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Folklore: movies about folk/musicians

quokka 14 Oct 08 - 10:32 AM
Big Al Whittle 14 Oct 08 - 11:11 AM
WFDU - Ron Olesko 14 Oct 08 - 11:21 AM
PoppaGator 14 Oct 08 - 11:31 AM
quokka 14 Oct 08 - 11:32 AM
Mark Ross 14 Oct 08 - 11:44 AM
Fred McCormick 14 Oct 08 - 11:58 AM
quokka 14 Oct 08 - 12:13 PM
Fred McCormick 14 Oct 08 - 12:25 PM
Mary Katherine 14 Oct 08 - 12:37 PM
GUEST 14 Oct 08 - 12:45 PM
GUEST,Tunesmith 14 Oct 08 - 01:11 PM
bankley 14 Oct 08 - 01:27 PM
quokka 14 Oct 08 - 01:55 PM
Will Fly 14 Oct 08 - 02:00 PM
PoppaGator 14 Oct 08 - 02:01 PM
Rog Peek 14 Oct 08 - 02:06 PM
SINSULL 14 Oct 08 - 02:09 PM
quokka 14 Oct 08 - 02:14 PM
GUEST,TJ in San Diego 14 Oct 08 - 04:13 PM
GUEST 14 Oct 08 - 04:29 PM
quokka 15 Oct 08 - 07:08 AM
r.padgett 15 Oct 08 - 07:18 AM
meself 15 Oct 08 - 10:12 AM
WFDU - Ron Olesko 15 Oct 08 - 10:37 AM
GUEST,Neil D 15 Oct 08 - 02:07 PM
Elmer Fudd 15 Oct 08 - 03:36 PM
quokka 15 Oct 08 - 07:33 PM
Ref 15 Oct 08 - 09:34 PM
quokka 17 Oct 08 - 11:52 AM
quokka 17 Oct 08 - 09:08 PM
fretless 18 Oct 08 - 12:34 AM
Nerd 18 Oct 08 - 04:26 AM
quokka 19 Oct 08 - 09:55 PM
Cluin 19 Oct 08 - 10:03 PM
quokka 19 Oct 08 - 10:04 PM
Elmer Fudd 20 Oct 08 - 09:35 AM
Elmer Fudd 20 Oct 08 - 09:39 AM
quokka 20 Oct 08 - 11:15 AM
GUEST,dulcimerjohn 20 Oct 08 - 02:16 PM
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Subject: Folklore: movies about folk/musicians
From: quokka
Date: 14 Oct 08 - 10:32 AM

Following on from the "books about folk" thread, what are your favourite movies/films/documentaries about folk music and/or folk musicians? Sorry if this is already the subject of a thread, I had a bit of a look and couldn't see anything similar...

Cheers,

Quokka


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Subject: RE: Folklore: movies about folk/musicians
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 14 Oct 08 - 11:11 AM

I love the music in the Leadbelly biopic.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: movies about folk/musicians
From: WFDU - Ron Olesko
Date: 14 Oct 08 - 11:21 AM

Pete Seeger: The Power of Song
The Ballad of Ramblin' Jack
Wasn't That A Time
Be Here to Love Me: A Film About Townes Van Zandt
a documentary on the Carter Family that appeared on PBS American Masters series and I cannot remember the title


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Subject: RE: Folklore: movies about folk/musicians
From: PoppaGator
Date: 14 Oct 08 - 11:31 AM

The PBS multi-episode "Blues" documentary was pretty good...


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Subject: RE: Folklore: movies about folk/musicians
From: quokka
Date: 14 Oct 08 - 11:32 AM

OK, here's my start...YES it's only a start...OK so it's all about the one guy...I'm really NOT obsessed with BD, I just happen to think that these films are masterpieces, OK?

Don't Look Back - D.A. Pennebaker

No Direction Home - Martin Scorcese

I'm Not There - Todd Haynes

Cheers,

Quokka


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Subject: RE: Folklore: movies about folk/musicians
From: Mark Ross
Date: 14 Oct 08 - 11:44 AM

SPROUT WINGS AND FLY, about Tommy Jarrel,
CATCHING THE MUSIC about Stephen Wade,
HIGH LONESOME SOUND by John Cohen, also
THE END OF AN OLD SONG about Dillard Chandler
JOE HILL

Mark Ross


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Subject: RE: Folklore: movies about folk/musicians
From: Fred McCormick
Date: 14 Oct 08 - 11:58 AM

The Singer and the Song, about Sam Larner and Harry Cox.

Death of a Miner, about Jack Elliott.

Bert. A wonderful tribute to Bert Lloyd by Barry Callaghan.

The Ballad of Ewan MacColl.

The entire series of American Patchwork.

Bartok. The Miraculous Circumstance.

And, even though it's not about folksong, the wonderful Ken Burns history of Jazz which was shown on BBC tv a few years ago.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: movies about folk/musicians
From: quokka
Date: 14 Oct 08 - 12:13 PM

Fred, thank you, I would love to see those films! Now just to find them! I must admit I LOVE everything Ken Burns has ever done...have you seen the Civil War series - 'Ashoken Farewell' is one of my favourite fiddle tunes.

