Muddy Waters: Can’t Be Satisfied

Filmmaker Interview – Robert Gordon and Morgan Neville

Filmmakers Robert Gordon and Morgan Neville were kind enough to answer some questions about their film. Q: What first got you interested in doing a film of Muddy Waters? Robert Gordon: I was writing Muddy’s biography for Little, Brown and, in order to get closer to Muddy, I began hunting up film and video performances […]

Aretha Franklin: The Queen of Soul

About Aretha Franklin

In 1987, singer Aretha Franklin became the first woman to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. This was a testament to her impact on the music world over the course of her long and exciting career. From her teenage days singing gospel in her father’s church to her ascendancy to rock […]

Ray Charles: The Genius of Soul

About Ray Charles

They call him the “genius” and they call him the “father of soul.” With perfect pitch and an expressive voice, he combines worlds as diverse as jazz, country, rhythm and blues, and gospel to break your heart or make you dance. His name is Ray Charles, and if you turn your radio to any station […]

Sarah Vaughan: The Divine One

About Sarah Vaughan

Jazz critic Leonard Feather called her “the most important singer to emerge from the bop era.” Ella Fitzgerald called her the world’s “greatest singing talent.” During the course of a career that spanned nearly fifty years, she was the singer’s singer, influencing everyone from Mel Torme to Anita Baker. She was among the musical elite […]

Danny Kaye: A Legacy of Laughter

About the Actor

Danny Kaye was a great American entertainer with an enormous creative range, encompassing dance, popular song, classical music, complicated verse, impersonation and improvisation, which melded together into an utterly unique style. He was equally popular and at home on the stage, television, the silver screen, and radio. Over the course of his career, Kaye’s talents […]

Hank Williams: Honky Tonk Blues

About Hank Williams

By: Colin Escott More than fifty years after his death, Hank Williams ranks among the most powerfully iconic figures in American music. Iconic to the point that man and myth are inextricably entwined. He set the agenda for contemporary country songcraft and sang his songs with such believability that we feel privy to his world, […]

Hank Williams: Honky Tonk Blues

Filmmaker Interview – Morgan Neville

WITH DIRECTOR MORGAN NEVILLE What got you interested in this project? What drew you to Hank Williams? Everything about Hank Williams interests me. His music, his life. His death. His impact. It’s the kind of subject that one hopes to find. Although there is a cottage industry in books about Williams, there has never been […]

Hank Williams: Honky Tonk Blues


Sweet Honey in The Rock: Raise Your Voice

About Sweet Honey in the Rock

by Horace Clarence Boyer This essay originally appeared as the introduction to a Sweet Honey in the Rock songbook. INTRODUCTION On February 28, 1927 in Memphis, Tennessee, the blind sanctified singer Mamie Forehand recorded a refrain based on Psalm 81:16. In this passage of scripture the poet and musician King David advised his people that […]

Ella Fitzgerald: Something to Live For

Something to Live For

Her first dream was to be a dancer. Growing up in New York, she was inspired by “Snake Hips” Tucker, studying his serpentine moves and practicing them constantly with friends. Then, one fateful night at the Apollo Theater in 1934, the headlining Edwards Sisters brought down the house with their dancing. Amateur Hour began immediately […]