Field Recordings

Dry The River: An Oasis Of Calm Amid The Feedback

There's so much to experience during South by Southwest at any given moment, it can be difficult to find peace amid Austin's frenetic pace and competing giant sounds. By the time we met up with Dry the River at Joe's Crab Shack's secluded patio overlooking the Colorado River, we were looking forward to giving our ears a break.

Dry the River typically writes music with big, cathartic climaxes in mind: Songs on the band's first full-length album, Shallow Bed, tend to start with miniaturized melodies that eventually burst into thunderous rock anthems. But on this particular morning, Dry the River arrived in a more intimate formation, swapping electric guitars for acoustics and its full drum set for a single snare. While this performance of the gorgeous "Bible Belt" eases back on the loudness of the original, the band by no means lacks power. The result is a hushed, stirring performance that highlights the band's many strengths — an all-too-brief oasis of calm, sandwiched by the din of guitar feedback.

Set List:
  • "Bible Belt"

Producers: Bob Boilen, Mito Habe-Evans, Saidah Blount; Editor: Michael Katzif; Videographers: Katie Hayes Luke, Michael Katzif, Mito Habe-Evans; Audio Engineer: Kevin Wait; photo by Katie Hayes Luke/NPR

Hear More:

Listen To An Interview With Dry The River On All Things Considered.

[+] read more[-] less

More From Folk

Tiny Desk Concert with The Wild Reeds Julia Reihs/NPR hide caption

toggle caption Julia Reihs/NPR

Tiny Desk

The Wild Reeds

Great singers aren't easy to come by, so finding three in one band is something special.

Ryley Walker performs live at the Woods Stage at the 2015 Pickathon festival. Bruce Ely/Pickathon hide caption

toggle caption Bruce Ely/Pickathon

Favorite Sessions

Ryley Walker, 'Summer Dress' (Live)

Watch the psychedelic-folk guitarist play an extended version of "Summer Dress" at Pickathon 2015.

Rhiannon Giddens. Brian Blauser/Mountain Stage hide caption

toggle caption Brian Blauser/Mountain Stage

Mountain Stage

Rhiannon Giddens On Mountain Stage

The masterful Carolina Chocolate Drops singer draws on the music of trailblazing women.

Listen Loading… 30:56
  • Playlist
  • Embed
    <iframe src="" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

Tiny Desk Concert with Joan Shelley and Nathan Salsburg. Lani Milton/NPR hide caption

toggle caption Lani Milton/NPR

Tiny Desk

Joan Shelley

As technology rules the day, here's a reminder that a single voice can carry deep emotion.

Fiona Apple performs with the Watkins Family Hour at the Tiny Desk. Ariel Zambelich/NPR hide caption

toggle caption Ariel Zambelich/NPR

Tiny Desk

Watkins Family Hour

With help from Fiona Apple, two Nickel Creek alums gather a band to perform old and new songs.

Tiny Desk Concert with Sam Lee Lydia Thompson /NPR hide caption

toggle caption Lydia Thompson /NPR

Tiny Desk

Sam Lee

The singer found his voice by finding and preserving old British, Irish and Scottish folk songs.

Madisen Ward And The Mama Bear perform at the 2015 Newport Folk Festival. Adam Kissick for NPR hide caption

toggle caption Adam Kissick for NPR

Newport Folk Festival

Madisen Ward And The Mama Bear, Live In Concert: Newport Folk 2015

The mother-and-son duo radiated easy familiarity and sincerity during this charming afternoon set.

Listen Loading… 49:14
  • Playlist
  • Embed
    <iframe src="" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
Back To Top

NPR thanks our sponsors

Become an NPR sponsor