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River City Folk with Tom May
Café Artichoke
Portland, OR
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Mar 14, 2020 2:00 PM

Admission Level Price Quantity
General $5.00 ($6.24 w/service fee)
(United States - Change Country)


River City Folk with Tom May
River City Folk returns to Artichoke Music!

River City Folk is an engaging mix of live performance, interview, and recordings. Hosted by veteran singer-songwriter Tom May, each program features a folk artist or group from across North America who performs live in the studio. Through Tom's interviews with the artists, and recordings that have influenced them, the listener is entertained by a unique perspective on the living tradition that is folk music.

This month's featured artists:
Chasing Ebenezer is an indie folk rock band based in Portland, Oregon. They are fronted by husband and wife team Benjamin & Heidi Beth Sadler. In their soul-searching music, Chasing Ebenezer reflects a yearning for peace in the midst of turmoil. They advocate for the abused and abandoned and seek to move hearts to sacrificial compassion. Social causes they are passionate about include clean water, Alzheimers/dementia, and the fight against homelessness.

On July 5th, 1985, a radio program premiered in Omaha, Nebraska that was to become one of the longest running syndicated music programs in history.

The idea for River City Folk came from Tom May's imagination as he toured doing concerts on the east coast of the U.S. in the spring of 1985. It occurred to him that though it seemed as if there were radio programs springing up all over the country playing the  music from his albums and featuring folk artists, there was no coverage of this genre on the airwaves in his hometown.

At that time, River City Folk adopted the format it still uses;  a blend of live performance, recorded musical influences, and interview. Tom May also frequently joins his guest for a song toward the end of the program.

First syndicated in the spring of 1991, River City Folk almost immediately became a very popular public radio offering across the United States, distributed initially on the National Public Radio satellite system and later on the WFMT Radio Network.  Carriage has varied from 40 to as many as 200 public radio stations throughout the years. Many stations have carried River City Folk for more than 20 years now, including WDCB in Chicago and WSKG in Binghamton, New York  ( with translators throughout upper New York State)

In 1994, the success of the radio program prompted KVNO's manager Howard Lowe to sign onto a co-operative effort to produce 32 episodes of River City Folk for television, to be seen nationwide on the Americana cable network originating out of Branson, Missouri, and on the University of Nebraska's television station in Omaha.  Proving to be a very popular and a perpetual "viewers favorite,"  reruns of the series are still shown in Omaha on public television.

Tom gives credit for the long time success of the show to the musicians who often travel great distances to perform live on the program; his partner, Clete Baker, who edits and masters each program to be as sonically good as it can be before it reaches the airwaves; his recording underwriters in Portland; Dan Rhiger at Medicine Whistle studios; and Billy Oskay at Big Red Studio and all of his supporters at KVNO, NPRN, and WFMT throughout the years.

River City Folk recorded a series of  programs with legendary folk music songwriter/ arranger  Peter Yarrow of Peter, Paul and Mary for the 25th anniversary of the show..  Peter joined a multitude of  musicians who have performed on River City Folk, including Tom Paxton, Iris Dement, Anne Hills, Michael Johnson, Bill Staines, David Mallett, Bryan Bowers, and literally hundreds more.


Café Artichoke (View)
2007 SE Powell Blvd
Portland, OR 97214
United States


Music > Americana
Music > Folk
Music > Singer/Songwriter

Kid Friendly: Yes!
Dog Friendly: No
Non-Smoking: Yes!
Wheelchair Accessible: Yes!


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