A revelatory, thrilling and emotional journey behind the scenes of Blue Note Records, the pioneering label that gave voice to some of the finest jazz artists of the 20th and 21st centuries.
“A Smart, Exhilarating Look at an Influential Label… ...This documentary directed by Sophie Huber makes a point right off that Blue Note Records is still very much a thing of the present… This tidy, thoughtful film gets at jazz’s joy and pain.” - Glenn Kenny, The New York Times (Critic’s Pick)
“Jazz may be a quintessentially American art form, but it is Europeans who make some of the best jazz documentaries, with the captivating 'Blue Note Records: Beyond The Notes' being the latest case in point. Potently directed by Switzerland’s Sophie Huber...” - Kenneth Turan, Los Angeles Times
“Damn-near immaculate music documentary" - Leslie Felperin, The Guardian
BLUE NOTE RECORDS: BEYOND THE NOTES explores the unique vision behind the iconic jazz record label. Through rare archival footage, current recording sessions and conversations with Blue Note artists, the film reveals a powerful mission and illuminates the vital connections between jazz and hip hop. One of the most important record labels in the history of jazz — and, by extension, that of American music — Blue Note Records has been home to such groundbreaking artists as Miles Davis, Thelonious Monk, John Coltrane, Bud Powell and Art Blakey, as well as present-day luminaries like Robert Glasper, Ambrose Akinmusire and Norah Jones.
Founded in New York in 1939 by German Jewish refugees Alfred Lion and Francis Wolff, the history of Blue Note Records goes beyond the landmark recordings, encompassing the pursuit of musical freedom, the conflict between art and commerce and the idea of music as a transformative and revolutionary force. Through rare archival footage, current recording sessions and conversations with jazz icons Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter and today’s groundbreaking Blue Note musicians, BLUE NOTE RECORDS: BEYOND THE NOTES reveals a powerful mission and illuminates the vital connections between jazz and hip hop.
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