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Viv & Riley’s Tradition and Innovation on Basic Folk

Jan 18, 2024

Viv & Riley's Tradition and Innovation on Basic Folk

Vivian Leva and Riley Calcagno, known as Viv & Riley, dive deep into the nuances of old-time music, their folk influences, and the process behind their album, Imaginary People. The duo, who ​met ​at ​a ​music ​camp ​in ​Port ​Townsend, ​Washington, trace their roots from Riley’s disciplined musical practice to Viv’s intuitive approach. The two found inspiration from growing up in the Seattle area listening to KEXP to living in Portland, Oregon, to their current home in Durham, North Carolina. Drawing on their experiences at fiddlers conventions and music camps, Viv & Riley reflect on the transformative power of collaboration and the vibrant community that has shaped their unique sound in their duo as well as their other band, The Onlies.

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As they share insights into their songwriting process, the episode unravels the intricate layers of Imaginary People, delving into the harmonious blend of indie roots and experimental production that defines their latest release. With a nod to their eclectic influences, including the supportive atmosphere of Durham, North Carolina, the duo discusses the evolution of their sound under the guidance of producer Alex Bingham from Hiss Golden Messenger, who produced their latest album.


Photo Credit: Libby Rodenbough

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Viv & Riley's Tradition and Innovation on Basic Folk
Viv & Riley's Tradition and Innovation on Basic Folk