Behind the Band Name: Alter Bridge

Creed had a firm grip on the post-grunge movement in the mid-90s. Despite their success, the group –Brian Marshall, Scott Phillips, Scott Stapp, and Mark Tremonti – disbanded in the early ’00s due to creative differences with frontman Stapp.

Videos by American Songwriter

In the wake of the band’s breakup, several of the members decided to break out on their own, forming Alter Bridge. You could say they embraced change with “Arms Wide Open”… wink, wink.

Alter Bridge has proven to be prolific enough for the band members after the whirlwind success with Creed. Find out the meaning behind their band name below.

Behind the Band Name

Alter Bridge was formed in 2004 by Myles Kennedy, Tremonti, Marshall, and Phillips. The former Creed musicians became fans of Kennedy’s after seeing him perform as part of The Mayfield Four.

The band name has simple enough origins. Tremonti, a Detriot native, lived near Alter Road where there was a bridge. Tremonti put the two together and voilà, they had a moniker.

The group released its debut single, “Open Your Eyes,” in June 2004, soon after the official breakup of Creed. Their debut album, One Day Remains, followed, peaking at No. 5 on the Billboard Hot 200. One Day Remains was largely composed by Tremonti with some additional writing from Kennedy towards the end of the album process.

Though the band earned moderate success with One Day Remains, the follow-up proved to make even more of a splash. Their second album, Blackbird, didn’t do as well on the charts but has gone on to become more favorably reviewed in hindsight. The band feels that’s when they found their stride.

“We already had a vocalist that sounds completely different to Scott, but with Blackbird and Myles also on guitar, we really got to turn the ship in the direction it’s heading in now,” Tremonti once said. “Our whole trip is about writing songs that come from the heart and that will hopefully resonate in other people’s lives for many, many, many, many years. We don’t have any gimmicks: we aren’t a bunch of super rock star types with a ton of swagger.”

Since Blackbird, Alter Bridge has shared five more studio albums. Their latest record, Pawns & Kings, was released last year. The band is currently on tour in support of the record. Find their tour dates HERE. Supporting the band on the entire North American leg of the tour are Mammoth WVH, Red, and Pistols At Dawn.

“It’s a cry for the underdog,” Kennedy told American Songwriter of Pawns & Kings’ title track. “It’s also a song of empowerment to a point. That line, Though we’re pawns, we could be kings / If we believe / Against all odds we will survive, is really about believing that you can control your destiny. 

“We’re always trying to make it so that the songs are painted with a broad enough stroke lyrically, and it has a certain amount of ambiguity so that you can insert your own meaning into it so it’s relatable in your own life,” Kennedy continued. “So people’s different perspectives of the song intrigue me, and it makes me happy.”

Photo by Chuck Brueckmann

Leave a Reply

Review: Not Such a Crazy Horse After All— Molina, Talbot, Lofgren, and Young Shine in a Solo Spotlight

After Contentious Court Case, Vicky Cornell and Soundgarden Settle, New Album Possible