American Routes throws shindig for 15th anniversary

By Mike Janssen

Public radio’s American Routes is celebrating its 15th anniversary on the air with a dance and concert in New Orleans and a discount for stations adding the show.

Nick Spitzer

American Routes‘s Nick Spitzer

The April 19 concert at the New Orleans Rock ‘n’ Bowl will feature the Treme Brass Band, the Lost Bayou Ramblers, Irma Thomas, Ivan Neville and other luminaries of the Louisiana and New Orleans music scenes. Sponsored by WWNO-FM in New Orleans, the fundraiser for the music program will be recorded and distributed to stations for broadcast during the week of July 4.

Hosted by folklorist and anthropology professor Nick Spitzer, American Routes airs on 260 stations. It has faced challenges to maintain steady carriage as more stations adopt news/talk formats and has “won and lost” some battles in that effort, Spitzer told Current in an email. But it remains on the air in major markets such as Boston, New York, Philadelphia and Phoenix.

Stations that sign up to add American Routes can now pay for the show at 1998 rates as part of a special deal to celebrate the anniversary.

This article was originally published in Current April 1, 2013.

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