Alamantra

Alamantra

 Birmingham, Alabama, USA
BandRockJam

Alamantra: psychedelic-alternative jam rock (REM meets Widespread Panic or Govt Mule) Alamantra's music is a melting-pot of alternative, blues, eastern, folk, psychedelic, soul & southern rock influences combined with artful, --often poetic-- lyrics.

Biography


Alamantra began in Birmingham, Alabama in 2000. Rather, that was the year the music stopped changing its brand name every few years. Songwriter/Guitarist/Vocalist, Bobby Shiflett, had begun using the name, Alamantra, as early as 1995, for an online persona. The general meaning is derived from Ala (Latin for “wing” ) + mantra or “prayer.” “Alamantra” is a play on the phrase “a wing and a prayer;” which is certainly an apt description of how they've managed to stick around. Though some pronounce the name, Ala –mon- tra, the band pronounces it, Ala –man- tra.

The Members:

Bobby Shiflett: Guitar, Vocals: Bobby is the primary songwriter and lyricist for Alamantra. He has been writing and playing for a generation. First inspired by The Beatles, Bobby has been on a musical odyssey of immense proportions. This is reflected in his broad musical interests. Both his lyrics and music have an introspective, undeniably spiritual element to them.

Steve Casteel: Guitar.

Steve comes from a musical family and grew up in the Florence/Muscle Shoals area. While growing up, he spent time in the studios around the area and sharpened his chops in touring bands like Radio Tokyo. He has hung out, roomed and played with people like Rob Malone (Fiddleworms, Drive-by Truckers). Steve is an intuitive, fluid guitarist, who is easy to play with. We’ve been jamming together in one thing or another since the mid 1990s. Alamantra’s secret ingredient is in the nearly seamless weaving of the guitars and Steve makes this possible.

Brandon Allison: Drums.

Alamantra’s original drummer was Bobby's brother, Ken Shiflett. He had played with the band since its official debut in 2000, and well beyond that, in other projects going back to 1993. In 2009 he scaled back his participation, though he occasionally sits in on percussion.

The drums are the heartbeat of any band, and it took a while for Alamantra to find a new heart for its ancient spirit. In Brandon Allison we found just that. At 32, Brandon is the youngest member of the band. Brandon, with his easy going demeanor and pocket drumming, has beat new life into the band.

Rick Glaze: Bass, Vocals.

Andrew ‘Drew’ Reid had played bass for Alamantra (and earlier projects) since 1993. When he left in 2009, it created a space in Alamantra that proved challenging to fill. Alamantra went through over a dozen talented musicians in the attempt. Finally they found Rick Glaze. Rick is a gifted, versatile, experienced bass player and a strong vocalist. Though he is laid back and possessed with an indispensable sense of humor, he has stepped into the work with purpose, made it his own, been a real team player and taken on a lot of the vocals…for which the rest of us are grateful.

Epilogue

Though the term “indie” has been reduced to being a misnomer, Alamantra truly is an indie band. From the beginning, it has been built on a DIY ethic. In 2003, Alamantra helped to organize and present a series of shows in the Birmingham area to raise money and awareness for RAINN. (Rape, Abuse, Incest, National Network).

Lyrics

Ajarah Jam

Written By: Bobby Shiflett

All that I’ve got are all my days
I’m gonna take them and give them up for you
All that I’ve got are all my days
I’m gonna make them and them back to you
All that I’ve got are all my days
I’m gonna shape them and give them up to you

Give it all up, give it all up, give it all up to you
Give it all up, give it all up, give it all up to you
Give it all up, give it all up, give it all up to you
Give it all up, give it all up, give it all up to you

All that I’ve got are wayward ways
I’m gonna leave them and bring it home to you
All that I’ve got are wayward ways
I’m gonna leave them and bring it home to you
All that I’ve got are wayward ways
I’m gonna leave them and bring it home to you

Bring it on home, bring it on home, bring it on home to you
Bring it on home, bring it on home, bring it on home to you
Bring it on home, bring it on home, bring it on home to you
Bring it on home, bring it on home, bring it on home to you

Move On

Written By: Bobby Shiflett

It’s almost 2 AM. Tonight is wasted.
Can’t remember where I’ve been
But I can still taste it.

Let’s hope we won’t recall …any of this tomorrow
Been strung out on the wall
Nothing left to borrow

Pockets are empty and my clothes are worn
Can’t remember why I was ever born
Time is an outline of disfigured grace
Written in the lines on my face

Help is on the way,
We need it yesterday
When we sing a song
And we sing as one
Our voice is strong
Won’t you sing along?
Time to stand up …and move on.

Don’t shake those snakes at me …makes me nervous
Trade freedom for security
We don’t deserve this
When you look at me, you seem so angry
What happened to civility?
How’d it get so dangerous?

Love is like a black butterfly
Hidden in the dark of the midnight sky
As dawn is breaking it comes into sight
Gliding through the prism of the shattered Light

Help is on the way,
We need it yesterday
When we sing a song
And we sing as one
Our voice is strong
Won’t you sing along?
Time to stand up …and move on.

Spaces

Written By: Bobby Shiflett

Morning comes to you like a lover
Feel the sunlight on your skin
The Earth so warm, so ripe and so tender
Feel the life throughout the land

Now wolves howl softly
And birds seek the trees

Daybreak, Springtime on the mountain
Feel the coolness in the air
Melting ice and cool, refreshing fountains
Like the water, have no care

Like you felt the wind for the first time
Felt the coolness in the air …in the air
And you look into the distance
See the mountains
We’ll be waiting for you
We’ll be waiting for you …there.

If you can cast aside those dreams born in darkness
And come back home to the land
The spaces in between, forgotten but familiar
Then I know you’ll understand

Like you felt the wind for the first time
Felt the coolness in the air …in the air
And you look into the distance
See the mountains
We’ll be waiting for you
We’ll be waiting for you …there.

Discography

Alamantra: Workingman's Bread 2012 (Alamantra Media: Released through CD Baby)
Alamantra By Turns: 2009 (Alamantra Media: Released through ReverbNation)
Alamantra 2004: 2004 (The Orchard)

Set List

Set Material:
Originals:
Bread
Ajarah Jam
Move On
Forever Away
Spaces
Will Hear
Vase Flowers
Silk Skin
Brian Jones
Surf Babe
Old Trickster Last Grand Parade
Mark of Cain
and many, many more

Covers:
Aint No Rest for the Wicked: Cage the Elephant
All Along the Watchtower: Bob Dylan, Jimi Hendrix
All New Minglewood Blues: Grateful Dead
Babe I’m Gonna Leave You: Trad., Led Zeppelin
Begin the Begin: REM
Black Magic Woman: Fleetwood Mac, Santana
Blue On Black: Kenny Wayne Shepherd
Boogie at Russian Hill: John Lee Hooker
Bridge of Sighs: Robin Trower
Bringing It Back from Mexico: J.J. Cale
Copperhead Road: Steve Earl
Cortez the Killer: Neil Young
Dead Flowers: Rolling Stones
Dear Mr. Fantasy: Traffic
Dear Prudence: The Beatles
Echoes: Pink Floyd
Eurotrash Girl: Cracker
Feelin’ Alright: Traffic, Joe Cocker
Fire on the Mountain: Marshall Tucker Band
Franklin’s Tower: Grateful Dead
Funky Bitch: Phish
Gimme Shelter: Rolling Stones
Goin’ Down: Freddie King