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Former Allman Brothers Drummer David ‘Frankie’ Toler Dies

Frankie Toler

David “Frankie” Toler — who manned the drum kit for Southern-dripped, blues-heavy groups the Allman Brothers Band, the Gregg Allman Band, the Marshall Tucker Band and Dickey Betts & Great Southern — passed away Saturday morning (June 4) in Sarasota, Fla., from complications occurring from a liver transplant he received a few years ago.

Toler began his career playing with his brother, guitarist Dan and Betts in 1978. He joined Dan in the Allman Brothers Band in 1980, churning out close-to-the-bone, gritty blues-rock alongside Gregg Allman, Betts and Butch Trucks. Frankie and Dan quickly became permanent members of the Gregg Allman Band, playing between 1982-83 and 1986-89. Next came a two-year stint with the Marshall Tucker Band in the early ’90s, followed by collaborations with Dan as the Toler Brothers in the mid ’90s and in their band Toler in 2002.

Friends and former colleagues, no doubt, will miss the Southern skinsman.

“As a friend, he was a delightful person, very nice and respectful to everybody,” Van de Bogert, who is a longtime drum tech for Gregg Allman, told “As a drummer, he was innovative and inspirational. He was always coming up with something new, playing stuff no one would ever think of.

“These are some big shoes to fill, a very big hole. I miss him terribly. He was hurting for years and he’s not hurting anymore … He’s in a special place now and we have to hold on to that.”

The Marshall Tucker Band’s latest endeavor is a USO tour throughout Iraq and Kuwait.

Watch the Gregg Allman Band Perform ‘Queen of Hearts’ with Toler on Drums

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