My Favorite Music Documentaries/Concerts

by Mellie511 | created - 22 Dec 2013 | updated - 20 Dec 2016 | Public

Great Performances series on PBS is one of my favorites but not listed...would like to add "Herbie Hancock, Gustavo Dudamel and the LA Phil celebrate Gershvin!!!

add also the New York Phil New Year's Eve concert Live: from Lincoln Center, esp 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013!!!!!!

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1. We Are The World: The Story Behind The Song (1985 TV Movie)

50 min | Documentary, Music

In 1984, British and Irish pop stars united for the cause of Ethiopian famine relief as Band Aid. The following year, the Americans did the same as USA for Africa. This is how it happened.

Director: Tom Trbovich | Stars: Jane Fonda, Dan Aykroyd, Harry Belafonte, Kim Carnes

Votes: 547

2. Riverdance Live from Beijing (2010 Video)

Not Rated | 101 min | Musical

Riverdale made to suit China with singing dancing and music. All Irish with an Asian feel.

Director: John McColgan | Stars: Ralph Cato, Wu Xiao Fang, Brioni Gallagher, Yolanda Gonzales Sobrado

4. Voices That Care (1991 TV Short)

27 min | Documentary, Short, Music

Add a Plot

Directors: David Jackson, James Yukich | Stars: Marcus Allen, Paul Anka, Catherine Bach, Deborah Benson

Votes: 118

5. Paul Simon, Graceland: The African Concert (1988 TV Special)

Not Rated | 90 min | Documentary, Music

A concert given in Zimbabwe, Africa, by singer Paul Simon, featuring such South African musicians as Miriam Makeba and Hugh Masakela.

Director: Michael Lindsay-Hogg | Stars: Paul Simon, Hugh Masekela, Miriam Makeba, Ladysmith Black Mambazo,

Votes: 113

6. Under African Skies (2012)

Not Rated | 108 min | Documentary, Biography, History

82 Metascore

Paul Simon returns to South Africa to explore the journey of his Graceland album, including the political backlash he received for allegedly breaking the UN cultural boycott of South Africa designed to end the Apartheid regime.

Director: Joe Berlinger | Stars: Paul Simon, Maya Angelou, Okeyerama Asante, Harry Belafonte

Votes: 445

7. The 25th Anniversary Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Concert (2009 TV Special)

Not Rated | 255 min | Music

A four-hour music event featuring performances from two concerts held at Madison Square Garden.

Director: Joel Gallen | Stars: Jeff Beck, Crosby Stills & Nash, Aretha Franklin, Metallica

Votes: 314

8. Live From Lincoln Center (1976– )

Music, Musical

Filmed performances from the famous performing arts center in New York City.

Stars: Beverly Sills, Audra McDonald, Louis Perry, Zubin Mehta

Votes: 146

New Year's Eve concerts and jazz performances

9. Marley (2012)

PG-13 | 144 min | Documentary, Biography, Music

82 Metascore

A documentary on the life, music, and legacy of Bob Marley.

Director: Kevin Macdonald | Stars: Bob Marley, Ziggy Marley, Rita Marley, Jimmy Cliff

Votes: 12,647 | Gross: $1.41M

10. George Harrison: Living in the Material World (2011)

Not Rated | 208 min | Documentary, Biography, Music

Filmmaker Martin Scorsese examines the life of musician George Harrison, weaving together interviews, concert footage, home movies and photographs.

Director: Martin Scorsese | Stars: George Harrison, Paul McCartney, John Lennon, Ringo Starr

Votes: 9,770

11. The 3 Tenors in Concert 1994 (1994 TV Special)


Followup Los Angeles concert to Carreras Domingo Pavarotti in Concert (1990). Several songs are sung in English, and celebrity attendees include the (then former) 41st US President and the (then future) 38th governor of the state of California.

