Session 239: River Glen // Travis Agnew

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SBS239 RiverGlen digital REV2 Poster Design: Caleb Weisnicht

September 25, 2019

"His words and vocals are reminiscent of Brett Dennen, from the idealism and social commentary to the balladeer crooning and wide tonal range."     -Julien's Journal

River Glen Breitbach was born in 1989 at Four Mounds along the Mississippi River (after which he is named). He began his musical career at the age of 2 on the violin. As he grew, his family nurtured his love for music and performance. They formed a family band, The One Hat Band, which had modest beginnings playing street corners in Galena, Illinois before blossoming into the widely-recognized and well-loved folksy-family sound that is now synonymous with the Breitbach name in the greater Dubuque area.

In 2004, River formed his own band, River and the Tributaries. What started as a group of high school buddies quickly evolved into something of a phenomenon: Riv and the Tribs became a sensation from the banks of the Mississippi, winning the VEISHA Battle of the Bands, appearing on various Iowa Public Radio programs, touring nationally, and recording two albums between 2004-2009.

River, a multi-instrumentalist and songwriter, makes lyrically driven music that blends elements of Folk, Pop, Rock, and Hip-Hop. His performances are extremely honest, heartfelt, humble, and inclusive. His talent and professionalism are serious, yet River is playful to the point that not even he knows where the music will go in any given show. River has published two albums and an EP (Nothing is Too Little, Pull My Hair, The Raleigh EP) since 2012, and is laying the ground work for his third studio album.


Madison native Travis Agnew has lived all over the United States and has traveled the globe gathering a flood of experiences. From the sun and surf of Florida to the mountainous landscape of Colorado his music is as diverse as his travels. His styles range from alt. country, folk, rock, indie, blues and reggae.

Travis writes gritty songs with passion and energy that wrestle with brokenness, love and forgiveness. He is engaging for audiences of all ages and backgrounds. His 2011 album entitled “fragile” recorded with his band, The Tin Roof Sparrow swells with three part harmonies and alt. folk rock delights. In 2015 Travis traveled to Nashville to record the ep entitled “dry bones and tumbleweeds” and played all the instruments like a kid in a candy store. Dry bones encompassed an early version of his wilco sounding song entitled “Two” which will be brought to new life on his upcoming release full with fiddles and lap steel guitar. Songs that move the human heart and make you feel things, that’s the aim of Travis Agnew’s music and that’s what you can expect.

The Isthmus Newspaper:

Travis Agnew is a serious Americana innovator whose new album Under the Sun explores setbacks and successes as reflected by an old, well-traveled soul. His edgy folk rock combines the social resolve of Utah Phillips with a Steve Earle outlaw-outlook.