First-time director and screenwriter Greg “Freddy” Camalier has put together what appears to be an amazing documentary about the FAME and Muscle Shoals Sound Studio in Alabama which was mentioned in Lynyrd Skynyrd’s “Sweet Home Alabama.”
Back in 2008, he was driving from the East Coast with a friend to New Mexico when Camalier saw a road sign for Muscle Shoals. Camalier was a music fan who had heard snippets of information about the place for years, but didn’t know much about it. They decided to spend the night in Muscle Shoals, and he and his friend talked about why they had never seen a film about that small yet crucial slice of rock history.
He then spent the next 4 years of his life putting together this documentary.
Located alongside the Tennessee River, Muscle Shoals, Alabama is the unlikely breeding ground for some of America’s most creative and defiant music. Under the spiritual influence of the “Singing River” as Native Americans called it, the music of Muscle Shoals has helped create some of the most important and resonant songs of all time. At its heart is Rick Hall who founded FAME Studios. Overcoming crushing poverty and staggering tragedies, he brought black and white together in Alabama’s cauldron of racial hostility to create music for the generations. He is responsible for creating the “Muscle Shoals sound” and The Swampers, the house band at FAME that eventually left to start their own successful studio, known as Muscle Shoals Sound. Greg Allman, Bono, Clarence Carter, Mick Jagger, Etta James, Alicia Keys, Keith Richards, Percy Sledge and others bear witness to Muscle Shoals’ magnetism, mystery and why it remains influential today.
“It’s a great American story, musical story, and international story,” Camalier said. “I loved all of the music in this film, but didn’t know its origins.”
The documentary features the likes of Aretha Franklin, Bono, Mick Jagger, Greg Allman, Jimmy Cliff, Alicia Keys, Keith Richards, Percy Sledge, Steve Winwood, and many more.
Muscle Shoals premieres at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival.
Source: Salt Lake Tribune