An Evening with DEVON ALLMAN!
' An Evening with DEVON ALLMAN' – ( and some ' FRIENDS ' - TBA) DECEMBER 7th 2013 on the ' STAR STAGE ' @SCREVEN ---' ' The Next Generation of The Allman Family '…
Family names are hard to live by, for they conjure up karma, old stories, habits and if you are DEVON ALLMAN e, artistic talent is passed down to you…
Devon didn’t grow up back upstage or have a guitar pick rattle, but he was born and raised by his mom in Corpus Christi, TX and has been in St. Louis, MO since he was about 12. He lived in the suburbs. He spent his time riding bikes, hanging out at the beach and going to school. So at 16, when he met his father, Gregg Allman, in a parking lot in St. Louis MO, they knew things were going to be different from then on.
Devon listened to everything from Dire Straits, AC/DC to KISS to Santana to The Rolling Stones when he started to get interested in music, he leaned towards what he heard and loved, songs blaring from the car stereo. His mother had a huge vinyl collection that served as his library. ”My path to finding music and making music is completely my own. It’s not from being brought up in the eye of the hurricane” Devon explained in an interview with Swampland.com in 2009.
Oddly enough, the song that perked up his ears was Layla, by Derek and The Dominos. He explains, "Although it's not straight blues, it's obviously dripping with soulful blues guitar. Layla has always appealed to me because you can really, really ‘feel’ what Clapton was going through. My Uncle Duane just sounds like a bird on it as well! It has so much raw energy and passion that it sounds ultra-fresh every time I put it on. Front to back, one of the few records that can bring me to tears if I let it.”
The spirit of Duane Allman provided the backdrop to what is to happen next in this young man’s life.
First, he went on tour with The Allman Brothers Band for their reunion tour in the early 90s and witnessed the whole thing in front of him, the constant and grueling of production, to traveling long hours and being away from home. Although, he had been to concerts before that got his ribcage rattled, he found his calling.
Second, Honeytribe was formed in 1999 by him, but stopped in 2001 when Devon celebrated the birth of his son, and wanted to spend time with him. They re-formed in 2005 with their original lineup, toured in the United States, Europe, and Canada vigorously. The band recorded Torch in 2006 and they again, played up to 300 shows a year in 42 states and ten countries. Allman was riding the wave. As they pared down to a power trio in 2008, they released, Space Age Blues in the fall of 2010. Met with critical acclaim and fans adoring it, the album became a cinder box in Allman’s growing musical architecture.
As Devon drew up his future, he knew he needed some kind of management so he reached out to Rueben Williams who was handling Cyril Neville and blues guitarist Mike Zito at the time. Zito and Devon knew each other from St. Louis where they worked at a Guitar Center store. Williams, a veteran in the industry, posed the question, “why didn’t The Allman Brothers Band and The Neville Brothers ever tour or play together?”
So in 2011, this surprising group of band leaders got their musical talents to form Royal Southern Brotherhood, with power bassist Charlie Wooton and Grammy winning Yonrico Scott and released a self-titled album on Ruf Records that shook the music world to its core. This 2012 album is filled with funk, blues, rock and little bit of “la famiglia”, the band pushed on, touring the world, selling albums, and gathering fans one by one. Their CD was on top 10 of the Billboard Blues Music Charts for five months. Catching the attention of Rolling Stone Senior Editor David Fricke’s early on, they found themselves on his end of the year best list. Now they look at 2013 square the eye with a Blues Music Award Nomination for Best Blues Rock Record, a few solo CDs and a group DVD set to come out.
As Devon began his solo effort, he went to his muse, the ocean. Where the signs came to him, Turquoise isn’t just color it’s an emotion. The songs on it are one big musical creation as if they were made for each other, with a three second break to let the listener breathe. Allman, a highly creative soul, digs deep in his pocket to bring out the best in him as he looks back. In “When I Left Home”, he’s reading from his journal as if it was the back of his hand. He feels so grateful to have such a blessed career that he can’t help but smile. This is where he makes his mark. In “Turn Off the World,” one of Devon’s most insightful compositions on the new CD, he asks to go where he can “wash off this rock and roll” so that he can cleanse his soul to start anew and refresh his mind after spending so much time on the road.
“The last 10 years I’ve spent in hotels, airplanes, taxis, truck stops, etc.,” says Allman about “Homesick” “This song is dedicated to my family for putting up with my absence.”
“These songs are very special to me,” says Allman. “It’s part ‘dusty road driving music’ and part ‘tropical getaway’ music. These are the stories, feelings and reflections from my last couple of decades of forging my musical path.”
As this musical time machine gets bigger and bigger, Devon gets a huge honor of being a part of the Nation Blues Museum in St. Louis as a member of the Board of Directors, to help mold and be a voice in something as important to the city’s character as a place for blues music lovers. Allman is honored by this, “This museum will galvanize St.Louis' reputation in the international arts community and provide a place to educate and celebrate generations of people about the importance of blues music."
It’s a path that has been well-traveled for decades and the road goes on forever…
Devon Allman – Turquoise - Ruf Records – Release date: February 12, 2013
DECEMBER 7th 2013 on the ' STAR STAGE ' @SCREVEN