Driftwood Soldier

"John Henry" - Driftwood Soldier - 2017 Tiny Desk Contest

Driftwood Soldier plays gutter-folk music, a proprietary blend of bitter ballads, fallen gospel, and thumping blue rants on mandolin, bass guitar, and assorted junk foot-percussion. This fall they'll be on tour with their second full length album, Stay Ahead of the Wolf, produced with support from Erin McKeown and mixed by Grammy winner Ted Hutt (Old Crow Medicine Show, Devil Makes Three, Lucero).

Bassist Bobby Szafranski first lent his velvet touch to the back-handed poetry and full-throated ruckus of mandolinero Owen Lyman-Schmidt’s solo work in 2013. Since then the duo has been leapfrogging their way up and down the East coast bringing their unlikely sound to bars, living rooms, roof tops, and back alleys.

Scavenger’s Joy, Driftwood Soldier’s 2015 debut, established their musical range for audiences everywhere, with two-thirds of the songs receiving radio play on dozens of radio stations around the country including WFUV, WNCW, and WXPN, where Bruce Warren called the duo “a bluesy version of Nick Cave with a nod to Tom Waits.”

In early 2017, they followed the breadth of Scavenger’s Joy with the focused intensity of Blessings & Blasphemy, a concept EP exploring the tension between spirituality and dogma by reinterpreting gospel traditionals alongside anti-religious originals.

Now, with Stay Ahead of the Wolf coming fall 2019 Driftwood Soldier is bringing their liver-shaking live show to audiences both devoted and unfamiliar. Come to the Riverwalk October 24 and hear this new beast howl!