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2 Quick Music Biz Movie Reviews: 20 Feet From Stardom and Welcome To The Machine

20-feet-from-stardomTwo new music industry documentaries grace us this summer. One, “20 Feet From Stardom,” focuses on background singers for major performing acts. The other, “Welcome To The Machine,” takes a look a bit more directly at the industry itself with what appears to be a great deal of humor. The first appears to be heartwarming while the second may well be a laugh riot.

I found out about “20 Feet From Stardom”
by accident when I saw that it was playing at a local indie movie
theater. Turns out it played SXSW earlier this year and opened in
theaters in June.

20 Feet From Stardom Trailer

Here’s an official description posted with the above trailer:

“Meet the unsung heroes behind the greatest songs of our time. In his compelling new film TWENTY FEET FROM STARDOM, award-winning director Morgan Neville shines a spotlight on the untold true story of the backup singers behind some of the greatest musical legends of the 21st century.”

“Along with rare archival footage and a peerless soundtrack, TWENTY FEET FROM STARDOM boasts intimate interviews with Bruce Springsteen, Stevie Wonder, Mick Jagger and Sting…However, these world-famous figures take a backseat to the diverse array of backup singers—including Darlene Love, Merry Clayton, Claudia Lennear, Lisa Fischer, and Judith Hill—whose lives and stories take center stage in the film.”

Judging from the trailer, it will make you laugh, it will make you cry, it will leave you feeling good. Possibly a good alternative date movie depending on your date.

Welcome To The Machine Trailer

“Welcome To The Machine”, which unfortunately shares the same name as the highly linked tech documentary “Welcome To The Machine”, is a documentary about the music industry. It’s currently making film festival rounds and is due out on DVD in August.

According to an official description:

“The 12 Commandments of the music business brought together in one film. The secret of success, the purpose of music awards, the whole truth about recording contracts and nine other monstrosities. “Welcome to the Machine” is not just a rockumentary, but also uncovers the whole truth! Features Kim Wilde, Fatboy Slim, Cypress Hill, Bloodhound Gang, Kool and the Gang and more.”

But judging from this trailer, the documentary will make you laugh at a constant parade of ridiculous individuals. I’m guessing the more well-known participants will poke at the industry while the documentary pokes at various individuals with which I’m unfamiliar.

Good with beer and pretzels and likely chock full of confirmation that you are surrounded by idiots.

Bon appetit!

Hypebot Senior Contributor Clyde Smith (@fluxresearch/@crowdfundingm) also blogs at Flux Research and Crowdfunding For Musicians. To suggest topics for Hypebot, contact: clyde(at)fluxresearch(dot)com.

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