Rockabilly, Western Swing, jazz, blues, Tejano, Cajun, Czech – the big sounds of Texas are incredibly diverse. American Routes explores that vast terrain visiting with Bandera, TX singer-songwriter Robert Earl Keen, Tejano accordion master Mingo Saldivar, and the King of Western Swing, Bob Wills, who is remembered by his fiddler Johnny Gimble, daughter Rosetta Wills, Bill Malone, Ray Price and Marle Haggard. Other musical Texans on tap include Illinois Jacquet, Townes van Zandt and T-Bone Walker.
From Absinthe to Zoloft, American Routes brews a stimulating show about elixirs, enhancers and downright downers. Guests include country star Hank Thompson on performing – and drinking – in the honky-tonks, and British historian James Hughes on altered states and creativity across time and cultures. Partake in music selections from Charlie Parker, Paul Bowles, Ella Fitzgerald and the Grateful Dead.
Honoring the late Civil Rights leader with a bittersweet, yet uplifting mix of music and songs. Jazz pianist McCoy Tyner reflects on his three major influences: his mother, John Coltrane and MLK. Plus jazz and classical composer/performer Hannibal Lokumbe and his masterwork “African Portraits”. Musical selections from strong voices Aretha Franklin, Lead Belly, Woody Guthrie, Bruce Springsteen and Burning Spear.
From creation to criticism, American Routes explores the relationship between language and sounds, words and music. Rock and roll originator Chuck Berry, alt country traditionalist Gillian Welch, and New Yorker music writer and novelist Nick Hornby (High Fidelity) give a variety of perspectives on the subject. With a mix of celebrated songwriters, storytellers, and literary heroes in American music.
American Routes combats cold, dark winter days with music and stories to keep you warm. Virtuoso fiddler/violinist Mark O’Connor discusses his latest composition, American Seasons. Seamus Egan and Win Horan of the Irish-American band Solas take a musical journey from Philadelphia and Brooklyn to Ireland, and back. Plus Mae Nagark on Eskimo music from the Inupiat village near Barrow, Alaska.