Deschutes River Recordings (a subdivision of Deschutes Brewery) out of Oregon has teamed up with Deschutes River Conservancy to produce a series of videos that is ripe with rivers, beers, and music. Their aim is to give away free downloads of this music in exchange for a monetary donation in an effort to restore stream flow and improve water quality in the Deschutes basin.
This third installment of this series features Portland's own Laura Gibson preaching cliff side at Smith Rock with her compelling interpretation of the American classic, Down By The Riverside. This song can be a tricky one to sing if you're anyone other than Pete Seeger because harmonically, melodically, and rhythmically the song doesn't really do anything. When I heard that this was her task I was nervous for her, but Gibson's arrangement has a quite confidence and brooding harmonium usage that complements the lyrics sincere and straight forward message. Additionally, I love the setting of the trumpet player on a rock in the river bed while the singers are high up on Smith Rock. This is a great use of the space for musical and visual effect! Bravo.
If you missed the first two installments of this series you can catch back up here with Eric D. Johnson and Eric Early. Donations can be made via a name your own price download here. Please enjoy the music and support the cause.