Deepwater Horizon blowout anniversary: great radio pieces from Barry Yeoman and Richard Ziglar

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As in the days leading up to today’s anniversary, we’ll be inundated today with stories and updates on the most extensive and damaging oil spill in history.

Journalists Richard Ziglar and Barry Yeoman have been working in Louisiana to capture the flavor of blues musicians of the region since before the Deepwater Horizon blowout. Their two-part, two-hour radio documentary project, Still Singing the Blues, showcases recognized and not-so-well-known blues and R&B musicians of New Orleans and south Louisiana.

Since that work and the oil disaster, Yeoman, a Louisiana native, and Ziglar have continued with radio documentary projects that build upon the strengths of their blues project. Several radio stations will air these pieces around the US as detailed below. But I thought our readers around the world and those who listen online might appreciate these unique and impressive views of the area as we mark this anniversary.

The documentarians are kind enough to include me in their mailing list and here is an the bulk of their missive:

1. Drew Landry, the Louisiana singer-songwriter and crawfisherman whose “BP Blues” went viral on YouTube, played his music for Richard and me and talked about his personal journey since the oil spill. Our music-rich report is currently available for listening on Louisiana Public Broadcasting’s GulfWatch site: http://is.gd/landry.

The eight-minute story, narrated by Richard, will also air on KRVS on Tuesday (4/19) at 5:19 p.m. and Wednesday (4/20) at 8:19 a.m. Listen live at 88.7 FM in Lafayette, La., or at http://krvs.org/.

Also, learn more information about the anniversary concert, second-line, and town-hall meeting that Drew Landry is helping to organize at http://guitarsforthegulf.com/.

2. On Wednesday (4/20), “The Story With Dick Gordon” will broadcast several excerpts from our GulfWatch radio pieces. Listen on your local station (including WUNC; there’s a list at http://thestory.org/Stations); listen online at 1 p.m. ET at http://wunc.org/; or wait until the webcast is archived at http://thestory.org. Thanks for producer Katie Davis for her fine work.

3. Our profile of Darla Rooks, the resilient Louisiana shrimper, will be broadcast once more on KRVS: Tuesday (4/19) at 3 p.m. If you haven’t listened to this report, I hope you will. It’s one of my favorites. If you’re not by a radio or computer Tuesday, you can listen anytime at http://is.gd/rooks.

Many thanks to Barry and Richard and congratulations on a terrific body of rich work that both celebrates this culture and touches the heart by revealing the threats to lives and livelihoods of the hardworking people of the Louisiana Gulf region.

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