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Thread: 20 Feet from Stardom

  1. #1
    Stuck on the Border
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    Default 20 Feet from Stardom

    Has anyone seen this documentary? It's about american backup singers going back to the 60s. I was surprised how many I've heard over the years. I didn't even know The Rolling Stones had a lead female singer! Some amazing singers, especially Lisa Fischer.

    Members of the Waters family make an appearance - they sang on most of Glenn's solo albums and at least one of Don's (that wasn't mentioned but I remembered the name).

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?list=PL...&v=lGPSI7-ZmMc

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    Default Re: 20 Feet from Stardom

    Merry Clayton is very prominent in Gimme Shelter, but that's the only time. You could compare her part in that song with Sandy Denny's in The Battle Of Evermore.

    Maxine Waters became a congresswoman. I looked at several biographies but her musical career isn't mentioned!

    http://waters.house.gov/biography/

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    Default Re: 20 Feet from Stardom

    They were referring to Lisa Fischer who has been on every Stones tour since 1989.

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    Default Re: 20 Feet from Stardom

    Well OK, but she would be a backing singer, not a lead singer.

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    Default Re: 20 Feet from Stardom

    The phrase used in the documentary was "lead female singer".

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    Border Rebel tjh532's Avatar
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    Default Re: 20 Feet from Stardom

    I saw this on Netflix - it was really good. I think it's still there if anyone wants to see it.

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    Stuck on the Border MaryCalifornia's Avatar
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    Default Re: 20 Feet from Stardom

    Yes, I saw it a few months ago. I enjoyed it for the most part, though I could have done with about 5 minutes less of both the Waters' and Lisa. For me, the best part by far was Merrie Clayton's description of getting the call in the middle of the night for Gimme Shelter. Pregnant, night dress, and hair in curlers, and she went to the studio like that. She lost the baby after she returned home that night - perhaps because of how hard she strained singing her classic lines, but I don't think the documentary mentioned that. Anyway, the best part is when they play the feed just from her mic, I had never heard it - gave me chills!! So cool. Mick had said, "you want to try it again?" and she was like, "oh yeah, I'll do it again - check THIS out!" Classic.

    Sad parts about those young singers who sang lead on a song and then the studios put out the songs under another artist's name, and the original singer would hear themselves on the radio!! Also the part about singing on Sweet Home Alabama was moving. Bottom line is it doesn't matter how good of a singer you are, there are intangible qualities necessary to be a star. I'm curious to see how Judith Hill fares, she is exceptionally beautiful and a great singer.

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    Administrator sodascouts's Avatar
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    Default Re: 20 Feet from Stardom

    I have it in my Netflix queue. I've been interested in watching it ever since it won an Academy Award. You guys have made it sound even more interesting.

    Always in our hearts, Never forgotten

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    Stuck on the Border TimothyBFan's Avatar
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    Default Re: 20 Feet from Stardom

    Loved this movie! Being a huge fan of Motown, this movie was a must for me. It was great finally seeing the background voices of so many songs I've loved for so many years.

    Quote Originally Posted by MaryCalifornia View Post
    Yes, I saw it a few months ago. I enjoyed it for the most part, though I could have done with about 5 minutes less of both the Waters' and Lisa. For me, the best part by far was Merrie Clayton's description of getting the call in the middle of the night for Gimme Shelter. Pregnant, night dress, and hair in curlers, and she went to the studio like that. She lost the baby after she returned home that night - perhaps because of how hard she strained singing her classic lines, but I don't think the documentary mentioned that. Anyway, the best part is when they play the feed just from her mic, I had never heard it - gave me chills!! So cool. Mick had said, "you want to try it again?" and she was like, "oh yeah, I'll do it again - check THIS out!" Classic.
    This is the part that sticks out to me also.
    He sings it high, he plays it low

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    Default Re: 20 Feet from Stardom

    There was also the part where Darlene Love described how she was cleaning someone's house and heard herself singing on the radio and realised she should go back to singing. I think the most shocking thing was that when she finally got to the end of her contract with Phil Spector, she signed with someone else who then sold her new contract to Phil Spector.

    I'd heard of 60s groups who would be out on tour and, meanwhile, sessions musicians would record the tracks so they could just turn up and record the vocals (that's how you get Jimmy Page and John Paul Jones playing on a Herman's Hermit record).

    It was also interesting to hear about singing backup for english rock bands/artists and how that gave the singers freedom to sing the way they wanted.

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