Singer-songwriter Iris DeMent returns to the landscape and soundscape of her youth, the Arkansas Delta. We’ll speak with Iris about her musical homecoming, and listen in on an exclusive solo piano performance of her most recent songs. Then we catch up with the Lafayette punk and rockabilly-inflected Cajun band, the Lost Bayou Ramblers, fronted by brothers Andre and Louis Michot, who can count Gordon Gano (of the Violent Femmes) as a collaborator and fan.
Meet two piano professors from the South with two differing styles. First up, from Macon, GA, Chuck Leavell has played in a few of Rock’s most iconic bands, from the Allman Brothers to the Rolling Stones. And while piano might be his day job, he’s also a keeper of a Georgia forest and an honorary forest ranger! We talk to Chuck about his love of the keys and the trees. Then, it’s a lesson in New Orleans funk a la keyboard with Jon Cleary, who breaks down the elements and reveals the Latin tinge to New Orleans piano favorites.
This week, on American Routes, we travel from the Village to the dancehall. John Sebastian talks about his childhood in Greenwich Village, encounters with blues greats Mississippi John Hurt and Lighting Hopkins, and the musical stew he created with his band The Lovin’ Spoonful. Then, a conversation with Kristi Guillory and Christine Balfa of the cajun band Bonsoir Catin about carrying on their musical heritage for the next generation.
We’re sitting down this week with two bands who make their hometowns proud. The Black Keys, Dan Auerbach and Patrick Carney, from Akron, Ohio, have roots in the blues and rock but construct a sound all their own. We chat with them backstage at a performance in the Crescent City. Then New Orleans brass band innovators the Soul Rebels talk about bringing the sounds of the streets to clubs around the world.
We’d tell you to put your feet up this Labor Day Weekend, but that might not be possible if you tune in to our show with live recordings from the annual Ponderosa Stomp in New Orleans, featuring the best in swamp pop, garage rock and surf music. We’ll visit with Arizona twangmaster Duane Eddy. On the flipside, it’s an archival conversation with the late Wardell Quezergue, the New Orleans music maestro and arranger known as the “Creole Beethoven.” Finally the left-handed Gulf Coast guitar lady and singer known as “the black Elvis,” Beaumont’s Barbara Lynn. Come Stomp with us!