The River and the Road – Fri Jul 3rd

The Details

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The River and The Road is a band built on risking new beginnings and telling their stories along the way.

After crossing an ocean, leaving a hemisphere, and a long stint hitch hiking across the American Southwest, singer/guitarist Andrew Phelan made his way to Chicago with the looming need to cross into Canada for work. He had two flight choices—Montreal or Vancouver—and flying west was cheaper. Once there, he found a healthy contest in singer/banjo player Keenan Lawlor, who had been playing around Vancouver for the previous eight months. Keenan had moved across water to forge a new path, but in his case, it was the Georgia Strait instead of the Pacific Ocean. In the beginning the two butted heads, seeing in each other the greatest competition for the attention of an East Vancouver open mic audience. Competition turned to collaboration, busking, and living on scraps together to make their musical existence possible. After several months as a duo, and experimentation with additional instrumentation, they recorded their debut eponymous twelve-track album. In the spring of 2012, the band emerged as a dynamic four-piece with the addition of drummer Cole George and bassist John Hayes.

In their short history as a band, The River and The Road has grown from a busking duo to an internationally touring quartet. Winter 2013 saw the boys working to stitch their name into the musical fabric of Australia, most notably in Sydney and Melbourne. The band has toured extensively across Canada, completing two coast-to-coast tours among many other regional tours. They are currently preparing for their third cross-Canada tour this spring in support of their second full length album, to be released May 12th through MapleMusic Recordings.

Tenacity, heart, and above all else, a gripping live performance, the band has no plans of slowing down. Sincere storytelling mixed with strong harmonies, heavy percussion breakdowns and dynamic arrangements, embodies the sound of The River and The Road.