The best music-related films and TV shows to watch on Netflix UK

Whether you are in the mood for a  pop culture romp, a biography of an icon or an in-depth exam of a particular genre, Netflix has built up slightly a repertoire when it comes to tune TV shows and films.

Having already solid an eye fixed over the best music-related films to be had to movement on Amazon Prime UK, our consideration now turns to its competitor. Netflix has produced a volley of its personal original song TV shows and documentaries (some of which might be integrated in this record), as well as harvesting some absolute treats from somewhere else.

More than there being one thing on this record for everybody, we expect every track fan will find something in every of these picks regardless of their tastes.

Inventing David Geffen

Whether you believe media magnate David Geffen a rags to riches sensation worthy of admiration for his unmitigated good fortune in the worlds of song and film or a ruthless businessman cashing in on the skill of others, the tale of his lifestyles, as he puts it forth, is a fascinating pop culture experience each bit as entertaining as the acts he represented.

This documentary features Geffen himself recalling his impoverished adolescence in Brooklyn prior to making his approach to LA and stealthily working his manner up from mailroom boy at the William Morris Agency (a task he obtained through falsifying educational credentials) to skill agent after noticing that "they earn the most while knowing the least".

After going solo, Geffen controlled acts together with Laura Nyro and Crosby, Stills and Nash. By the time he was 30, he had based Asylum Records signing artists comparable to The Eagles, Bob Dylan, Tom Waits and Joni Mitchell. Mitchell's recollection of writing Free Man in Paris about Geffen and his endured bashfulness about the song provides a brief glimpse at the back of his sparsely built facade.

With a lifestyles and occupation that encompasses his eponymous label, home to a diverse roster with the likes of Nirvana, Elton John, Guns N' Roses, Peter Gabriel and Olivia Newton-John; founding Dreamworks film studios; and just about marrying Cher, there is not any shortage of glittering speaking heads who gush over – and every so often critique – Geffen. The outcome, fact or fiction, is a fascinating deal with for track enthusiasts.

 Tick, Tick... Boom! 

A musical about the strategy of writing a musical: if the thought of Broadway legends abruptly breaking right into a tune about the futility of eating Sunday brunch in a New York diner fills you with dread, then you may think that Tick, Tick... Boom! is not for you. 

But although Lin-Manuel Miranda's film about composer Jonathan Larson (performed through an inconceivably proficient Andrew Garfield) sooner than he achieved the mega success of Rent may appear all showbiz jazz palms and heavy vibrato, it is in truth an engaging reflection of a musician desperately in search of inspiration while suffering against the brutality of failure and the ingenious slog.

The narrative best examines Larson's life as he works on Superbia – a failed futuristic rock opera reimagining of George Orwell's 1984. It's interspersed with songs, each staged and interpolated, from what would be his next challenge, a one-man show referred to as Tick, Tick… Boom! about the existential dread he felt about turning 30 with out attaining success in his box, opening with the lament that he would quickly be "older than Stephen Sondheim when he had his first Broadway show, older than Paul McCartney when he wrote his last song with John Lennon".

Larson did, of course, go on to be extremely a hit, however he sadly didn't are living to see his work turn out to be celebrated, dying of a heart disorder at the age of 35 on the day of the first preview of Rent, for which he posthumously gained the Tony Awards for best musical, best book and best rating, as well as a Pulitzer.

Clive Davis: The Soundtrack of Our Lives

Netflix just loves a documentary about media impresarios, and this two-hour function on Clive Davis is ripe with nine decades-worth of history-making anecdotes that make Forest Gump look like an underachiever.

Growing up in a middle-class Jewish circle of relatives in Thirties Brooklyn, Davis was once still in his teens when his oldsters gave up the ghost in quick succession, an tournament that each devastated him and drove his unrelenting paintings ethic, to begin with as an leisure lawyer and later as president of CBS Records.

Despite now not having a musical background, Davis came upon that he had 'golden ears', a gift that, according to showbiz lore, led to him signing the likes of Janis Joplin, Gil Scott-Heron, Whitney Houston and Patti Smith. Davis' ears not only helped him uncover artists but in addition influenced his shrewd control, allegedly pushing Bruce Springsteen to write Blinded by the Light through time and again rejecting his first album until he came up with successful, and forcing Simon and Garfunkel to release Bridge Over Troubled Water as the lead unmarried for his or her ultimate album. And then there used to be his knack for relaunching stars equivalent to Dionne Warwick and Aretha Franklin, who had unbelievably fallen out of favour with the record-buying public.

Don't expect any giant non-public revelations – there's the atypical juicy tidbit similar to Davis claiming to decline Joplin's advances, and quite a lot of scandals involving payola and bitter corporate betrayal – but it is the exam of his dating with Houston, from first finding her and guiding her career (apparently insisting that the intro to I Will Always Love You stay a cappella) to his feelings of ineptitude as he witnessed her decline, this is most telling.

Echo in the Canyon

This relatively patchy documentary can pay homage to the folk-rock scene that grew out of Laurel Canyon in the mid-60s. It follows Jakob Dillon (Bob’s son) as he gathers some musician buddies – Fiona Apple, Nora Jones, Beck and Regina Spektor – in combination for what is largely a tribute show to the bands that defined the generation, together with The Byrds, The Beach Boys, the Mamas and the Papas and Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young. 

Be warned: the movie’s pacing is asymmetric, frequently self indulgently luxuriating over live footage of Dillon’s covers that are possibly a at hand software to steer clear of paying for track rights. And there are pretty conspicuous gaps in the narrative too. There are no mentions of Joni Mitchel, Jim Morisson, Love, The Eagles or James Taylor, despite the fact that Ringo Starr and his sports activities automotive seem to get numerous screen time. There’s also no allusion to the Manson extended family and the notorious murders dedicated at Cielo Drive that undeniably impacted the spirit of freedom and openness that had permeated the Canyon song group.

