The dirty blond hair is the same, the body posture is also the same, and there are touches in the voice that have a similar genetic connection, but Devon Allman has toiled long and hard to establish his own musical identity, separate from his mega-famous dad, Gregg Allman.
In fact, Allman, who was raised by his mom (Shelly, not Cher) in Texas, took up the guitar on his own, and did not meet his father until he was 15 years old. "I was 15, and I sent him a really short letter saying, 'Hey, it's me. Here's where I'm at. I'm playing guitar." I got a phone call three days later," says Allman.
Growing up with his mom, Devon was listening to anything on the radio he could find. Often it was the Rolling Stones or Jimi Hendrix. "I can remember listening to music at the age of four or five. Something would come on the radio and I would always ask my mom who it was. She would say 'That's John Lennon' or 'That's Styx.' One time "Midnight Rider" came on, and I asked her 'Mom who's that?' and she said 'That's your dad.'"
This young Allman did not come on the music scene riding the coattails of a famous parent. Allman has been living his own musical life for decades. After playing in local bands and working in Guitar Center in St. Louis, Allman formed Honey Tribe in 1999. One part blues, one part rock, and one part jam, Honey Tribe was named the 1999 Jam Band of the Year in St. Louis.
Devon and Honey Tribe toured for two years, took a break for a few years allowing Devon to actively parent his son, then reformed in 2005. At the same time, he toured in Europe with Javier Vargas, a Spanish blues rocker. Devon and Honey Tribe continued to tour in support of his 2010 release Space Age Blues. Then, in 2011, his musical fate changed.
Royal Southern Brotherhood was formed during JazzFest in New Orleans. It combined the vocal and musical talents of Devon, Mike Zito, and the legendary Cyril Neville with the veteran rhythm section of Charlie Wooton and Yonrico Scott. Since that genesis, the band has become one of the major new attractions on the music scene. RSB tours non-stop and has just released its second studio record along with a live Songs From The Road, all on Ruf Records.
After touring the world as a fiery guitarist and soulful vocalist in Royal Southern Brotherhood, Devon is still committed to performing dates with his own band. But with a renewed intensity.
Ticket prices starting at $15. Must be 21 or older to attend.