Wednesday at 7:00 pm

American Routes


“In the history of American radio, no series has come close to Nick Spitzer’s American Routes in exploring the many streams of this nation’s music.”
— Nat Hentoff, Wall Street Journal

American Routes is a weekly two-hour public radio program produced in New Orleans, presenting a broad range of American music — blues and jazz, gospel and soul, old-time country and rockabilly, Cajun and zydeco, Tejano and Latin, roots rock and pop, avant-garde and classical. Now in our 15th year on the air, American Routes explores the shared musical and cultural threads in these American styles and genres of music — and how they are distinguished.

The program also presents documentary features and artist interviews. Our conversations include Willie Nelson, Tom Waits, B.B. King, Dr. John, Dave Brubeck, Abbey Lincoln, Elvis Costello, Ray Charles, Randy Newman, McCoy Tyner, Lucinda Williams, Rufus Thomas, Jerry Lee Lewis and many others. Join us as we ride legendary trains, or visit street parades, instrument-makers, roadside attractions and juke joints, and meet tap dancers, fishermen, fortunetellers and more.

The songs and stories on American Routes describe both the community origins of our music, musicians and cultures — the “roots”— and the many directions they take over time — the “routes.”


Upcoming episodes
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Recent episodes

Autumn Equinox: Season Change and Autumnal Sounds, 9/19/2018 September 19, 2018 | 7:00 pm

featuring Sarah Vaughn, Sam Cooke, Van Morrison and Aretha Franklin

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A Grateful Journey, 9/12/2018 September 12, 2018 | 7:00 pm

featuring Kris Kristofferson

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Fellow Travelers, 9/5/2018 September 5, 2018 | 7:00 pm

Margo Price, Willie Nelson, and friends

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Labor Day Live With the Baton Rouge Blues Fest, 8/29/2018 August 29, 2018 | 7:00 pm

featuring live performances from the 2018 Baton Rouge Blues Festival, including Lazy Lester, Samantha Fish, Jimmy "Duck" Holmes, Chris Thomas King and more

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Routes Live!, 8/22/2018 August 22, 2018 | 7:00 pm

with the Meters, Randy Newman, Doug Kershaw, and the Tedeschi-Trucks Band

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New Blues and Bluegrass, 8/15/2018 August 15, 2018 | 7:00 pm

with Cedric Burnside and Shadowgrass

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Giants of Jazz August 8, 2018 | 7:00 pm

Exploring the lives of John Coltrane and Thelonious Monk

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A Routes Rocker and Memories of the Alligator Man July 25, 2018 | 7:00 pm

Boz Scaggs and Jimmy C. Newman

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Record Mavens, 7/18/2018 July 18, 2018 | 7:00 pm

featuring Dan Auerbach and Joel Savoy

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Blue Note Records: Then and Now, 7/11/2018 July 11, 2018 | 7:00 pm

featuring Don Was and Michael Cuscuna

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