In 1987, photographer Sandra Dyas moved to Iowa City and began documenting the area's vibrant live music scene, with its distinctive com-bination of folk, blues, roots/Americana, and rock sounds. The sixty photos in ""Down to the River"" capture her twenty years of photographing live music venues and shooting portraits of musicians in and around the city, resulting in a collection of images as compassionate and honest as the music itself. Dyas' photographs present both the sweaty intensity of live performances and the more contemplative moments of individual portraits. They are complemented by Chris Offutt's empathetic essay, which also encapsulates the experience of connecting with a new home through its music. A companion CD with eighteen tracks by Iowa's finest singer/songwriters, including Dave Moore, Greg Brown, Bo Ramsey, David Zollo, and Pieta Brown, adds up to an unmatched perspective on Iowa music and musicians.
Sandra Dyas received her MFA in intermedia and video art from the University of Iowa in 1998; she teaches photography at Cornell College and has a thriving freelance photography business. Her photographs have been published on and in numerous CDS, websites, and magazines including No Depression, Vogue, Acoustic Guitar, and the New York Times. Chris Offutt is the author of Kentucky Straight, Out of the Woods, The Good Brother, The Same River Twice, and No Heroes. His stories and essays have been published in Esquire, GQ, the New York Times, Best American Short Stories, and Best Stories of the South.