Dismiss Notice

Psst... Ready to join TalkBass and start posting, make new friends, sell your gear, and more?  Register your free account in 30 seconds.

Is there a bassist documentary film?

Discussion in 'Bassists [DB]' started by JoeB, Nov 23, 2004.


  1. JoeB

    JoeB

    Dec 19, 1999
    Toronto, ON, Canada
    Hello fellow substers,

    I'm doing a little research and I'm wondering if anyone knows of a documentary film about bassists?

    Standing in the Shadows of Motown was not quite what I had in mind because I'm looking for something focusing on just the bass.

    The closest thing I've found is Jay Leonhart's one-man show called "The Bass Lesson" which is a loose history of the bass and has humorous anecdotes many bassists will relate to, but it is not an actual doc of the life of a bassist.

    Any of you seen an actual documentary?

    Cheers,
    Joe

    ***I'm sure I've played more basses poorly than any man in history. This must have some cosmic effect on the universe, and I'll have to answer for it when I die.
    ¬óDick Smothers
     
  2. My buddy has an obscure documentary on Charles Mingus which took him a year to receive after ordering it.. i can find out the name and what not, and maybe even try to get a copy for you if you would like. I havent seen it, so i wouldnt really know if it is what you are looking for.

    Send me a PM if you are interested
     
  3. Alexi David

    Alexi David

    May 15, 2003
    NYC
    It's probably the 1968 documentary by Tom Reichman called "Mingus". It's priceless.
     
  4. There is the Mingus documentary "Triumph of the Underdog",that is now available on DVD...havent seen it,but I read reviews(some say it is great,others say the footage is great,but the doc is medocre)...
     
  5. Alexi David

    Alexi David

    May 15, 2003
    NYC
    I agree. I'm a collector, and even I have tons of great footage they could have used......(Umbria 74, Belgium 64, stockholm 64, antibes 60, etc) and I didn't like the way it was directed. And it spent way too much time on the Mingus Big Band, etc. In the end it seemed a bit too much like a selling point for the Mingus Big Band rather than about Mingus himself. And of course, Wynton had to show up somewhere. Why didn't they interview Charles McPherson, Jaki Byard, Max Roach, etc.????
     


  6. This is a bit off topic...sort of...but perhaps MingusFingus can answer...

    Many years ago I read a bio on Mingus,and it made reference to a biopic that Mingus starred in(as himself)...is this "Triumph of the Underdog"?...or was it "Beneath the Underdog",like his "autobiography"?
     
  7. Alexi David

    Alexi David

    May 15, 2003
    NYC
    Surely it must be:

    Mingus USA 1968-56 mins dir-Thomas Reichman
    An honest and accurate interview with Charlie Mingus made at the time of his eviction from his downtown New York flat, intercut with footage of Mingus groups performing in a club with numbers including "All the Things You Are", "Secret Love" and "Take the 'A' Train". Otherwise music and poetry by Charlie Mingus, Lonnie Hillyer, Walter Bishop, John Gilmore, Dannie Richmond and Charles McPherson. (Also available as video "Mingus, 1968" on Rhapsody Films, Inc., P.O. Box 179, New York, NY 10014, USA)

    some other films he appears in as himself:
    http://webusers.siba.fi/~eonttone/mingus/filmog.html
     
  8. Alexi David

    Alexi David

    May 15, 2003
    NYC
    Back on the topic though, I don't know of one documentary that talks about bassists. Even for individual artists only, there's very little....hmmmm....

    There's a project - a video documentary on Bassists - just keep Wynton away from it!!! :mad:
     
  9. Perplexer

    Perplexer

    Sep 2, 2003
  10. abaguer

    abaguer

    Nov 27, 2001
    Milford, NJ
    There's also a terrific documentary on Israel "Cachao" Lopez. It was made by the actor Andy Garcia and includes a concert in Miami of Cahao's music. It also goes into Cachao's playing when he lived in Cuba.
     
  11. Dennis Kong

    Dennis Kong Supporting Member

    Sep 1, 2004
    San Mateo CA
    That's good one! Have it on VHS. 1993 CineSon Prod. 16V 49191. Dunno if available on DVD.
     
  12. JoeB

    JoeB

    Dec 19, 1999
    Toronto, ON, Canada
    thanks everyone. really enjoy reading these responses!
     
  13. pedro

    pedro

    Apr 5, 2000
    Madison, WI.
    [[There's also a terrific documentary on Israel "Cachao" Lopez.

    Ah man I'd love to own that one. Where can I get a copy?

    And FWIW, I loved the Mingus documentary.
     
  14. Dennis Kong

    Dennis Kong Supporting Member

    Sep 1, 2004
    San Mateo CA
    I got mine at Amoeba Music in Berkeley CA for 10.00.
    They may have a few left. Dunno if they do mail order or
    not. Their phone # is 510 549 1125. It's in the Latin section
    with other Latin music videos.
     
  15. Dennis Kong

    Dennis Kong Supporting Member

    Sep 1, 2004
    San Mateo CA
    No problem. Glad to be of assistance. If they don't have it,
    I can look for a copy for you or dup mine for you.
     
  16. pedro

    pedro

    Apr 5, 2000
    Madison, WI.
    Hi Dennis, I called them but they're out. Won't have anymore until the new year. I'm going to keep looking elsewhere. Amazon didn't have any and neither did Tower or Barnes and Noble.
     
  17. Chip Boaz

    Chip Boaz

    Apr 23, 2004
    Seems like its been a while since this was posted, but if any of you are still looking for the Israel "Cachao" Lopez documentary, go to DESCARGA.COM They've got a huge inventory of latin music, and I'm sure they will have this video.

    Its fantastic by the way - a must for anyone even slightly interested in Afro-Cuban bass. His new CD, Ahora Si also includes a DVD - its not an in-depth documentary like "Como Su Ritmo No Hay Dos", but it has some great studio footage. He just won a grammy for it too, its a cool album, incredible to believe it was made by an 85 year old man. Cachao is amazing!
     
  18. anonymous0726

    anonymous0726 Guest

    Nov 4, 2001
    He'd look funny with that bow poking out of the front of his lower abdomen.
     
  19. Alexi David

    Alexi David

    May 15, 2003
    NYC
    :p :D