NEA's Adam Kampe Talks With Nick Spitzer About American Routes Abroad
May 28th, 2014 ~ By Adam Kampe
NEA grantee American Routes has been on the air for almost 16 years, educating and entertaining audiences about all sorts of American music and cultural heritage. Now Nick Spitzer, folklorist, professor, and the show’s host, has taken the show on the road… and we ain’t talking Route 66. Right now, Spitzer is in China with NEA National Heritage Fellow Chuck Campbell, a sacred steel guitarist, as part of his American Routes Abroad program, which takes a wide range of American musicians to countries around the world. In light of the latest issue of NEA Arts, which focuses on the broad reach of arts across continents, we looked to this riveting initiative to keep the international conversation going. Listen here…
American Routes: Songs and Stories from the Road
American Routes is celebrating its 12th anniversary on the air with the release of American Routes: Songs and Stories From the Road, a double CD collection of favorite interviews and stories from a decade of programs. From mambo kings and country sweethearts to cool pianomen and sidewalk steppers, you’ll find the iconic mix of voices and music you hear each week on American Routes. East Coast songmen Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller reminisce about their years as songwriters for Elvis and others. Dolly Parton shares her love of east Tennessee while Tom Waits talks about his various inspirations, including his kids’ toys. Young Cajun band Feufollet explains why Cajun music is cool despite what their friends think. Many of the interviews on Songs and Stories capture the voices of beloved musicians who have passed on, including Jerry Garcia, Rufus Thomas, Tito Puente and Nina Simone. Join us as we visit the Antique Radio Museum in St. Louis. Spend a day at Sea Breeze, North Carolina, to learn about the origins of beach music. Then, we’ll jump with the Treme Sidewalk Steppers and Rebirth Brass Band for a post-Katrina second line.
After starting back in 1998 broadcasting on only 7 stations, American Routes is now heard by nearly 400,000 listeners on 195 outlets across the country. With 10 years of programs in the archive, it was a challenge to choose from the many interviews we’ve done over the years. And with exciting programs to come, we look forward to even more miles with the radio turned up. For more information on American Routes: Songs and Stories From the Road, click here!