American Routes assists Grammy nominated Arhoolie 50th Anniversary Box Set

‘They All Played for Us’—The 50th Anniversary of Arhoolie Records nominated for a Grammy in the “Best Folk” recording category has a lot of great performers on it: Ry Cooder, Taj Mahal, Santiago Jimenez, Linda Ronstadt , Laurie Lewis, Country Joe, the Campbell Bros, and Los Cenzontles as well as Louisiana artists like Treme Brass Band, Michael and David Doucet, Marc Savoy with Anne Savoy and sons.

American Routes did the artist interviews and stage-hosted the concert held over three days in February, 2011 at the Freight & Salvage Club in Berkeley, CA. We used the interviews and the recordings of the concert to produce an American Routes special heard nationally on July 4th in 2012.


Arhoolie was founded by German emigre Chris Strachwitz back in 1961 with a field recording devoted to Texas blues songster Mance Lipscomb. Over the years Arhoolie produced great records by Zydeco King Clifton Chenier, Cajun modernists BeauSoliel, Mississippi Fred McDowell, “the Lark of the Border” Lydia Mendoza and many more.


Nick wrote a dedication in the accompanying booklet to Arhoolie and Chris Strachwitz, who had a major influence on his musical tastes. Quotes from the American Routes interviews augment extensive notes by Grammy-winning writer Adam Machado and fine documentary images of the players by Michael Melnyk.

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