antiMusic Logo
Jealous Haters Since 1998!
Home | News | Reviews | Day In Rock | RockNewsWire | Singled Out | Feeds
spacer

Behind The Documentary About Legendary Backing Singers (Recap)


.
On Tuesday Behind The Documentary About Legendary Backing Singers was a top story. Here is the recap: (Radio.com) Lots of music documentaries tell you more about something you already know. Do you love Stevie Nicks? Check out In Your Dreams! Are you a Rolling Stones die-hard? Grab a copy of Crossfire Hurricane! Are you a huge Bruce Springsteen fan? Watch testimonials by even bigger fans in Springsteen & I! But how many backing singers do you know by name, and how much to do you know about them?

In 20 Feet From Stardom, those back-up vocalists take center stage, and a number of iconic stars— including Bruce Springsteen, Bette Midler, Stevie Wonder, Sting and Mick Jagger, along backing singer turned front woman Sheryl Crow—play a supporting role to sing their praises. The film is a gripping story of talent that came close to stardom, but could never quite grabbed the spotlight or just couldn't hold on to it.

Darlene Love's story was one of the most complex in the film. That measurement of "20 feet" marks the approximate distance between the background singers' microphones and the lead singer's. As Bruce Springsteen says in the film, "It's a bit of a walk. That walk to the front is… complicated." As a backing singer on some of Phil Spector's biggest productions including the Ronettes' "Be My Baby," the Crystals' "Da Doo Run Run" and the Righteous Brothers' "You've Lost That Lovin' Feeling," Love also sang lead for the Blossoms and Bob B. Soxx and the Blue Jeans before going solo. But despite having a solid discography of hits, she soon found herself broke and cleaning houses for a living.

Watching her tell her story is one of the most emotional moments in a film filled with them. "Well, when I first saw the film on screen, it was really touching to me, seeing me telling the story," Love told Radio.com. "I didn't know I was going to be so emotional. I wasn't emotional about it when I was cleaning the houses! I don't mind telling the story, because it's true. Not only were stars mistreated, but so were background singers. You would always hear about the star who didn't get their money. The same thing happened to background singers, just no one ever knew it. I am really happy that the story is being told. I wish every entertainer who is in this business—especially the younger ones—will go see this film."

Another storyline traces the tale of Merry Clayton. You may not know the name, but you should, and you definitely know her voice. That's her singing with Mick Jagger on the Rolling Stones' "Gimme Shelter." That's also her on Lynyrd Skynyrd's "Sweet Home Alabama." The film tells the story of how, despite having sang on a number of huge hits, and having industry heavyweights like Lou Adler behind her, she simply never became a star on her own.


The woman who sings Merry's part from "Gimme Shelter" onstage with the Rolling Stones, Lisa Fischer, is also a central figure to the documentary, although her story follows a different path than that of her fellow backing singers.

She's been in the Stones' touring band since their 1989 return to the road, but in 1991, she released her solo debut, So Intense; the single "How Can I Ease The Pain" won a GRAMMY for Best Female R&B Performance. The expected career trajectory at that point would be to leave her other gigs to focus on her solo career. Instead, she did the opposite: she ditched her solo career, and remained a backing singer for the Stones, Luther Vandross, Tina Turner and Sting, among others.

"I think, for me, the background singer part of my life which is where I started," Fischer told Radio.com. "I love it so much. I love being with people, I love making sounds with other people, I love watching people shine when they know their purpose. I just felt that I really didn't know my purpose [as a solo artist]. I knew that I could sing. But when it came down to going into the studio – 'Ok, what do you want to do?' I was like, 'Um… I want to sing a nice song?'" - more on this story

Radio.com is an official news provider for antiMusic.com.
Copyright Radio.com/CBS Local - Excerpted here with permission.

20 Feet From Stardom DVDs and Blu-Rays

20 Feet From Stardom T-shirts and Posters

Share this article


...end


advertisement
advertisement

.
News Reports
.

• Day in Rock:
AC/DC Release Video Recaps Of Two Shows With Axl Rose- The Tragically Hip Add New Farewell Dates Amid Ticket Controversy- L.A. Guns' Phil Lewis and Tracii Guns Reunite- more

• Beyond Rock: Gucci Mane Early Prison Release Reason Revealed- Twenty One Pilots Performance Cut Short For 'Safety' Reasons- Sam Hunt Releases 'Single For The Summer' Video- more

• Metallica's New Album Will Be Done This Summer- Video From AC/DC With Axl Rose's Switzerland Show Goes Online- B.B King's Children In Heated Battle Over His Estate- more

 Subscribe To Day in Rock


advertisement

.
Rock News Stories
• AC/DC Release Video Recaps Of Two Shows With Axl Rose

• The Tragically Hip Add New Farewell Dates Amid Ticket Controversy

• L.A. Guns' Phil Lewis and Tracii Guns Reunite

• Sequel To The Who's Quadrophenia Movie Being Made

• Jeff Beck To Be Honored At 2016 Classic Rock Awards

• Bullet For My Valentine 'Raising Hell' In New Live Video

• Bad Company Announce Swan Song Tour

• Former Megadeth Guitarist Explains Exit From The Band

• Frost Release 'Numbers' Music Video

• One Gone Thus Streaming New Impermanence EP Online

• Walter Trout Streaming Three Songs From Forthcoming Album

• Steve Hackett Releases Live Video For Genesis Classic

• Ana Popovic Releases 'You Got The Love' Video

• Aggression Streaming New Song 'Unleashing The Ghost'