But in spite of these hefty caveats, Echo in the Canyon’s focus on the songs themselves is gently rewarding, as are many of the interviews with Crosby and Stills as well as Michelle Phillips of the Mamas and the Papas, who gamely divulges on her musical ménage à trois with fellow band members, unapologetically grinning, “I used to be an excessively busy girl”.

ReMastered: Massacre at the Stadium

Massacre at the Stadium is an excessively different kind of tune documentary about the life of Victor Jara, a Chilean folks singer, songwriter and poet in the Sixties. His outspoken criticism of General Pinochet, who become the country's dictator by means of an American-backed coup ousting the democratically elected socialist president in 1973, ended in his torture and homicide via loyalist squaddies. A crime that went unexamined and unpunished for over Forty years.

Despite its graphic sounding identify, the filmmakers chorus from getting too detailed on the violence that Jara continued, instead choosing to focus on his existence, track and influence as well as the unrelenting activism fastened by means of his wife Joan Jara in the face of repression and bureaucratic indifference. His songs, either one of protest and daily existence, take entrance and centre, with artists together with Bono and Bruce Springsteen paying tribute to his talent and bravery.

The Defiant Ones

A four-part sequence that firstly aired on HBO, The Defiant Ones charts the partnership between Interscope Records co-founder Jimmy Iovine and rapper and checklist manufacturer Dr. Dre.

As a lot as being a track documentary, it is a tale of entrepreneurship and how an artform helped construct an empire for two pioneering individuals.

The Get Down

Baz Luhrmann and Stephen Adly Guirgis's 11-episode drama, cut with real photos from 1970s New York, is one of those fictionalised retelling of the beginnings of hip-hop.

Executive produced by way of Grandmaster Flash and narrated by Nas, you tend to really feel if those guys don't get it right then there is little hope it is going to ever be completed.

Song Exploder

This one began existence as a podcast earlier than being picked up through Netflix. The thought is that artists pick aside their very own tracks, discussing the inspiration and the way it was written and recorded; it's the more or less granular insight you just do not get in a typical documentary or biopic.

Now in its second collection on Netflix, Song Exploder has featured artists as diverse as R.E.M., Dua Lipa, Alicia Keys, Nine Inch Nails and Lin-Manuel Miranda up to now. Long might it proceed.

What Happened, Miss Simone?

Opening the 2015 Sundance Film Festival, What Happened, Miss Simone? documents the remarkable skill and uncontrollable character of Nina Simone.

Released later the identical yr by means of Netflix, the film (and Liz Garbus's light touch), won the Primetime Emmy for Outstanding Directing.

Sample This

"When Kool Herc found Apache, he was under heavy guard," Grandmaster Flash told What Hi-Fi?. "You would never see the album cover of where it came from."

Described in the film as the most important list in hip-hop, Incredible Bongo Band's Apache has since been sampled masses of occasions by way of the style's maximum seminal artists. Sample This is both its tale and a party of the culture it unwittingly helped to create.


Quincy Jones is the matter of this two-hour documentary created by means of Netflix, celebrating his strange lifestyles as trumpeter, producer, conductor, composer and arranger as well as discoverer of a few of the ultimate century's largest artists.

It might not tread much new floor for the ones already well-read on the US icon – you check out masking greater than Eighty years in a hundred and twenty mins – however it is an undeniably entertaining watch to which you can incessantly to find your self singing along.

Rolling Thunder Revue: A Bob Dylan Story by way of Martin Scorsese

Though the identify of this 2019 Netflix unlock appears to give all of it away, its combination of documentary and fiction is a refreshing take on a track legend who has been the topic of a super selection of films already.

Covering Bob Dylan's 1975 Rolling Thunder Revue excursion, Martin Scorsese's take mixes real interviews with figures similar to Joan Baez, Allen Ginsberg and Dylan himself, with the ones of actors portraying characters who were not in truth all for the tour.


Whether you like them, detest them or remain completely ambivalent, it is tricky to deny Oasis's early upward thrust used to be somewhat impressive. Supersonic avoids later spats, headline-hungry barbs and less than cutting-edge artistry to focal point on how the band became the greatest in the UK in only some years.

If nothing else this can be a movie harking again to a most likely more hopeful time, when what we are experiencing now would seem too ridiculous even for a disaster film.

Miss Americana

Using archive pictures from Whitney Houston's 1999 World Tour blended with testimonies from the singer's family, buddies and musical collaborators, Nick Broomfield's documentary objectives deep at the troubled yet celebrated life of its subject.

Though touching upon her beginnings as a gospel singer, in addition to leap forward hits and her function in The Bodyguard, this is extra a personality piece than chronicling of a career.

Miles Davis: Birth of the Cool

If you suppose two hours is too quick a time to quilt the atypical lifestyles and genius of Miles Davis in anything else approaching enough detail, you would be absolutely right.

Birth of the Cool is not at all an 'everything you want to know' documentary, however as an summary of considered one of the largest musicians of the twentieth century it does no less than inspire further listening and additional studying. We'd recommend watching this and then shopping Davis's autobiography Miles.

I Called Him Morgan

Kasper Collin's documentary is a love letter to the stormy courting between jazz trumpeter Lee Morgan and his spouse Helen, who used to be chargeable for his murder in 1972.

It's a documentary that has it all, with the exception of for the long checklist of awards it really merits.

What We Started

It's going down with dance music just as it's with hip-hop – a kind of gateway into adulthood and acceptance as a major style, rubber-stamped 'critical documentary storytelling'.

With focus on and interviews with stars from the genre's past, present and long run, What We Started does as properly to juxtapose their more than a few paths over the years as it does charting the style's rise.

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