Favorite Documentary: Music

I’m a big fan of The Decline of Western Civilization trilogy of documentaries, but the second one, The Metal Years, is an absolute delight, as it is a documentary whose principles celebrate heavy metal circa the mid-80’s, with all that entails.

It is compulsively hilarious.

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I borrowed Buena Vista Social Club from the library, and I absolutely adored it.

A Wim Wenders gem, perfect if you’re into the Cuban music scene.

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This is Spinal Tap. :smirk:

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I was at most a casual fan of the Beach Boys but found Beautiful Dreamer: Brian Wilson and the Story of Smile fascinating.

I completely forgot to show some love for fellow MSTie Alex Winter (yes, from Bill and Ted). He has become a competent filmmaker, and his documentary Zappa on the late musical genius is one of the better films on the subject.

If you turn your crank to Frank, I also recommend -

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Eat That Question I have seen and loved, and though I backed the Kickstarter once Alex Winter’s film finally came out I never got around to watching it … honestly, I was a bit hacked-off by the last-minute decision to not allow backers to download their copy of the film after six years of that being the promise. I should give that a watch soon.

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https://www.ninasimone.com/film

I’ve seen the second one on this page: The Amazing Nina Simone . (No, it’s not the same director who brought us Squirm.) I have not seen the first one listed, but if it’s half as good as the other, it must be pretty damn good.

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Oh, yes please.

Ace of Cups, Fanny, Goldie And The Gingerbreads, Snake/Alice Stuart, Birtha… Probably more I’m not thinking of right now. (Get Barbara Lynn in there, too. Wooo Lefties!!)

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Theory of Obscurity is a good one. I’m a big fan of The Residents and this documentary is great.

I’m also a huge Nirvana fan, as they were the first rock band I became obsessed with as a teenager, and Montage of Heck is a good documentary. Love the animated bits. They did a beautiful job. Made me cry.

Also am a big fan of the documentaries Wesley Willis’s Joy Rides and The Devil and Daniel Johnston. I’m a big fan of both musicians.

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Good Gravy! I just found this by mistake about 10 minutes ago! And it’s still showing in some places! :sunglasses:

https://www.fannythemovie.com/#See_film

I’m going to have to find it… somehow.

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That just went into my watchlist!

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While I realise that it’s greatest strength is arguably as a meme generator Some Kind Of Monster is actually a great doc. Hear me out!

I think it does a really good job of laying open the emotional world of men in their mid-40’s who have been insulated by extreme wealth since their mid-20’s and thus avoided facing dilemmas that lead to emotional maturation. It also lays out in painful detail the lengths that people will go to keep a billon dollar group together.

It’s not much to look at, and I do think it has all the standard problems behind the scenes documentaries have re: misleading or obscuring ‘reality’ through selective editing etc but it should be noted the band very publicly endorse the film, which is in and of itself quite something.

And I admit it is also funny as fudge.

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While The Last Waltz started a lifelong love of The Band and some of the featured artists, it is frustrating for me. Not all the best performances from the concert are included and, just as you feel some sort of live momentum being built up Scorsese kills it by switching to coke-addled backstage reminiscences.
The non-live material, with EmmyLou Harris and The Staples Singers is pure magic, though.
So I tend to gravitate to the 4-CD set. It includes all the songs from the concert(s), and omits the indigestible chunk of Beat Poetry in the interval, while the musicians were off “powdering their noses”. It does include the two tedious jam sessions, but you can skip those.
There is a single fixed-camera recording of the entire event, but it’s very poor quality.

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No need to defend. Been a fan since 1988 myself, and this serves as a “never meet your heroes” reminder.

My wife and I work in mental health, and she is FASCINATED with this film. St. Anger is her favorite album now, and we both enjoy it for what it is.

By the way, well said!

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I can imagine if you work in a mental health setting there are some fascinating case studies to observe in this film!

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While I was never a fan of the Eighties pop group Bros, a recent documentary called When the Screaming stops is a pretty good watch. Partly for what it’s like to have been a teen idol, when your poster is no longer on teenage girls’ bedroom walls, but also for some inadvertently hilarious bits, when the guys try to be philosophical.

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I haven’t seen J.Elvis Weinstein’s documentary on Michael des Barres yet. Anyone here watched it?

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@MisterScott

never meet your heroes

Reasons I Quit Twitter , No. 5 in a 500-part series.

Reading their bios is often a grave mistake, too. :confused:

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A movie I would encourage any music lover to see is Pete Seeger: The Power of Song. The man had an incredible career & life, spanning the decades from Woody Guthrie to Bruce Springsteen. Of course his career involved not only music but also activism in a range of important political/social causes. What he believed in most passionately was the power of music to bring people together. Kind of a quaint notion nowadays.

It’s also awesome to see him in his late 80’s still chopping wood and ice skating (not simultaneously, mind you).

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Ah, yeah. The Wrecking Crew!

^%&@ brilliant, loads of great-a$* vintage clips, loads of great interviews. Yeah, I’ve known about the “gang” since forever, and indeed while re-taking up the guitar, Carol Kaye comes up all the time among musicians for her instructional work on guitar. Of course, on piano Leon Russell everybody who can play a bit knows about, and for the MSTies, everybody recognizes Jack Nitzsche’s work (Village/Giants).

Priceless!

Gotta run to the straight job, but I’ll look forward to finishing this when I get home.

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