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Thread: Rock Documentaries on Netflix Instant

  1. #1
    old school buddy's Avatar
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    Default Rock Documentaries on Netflix Instant

    rollingstone had an article on the best rock documentaries on netflix instant a while ago. i thought this might be a good place for people to offer their opinions on some good rock documentaries/concert films/etc. for people to watch, that stand on their own even if people are unfamiliar with the band. maybe even talk about some great rock documentaries that are not on netflix instant, and why they are. a brief description can be helpful

    here's some on instant i'd recommend:

    We Jam Econo: The Story of the Minutemen
    documentary of the punk band the minutemen. i hadn't really listened to much minutemen prior to this, but it kept me interested regardless. interviews with thurston moore, henry rollins, members of the band, etc. talk about their influence, respect for the band, and the death of guitarist/singer/songwriter d. boon.

    Who Is Harry Nilsson? (And Why Is Everybody Talkin' About Him?)
    talks of the singer/songwriter harry nilsson, who was respected and friends with members of the beatles. nilsson had a fantasic voice, and was an equally great songwriter, but alcohol and a very active party life ultimately wore him down and his voice.

    The Flaming Lips: The Fearless Freaks
    even if you're not a fan of the band this documentary is engrossing, which most good rock documentaries are. shows of the rise of the band, tracing some of the band's classic albums, and band member steven drozd's struggle with heroin.

    I Am Trying to Break Your Heart
    about the making of, some say, Wilco's best album Yankee Hotel Foxtrot. covers the making of the album, the band's confrontation with their then record label about its commercial appeal, and the kicking out of member jay bennett.

    Scott Walker: 30 Century Man
    describes his early work with the walker brothers, solo work (scott walker 1-4), and his later work. interviews the camera shy man himself.

    some not on netflix instant:

    The Devil and Daniel Johnston
    covers daniel johnston rise from obscurity to mtv popularity, also his struggle with mental illness.

    Westway To The World/Joe Strummer: The Future Is Unwritten
    the former about legendary band the clash. the latter narrated by lead singer joe strummer himself, about the clash, and his life.

    Be Here to Love Me: A Film About Townes Van Zandt
    about influential country songwriter townes van zandt. told through archival interviews with van zandt, and interviews with those he influenced, and his family.
    Last edited by buddy; 03-19-2012 at 04:54 PM.

  2. #2
    old school westcoastpirate's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rock Documentaries on Netflix Instant

    Awesome, thanks! I've been looking for recommendations like this on Netflix instant.
    Fresh off his "JUICY AUSTRALIA TOUR"

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    Dark Lord mountmccabe's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rock Documentaries on Netflix Instant

    Quote Originally Posted by buddy View Post
    We Jam Econo: The Story of the Minutemen

    Who Is Harry Nilsson? (And Why Is Everybody Talkin' About Him?)

    The Flaming Lips: The Fearless Freaks

    I Am Trying to Break Your Heart

    Scott Walker: 30 Century Man
    I liked We Jam Econo but probably not as much as I expected. It was mostly a lot of awed reverence and live clips of songs. (Oh, wait, not clips - that's just how they write - but it felt like it, in this context.)

    I rather liked The Fearless Freaks but recommend against watching it with your parents if your parents are my parents.

    The Wilco and Scott Walker ones are fantastic.

    Also I think I refuse to watch the Harry Nilsson one because if you're doing a doc about a songwriter you don't name it after a Fred Neil song. Unless it is about Fred Neil. And I would watch the hell out of that.


    I would like to add

    You're Gonna Miss Me
    About Roky Erickson. I knew some 13th Floor Elevators before this but damn did this hook me. It really is amazing that he was able to play Coachella a couple years ago; I wish I had seen him.

    Kill Yr Idols
    Looks at No Wave and related late 70s/early 80s New York outsider rock movements, intercut with artist from the current (2002-3) wave of New York alt bands (generally making them look silly.) Do you like Glenn Branca and James Chance and Lydia Lunch? Do you want to? If so then this is for you.

    It Might Get Loud
    Recent guitar-worship doc featuring Jimmy Page, the Edge and Jack White. Hear about each artist's coming of age as a musician, wander around the country estate where Led Zeppelin IV was recorded, see where the members of U2 went to middle school, etc. It climaxes with the three of them together in a studio filled with guitars talking about the guitar and playing. The looks on Jack and the Edge's faces when Jimmy starts playing Zeppelin riffs is worth the price of admission, as is Jimmy watching Jack to see how to play one of his riffs.

    Not on Instant (but Netflix has it on DVD)
    Jandek on Corwood was very interesting. It came out in 2003 and as such is more speculation than it would be today. It is mostly people - journalists and critics, radio DJs, other musicians, one or two random people that met him - talking about Jandek, his music and their experiences and thoughts on the music. Calvin Johnson gets an A+, Dr Demento an A, Richie Unterberger a D. Sadly Richie has far more screen time than most.
    Last edited by mountmccabe; 02-23-2011 at 09:20 AM. Reason: Bad phrasing
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    Dark Lord mountmccabe's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rock Documentaries on Netflix Instant

    In my Instant queue but not watched (i.e. please comment if you've seen!)

