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

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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And So Fourth!, 7/4/2018 July 4, 2018 | 7:00 pm

featuring live recordings from Preservation Hall in New Orleans and the Montana Folk Festival

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Small Town Blues, 6/27/2018 June 27, 2018 | 7:00 pm

featuring Jeff Tweedy and Jimmy "Duck" Holmes

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Summertime Variations, 6/20/2018 June 20, 2018 | 7:00 pm

featuring music from the Beach Boys, Toots and the Maytals, Wilco, the Kinks, and more.

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When Is Fathers’ Day?, 6/13/2018 June 13, 2018 | 7:00 pm

featuring the Marsalis and Masakowski Families

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Memorial Day with the NEA National Heritage Fellows, 5/23/2018 May 23, 2018 | 7:00 pm

featuring Del McCoury, Carol Fran, Eva Ybarra, John Cephas, Phil Wiggins, and the 2017 National Endowment for the Arts Heritage Fellows

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Blues, Old, New & Beyond, 5/16/2018 May 16, 2018 | 7:00 pm

featuring the Black Keys, Robert Finley, and Luke Winslow-King

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Remembering Charles Neville, 5/9/2018 May 9, 2018 | 7:00 pm

featuring interviews with the Neville Brothers

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The Killer, the Thriller, and the Chiller, 5/2/2018 May 2, 2018 | 7:00 pm

Featuring Jerry Lee Lewis With Sisters Linda Gail and Frankie Jean

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