
Click here for Gilbert Lee's website http://www.gilbertlee.com/gilbertlee.com/Home.html
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