The quintessential New Orleans pianist, Allen Toussaint helped define the Crescent City's unique brand of R&B while creating its swampy Funk sound. He began his career in the late 1950s when he sat in for Fats Domino in a recording session; the following decade saw him write and arrange countless hits for other artists. Al Hirt, Herb Alpert, Irma Thomas, Lee Dorsey, the Meters, the Neville Brothers, the Pointers Sisters and Glen Campbell are indebted for his work as a songwriter, arranger and producer. His playing has what he calls "flairs of Fess" -- a reference to Professor Longhair, patron saint of the New Orleans piano faculty. From Boogie-Woogie and jazz to ballads and blues, Toussaint plays them all amidst crafty horn arrangements, laying out the rhythm section with complex dialogues he makes sound easy.
Allen Toussaint Concert Films
Love for Levon: A Benefit To Save The Barn
Runtime: 2 hr 40 minIt only takes about 200 folks to rattle the rafters during one of the Midnight Rambles at Levon Helm's rustic studio in Woodstock, New York. But it took the 20,000-seat Izod Center in East Rutherford, New Jersey, to hold his adoring fans for the LOVE FOR LEVON tribute concert on October 3, 2012. Helm, who died the previous April from throat cancer, organized his first Ramble back in 2004. People flocked to these intimate events Levon hosted, joined by an enviable core of Woodstock-based musicians and special guests. You couldn't beat the intimacy or the vibe. The Izod Center concert served as a fund-raiser and pledge to keep the Rambles alive. Dozens of luminaries from rock, soul, and country-artists as diverse as Roger Waters, Mavis Staples, and My Morning Jacket-gathered to pay their collective respects in an incredible final tribute to Levon Helm. This LOVE FOR LEVON extravaganza features 27 songs capped by a full group finale of The Weight, one of Levon's greatest moments on record. On this magical night, everyone felt the outpouring of love toward Levon. That evening, one at a time, or sometimes in pairs, music royalty took turns in the spotlight, performing songs associated with Levon Helm and the Band. Produced by Blackbird Presents blackbirdpresents.com
Allen Toussaint Top Tracks
Live at Montreux 2006
Runtime: 1 hr 56 minSoul legend Solomon Burke delivers a twenty-song set in Montreux. He delivers renditions of such classics as "Georgia On My Mind," and "I Will Survive,", and he performs a number of medleys that include such recognizable standards as "When the Saints Go Marching In," "Sitting on the Dock of the Bay," and "Tutti Frutti."
Runtime: 1 hr 16 minStill Bill is an intimate portrait of soul legend Bill Withers, best known for his classics "Ain't No Sunshine," "Lean On Me," "Lovely Day," "Grandma's Hands," and "Just the Two of Us." With his soulful delivery and warm, heartfelt sincerity, Withers has written the songs that continue to resonate deeply within the fabric of our times. Filmmakers Damani Baker and Alex Vlack follow Withers and offer a unique and rare look inside the world of this fascinating man. Through concert footage, journeys to his birthplace and interviews with music and sports legends, his family and closest friends, STILL BILL presents the story of an artist who has written some of the most beloved songs of our time and who truly understands the heart and soul of a man.
Gospel According to Al Green
Runtime: 1 hr 36 minGOSPEL ACCORDING TO AL GREEN looks at Green's transition from hugely successful soul singer to gospel artist and fundamentalist preacher. Filmed in concert in Washington, D.C., in rehearsal in his recording studio, in a service at his Memphis church, and in an extended interview, Green reveals himself to be an electrifying performer, whether singing love songs to women or spiritual ones to God.
The Musical Mojo of Dr. John: A Celebration of Mac & His Music
Runtime: 1 hr 41 minOn Saturday, May 3, 2014, esteemed musicians and friends joined together for “The Musical Mojo of Dr. John: A Celebration of Mac & His Music”, a special concert event taping honoring this musical icon in his hometown of New Orleans. Taking place at the historic Saenger Theatre in the French Quarter, the concert paid homage to Dr. John’s illustrious songbook and featured once-in-a-lifetime collaborations from a lineup of prestigious and award-winning artists. Produced by Blackbird Presents blackbirdpresents.com
Mr. Dynamite: The Rise Of James Brown
Runtime: 1 hr 60 minDirected by Oscar and Emmy winner Alex Gibney, and co-produced by Mick Jagger, Mr. Dynamite: The Rise Of James Brown digs into the career of one of music and culture's towering figures, using fresh interviews with band members and contemporaries, extraordinary historical interview footage, and rare archival. Film running time is 120 minutes. Bonus features include an essay by Mick Jagger, 27 minutes of additional interviews, commentary, photo gallery and Soul Train performances.