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During Christmas of 1988, Aleka's Attic gave their first concert in Gainesville. The band got a standing ovation and River decided to take the band on a six-week East Coast tour in the New Year. The tour soon became out of control when hundreds of young girls turned up at each show to mob River despite the venue organizers being contractually prevented from using River's name to promote the shows.
By this time, with his relationship with Martha Plimpton breaking up, River immersed himself in his music and played in night-clubs around Gainesville until the early hours every weekend. It would be in these circles that River would meet his second girlfriend, Suzanne Solgot who played in an all-girl punk band called Mutley Chix.