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Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Santa Ana based Blues/Americana outfit Dry River release 2nd album

Prayin' for the Rain is the second studio album from Dry River, recorded and produced by singer/songwriter guitarist Oliver Althoen at his home studio in Orange, California and mastered by Rob Elfaizy at Stage One Studios in Lake Forest. For the second album, Dry River wanted to crank it up a notch and stretch out a bit; so they expanded their ranks with a rhythm section, recruiting bassist Joel Helin and drummer Ruben Ordiano.  Half the songs on the new album are electric and the other half acoustic; all are originals written by Althoen with the exception of "Makin' Biscuits' which was cooked up by harmonica player Dave Forrest.
Dry River is a Blues-Rock/Americana band hailing from the banks of the Santa Ana River in Southern California.  It was originally formed as an acoustic duo when Althoen and Forrest got together to share a love of early Blues. They started out playing tunes by vintage Blues giants like Mississippi Fred McDowell, Little Walter, Slim Harpo, Skip James, and Robert Johnson, as well as modern acts like Gary Primich, Tom Waits, Randy Newman, and ZZ Top.  Dry River's tag line is "Songs of Death, Desperation, and Redemption," in the Folk/Blues/Americana tradition.  Dry River's members are basically happy people... but they like to play sad songs.

Their first public performance together was on the street in downtown Orange, California.  They earned enough money in tips to buy a few beers at a local gastropub, which they took as a good omen.  That was the night they decided on Dry River as their band name. The name "Dry River" refers to the Santa Ana River (which would be dry most of the time if it weren't for reclaimed wastewater) is the geographic link between Orange County (where Oliver and his family lives) and the Inland Empire (where Dave and his wife live).

Their first album Lost in the World featured all original material by Althoen. The two of them recorded the album live into a single microphone; it's about as honest as music gets. 

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