AMERICAN ROUTES LIVE: CREOLE SONGLINES OF LEYLA MCCALLA AND SAXOPHONIST DONALD HARRISON'S JAZZ JOURNEY
We go live in concert and conversation with two New Orleans artists each of whom bring their family heritage forward into contemporary music. Singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Leyla McCalla has called New Orleans home for many years, but her family ties are to Haiti. She draws on French Creole roots for inspiration, as well as from the poetry of Langston Hughes. Then jazz saxophonist Big Chief Donald Harrison, whose musical journey includes time in New York with drummer Art Blakey’s band, talks about “Afro-New Orleans” culture and demonstrates how to bring soul, funk, and Black carnival traditions into modern jazz.
The dead of winter has us pondering warmer times with the help of songs of love – lost and found. Whether it’s from swooning crooners or heartbroken honky-tonkers, love has wedged itself prominently in the American songbook. We talk to two songwriters who specialize in matters of the heart: ’60s folk chanteuse Judy Collins and Americana songmaker Jim Lauderdale, a.k.a. “The King of Broken Hearts.” Plus we hear soulful sweet songs from the Pointer Sisters and the Four Tops, ballads of love on the rocks from George Jones and Tracy Chapman, and love confessions for “My Girl, Josephine” by Fats Domino and “Ophelia” by The Band. Join us for songs of love sad and happy, sexy and silly, careless and calculated on American Routes.