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Capricorn Rising: Conversations in Southern Rock (MERCER UNIVERSITY PRESS) is a collection of interviews with many of the stars, producers, and associates of the 1970s Southern record label, Capricorn, which was founded in the heart of Macon, Georgia in 1969.

Author Michael Bu alo Smith has been interviewing the movers and shakers in rock and country music for over twenty- five years, and with this volume, he collects word for word, complete interviews with Capricorn artists including Gregg Allman, Dickey Betts, George McCorkle, Bonnie Bramlett, Paul Hornsby, Johnny Sandlin, Chuck Leavell, and many others, providing a glimpse into the early 70s when Southern Rock was born in Macon.

Capricorn Rising also includes memorials to the two men who founded the Capricorn studio and record label, Phil Walden and Frank Fenter. The foreword was penned by Willie Perkins, the Allman Brothers Band tour manager from 1970-1976. 


Capricorn Rising received a nice review and recommendation from Donovan's Literary Service in 2017. READ REVIEW

Capricorn Rising was reviewed in NO DEPRESSION magazine, Oct 2016. READ REVIEW




"Phil Walden and Frank Fenter gave all of us southern kids who dreamed of having our own place in music a label full of artists who spoke to us. From the Allman Brothers and Marshall Tucker to Captain Beyond and Wet Willie, those of us who were raised in the land where rock and roll was born finally had OUR bands. Who better to write about it than Michael Buffalo Smith, a man who lives , breathes and respects that music and those times. Hats off to Phil and Alan Walden and Frank Fenter.

- Billy Bob Thornton, Oscar & Golden Globe Winning Actor, Director, Writer and Musician


  "If anybody has been the scribe for the history and growth of the music known as southern rock, it's been Michael Buffalo Smith. His devoted and in depth writing has for decades kept the public abreast with the music, the players, the triumphs and the tragedies. His new book Capricorn Rising gets to the heart of the matter with one on one conversations with the artists who have made the music a part of American Culture."

-Charlie Daniels


I’ve known Michael for several decades and have the upmost respect for him and his talents. In this book of interviews with various musicians, artists and folks in the music business from the South, he brings forth great insight into the making and development of the Southern Rock sound. You get all sides of the story and the history unfolds as he leads the interview subjects with dexterity and great questions. This is a highly entertaining, interesting and important read!

—Chuck Leavell, Mercer University Press author, Keyboardist with The Rolling Stones and former member of The Allman Brothers Band

"Michael Buffalo Smith has a deep passion and knowledge of southern music and Capricorn Records, the label most singularly associated for bringing the "southern rock" genre to the world. Michael's journalistic chops goes beyond the superficial writing that often skims the surface of southern rock by sharing the real story. Capricorn Rising is an on point oral history of southern Rock where Michael interviews those who helped create the genre by always asking the right questions. If you area serious student of Southern Rock, Capricorn Rising is a must read."

Rob Duner-Fenter
Son of Frank Fenter, Capricorn Records co-founder and Partner


In “Capricorn Rising,” Michael Buffalo Smith has put together a collection of personal interviews that take the reader through one of the most important periods in the long, wonderful history of “Southern” music. His care for and love of the genre and the musician’s who added to it is present in each and every question. We should all thank him for his patience and ability to document the history, by presenting it from the inside view of those who were right in the middle of it all!

—Tommy Talton, recording artist and member of the band, Cowboy



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