From the Vault...


Devon Allman
"Ride Or Die"

© Ruf Records

Year of Release: 2016

track listing
  • Say Your Prayers
  • Find Ourselves
  • Galaxies
  • Lost
  • Shattered Times
  • Watch What You Say
  • Vancouver
  • Pleasure And Pain
  • Hold Me
  • Live From The Heart
  • Butterfly Girl
  • A Night Like This

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    Devon Allman Website
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    Devon Allman
    "Ride Or Die"

    Gregg Allman's son, Devon, gets the nod this week, with his recent #1 Blues album, Ride Or Die (2016). (Devon's mother is Shelley Kay Jefts). Ride Or Die was #1 on the Billboard Blues Albums Chart, in October of 2016, for one week. It really should have been more than one week... This album is truly a great and fantastic album. The album has a great mix of not only Blues, but more of a Rock & Blues feel. More rocking than bluesin', Devon Allman makes any Rock/Blues fan enjoy this album.

    Opening the album is a fantastic rockin start, with "Say Your Prayers." Prayers are not needed, really, as this album starts off on the right track, and quite frankly, every song afterwards sets Gregg's son as a sure-fine Rock & Blues artist.

    Another great Blues artist to keep in mind with Devon, is Robert Cray. "Find Ourselves" and "Live For The Heart" has the Cray comparison. And comparing Devon to Cray, it really should be a fine compliment. Even "Pleasure And Pain" has a Cray feel.

    "When Galaxies collide, will you Ride or Die? is the question on the track "Galaxies" -- another great blues+rock track. "Lost" gets a soft touch sound, and blends well. Funky Blues has "Shattered Times."

    More good Rock+Blues tracks: "Watch What You Say," and "Vancover." A more soulful sound is heard on "Hold Me." And another impressive artist to compare, is on "Butterfly Girl" -- Darius Rucker when he was in Hootie & The Blowfish. Closing out the album is another good rock track, "A Night Like This" -- having a comparison to the more recent Rock acts (I kinda think of U2 on this one).

    Devon Allman's musical recording career began in 2006, with the band Honeytribe. Two albums were released by them, Torch (2006), and Space Age Blues (2010). His next band was the Royal Southern Brotherhood, as their self-titled album was released in 2012. He has also recorded with others, such as the Vargas Blues Band, the Dan Bruder Band, Jeremiah Johnson, and a various artists tribute album to his father, in 2007.

    As a solo performer (credited as Devon Allman), he has recorded three albums, including Ride Or Die: Turqoise (2013), and Ragged And Dirty (2014).

    It's easy to see how Ride Or Die would become #1, and a classic album, if it can be labeled as this. If you don't have this album in your collection, you should. It's a great album, and there is something for everyone. Rock, Blues, Funk Blues, and one track that slows down the pace "Lost." It all blends well, as this is an album that easily enjoyed taking a car ride, or if you just want to rock it out. Devon grew up from a famous Rock father, and grew up on great Rock artists, such as Santana, the Rolling Stones, the Doors, and his father's band, the Allman Brothers Band. His most influential and inspiration song would be "Layla" by Derek & The Dominoes. Not only was he inspired by Eric Clapton's guitar playing, singing, and what was based on the song itself (Clapton was infatuated by George Harrison's wife, Patti). And another mention of the song and the band itself, is that not only did Derek & The Dominoes have one great and inspiration guitar player, that of Eric Clapton, another guitar player (and another great and inspirational one too), was Duane Allman, Gregg Allman's brother, and Devon's uncle.

    I'm sure Gregg Allman was extremely proud that his son has something in common with him, having a #1 album. The Allman Brothers only had one #1 album on the Billboard Albums chart -- their 1973 release, Brothers And Sisters. Gregg would have better success himself on the Billboard Blues Albums chart: His solo album in 2011 Low Country Blues; it was #1 for a total of 8 weeks. In 2014, a various artists tribute to Gregg Allman hit #1, the 2-disc set All My Friends: Celebrating The Songs And Voice Of Gregg Allman. It would reach #1 for a total of 2 weeks. His next #1 album was a live album, in 2015, entitled Live: Back To Macon Georgia, GA January 14, 2014. It spent one week at #1.

    Devon Allman is one of the most recent young blues artists to look for. Another one is Gary Clark Jr. Ride Or Die maybe the musical question asked here. The answer is obvious. This album does have a great ride, no dying whatsoever, of any kind. It's all smooth riding, from start to finish.

    UPDATE: Gregg Allman, lead singer and founding member of the Allman Brothers Band, passed away on May 27, 2016, at the age of 69. He had been diagnosed with hepatitis C in 2007, which he attributed to a dirty tatoo needle. The following year it was discovered he had three tumors within his liver, and was recommended a liver transplant. Waiting five months, he underwent a successful liver transplant, in 2010. With his health problems, he was album to release his solo album, Low Country Blues. In 2011, he underwent a lung surgery, and rehab in 2012. He released his memoir that year, My Cross to Bear, which was 30 years in the making. The memoir was optioned to become a movie, entitled Midnight Rider. It was cancelled, due to on set train accident that caused the death of a member of the movie's crew. A tribute album was released in 2014, All My Friends: Celebrating The Songs And Voice Of Gregg Allman. Also in the year, the Allman Brothers Band performed their final concerts. 2015 saw the release of his live album, Live: Back In Macon, GA. He received an honory doctorate from former President Jimmy Carter from Mercer University in Macon, Georgia in 2016.

    His liver cancer returned, as he kept it private. He switched to a gluten-free vegan diet. His doctors advised him to perform on a light schedule, warning that too many performances would risk his medical condition. His last concert was in October 2016, although he was battling "serious health issues."

    Gregg Allman died on May 27, 2017, due to complicaions from liver cancer. Rest in peace, and you will always rock the Heavens, with your brother Duane, and your fellow "Allman brother," Berry Oakley.

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    Previous Review: #1568
    Santo & Johnny--The Best Of Santo And Johnny
    Next Review: #1570
    Gilbert O'Sullivan--The Best Of Gilbert O'Sullivan