Browse by Title
A B C D E F G
H I J K L M N
O P Q R S T U
V W X Y Z #  




Midnight Rider

by

The Allman Brothers Band



Songfacts®:  You can leave comments about the song at the bottom of the page.

This is Gregg Allman's signature song, describing how he continues on in the face of obstacles.
Roadie Kim Payne came up with the line "The road goes on forever." He got a songwriting credit for his contribution.
With the help of Kim Payne, who was guarding their equipment, Gregg Allman broke into their Macon recording studio in the middle of the night he wrote this. He wanted to get some tracks down before he forgot.
Gregg Allman used this to open his 1973 solo album Laid Back. It was released as a single and hit US #19.
This song can be heard in the movie Unbreakable when Bruce Willis's character is lifting weights. (thanks, ni - mechanicsburg, PA)
In 2013, this was used by Geico in a commercial for their motorcycle insurance. The spot, titled "Money Man," shows a rider literally made of money cruising while the song plays. The Allman Brother are certainly popular with the biker crowd, but those familiar with the band found the ad in poor taste, as both Duane Allman and Berry Oakley died in motorcycle accidents.
The Allman Brothers Band
The Allman Brothers Band Artistfacts
More The Allman Brothers Band songs
More songs about perseverance
More songs used in commercials
More songs with times of day in the title

Comments (16):

On January 23rd 1982, the Allman Brothers performed "Midnight Rider" on the NBC-TV program 'Saturday Night Live"...
Nine years earlier on December 16th, 1973 Gregg Allman's re-worked version of the song entered Billboard's Hot Top 100 chart; and on February 17th, 1974 it peaked at #19 (for 1 week) and spent 12 weeks on the Top 100...
Three covered versions charted; in 1972 Joe Cocker took it to #27 on the Top 100, in the U.K. in 1976 Paul Davidson reached #10 with it, and in 1980 Willie Nelson's version peaked at #6 on Billboard's Hot Country Singles chart.
- Barry, Sauquoit, NY
Damn good song. I like Gregg's version okay, with the electric piano and horns (4:28 on his "Laid Back" or "Best of" albums), but I kinda prefer the original (first released on "Idlewild South," I think), even though it's shorter (2:59). Tommy of NY, NY: Thanks for that note about the sound engineer being "drafted" to play that riff. I found several lessons for it on YouTube, so I might finally learn to play it. It looks fairly easy, once somebody shows how it's played. Would've been cool to learn it from Gregg himself.
- Doug, Bristol, ME
This incredible song is now used in a Geico motorcycle insurance commercial. Just saw it today. It features the money covered biker riding down a road with money flying all over the place. As far as I am concerned, this is another big company co-opting the wonderful music from the baby boomer generation.
- Roann, Apalachin, NY
This is as good a song as there is. Would have loved to see this live with all the original players.
- Jerry, Chicago, IL
dickey also played on marshall tucker's "fire on the mountain" single...listen and you will undoubtedly hear his style. he has that signature sound with no rival.
- lee, huntsville, AL
this was the original version of the song with duane playing. greg re-made it a few years later but this is the best. you can hear and feel duane and dickeys' opposing styles so well here. both amazing guitarist,who knows what could have been. we'll never know except what we already know...true southern talent.
- lee, huntsville, AL
Greg Allman once said in an interview regarding writing Midnight Rider; "that song hit me like a sack of hoe handles". I was but 8 or 9 years old when I first heard it on the radio and had the same experience.
- Steve, Alexandria, VA
I heard that during the studio recording of this song he actually had one of the enineers play the little riff that you hear through out the song. The guy supposedly didn't know how to play guitar so Gregg taught him the chords and whenever Greg wanted him to play them he would point to him and he'd play it. All while singing and recording. That's why I like this song.
- Tommy, NY, NY
One of my favorite songs ever!i first heard it on the movie Now and Then
- Shannon, Sioux Falls, SD
This might be one of the best songs of all time. However I did not like the version of "Midnight Rider" in the opening scene of the Rock's "Walking Tall". And yes, the opening of "Devil's Rejects" is 10 times better because of this song. In fact, that whole soundtrack is amazing. Skynard, Allman, Steely Dan, Three Dog Night, David Essex...good stuff!
- Michael, Chicago, IL
Great song. In 2005, this was used in the opening credits of Rob Zombie's horror flick The Devil's Rejects.
- Cody, Dallas, TX
On the 1989 tour Gregg let his son Devon take a few vocals in this song. Luckily, Devon hasn't butchered the song since!!
- Barry, New York, NY
To Andy, if you think front row is awesome, then you oughta try back stage. My mom gets free backstage passes from their road manager. They met in rehad like 20 years ago, and he gives her a few tickets a year to see them and I've been twice. I have stuff authographed by all the members.
- Ryan, Auburn, NY
dang, i would love to see the Allman Bros in concert... and i love this song
- Angus, Ransomville, NY
I was in the front row for the Allman Brothers at Bonnaroo 2005 and yes it was an AMAZING set with Midnight Rider standing out as one of the better songs.
- Andy, Charlton, MA
At Bonnaroo 2005, the remaining members, with some new, including Warren Haynes, played an extremely cool version of this during their 2 1/2 hour set. "Jessica" was unforgettable.
- Justin, Chicago, IL
You have to to post comments.
Richie Wise (Kiss producer, Dust)Richie Wise (Kiss producer, Dust)
Richie talks about producing the first two Kiss albums, recording "Brother Louie," and the newfound appreciation of his rock band, Dust.
Jesus Christ Superstar: Ted Neeley Tells the Inside StoryJesus Christ Superstar: Ted Neeley Tells the Inside Story
Expect to see protests even in today's society, as Jesus Christ Superstar, the film, marks its 40th anniversary with a worldwide theater tour. Here, we take a walk down film location lane with Ted Neeley, or "Christ," if you prefer.
Butch VigButch Vig
The Garbage drummer/songwriter produced the Nirvana album Nevermind, and Smashing Pumpkins' Gish and Siamese Dream.
Curt Kirkwood of Meat PuppetsCurt Kirkwood of Meat Puppets
The (Meat)puppetmaster takes us through songs like "Lake Of Fire" and "Backwater," and talks about performing with Kurt Cobain on MTV Unplugged.