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Allman Brothers guitarist Dan Toler dies after battle with ALS

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Dan Toler performing in 1986.

Onetime Allman Brothers Band guitarist Dan Toler died on Monday of Lou Gehrig's disease in Sarasota, Fla., his official website is reporting. 

Toler was a member of the band from 1979-82, and his age has been reported variously as "in his early 60s" (according to manager Glen Halverson, who spoke to Reuters), 64 (according to the Sarasota Herald-Tribune) and 65 (according to Rolling Stone). Toler (also known as "Dangerous Dan") played on the albums "Enlightened Rogues," "Reach for the Sky" and "Brothers of the Road." 

He and his late brother, drummer David "Frankie" Toler, were members of other bands as well, including Dickey Betts & Great Southern. Both played with the Gregg Allman Band in the 1980s.

In 2009, Dan Toler paired with John Townsend for the Toler/Townsend Band, which released a self-titled independent album that year.

"His ability to make people laugh and feel good and happy was amazing," former bandmate Chaz Trippy told the Herald-Tribune. "That smile of his is just a force of life and, God, how he loved playing that guitar." 

After his brother died in 2011, Toler announced he had been diagnosed with the degenerative nerve disease amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, which is often known as Lou Gehrig's disease.

Fellow musician and longtime friend Bonnie Bramlett told the Sarasota Herald-Tribune: "To see how Danny walked tall through that disease and play guitar so beautifully with his blue eyes burning (during a November 2011 benefit), what a hero.... He really showed people how to live, and how to die."


Toler is survived by his wife Debbie and their daughter Danielle Franz. A public memorial/celebration is slated to honor him in Sarasota on March 9.

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