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Rostam: Tiny Desk (Home) Concert

The Tiny Desk is working from home for the foreseeable future. Introducing NPR Music's Tiny Desk (home) concerts, bringing you performances from across the country and the world. It's the same spirit — stripped-down sets, an intimate setting — just a different space.

My great-grandmother always used to say, "Life is a train. People get on. People get off." And it just keeps going. Watching Rostam's Tiny Desk performance, it's easy to imagine you're on that life-train, traveling around and around, catching glimpses of instruments and faces as they pass by, before coming back where you started. It's a clever, if sometimes dizzying nod to the overarching themes of Rostam's Changephobia, a collection of songs that simultaneously look to the past and the future.

Rostam and a group of backing musicians play two cuts from that album: the relatively breezy, escapist ballad "4Runner" and the reflective "These Kids We Knew." The group closes with "In a River," a one-off single from 2018 that sits perfectly alongside the newer songs as he recalls a warm night skinny dipping with a friend.


  • "4Runner"
  • "These Kids We Knew"
  • "In a River"

  • Rostam Batmanglij: vocals, guitar, harmonica
  • Julian McClanahan Calvert: guitar, mandolin, harmonies
  • Logan Kane: bass
  • Henry Solomon: saxophone, congas, harmonica, 808 sample pad
  • Benji Lysaght: guitar
  • Conor Malloy: drums, percussion

  • Video: Jason Lester, Laura Burhenn
  • Audio: Joey Messina-Doerning
  • Special thanks to Our Secret Handshake

  • Producer: Robin Hilton
  • Video Producer: Maia Stern
  • Audio Mastering: Josh Rogosin
  • Associate Producer: Bobby Carter
  • Tiny Production Team: Bob Boilen, Kara Frame, Gabrielle Pierre
  • Executive Producer: Keith Jenkins
  • Senior VP, Programming: Anya Grundmann
  • Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

    Robin Hilton is a producer and co-host of the popular NPR Music show All Songs Considered.