You may have heard of Devon Allman's father. He is, after all, one-half of a little band called the Allman Brothers. But though Devon Allman’s paternal side of the family is undisputed rock royalty with his father Gregg and uncle Duane being, you know, the Allman Brothers, it was through his mom that Devon learned to love music.
“At 5 years old, I raided my mom’s vinyl collection,” Devon told New Times as he waited out the bad weather that had him stranded in Austin, Texas. “I got into all the classic stuff: Steely Dan, the Doors, the Beatles.”
As a teenager, Devon taught himself to play guitar and at first avoided playing anything that could be associated with his famous last name. “I started in my 20s playing in some grunge bands. But then I found my way into blues-inspired rock ’n’ roll.”
After spending some time with the bands Honeytribe and the still existing Royal Southern Brotherhood, Allman has focused on his solo career. He recently released his second solo album, Ragged & Dirty. Recorded in Chicago, the album tries to capture the city’s electric blues vibe using session men who played with Buddy Guy and Miles Davis.
Allman's currently traveling the country with guitarist Bobby Schneck Jr., bassist Steve Duerst, and drummer Anthony Nanney on a tour that will take them to the Funky Biscuit on May 22. "It's one of my favorite intimate venues," Allman says of the Biscuit. "We’re going to play a lot of cuts off the new record, songs from my Honeytribe days, some cool covers. We go acoustic for a handful of numbers and also bring out some instrumentals.”
Though this tour is keeping Allman busy, he doesn’t want to let that stop him from recording more music. “I want to keep the clip of my heroes and put out a record a year. I’m always writing stuff. Ideas come to me often. I’ll sing the idea into my iPhone and over the course of a tour, I’ll come up with a hundred seedlings for songs. That’s when I have to be disciplined and try to make something out of them.”
He knows his last name has opened some doors, but Devon Allman is insistent on paying his dues and letting his music earn an audience. “I don’t worry about my name. I recently hit a million miles touring. This here is a do-it-yourself enterprise.”
Devon Allman with JP Soars and the Red Hots. 9 p.m. Friday, May 22, at the Funky Biscuit, Royal Palm Place, 303 SE Mizner Blvd., Boca Raton. Call 561-395-2929, or visit funkybiscuit.com. Tickets cost $15 to $30 plus fees via ticketfly.com.