    Danielson: A Family Movie

    Glass: A Portrait of Philip in 12 Parts

    John Cage: One 11 with 103
    This includes a pair of Cage's experimental video pieces and also an hour long documentary on the composer.

    And since I'm straying enough, I'll go back to a film I've already seen
    32 Short Films About Glenn Gould
    about the Pianist who caused a stir in the 50s with his odd approaches/opinions on baroque and classical music who abruptly quit performing live in the mid 60s.

    Until the Light Takes Us (DVD only)
    About Norwegian black metal, focusing on the late 80s and early 90s, artists like Mayhem, Burzum and Darkthrone. It's focus is on the culture and the principles (and the killings and church burnings) rather than the music.
    Quote Originally Posted by SoulDischarge View Post
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    Member thom cobain's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rock Documentaries on Netflix Instant

    Nice thread. Yes on Wilco, Harry Nilsson, and Phillip Glass.
    2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2012, 2013, 2013, 2014, 2014

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    Member BigBryan's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rock Documentaries on Netflix Instant

    Heavy Metal in Baghdad- Made by the folks over at Vice (VBS.com) while out researching and filming other stuff they found this metal band trying to just be a band and play the music they want to play in the middle of Iraq and this big war.

    There's also a couple of cool hip hop docs. I'd recommend The MC: Why we Do it and the Art of 16 Bars. Probably the two best produced pieces on hip hop as an art, culture, business etc. The two actually work as companion to each other. If you like hip hop check these out.

    Planet B-Boy is also a great doc about the biggest b-boy/break dance competition.

    Ill also throw an honorable mention at the Beef series. The first Beef is very good and gives a lot of history and background of hip hop and focuses on how competitive hip hop is just by nature alone and why and where the beefs and feuds began. If you aren't a fan of hip hop these can easily come off as silly. Beef 2-4 slide down the scale of freshness quickly and aren't nearly as good as the first.
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    Dick Nicewonger kreutz2112's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rock Documentaries on Netflix Instant

    I just watched fearless freaks for the first time last night on instant. In news unrelated to netflix I downloaded the ATP movie. I can't wait to watch it.
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    Coachella Junkie shakermaker113's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rock Documentaries on Netflix Instant

    Quote Originally Posted by mountmccabe View Post
    32 Short Films About Glenn Gould
    about the Pianist who caused a stir in the 50s with his odd approaches/opinions on baroque and classical music who abruptly quit performing live in the mid 60s.
    oh shit. I was just looking for that yesterday and couldn't find it. thanks for pointing that out. I have never seen it because I don't think it's ever been released on dvd.

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    Coachella Junkie bballarl's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rock Documentaries on Netflix Instant

    I loved the Nilsson/Wilco/Scott Walker docs. It Might Get Loud was good too. Need to check out some of these others. Great thread, thanks.

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    Coachella Junkie bballarl's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rock Documentaries on Netflix Instant

    Oh, the brief doc on the Stones/Exile on Main Street is worth watching. Nothing mindblowing, but worth your time if you are a fan of the band.

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Rock Documentaries on Netflix Instant

    some great adds everyone. some i've yet to see, and i will now, and those i have You're Gonna Miss Me and It Might Get Loud i'd recommend, as well.

    Quote Originally Posted by mountmccabe View Post
    Also I think I refuse to watch the Harry Nilsson one because if you're doing a doc about a songwriter you don't name it after a Fred Neil song. Unless it is about Fred Neil. And I would watch the hell out of that.
    you should watch this john. they cover that fred neil wrote the famous song, and i agree that it's kind of silly that they named it after it. my guess is they named it so, because it's what people unfamiliar with nilsson's work recognize.


    Quote Originally Posted by bballarl View Post
    Oh, the brief doc on the Stones/Exile on Main Street is worth watching. Nothing mindblowing, but worth your time if you are a fan of the band.
    liked this, too. you're right it probably helps to be a fan of the band going in. it shows the stones, especially keith richards, at their most drug dependent, while making some of their best work.
    Last edited by buddy; 01-30-2011 at 01:37 PM.

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    old school daxton's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rock Documentaries on Netflix Instant

    Quote Originally Posted by kreutz2112 View Post
    I just watched fearless freaks for the first time last night on instant. In news unrelated to netflix I downloaded the ATP movie. I can't wait to watch it.
    Entitled All Tomorrow's Parties?

    Anyone seen the Leonard Cohen doc I'm Your Man? It's been in my queue for a while, but I haven't made my way to it yet.
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    Member Desaparecidos's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rock Documentaries on Netflix Instant

    Has anyone seen that Jimi Hendrix documentary Rainbow Bridge? I just read a book about the Brotherhood of Eternal Love called Orange Sunshine and am interested in the movie. From the book I picked up that it has a lot to do with aliens, it's based in Hawaii, and it features Hendrix's show on a volcano?

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    Member zircona1's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rock Documentaries on Netflix Instant

    I actually watched the Harry Nilsson one last night, it was pretty good.

