American Routes Celebrates Ten Year Anniversary with Concert and Broadcast

January 12, 2009

Kathryn Hobgood
Phone: 504-865-5229

American Routes, the weekly nationally-syndicated public radio program devoted to music and musicians, stories and cultures from New Orleans, the Gulf South and America at large, is celebrating its tenth anniversary with a concert at the House of Blues in New Orleans on Friday, Jan. 16, 2009.

The 10th Anniversary Extravaganza will be in front of a home audience at the New Orleans House of Blues, 225 Decatur St, at 8 p.m. The show, to be recorded for network broadcast during the week before Mardi Gras, will feature the spirited R & B of Deacon John’s big band, neo-traditional Cajun music from Feufollet, and Dr. Michael White’s Original Liberty Jazz Band. Additional guests include vocalist Topsy Chapman, Trombone Shorty and Al “Carnival Time” Johnson.

Produced and hosted by folklorist and Tulane University professor Nick Spitzer, American Routes reaches up to a half million people on over 200 stations nationwide. Launched in 1998 from its studios in New Orleans’ French Quarter, the program started modestly, being carried on only seven stations.
“A lot of people said the program,” which presents blues and jazz, roots rock and soul, country and gospel, zydeco and Tejano among other styles of American vernacular music, “was too eclectic and roots-oriented to succeed at a network level,” noted Spitzer. However, “within two months we had thirty stations, sixty stations by year’s end, and within two years we’d reached a hundred.”

American Routes is produced in collaboration with Tulane University, and co-produced and distributed by American Public Media. Major program underwriters are the National Endowment for the Arts, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities, and the Louisiana Office of Tourism.

Additional support is provided by the University of New Orleans and Offbeat magazine. The anniversary concert and broadcast are underwritten by Louisiana Entertainment, in the state Department of Economic Development; Lafayette: Louisiana’s Crossroads; and the W Hotel of New Orleans.

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Tulane University, New Orleans, LA 70118 504-865-5000