• This Week's Temples Festival Canceled

• Counting Days Release Prison Of Misery Video

• Rob Reed To Play Sanctuary Live With 10-Piece Band

• Of Mice & Men Announce European Tour

• Saxon, Fastway and Girlschool Announce Fall Tour

• Singled Out: Suns of Thyme's Intuition Unbound

• Metallica's New Album Will Be Done This Summer

• Video From AC/DC With Axl Rose's Switzerland Show Goes Online

• B.B King's Children In Heated Battle Over His Estate

• Twisted Sister Star Criticizes Classic Bands For Releasing New Music

• Video From Hollywood Vampires' Rock In Rio Lisbon Set Goes Online

• Attack On Teen Goth Deemed A Hate Crime By Police

• The Strokes Preview New EP 'Future Past Present'

• Ozzy Osbourne Helps Hometown Children's Hospital

Other Music News Stories
• Gucci Mane Early Prison Release Reason Revealed

• Twenty One Pilots Performance Cut Short For 'Safety' Reasons

• Sam Hunt Releases 'Single For The Summer' Video

• Fetty Wap Goes Back to High School For 'Wake Up' Video

• Kevin Gates Releases New Mixtape 'Murder for Hire II'

• Zayn Releases Seven 'Like I Would' Remixes

• Ulysses Streaming 'Law And Order' Documentary Online

• Tod Howarth Sets Record Straight On Exit From Frehley's Comet

• Letlive Plan Special Record Release Art Show

• Johnny Depp Ordered To Stay Away From Estranged Wife

• Guns N' Roses' Duff McKagan Was Blown Away By Axl Rose

• T.I. Reacts To Fatal Shooting At His Concert

• Gucci Mane Gets Early Prison Release, Celebrates With New Song

• Calvin Harris Posts First Message Since Serious Car Crash

• Snoop Dogg Returning To Doggystyle With New Album

• Volbeat Take New Direction With 'Seal The Deal' Album

• Skrillex Defends Justin Bieber In 'Sorry' Song Theft Claim

• Korn's Head and Munky Feel Really Connected On New Album

• Phish's Trey Anastasio Open To More Grateful Dead Shows

• Rob Halford To Perform With Babymetal At Awards Show

• Linkin Park Release New Studio Videos

• Justin Bieber Accused Of Song Theft With 'Sorry'

• Bon Jovi Finish Work On New Studio Album

• Meek Mill Reignites Drake Feud With New Remix

• Jake Owen In Emergency Room Following Biking Accident

• John Belushi Documentary In The Works

• Dierks Bentley Received Advice From U2 Frontman Bono

• Paul Simon Streams EDM Inspired New Album 'Stranger to Stranger'

Reviews
• All Recent Reviews and Interviews

• Rock Reads: Trouble Boys: The True Story of the Replacements

• MorleyView Marty Balin (Jefferson Airplane)

• Red Tide Rising - Voices

• Denner Shermann - Satan's Tomb

• The Blues: Blind Lemon Peel Blues All-Stars - Don't Tear My Clothes

• Steve Porcaro - Someday/Somehow

• Kiefer Sutherland Live

• The Allman Brothers Band - Live From A&R Studios, New York, August 26, 1971

• Howardian - A Smurf at Land's End

• Anvil is Anvil

• Album of the Week: Generation X

• Root 66: Darryl Purpose - Still the Birds

• Quick Flicks: The Dollyrots - Family Vacation: Live in Los Angeles

• 5 Star Friday: Searching for Sugar Man

• Rock Reads: Show Posters: The Art and Practice of Making Gig Posters

• Vehemence - Forward Without Motion

• Ben Craven - Last Chance to Hear

• The Rides - Pierced Arrow

• Psychedelic Shack: Black Rainbows- Deadsmoke- Duel- Holy Grove

• Roots of Creation - Livin Free

• On The Record: Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Live - Volume 1

• Classics: Prince's Purple Rain

• The Blues: New Blues Revolution, Golden State - Lone Star Blues Revue, Peter Karp

• Lita Ford - Time Capsule

• The Blues: Jeff Healey - Heal My Soul

• Rock Reads: Little Gray Bastards- The Incessant Alien Presence

• Guns N' Roses Month: Chinese Democracy

• Iron Maiden Live In Chicago

• Grey Heaven Fall - Black Wisdom

• The Blues: Keb' Mo' - Keb' Mo' Live: That Hot Pink Blues Album

• Guns N' Roses Month: Use Your Illusion I and II

• Passport: Lakou Mizik - Wa Di Yo

Contact Us - Privacy - antiMusic Email - Why we are antiMusic

Copyright© 1998 - 2016 Iconoclast Entertainment Group All rights reserved.

Please click here for legal restrictions and terms of use applicable to this site. Use of this site signifies your agreement to the terms of use.