On a recent rainy evening in New York City, in a private viewing theatre in the SONY building in Manhattan The FADER & Sony Classic Pictures held a pre-screening for the upcoming film, Searching For Sugar Man. PLAYGROUND DETROIT had a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to meet and hear veteran musician Rodriguez speak with the Director, Malik Bendjelloul.
The film tells the awe-inspiring story of the Detroit-based artist and the epic search for this man who changed the lives of another country– without even knowing it. Already drawing serious attention from Sundance Film Festival, TriBeCa Film Festival, Los Angeles Film Festival, and SXSW Film Festival, the films official public release date is not until August 27th, 2012, showing in NYC and LA. Rodriguez will be making a special guest appearance on David Letterman on August 14th.
According to the Official Searching For Sugar Man Press Release,
Rodriguez was the greatest ‘70s US rock icon who never was. Momentarily hailed as the finest recording artist of his generation, he disappeared into oblivion – rising again like Lazarus in a completely different context a continent away. Unbeknownst to Rodriguez, he enjoyed a parallel life, full of acclaim and success, a world away. SEARCHING FOR SUGAR MAN is a film about hope, inspiration and the resonating power of music.”
CAN’T WAIT FOR THE FILM? WATCH THE TRAILER:
Rodriguez on living in Detroit from the Q&A after the film screening:
“I’m from Detroit, born and bred. You gotta be from somewhere, it’s quite a cool hometown…
I used to say I love Detroit
Then I said I liked Detroit
Now I say I understand Detroit”
Here is Pitchfork‘s reponse to the story and film:
“How did this (success in South Africa) happen? Well, the reasons are all audible on the record – for one, there’s the … uniqueness of its sound. The album is a patchwork of folk, psychedelic rock and pop production, built around a workman-like voice and simple melodies … The more direct reason his music spread so widely in South Africa, though, was the lyrics which played as unbelievably subversive to young (predominantly white) South Africans living under a cultural system that was so repressed it considered the entire medium of television to be too corrupting to be allowed in the country. In a police state like that, songs with lines like, “I wonder how many times you’ve had sex/And I wonder do you know who’ll be next” – never mind the drug-dealing references and anti-establishment messages — had automatic currency, the kind that cause listeners to circulate it amongst their friends … Listening to this excellently remastered reissue of Cold Fact, it’s not difficult to hear why so many South Africans placed it on the shelf next to Black Sabbath and The Beatles and figured that’s what the rest of the world was doing too. It is one of those rare lost albums that turns out to be a genuine classic.”
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