Caught by the River

Laura Barton’s American Road Trip

21st October 2018

Yesterday morning, BBC Radio 4 Extra aired Laura Barton’s American Road Trip – in which writer, broadcaster, and friend of the river Laura Barton guides listeners from the bright lights of New York City to the pacific breeze of California, using a mix of archive documentaries, stories and travelogues.

Along the way the journey includes a free-wheeling buggy tour around New Orleans, a look at the Green Book travel guide and an encounter with the fearless rodeo cowgirls of the Deep South.

Writers including Joan Didion, Sam Shepard and Jonathan Raban also share some of their own perspectives about life on the American highway, while Joe Queenan explores the history of the roadside motel.

Laura Barton’s American Road Trip is a dreamlike exploration of life across the USA over the last 70 years, from blues singers on Beale Street to X-rated frogs in the French Quarter, and from LA hopefuls to the loneliest Opera House in Death Valley.

You can listen back to the programme here.