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|Originaltitel:||20 Feet from Stardom|
|Genre:||Documentary, Music movie|
|Laufzeit:||Approx. 91 min.|
|FSK:||From 0 years|
There are numerous song classics that would never have become what they are today without background vocals. "Walk on the Wild Side" without background vocals? Hard to imagine. "Sweet Home Alabama" worn only by the voice of Lynyrd Skynyrd singer Ronnie Van Zant? That wouldn't be a comparison to the powerful version that is still played on the radio today. Or Joe Cockers "With a little help from my friends" without the choir singing? There are countless such examples, in which songs have only been given that very special something through the contribution of one or more background voices. But even though they make such an important contribution, first-class background singers like Lisa Fischer, Merry Clayton, Darlene Love, Tata Vega or Judith Hill usually lead lives outside the industry in total anonymity. That's changing now, because in his Oscar-winning documentary "20 Feet from Stardom", Morgan Neville finally turns the spotlight on the artists who are usually only in the shadow of the stars.
The five artists that Neville places at the centre of his film, representative of the guild of background singers, are not only very strong voices, but also strong personalities. Darlene Love occupies a very special position here. Not only can she be heard as a member of the legendary background trio "The Blossoms" on some of the greatest hits of the early 60s. She has also managed to become a star herself through a hard and stony path. Lisa Fischer was also on the verge of a major breakthrough. But after her first Grammy-winning solo album, Fischer's success is still limited and he retreated back into the background.
Not all background singers have the ambition to actually be in the limelight. For many it is more important to simply be able to pursue their great passion, singing. But for those who want to make it to the front, working in the background can be an important springboard - which, as Judith Hill notes, can also quickly become quicksand. And this is exactly where Neville's film starts in a very stirring and entertaining way. After all, it is not the comparatively rare success stories that are the rule in this business. Rather, the reality is that even great talents like Darlene Love had to work as a cleaning lady despite the highest recognition in the business or that first-class engagements with stars like Elton John or the Rolling Stones are no guarantee for future commitments. Especially at a time when the studios work a lot with samples, loops and other technical gimmicks, it becomes more and more difficult for professional background singers to make a living with their music.
However, "20 Feet from Stardom" is first and foremost a tribute to the great talents who have given countless hits their immortal character and their often underestimated importance in the music history of the last decades. Stars like Bruce Springsteen, Sting, Mick Jagger and Stevie Wonder talk about their experiences with background singers, review very special recording sessions and evaluate the significance of the vocal parts in the background for their songs. The result is a great musical journey through time, a fascinating look behind the scenes of the music industry and an extremely entertaining documentary that music lovers should not miss. Absolutely worth seeing!
Ein Artikel von Frankfurt-Tipp