Director: William Cosel | Stars: José Carreras, Plácido Domingo, Luciano Pavarotti, Zubin Mehta

Votes: 206

14. Searching for Sugar Man (2012)

PG-13 | 86 min | Documentary, Biography, Music

79 Metascore

Two South Africans set out to discover what happened to their unlikely musical hero, the mysterious 1970s rock n roller, Rodriguez.

Director: Malik Bendjelloul | Stars: Rodriguez, Stephen 'Sugar' Segerman, Dennis Coffey, Mike Theodore

Votes: 59,511 | Gross: $3.97M

17. Great Performances (1971– )
Episode: Tanglewood 75th Anniversary Celebration (2012)


Located in the Berkshire Mountains of western Massachusetts, Tanglewood is one of the world's most beloved music festivals and serves as the summer home for the famed Boston Symphony ... See full synopsis »

Director: William Cosel | Stars: Stefan Asbury, Emanuel Ax, Boston Pops Orchestra, Eudora Brown

Votes: 5

19. Great Performances (1971– )


"You Can't Take It With You" is hailed one of the greatest revivals and filmed plays for PBS television. David Woods brought stunning charm, humor, and time to this Moss Hart masterpiece. ... See full summary »

Stars: Julie Andrews, Walter Cronkite, Plácido Domingo, Renée Fleming

Votes: 509

21. Carmen (1984)

PG | 152 min | Drama, Music, Romance

A film version of the famous Bizet opera, where a soldier (Don Jose) falls in love with a beautiful factory worker (Carmen), but she does not reciprocate his feelings.

Director: Francesco Rosi | Stars: Julia Migenes, Plácido Domingo, Ruggero Raimondi, Faith Esham

Votes: 1,366

22. History of the Eagles (2013– )

Not Rated | 187 min | Documentary

The life and times of the super successful American soft-rock band, Eagles.

Stars: Don Henley, Glenn Frey, Don Felder, Joe Walsh

Votes: 2,296

23. Austin City Limits (1975– )

60 min | Documentary, Music

Established singer-songwriters and acclaimed newcomers perform country, blues, rock, folk, bluegrass, and related styles of music from Studio 6A of public television station KLRU (formerly KLRN) at the University of Texas at Austin.

Stars: Willie Nelson, Lyle Lovett, John Prine, Rosanne Cash

Votes: 209

24. Imagine: John Lennon (1988)

R | 100 min | Documentary, Biography, Music

A biography of the rock music star.

Director: Andrew Solt | Stars: John Lennon, Yoko Ono, Paul McCartney, George Harrison

Votes: 4,260 | Gross: $3.75M

25. Thunder Soul (2010)

PG | 83 min | Documentary, Music

81 Metascore

Alumni from Houston's storied Kashmere High School Stage Band return home after 35 years to play a tribute concert for their beloved band leader who turned the struggling jazz band into a world-class funk powerhouse in the early 1970s.

Director: Mark Landsman | Stars: Craig Baldwin, Craig Green, Conrad O. Johnson Sr., Bruce Middleton

Votes: 453 | Gross: $0.14M

26. Great Performances (1971– )
Episode: Respect Yourself: The Stax Records Story (2007)

155 min | Music

Spectacular rise & disgraced collapse of Memphis' socially-conscious, neighborhood-based Stax Records, which spawned many of the best soul sounds of the 60's and 70's is told mostly by its ... See full summary »

Directors: Robert Gordon, Morgan Neville | Stars: Samuel L. Jackson, Jim Stewart, Estelle Axton, Deanie Parker

Votes: 179

29. Standing in the Shadows of Motown (2002)

PG | 108 min | Documentary, Music

76 Metascore

Documentary about the Funk Brothers, a group of Detroit musicians who backed up dozens of Motown artists.

Director: Paul Justman | Stars: Joe Hunter, Jack Ashford, Uriel Jones, Richard 'Pistol' Allen

Votes: 3,201 | Gross: $1.60M

30. Killing Me Softly: The Roberta Flack Story (2014 TV Movie)

TV-PG | 57 min | Documentary, Music

Documentary about soul vocalist Roberta Flack and her ascent to notoriety, set against the turbulent scenery of America's Civil Rights development. Highlights interviews with Dionne Warwick, Johnny Mathis and Cissy Houston.