    I'm waiting for Strange Powers: Stephin Merritt and the Magnetic Fields to come around here, but it'll probably head to DVD before it happens.

    Most of you probably know or have seen it, but Metallica - Some Kind of Monster is really good.
    We're here to play some Mississippi Delta Blues. We're in a horrible depression, and I gotta admit - we're starting to like it.

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    Dick Nicewonger kreutz2112's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rock Documentaries on Netflix Instant

    Quote Originally Posted by daxton View Post
    Entitled All Tomorrow's Parties?
    Yes. I just finished it. Honestly, I didn't think it was that great. I wanted more interviews. More history. Stories. Anything. All it was was clips of various performances mainly from 2004-2007. The clips were cool, but it got a little repetitive and I almost fell asleep.
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    old school shotglass75's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rock Documentaries on Netflix Instant

    Not sure if it's on Netflix but The Making of Contakt with Richie Hawtin was an excellent behind the scenes doc and concert film.

    Check out Sleeping is Giving in for great mixes and other cool stuff

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    Member zircona1's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rock Documentaries on Netflix Instant

    Also I forgot to mention VH1 Inside Out: Warren Zevon, which chronicles Zevon's battle with cancer and the making of his final album, The Wind. Really great stuff, plus lots of interview footage.
    We're here to play some Mississippi Delta Blues. We're in a horrible depression, and I gotta admit - we're starting to like it.

  18. #18
    old school buddy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rock Documentaries on Netflix Instant

    got reminded about this doc, due to another thread

    DiG!
    is pretty great from what i remember. follows two bands, the brian jonestown massacre and the dandy worhols, as they try to make it big, and as anton from bjm slowly self destructs. it's not on netflix instant, but worth a shot if you're looking for something to watch, among the others recommended.

  19. #19
    old school buddy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rock Documentaries on Netflix Instant

    Quote Originally Posted by zircona1 View Post
    I'm waiting for Strange Powers: Stephin Merritt and the Magnetic Fields to come around here, but it'll probably head to DVD before it happens.
    i'd like to see this one, as well. i'll have to wait for the dvd. there's also a documentary on the largo in la that i'm waiting for to come on dvd.

  20. #20
    Coachella Junkie shakermaker113's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rock Documentaries on Netflix Instant

    dig! is awesome. though not available on netflix instant.

    while we're off topic, the Filth & the Fury is another great documentary not available on instant.

  21. #21
    Coachella Junkie shakermaker113's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rock Documentaries on Netflix Instant

    not exactly a documentary, but contains a lot of good (real) concert footage... Nine Songs is available on instant.

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    old school
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    Default Re: Rock Documentaries on Netflix Instant

    Bruce Haack: The King Of Techno
    A must for the music documentary fan.
    "Oh this uncertainty is taking me over"

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    Default Re: Rock Documentaries on Netflix Instant

    Scratch is also a great documentary that chronicles the history of turntablism.
    "Oh this uncertainty is taking me over"

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    old school daxton's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rock Documentaries on Netflix Instant

    Oh, so I saw I'm Your Man recently. I didn't love it. It was pretty ok. The format was sort of strange. It was mostly footage of various artists covering Cohen songs, combined with pieces of an interview of Cohen. Martha Wainwright did cover the shit out of one song I can't remember.
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    old school CrimesceneCookie's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rock Documentaries on Netflix Instant

    Quote Originally Posted by shoegazer76 View Post
    Bruce Haack: The King Of Techno
    A must for the music documentary fan.
    I remember trying to watch this mess years ago. I couldn't make it to the end.
    Was everyone they interviewed on acid or just the crew?

  26. #26
    old school
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    Default Re: Rock Documentaries on Netflix Instant

    Yes I'm sure hallucinogens had some role in that documentary.
    "Oh this uncertainty is taking me over"

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    Default Re: Rock Documentaries on Netflix Instant

    Quote Originally Posted by buddy View Post
    Who Is Harry Nilsson? (And Why Is Everybody Talkin' About Him?)
    talks of the singer/songwriter harry nilsson, who was respected and friends with members of the beatles. nilsson had a fantasic voice, and was an equally great songwriter, but alcohol and a very active party life ultimately wore him down and his voice.

    .
    Thanks buddy. That was a good one.

  28. #28
    Member kronz420's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rock Documentaries on Netflix Instant

    The Police - Everyone stares ... Its worth a watch. Im sure you could find it online
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  29. #29
    Coachella Junkie fikus222's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rock Documentaries on Netflix Instant

    I eagerly await this release:



    I had tickets in hand to see Morphine live when they got back from their European tour, but Mark Sandman died on stage in Rome and I never got to see them perform. Morphine is the soundtrack to my HS years hanging out at a coffee shop in the mid 90s called, Celebrities. The same coffee shop where I met the woman who was to become by wife, a decade later. This year, the documentary will be out on the festival circuit. I can't wait to see it.
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  30. #30
    Member mikebspeedracer's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rock Documentaries on Netflix Instant

    these are all great! can anyone recommend any good lesser known comedy, drama, horror, or any other movies that can be watched on instant?
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