Saliva is a band that many of us have heard and probably jammed to “up in our rooms with the stereo playing,” as the lyrics go in one of my favorite songs by them called Click Click Boom. For me, personally, I resonated with that song because I was that high school teenager listening to music all the time in my room and being creative. Saliva formed in 1996 in Memphis, TN and released their self-titled debut album in August of 1997. Today, they are still going strong, even playing at Blue Ridge Rock Festival with Josey Scott and releasing a new single, Crows, this year. I must say, it was an honor to be able to, not only get to watch one of my favorite bands and revel in my teenage nostalgia, but also to get to sit down and talk with Bobby Amaru just before Saliva took the stage at The Shed Smokehouse and Juke Joint in Maryville, TN.
Bobby has had many influences such as his father, who was in a band, and uncle, who was a guitar player, and his grandfather, who was a singer – He was just surrounded by music growing up. He also credits Mӧtley Crϋe, Ozzy, and Kiss as a few of the musical influences he has had. Bobby plays the drums and can play guitar and piano. Singing was the last thing he said he thought about. If he could collaborate with an artist dead or alive, he named Ronnie Van Zandt [Lynard Skynard] and Liam Gallagher [Oasis]. Currently, Bobby is listening to I Prevail, Ghosts, and Thrice, just to name a few. However, he mentioned Hangman’s Chair, which is a band out of Paris, France. One of his favorite bands is Alice In Chains.
Bobby does some producing and songwriting and has mentored other artists. He is currently mentoring an upcoming artist out of Houston whose band has a throwback 90s vibe.
Bobby stated Saliva’s new single, Crows, was a song that written in about five minutes. He stated the writing process is never the same. Epidemic is a song on Saliva’s 10 Lives record that was about the heroin epidemic in the United States, which is an emotional song for Bobby because it hits close to home when he watched his sister battle the addiction, influencing the song. However, Epidemic was also inspired by Seattle Bands that went through the same kind of things.
“Seeing a band absolutely kill it, no matter what it is, taking something from that and realizing you need to step it up” is something Bobby said is a feeling he gets when he sees a band perform that he loves. He took his daughter to see Bad Flower, and he said they were engaging the audience, had a great light show, and were really tight. Keeping the audience engaged is something he tries to do with Saliva shows. He is grateful when people come to see Saliva play shows and have the same feelings he does about seeing bands he loves play. He just wants to “put on the best show possible for people, and that is the greatest reward of performing.”
The best advice bobby said he has ever been given is to “be humble, do not take anything for granted, and always stay true to who you are and remember where you came from.”
Saliva has several shows in the works and a new record is debuting soon.