Cheers,

Quokka


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Subject: RE: Folklore: movies about folk/musicians
From: Fred McCormick
Date: 14 Oct 08 - 12:25 PM

Ken Burns' series on the American civil war was indeed a reamarkable acheivement. I would think his series on jazz will be available on DVD somewhere.

Anyway, I've just remembered a couple more BBC documentaries.

But Still We Sing from Bert Lloyd. About Hebridean folksong.
A prgramme, title forgotten, made by MacColl and Seeger about the Stewarts of Blair.
A short, about 20 minutes, made by Bert about Doc Watson. For Arena, I think.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: movies about folk/musicians
From: Mary Katherine
Date: 14 Oct 08 - 12:37 PM

"Wasn't That a Time," Jim Brown's terrific documentary about the Weavers.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: movies about folk/musicians
From: GUEST
Date: 14 Oct 08 - 12:45 PM

Buenavista Social Club


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Subject: RE: Folklore: movies about folk/musicians
From: GUEST,Tunesmith
Date: 14 Oct 08 - 01:11 PM

Don't forget this fantastic resource! And, remember, you can play these films in their entirity on this site; I say that because that fact it might not seem immediately obvious.

Link to folk music films


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Subject: RE: Folklore: movies about folk/musicians
From: bankley
Date: 14 Oct 08 - 01:27 PM

Gypsy Caravan
Latcho Drom
Bound for Glory
Alice's Restaurant


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Subject: RE: Folklore: movies about folk/musicians
From: quokka
Date: 14 Oct 08 - 01:55 PM

I can't believe I left out 'Alice' in my post - "Remember Alice? This is a song about Alice!" I had the privilege of meeting Arlo Guthrie earlier this year.

Cheers,

Quokka


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Subject: RE: Folklore: movies about folk/musicians
From: Will Fly
Date: 14 Oct 08 - 02:00 PM

Purely a commercial, Coen Brothers film and not a "folk film" as such, but "Oh Brother Where Art Thou" did bring a whole tranche of American music back into the collective consciousness in the US - and probably the UK as well.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: movies about folk/musicians
From: PoppaGator
Date: 14 Oct 08 - 02:01 PM

Les Blank's life work, a series of documentaries covering various aspects of indiginous Louisiana culture, is definitely worth a look.

The best of all might be "Always for Pleasure," depicting New Orleans street-parade culture, including the Mardi Gras Indians.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: movies about folk/musicians
From: Rog Peek
Date: 14 Oct 08 - 02:06 PM

CHORDS OF FAME
Starring Bill Burnette as Phil Ochs
directed by Michael Korolenko


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Subject: RE: Folklore: movies about folk/musicians
From: SINSULL
Date: 14 Oct 08 - 02:09 PM

A Mighty Wind


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Subject: RE: Folklore: movies about folk/musicians
From: quokka
Date: 14 Oct 08 - 02:14 PM

You beat me to it, SINSULL. I was going to say A Mighty Wind! Also I LOVE 'O Brother Where Art Thou' - great film.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: movies about folk/musicians
From: GUEST,TJ in San Diego
Date: 14 Oct 08 - 04:13 PM

I, too, loved "The Civil War" series by Ken Burns. My two sons visited Gettysburg and Antietam shortly after viewing it several years ago. It helped to humanize and make the war very real, something that history books alone cannot accomplish. The music used in this series was an indispensable part of its overall effect.

When he did the series on Jazz, however, I felt he gave short shrift to some influential early jazz contributors, such as trombonist/vocalist Jack Teagarden and others who influenced succeeding generations of jazz players and composers. Owing to time constraints, this might have been an arbitrary editing choice, but did a disservice to some pioneers who deserved better. On balance, it was a very good series in spite of this.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: movies about folk/musicians
From: GUEST
Date: 14 Oct 08 - 04:29 PM

Songcatcher was a 2000 movie about an ethnomusicologist teaching school in rural Appalachia, who discovers the musical tradition in the hills around her and tries to document it. With some good traditional music.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: movies about folk/musicians
From: quokka
Date: 15 Oct 08 - 07:08 AM

Old Weird America - documentary about Harry Smith and the Anthology of American Folk Music


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Subject: RE: Folklore: movies about folk/musicians
From: r.padgett
Date: 15 Oct 08 - 07:18 AM

This is brilliant should be on channel TV permanently

Ray


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Subject: RE: Folklore: movies about folk/musicians
From: meself
Date: 15 Oct 08 - 10:12 AM

A Sigh and a Wish - about folklorist Helen Creighton.

Born For Hard Luck - about harmonica-player Peg-leg Sam ("If it was raining soup, and everyone was holding out their spoons, I'd be standing there with a fork").


