Arhoolie Foundation Benefit Concerts, Celebrating 50 Years of Arhoolie Records, on American Routes Radio

From June 29 through July 6, American Routes public radio will be featuring a two-hour program recorded live at Arhoolie Records’ 50th Anniversary concerts held in February at Berkeley’s Freight & Salvage Coffeehouse. The entire three day celebration was a benefit for the Arhoolie Foundation.

Routes’ host Nick Spitzer flew out from New Orleans to MC the event, and was joined on stage by some of Arhoolie’s many admirers including roots rock guitarist Ry Cooder, bluesman Taj Mahal, Michael Doucet of Beausoleil, New Orleans’ Treme Brass Band, sacred steel masters the Campbell Brothers (pictured), the Mexican-American traditionalists Los Cenzontles, and many others.

Spitzer will also chat with Arhoolie’s founder, Chris Strachwitz about his passion for putting American roots music on record. Streamed on the internet, starting June 29th at or on a radio station near you.

Statement on the passing of Chris Strachwitz

Arhoolie Records Founder
July 1, 1931 – May 5, 2023

We celebrate the life of our founder, friend, and great record man Chris Strachwitz. He died peacefully at home in Marin County, CA, surrounded in his last days by dear friends and family. Over his 91 years, Chris captured the music that represents the best “down home music” the world has to offer.

He was at the forefront of nearly all the roots revivals over the last 60 years including blues, zydeco, Cajun, Norteño and Tejano music. His drive to document traditional music helped introduce the nation to our diverse musical heritage. He had the foresight to save music that might have otherwise been lost to obscurity and played a role in strengthening cultural traditions through his records, films, and most recently the Arhoolie Foundation. He cared for those around him, fought for royalties and recognition for Arhoolie artists, and provided counsel to countless musicians, writers, film makers, and academics.

Plans for a public celebration of his life will be announced in the coming weeks. Today we’re thinking of all that Chris brought to our lives and the lives of the musicians and fans with whom he shared his passion.