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American Routes Shortcuts: Guilty Pleasures Deluxe

Doug Sahm
Doug Sahm

Somewhere on our journey over the past two decades at American Routes, we started talking about “guilty pleasures” shows, where old free form radio roots called for the pleasure of old favorites and new discoveries. But since we broadcast from New Orleans, we’ll drop the word guilty and roll on.

Nick Spitzer: This is American Routes with a sonic focus on what we used to call “guilty pleasures.” Now, it’s just “pleasures.” Radio has been a part of my life as long as I can remember, and I have the photos to prove it. In college, radio was a way to bring deep culture from the archives and record library to the wider audience at WXPN, Philadelphia, where we have many friends listening today in the land of the World Cafe. But it was in “underground rock” at nearby WMMR FM, “The Radio Station,” as it was branded, that I did drive time and got to host visiting artists live at local clubs and theaters. Management agreed to an air name: Nick Spencer. I’ve never used it since, but here I am in 1973 with a great San Antonio, TX performer I’d get to spend a lot of time with later after moving to Austin.

Nick Spencer intro: Good evening I’m Nick Spencer, sitting here on a rather wobbly chair at the Bijou Café, the site of a WMMR radio concert. Please welcome from the Lone Star State, San Antonio’s favorite son, Doug Sahm and band.

“The Rains Came” Doug Sahm 
Live at the Bijou Cafe--WMMR-FM Broadcast

Max Baca: What’s going on, this is Max Baca from Los Texmaniacs y estás escuchando Rutas Americanas.

“Mexico Americano” Los Texmaniacs
Cruzando Borders (Smithsonian Folkways)

To hear the full program, tune in Saturdays at 5 and Sundays at 6 on WWNO, or listen at