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Subject: RE: Folklore: movies about folk/musicians
From: WFDU - Ron Olesko
Date: 15 Oct 08 - 10:37 AM

Raise Your Voice - a brilliant documentary about Sweet Honey in the Rock


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Subject: RE: Folklore: movies about folk/musicians
From: GUEST,Neil D
Date: 15 Oct 08 - 02:07 PM

Along the lines of "OH, Brother" another film not about music but featuring some great traditional songs is "Cold Mountain". And my 2 cents about "The Civil War" by Ken Burns: THE best thing ever shown on television.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: movies about folk/musicians
From: Elmer Fudd
Date: 15 Oct 08 - 03:36 PM

The Honeydripper, written and directed by John Sayles, traces the earliest move of blues towards rock 'n' roll, and the evolution of the electric guitar. There's a lot of acoustic blues in it and a tiny bit of rock 'n' roll. It's a great story, starring Danny Glover.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: movies about folk/musicians
From: quokka
Date: 15 Oct 08 - 07:33 PM

Get Up, Stand Up: The Story of Pop and Protest (2003) This was a six part series made by PBS, I think.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: movies about folk/musicians
From: Ref
Date: 15 Oct 08 - 09:34 PM

Oh, Brother is good. Cold Mountain is OK, but I think T-Bone Burnett made a mistake getting so involved with the overly precious Jack White, who seems to think that singing through his nose makes him authentic. Songcatcher is a great sound track, but the movie has awful production values, Aidan Quinn is badly miscast, and it seems to me very disrespectful to its subjects. Thanks for the good references to other films and docs.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: movies about folk/musicians
From: quokka
Date: 17 Oct 08 - 11:52 AM

Not strictly folk, I guess, but a brilliant documentary, again by the master, Martin Scorsese - 'The Last Waltz'. Pure brilliance. Great music.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: movies about folk/musicians
From: quokka
Date: 17 Oct 08 - 09:08 PM

Again, not strictly....but the film Hi Fidelity has a lot of appreciation of music of all sorts. I guess I loved John Cusack's character and his passion for great music, and also the fact that the film TALKED about why the songs are great etc.

Cheers,

Quokka


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Subject: RE: Folklore: movies about folk/musicians
From: fretless
Date: 18 Oct 08 - 12:34 AM

"Gotham Fish Tales," a documentary about fishing in New York City. Topic isn't folk, but the sound track is wouderful blues by the Rev. Gary Davis.

Songcatcher, but the way, had a great sound track in the movie, but they decided to sanitize it on the CD and the result was simply awful.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: movies about folk/musicians
From: Nerd
Date: 18 Oct 08 - 04:26 AM

Rok Dabla, a weird film starring the Czech folk-rock band Czechomor as a fictionalized version of themselves, is funny.

Paul Kovitz's film about Fairport Convention, Meet on the Ledge.

The TV series American Roots Music was pretty good, too...


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Subject: RE: Folklore: movies about folk/musicians
From: quokka
Date: 19 Oct 08 - 09:55 PM

Festival Express, the documentary about the train ride across Canada in 1970, only resurrected a couple of years ago


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Subject: RE: Folklore: movies about folk/musicians
From: Cluin
Date: 19 Oct 08 - 10:03 PM

"High Lonesome: The Story of Bluegrass Music" by Rachal Liebling.


And I'd like to see "The Ballad of Ramblin' Jack".


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Subject: RE: Folklore: movies about folk/musicians
From: quokka
Date: 19 Oct 08 - 10:04 PM

Festival Express


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Subject: RE: Folklore: movies about folk/musicians
From: Elmer Fudd
Date: 20 Oct 08 - 09:35 AM

I interviewed one of the cameramen on "Festival Express." It has quite a history. There was much comradery and impromptu jamming on the train that didn't make it into the movie. The producers didn't pay the camera crew, so they heisted a lot of the film footage and didn't give it back until they got paid! Then the film sat in canisters for 33 years in the producer's garage, unedited and deteriorating, until after the producer died his son was able to find funding to make it into a feature-length film. Some of the film was beyond repair. We're lucky to have what we do.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: movies about folk/musicians
From: Elmer Fudd
Date: 20 Oct 08 - 09:39 AM

"And This is Free" is the lost footage of Maxwell Street in Chicago, the lively street market started by Polish Jews, where some of the best Chicago blues and gospel singers would play on weekends. Those with electric instruments would string extension cords from nearby apartments to fire up their amps. Again, this is from footage that sat around since the 1960s. A lot of it was destroyed, and that which was recovered has precious little of these amazing musicians playing in their element. It has the only known footage of Johnny young, plus Robert Nighthawk, Arvella Gray, and some amazing anonymous gospel singers.

Elmer


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Subject: RE: Folklore: movies about folk/musicians
From: quokka
Date: 20 Oct 08 - 11:15 AM

Thanks for that info on Festival Express, Elmer...from your interview, have you anything you'd like to post? It's such an interesting project.

Cheers,

Quokka


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Subject: RE: Folklore: movies about folk/musicians
From: GUEST,dulcimerjohn
Date: 20 Oct 08 - 02:16 PM

I just posted a few days a go a thread regarding a movie we will make in Va on John 'Babbacombe' Lee..a folk hero, not a musician, but a story told by Dave 'Swarb' Swarbrick of Fairport. 'Drop away'..


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