Director: Mike Connolly | Stars: Peabo Bryson, Roberta Flack, Lalah Hathaway, Cissy Houston

Votes: 44

31. Finding the Funk (2013)

78 min | Documentary, History, Music

Finding the Funk is a road trip in search of the past, present and future of Funk music. Starting with Funk's roots in Jazz and the James Brown bands of the '60s we travel to the Bay Area ... See full summary »

Director: Nelson George | Stars: Ahmir-Khalib Thompson, James Brown, Bootsy Collins, Sly Stone

Votes: 55

32. Jazz (2001)

114 min | Documentary, History, Music

A survey of the musical form's history and major talents.

Stars: Keith David, Louis Armstrong, Sidney Bechet, Duke Ellington

Votes: 1,726

33. Tina Turner: One Last Time Live in Concert (2000 Video)

Not Rated | 120 min | Documentary, Music, Musical

Compilation of Tina Turner's two final concerts at Wembley Stadium, recorded during her 'Twenty Four Seven' tour, and featuring classic hits, cover versions and new songs.

Director: David Mallet | Stars: Tina Turner, Ivona Brnelic, Clare Louise Turton, Solange Guenier

Votes: 177

34. Tina Turner: Live in Amsterdam (1996 Video)

Not Rated | 113 min | Documentary, Music

Footage of Tina Turner's amazing three-night stint at the Amsterdam Arena in September, 1996, where she performed all her biggest hits in a spectacular visual production.

Director: David Mallet | Stars: Tina Turner, Jack Bruno, Timmy Cappello, Cynthia Davila

Votes: 178

35. The Latin Explosion: A New America (2015 TV Movie)

TV-PG | 65 min | Documentary, Music

Explores the impact of Latino music on United States culture. The documentary traces the roots of Hispanic contributions to American music starting from Pérez Prado, Xavier Cugat, the ... See full summary »

Directors: Jon Alpert, Matthew O'Neill | Stars: John Leguizamo, Marc Anthony, Gloria Estefan, Emilio Estefan Jr.

Votes: 94

36. Latin Music USA (2009– )

TV-PG | Documentary, Music

Latin Music USA highlights the great American music created by Latinos and celebrates the Latin Rhythms at the heart of Jazz, rock, country and rhythm and blues. It's a fresh take on ... See full summary »

Stars: Jimmy Smits, Bob Keane, Linda Ronstadt, Ellis Creez

Votes: 19

37. Rockshow (1980)

G | 102 min | Documentary, Music

In 1975 and 1976 Paul McCartney and Wings undertook the epic Wings over the World tour, the largest scale tour they would ever undertake as a band. From this tour came both the legendary "... See full summary »

Director: Jack Priestley | Stars: Paul McCartney, Linda McCartney, Denny Laine, Jimmy McCulloch

Votes: 378

38. Nat King Cole: Afraid of the Dark (2014)

TV-14 | 94 min | Documentary, Biography, Music

Imagine what it would feel like to be the only black television star in Hollywood at a time when the Ku Klux Klan acted out violently against black people, when America groaned under the ... See full summary »

Director: Jon Brewer | Stars: Nat 'King' Cole, Tony Bennett, Ralph Carmichael, Johnny Mathis

Votes: 446

39. The Ghosts of Christmas Eve (1999 TV Movie)

Unrated | 46 min | Fantasy

TSO's THE GHOST OF CHRISTMAS EVE is a unique fantasy trip through the magic of Christmas. Narrated by award-winning actor Ossie Davis, the production takes us on a journey of a runaway ... See full summary »

Director: Hart Perry | Stars: Michael Crawford, Ossie Davis, Tommy Farese, Charity James

Votes: 309

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