Music Documentaries

barry_abs

lil' beyutch
.. i love em.. i could watch em all day!! recently, i've loved every second of
* soul deep
* howard goodall's how music works
* howard goodall's twentieth century greats
* buena vista social club
* wesley willis - the daddy of rock'n'roll
* others which i'm too tired to recall..

please post your essentail choices!
 

spooky girlfriend

Wild Horses
one of the last ones i saw 'punk:attitude' by Don Letts. Letts is the authority to be making a documentary like this and analyzes the attitudes that drove punk,as the title indicates. some annoying characters are interviewed (particularly the Americans with their contentions about who 'invented' punk) but it's as entertaining to the newcomer as it is for the fiends..putting the scene, its birth and progression, nicely in context and assessing punk's roots as well as it's lasting effects on music, popular culture (though this is nowhere to be seen in our current environment) and thought.
definitely recommend this one. henry rollins' contributions are hilarious:D
also looking for Letts' original 'punk rock movie' made on 16mm in 1976...only seen odd clips that intrigue me - like the Slits smashing up a car and running barbed wire round a restrained girl in 'Sex'-style S&M gear
 

Ach!

Turd on the Run
Howard Goodall's 'How Music Works' was absolutely incredible. I saw the first one by chance when I woke up in the week one morning. I think there are torrents available, but I haven't gotten round to d/l them yet.

As far as Rockumentaries go, I really like 'A Year and a Half in the life of Metallica' - paints a lot better picture of the band than Some Kind of Monster, that's for sure.
 

elgato

I just dont know
Howard Goodall's 'How Music Works' was absolutely incredible
Yeh ive got a lot of time for that guy. I love that he's maintained such a humble, subjective perspective, and that he places so much importance on what music does for people, despite his deep knowledge of theory...he never seems to tread even close to elitism. Interesting contextual narrative without too much of a tendency to make ridiculous grandiose claims. Music needs more people like him! Although I was very very embarassed to hear him pronounce that "bass now even has its very own genre... drum and bass"!

In terms of TV documentaries, back in the day there was a series called Classic Albums, which would just look at one seminal LP, its production, context etc, which had excellent ones on Electric Ladyland and Songs In The Key of Life.

Also Dancing In The Street was very big for me as a yout, although I dont know how well it would stand up to critique now...
 

Woebot

Administrator
Staff member
Although I was very very embarassed to hear him pronounce that "bass now even has its very own genre... drum and bass"!
(start_of_predictable_sniping)Yes, doesn't he know that's Dubstep! :rolleyes: (/end_of_predictable_sniping)
 

mos dan

fact music
believe it or not 'nirvana: live, tonight, sold out' is actually an incredible film. so much great footage, and such a precise insight into what was great about nirvana purely through a seemingly disconnected collage of clips. i love that one.

who knows about the clash's 'rude boy'? so bad and so good in equal measure. also kinda not really a docu, not really.
 

gumdrops

New member
i could watch them all day too.

i liked the howard goodall ones very much. liked the classic albums series, esp the ones on songs in the key of life and electric ladyland. the hendrix film from 67 or 68 just titled jimi hendrix is worth checking too (the one with interviews with little richard and pete townshend etc). i used to like the docus omnibus would do on music like their prince or gershwin documentary. arena used to do good ones too. its not music per se but i used to have on video a ch4 docu that was broadcast late night about black sci fi and sci fi in music that had greg tate, ishamel reed, and george clinton on it. wish i still had that.

some random ones i like -
the clash - rude boy
bob dylan - dont look back in anger
that arena docu on the song my way

theres loads i cant remember
 
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elgato

I just dont know
(start_of_predictable_sniping)Yes, doesn't he know that's Dubstep! :rolleyes: (/end_of_predictable_sniping)
arf arf

such a claim just seems curious, regarding any music. just a strange turn of phrase though i suppose

it was an unfortunate moment. they played Shake Ur Body by Shy FX
 

DRMHCP

New member
who knows about the clash's 'rude boy'? so bad and so good in equal measure. also kinda not really a docu, not really.
saw this because i was told it was filmed in a documentary style and had good clips of everyday seventies life/events
The actual film though was completely laughable. The Clash showing just how middle class they were and into the bargain ridiculing the working class they so wanted to be by thinking speaking in a caricature "thick prole" way equated with being "street" . Talk about making you cringe.And so obviously fake when everyone knows that Joe Strummer went to public school etc. To me it just shows how ridiculous a lot of punk was.
 

zhao

there are no accidents
damn i just missed a great one that was showing - Jupiter's Dance - about street music in Africa - the schools are permanently out because most of the teachers walked as there is no money - so kids make their own instruments and become incredible players. i think it's a dutch film, will have to track it down.

also there is a sequal to Crossing the Bridge, the film made by Einsturzende dude, about music in Turkey, cut from the mountains of footage left over, which I've heard at least rivals, but might even be better, than the first...
 

petergunn

plywood violin
i just bought "american hardcore" on dvd...

pretty solid stuff, tho the idea of playing a 25 second clip of a 45 second song is annoying... they should have let more of the music play out...
 

Charlie George

New member
"The Clash showing just how middle class they were and into the bargain ridiculing the working class they so wanted to be by thinking speaking in a caricature "thick prole" way equated with being "street" . Talk about making you cringe."

Damon Albarn was obviously taking notes
 

dave

the day today tonight
I'm just watching Howard Goodall's 20th Century Greats on The Beatles (it was linked from the first post in this Timbaland thread -> http://www.dissensus.com/showthread.php?10958-Timbaland). Great stuff.

I really enjoyed his "Big Bangs" show, and from skimming this thread I should check out "How Music Works" next.

Some others I have enjoyed are
BBC Synth Britannia
BBC Seven Ages of Rock
Pump Up The Volume (possibly also BBC)

Has anyone seen Maestro, that house flick?
 

gumdrops

New member
not a docu but i watched that film about the house dj who loses his hearing (it had the guy who dennis pennis, i always forget his name). funny in places but oddly not enough actual dance music!
 

Otherwise

New member
All time favourites:

Alchemists Of Sound (a great doc about the Radiophonic Workshop)

High Tech Soul (all things Detroit)

What The Future Sounded Like (very nice short about the EMS studios, Tristram Cary and Peter Zinovieff, creators of the VCS3 synth - among others. great aesthetics and narrative)

Can documentary (lots of live footage)

Krautrock - The Rebirth Of Germany (BBC, very cool)

BBC's Story Of Reggae Music (3 episodes) was quite thorough and well put together, and i've also enjoyed the old VHS rips from Deep Roots Music with Mikey Dread narrating - they must be still floating around somewhere.

also seen Maestro, covering the NY/Chicago house and disco scene, it's well worth watching if only just to catch David Mancuso and the rest of these people talking about music.

African Solo Fingerstyle looks cool, haven't watched yet:
http://www.amazon.com/African-Guitar-Solo-Fingerstyle-Music/dp/B000096IAO

and last but not least, that BBC doc about Joy Division was really enjoyable for some reason.
 
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