The “American Routes” radio show wants to know which songs and artists are helping music fans cope with physical isolation and social distancing.
Drop links to songs, artists, albums, playlists and podcasts to Tulane Professor of Anthropology Nick Spitzer, host and executive producer of “American Routes” via email: firstname.lastname@example.org or via social media:
“Early results will be included in a new program for Easter/Passover and Spring called ‘American Routes Spring Awakening—A COVID Global Companion’ that will broadcast nationally and stream globally next week,” said Spitzer. “Beyond that, we’ll continue to ask listeners for suggestions of words and music, ideas and expressions that they create, invoke or listen to going forward.
“Our team is working from home. I wish we could see the listeners like we do with our Tulane students in Zoom classes, but the hundreds of thousands make that a bit tricky,” Spitzer added. “My favorite visuals are musicians’ performances are on Facebook (often live) by city and regional folks like Kermit Ruffins from the Mother-in-Law Lounge, Jon Cleary (New Orleans R&B), Don Vappie (Creole jazz banjo), and Chubby Carrier (zydeco). DIY streaming seems perfect for this moment. Music and musicians can be an index of cultural health, which seems related to physical health.”
The show’s greater engagement with listeners and the cultural shape of and expressions surrounding the crisis is analogous to what it did during the Katrina recovery. “People have time now to think about their lives individually, in families and communities, with social and cultural, as well as regional, national and global identifications that explore what we share and what distinguishes us as mortal and spiritual beings,” Spitzer said.
Listeners can also stream all past and present episodes of “American Routes” and find a local station that carries the show at americanroutes.org.