Look what's coming to Blue Ridge PBS!
Tuesdays at 9:00pm
Travel the country in search of unknown 1920s artists, when the music of ordinary Americans was recorded for the first time, transforming music forever, in a three-part film narrated by Robert Redford (shown at right), featuring Jack White, Nas, Taj Mahal and others.
May 16 – The Big Bang
Travel to 1920s Tennessee as the Carter Family, Jimmie Rodgers, and the Memphis Jug Band make their first records with producer Ralph Peer on a revolutionary portable recording machine, creating the first recordings of R&B and country songs.
May 23 – Blood and Soil
Travel to the rural South as Elder Burch, Charley Patton and others record early Delta blues, gospel and protest songs. The Great Flood of 1927 devastates Mississippi River communities, leading to northern migration and Chicago Blues by Howlin’ Wolf.
May 30 – Out of the Many, One
Discover how America’s diverse cultures contribute to its musical styles: from the Hopi tribe to Hawaii’s Joseph Kekuku to Mexican-American Lydia Mendoza and the Cajun Breaux Family. Mississippi John Hurt’s blues inspires a generation of musicians.
Tuesdays at 9:00pm
Television's most-watched history series, AMERICAN EXPERIENCE has been hailed as "peerless" (Wall Street Journal), "the most consistently enriching program on television" (Chicago Tribune) and "a beacon of intelligence and purpose" (Houston Chronicle). On air and online, the series brings to life the incredible characters and epic stories that have shaped America's past and present. In January, AMERICAN EXPERIENCE explores the West.
May 2 – Ripley: Believe it or Not
LeRoy Robert Ripley rose to fame during the Great Depression, transforming himself from a skinny, bucktoothed boy into an entertainer who mesmerized the nation with his razzle-dazzle blend of homespun Americana, colorful exotica and freakish oddities. Over three decades, his “Believe It or Not!” franchise grew into an entertainment empire, expanding from newspapers to every form of “new media” in the 20th century: radio, film and, ultimately, television. At the center of it all was Ripley, whose obsession with the odd and keen eye for the curious made him one of the richest men in the country. Americans not only loved his bizarre fare, but were fascinated by the man himself; the eccentric, globetrotting playboy became an unlikely national celebrity. This is the story of the man who popularized the iconic phrase, and proof of why we still can’t resist his challenge to “Believe it — or not!”
May 9 – Bonnie & Clyde
Discover the true story of the most famous outlaw couple in US history. Though their exploits were romanticized, the Barrow gang was believed responsible for at least 13 murders, including two policemen, as well as robberies and kidnappings.
AMERICAN MASTERS, which pioneered the television biography genre, continues to offer insightful profiles of important figures in America's artistic and cultural life. Winner of the 2011 Emmy for Outstanding Nonfiction Series.
May 19 at 9:00pm – James Beard: America’s First Foodie
Experience a century of food through the life of one man, James Beard (1903-1985). A cookbook author, journalist, television celebrity and teacher, Beard helped to pioneer and expand the food media industry into the billion-dollar business it is today. Written and directed by Elizabeth Federici. Produced by Elizabeth Federici and Kathleen Squires.
May 19 at 10:00pm – Julia Child
Child (shown at right) is fondly remembered for introducing French cuisine to American home cooks through her television series - beginning with WGBH's "The French Chef" in 1963 - and books. The film tells two love stories: one between Julia and Paul Child, the other between Julia and French food. It includes photos never before seen, including several from Paul Child's personal archive, granted exclusively to producers. Julia was a pioneer in public television's long tradition of cooking programs, revolutionizing the way America cooks, eats and thinks about food
May 26 at 9:00pm – Jacques Pepin: The Art of the Craft
Explore the American story of chef Jacques Pépin, a young immigrant with movie-star looks, a charming Gallic accent and a mastery of cooking and teaching so breathtaking he became an early food icon — joining James Beard and Julia Child among the handful of Americans who transformed the way the country views the world of chefs, restaurants and food.
May 26 at 10:00pm – Alice Waters and Her Delicious Revolution
Discover Alice Waters, who, with her cafe Chez Panisse, became a major force behind the way Americans eat and think about food, launching the explosion of local farmers' markets and the edible schoolyard.
Austin City Limits
Saturdays at 9:00pm
Explore the best original music — including contemporary and traditional rock, blues, country, folk, soul and worldbeat — in uninterrupted full concerts recorded live in Austin, Texas.
May 6 – Robert Plant & The Sensation
Enjoy new classics and fan favorites from music icon Robert Plant. The British superstar sings classics from the catalogs of Led Zeppelin, the blues canon and his solo Americana albums.
May 13 – Gary Clark Jr. / Courtney Barnett
Experience the contemporary R&B of Austin’s Gary Clark Jr. as he plays songs from his album The Story of Sonny Boy Slim. Rocking Australian singer/songwriter Courtney Barnett performs tunes from her LP Sometimes I Sit and Think, and Sometimes I Just Sit.
May 20 – Tedeschi Trucks Band
The Grammy Award-winning group featuring Susan Tedeschi, Derek Trucks and an ensemble of musicians showcases their latest record, Let Me Get By.
May 27 – Iggy Pop
A thrilling hour with rock & roll legend Iggy Pop. The Detroit native blasts through classics and cuts from his latest album, Post Pop Depression, accompanied by members of Queens of the Stone Age and Arctic Monkeys.
Call The Midwife
Sundays at 8:00pm
It’s now 1962 and times are changing. As they strive to help mothers and families cope with the demands of childbearing, disability, disease and social prejudice, the Poplar medics must make choices – and fight battles – of their own.
May 7 – Episode 6
Valerie Dyer oversees the care of an expectant Somali woman and is shocked when she uncovers a troubling aspect of this unfamiliar culture. The Nonnatus family unites to provide the very best care for Sister Mary Cynthia.
May 14 – Episode 7
Dr. Turner helps the Mullucks cope with the stresses of caring for a disabled child as the terrible legacy of thalidomide becomes apparent. Nurse Crane faces an unexpected crisis.
May 21 – Episode 8
An unexpected turn of events leads to a hastily arranged wedding. Shelagh finally goes into labor. The arrival of the birth control pill leads to unforeseen consequences.