In tandem with the approaching celebration of Black History Month, comes word about the premiere of A&E’s latest documentary: James Brown: Say It Loud. Described by A&E as a “definitive look at a complicated life and a reflection on the immense impact Brown continues to have on music and culture today,” the four-part documentary series will debut during a two-night event set for Feb. 19-20. And on Friday (Jan. 29), Billboard presents the exclusive premiere of the James Brown: Say It Loud trailer above.
“He [James] was a brilliant performer who inspired me from the beginning and was deeply committed to the civil rights movement. I’ve always admired James and learned so much from him,” states rock icon Mick Jagger in a press release. He also served as one of the documentary’s executive producers, and reflects on the musician’s impact in the trailer.
James Brown: Say It Loud is directed by Deborah Riley Draper. In addition to Jagger, the project was executive produced by Academy Award winner Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson and Tariq “Black Thought” Trotter. Featuring never-before seen archival interviews and performances, the documentary chronicles Brown’s hard-fought journey from seventh-grade dropout to being crowned the “hardest working man in show business.”
In addition to Jagger, the artists, protégés, family and friends sharing their insights include Questlove, Bootsy Collins, LL Cool J, Chuck D, Dallas Austin, Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis, Rev. Al Sharpton and Brown’s children Deanna, Yamma and Larry.
“The life of James Brown is significant not only to understand his immense musical impact, which inspires us and other artists to this day, but also for the deep and lasting impression he has had on American culture,” note Questlove and Black Thought in a joint statement. “Brown’s life is a crucial and timely story of struggle, redemption, and self-identity and we are honored to have the chance to share it.”
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