November 13, 2012

Rock band Saliva has big plans

By Connie Hall-Scott

— I rarely like a song the first time I listen to it. But for me and Saliva’s “All Around the World” it was love at first listen. “Always,” “Click Click Boom” and other salivations were already personal favorites, but when I first heard “All Around the World,” released earlier this year, I became a true fan.

This band called Saliva, founded in 1996 in Memphis, has received a Grammy nomination for Best Hard Rock Performance. They have chart-topping hits, gold and platinum records, and their songs have been featured in “The Fast and the Furious,” “Talladega Nights” and Tiger Woods PGA. They have toured — are touring — the world, and boys and girls, I think they’re just getting started.

On Monday night Saliva’s new vocalist, Bobby Amaru, took a break from song writing at a friend’s studio in Nashville to ring my phone. Amaru, 28, replaced Josey Scott this past January.

“Your bandmate (guitarist Wayne Swinny) has described you as a singer, songwriter and producer who is bringing fresh blood into the band and putting a new spin on Saliva’s sound,” I told him. “How are you doing that?”

“We’re not trying to change the band,” Bobby said. “Saliva will be Saliva. We’re still doing rock songs. I bring a lot of energy to the live shows. As a group, we’re tying to hit multiple audiences. We want to keep our fans happy and target a younger audience as well.”

In addition to touring, the band stays busy writing, sharing ideas, and putting together songs for an album they hope to record in January with Luis Bacardi’s Rum Bum label.

“Rock and roll is fun,” Bobby said. “Music is in my blood. My dad was into the 80s hair metal stuff, so I grew up on that … Guns N’ Roses, Motley Crue… but I also like grunge, Alice in Chains… and all kinds of music.”

“What does the future hold for Saliva?” I wanted to know.

“We want to sell 10 million records,” Bobby said. “Who doesn’t want that? We want to put out a really good record that we’re excited about, to go on tour with it. As long as we’re happy and our fans are happy and coming to the shows, that’s what it’s all about.”

Catch Saliva at Wild Bills in Atlanta, along with band Less Than Saints, on Wednesday, Nov. 14. Tickets can be purchased at www.ticketmaster.com for $15 in advance or for $20 at the door. Visit www.wildbillsatlanta.com for more information. To keep up with Saliva, visit www.saliva.com.