Bringing The World Home To You

© 2021 WUNC North Carolina Public Radio
120 Friday Center Dr
Chapel Hill, NC 27517
919.445.9150 | 800.962.9862
91.5 Chapel Hill 88.9 Manteo 90.9 Rocky Mount 91.1 Welcome 91.9 Fayetteville 90.5 Buxton
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations
NPR Music
Music features, reviews and "first listens" from NPR. Find more music at WUNC's Back Porch Music.

River Whyless, Live In Concert: Newport Folk 2016

River Whyless performs at the 2016 Newport Folk Festival.
River Whyless performs at the 2016 Newport Folk Festival.

Three of the four members of the Asheville band River Whyless met while attending Appalachian State University in nearby Boone, N.C., and their long-lived friendship shows in their band's music. The folk-pop band builds mountains out of sensitive harmony lines and adorns its open-road sound with Halli Anderson's yearning fiddle.

River Whyless' Newport Folk set, full of moments of reflection and joy alike, was ideal for Sunday morning. The band's members were clearly thrilled to be playing at the festival, and their humility was wholly endearing. "I planned to talk a lot and woo everybody, but I'm kind of emotional for some reason," Anderson admitted after the quietly empathetic "Life Crisis," from last year's self-titled EP. Another highlight was the band's soaring cover of the Woody Guthrie-Wilco song "Airline To Heaven," which featured surprise guest vocalist Kam Franklin of Houston soul band The Suffers.

Set List

  • "The Hunt"
  • "Bath Salts"
  • "Life Crisis"
  • "Widows Walk"
  • "Baby Brother"
  • "All Day All Night"
  • "Pigeon Feathers"
  • "Airline To Heaven" (Billy Bragg & Wilco cover)
  • Credits

    Audio: Joshua Rogosin, Suraya Mohamed, Loretta Rae; Photography: Adam Kissick

    Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit

    More Stories