Film ‘Blue Note – A Story of Modern Jazz’

Film by Julian Benedikt

Past Dates

“Ask mountain climbers about peaks, and they start with Everest. Ask jazz fans about record labels, and it's Blue Note. Founded in 1939 by Alfred Lion and Francis Wolff, a pair of Jewish refugees from Nazi Germany, Blue Note set an unmatched standard for consistent quality, innovation, and devotion to jazz.

There's nothing quite like that unmistakable Blue Note sound - crisp, solid, densely propulsive. Lion and Wolff recorded everything from trad and boogie-woogie to avant-garde, but its musical home was hard bop – jazz at its most muscularly swinging. ‘Even in the ballads,’ bassist Ron Carter says in the documentary ‘there was some swing going on.’ (or as Lion and Wolff would say in their accented English, ‘schwing.’) There's also nothing quite like the look of Blue Note albums. Wolff was a gifted photographer, and the pictures he took of Blue Note recording sessions are classics. Art director Reid Miles did things with layout, typeface, and Wolff's photos that were every bit as innovative as the music (…)”
(Mark Feeney / The Boston Globe)

… the most successful movie ever made about jazz, is a testimony to the passion and vision of these two men and certainly swings like the propulsive sounds that made their label so famous.

Written and directed by Julian Benedikt
With Bud Powell, Thelonious Monk, Herbie Hancock, Ron Carter, Freddie Hubbard, Dexter Gordon, Art Blakey, Cassandra Wilson and many others