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

Country-Soul Crossover November 22, 2017 | 7:00 pm

featuring George Jones and Sam Moore

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Recent episodes

Rhythm & Blues into Rock & Roll November 15, 2017 | 7:00 pm

Fats Domino, Billy Boy Arnold and the Tedeschi Trucks Band

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Jews & Blues November 8, 2017 | 7:00 pm

featuring Jerry Wexler and Henry Sapoznik

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Creoles and Cowgirls October 25, 2017 | 7:00 pm

featuring Charlie Gabriel of the Preservation Hall Jazz Band and the Quebe Sisters

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More Words and Music October 18, 2017 | 7:00 pm

featuring Laura Cantrell, Toussaint McCall, and Nat Hentoff

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American Routes 2017 Fall Fundraiser October 11, 2017 | 7:00 pm

Kris Kristofferson, Jeff Tweedy, and La La Brooks

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Ponderosa Stomp and Americana Swamp, 10/4/2017 October 4, 2017 | 7:00 pm

featuring Dr. Ike, Duane Eddy, and Barbara Lynn

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Midnight Special, Shine a Light on Me: Prison Music from Angola, Louisiana & Beyond September 27, 2017 | 7:00 pm

featuring Charles Neville, the field recordings of Henry Oster and more

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Latin Tinge, 9/20/2017 September 20, 2017 | 7:00 pm

featuring Tito Puente and Nati Cano

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Rock and Soul from Memphis to Muscle Shoals, 9/13/2017 September 13, 2017 | 7:00 pm

featuring Sam Phillips, Rufus Thomas, Candi Staton and more

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Rockin’ the Blues, 9/6/2017 September 6, 2017 | 7:00 pm

featuring Sonny Burgess and Snooks Eaglin

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