Mediagraphy - Discography - Trackography - Videography - Gigography - Biography - Chronology

03 April 2010

Ray Charles In Listen Up: The Lives Of Quincy Jones (1990)

Promotional CD, liner notes.

Vinyl release.
The exact release history is totally unclear to me, but this maxi single was part of a multimedia package with the documentary and "book with music" Listen Up - The Lives Of Quincy Jones, "a Warner Bros. motion picture", available with cassette or CD. It obviously was also released on vinyl. The maxi single contains 7 remixes of Quincy's composition Listen Up.

Produced and Arranged by: Arthur Baker and Arif Mardin. Executive Producer: Courtney Sale Ross. Published by: Shakin' Baker Music/Deniz Music BMI/Black Chick. Recording and Original Mix Engineer: Louis Scalise. Keyboards Programming: Eric Kupper and Mac Quayle. Features: Tevin Campbell, Siedah Garrett, Karyn White, Ice T, Al B. Sure!, The Winans, James Ingram, El DeBarge, Big Daddy Kane, Melle Mel, Ray Charles.

?Vinyl? single: Warner Bros/Quest Records, 7 September 1990, ASIN B00000DDR5.
CD single: Warner Bros, 14 September 1990, ASIN: B000008HS0.
Warner Home Video VHS: Warner Bros, 28 October 1992, ASIN: 6302066905.

Raw Dance Mix:

The surprising - impressionistic - documentary was written and directed by Ellen Weisbrod. The video and sound editing turned it into a masterpiece. The film was produced in 1990 and released on August 2nd, 1991. In a splendid découpage of music and interview fragments it presented a kaleidoscopic story of Q's life and career, and a who-is-who of all the stars that populate(d) Q's universe.

The excellent documentary Listen Up: The Lives Of Quincy Jones is also known as Back On The Block With Quincy Jones and Places You Find Love. It offers a kaleidoscopic, associative picture and a marvelously mixed soundscore of Jones' life, with on camera interview soudbites, musical themes and archive footage.

On camera: interviews/performance footage/film clips: Quincy Jones, George Benson, Ray Charles, Miles Davis, Billy Eckstine, Ella Fitzgerald, Dizzy Gillespie, Lionel Hampton, Herbie Hancock, Michel Legrand, Harry Lokofsky, Bobby McFerrin, Chan Parker, Frank Sinatra, Clark Terry, Sarah Vaughan. Ray contributes with:
  • I'll Be Good To You (with Quincy Jones and Chaka Khan)
  • Let The Good Times Roll
  • In The Heat Of The Night
  • Listen Up (with Tevin Campbell, Siedah Garrett, Karyn White, Al B. Sure!, The Winans, James Ingram, El DeBarge, Big Daddy Kane, Ice-T, Melle Mel). For the maxi single release of these songs also read this
From Amazon:
"If casual music fans know the name of the man who is the subject of Listen Up: The Lives of Quincy Jones, more than likely it's as the producer of Off the Wall and Thriller, the two albums that launched Michael Jackson into the pop stratosphere, or perhaps as the musical mastermind behind We Are the World. Yet while those may be Jones's biggest successes, they certainly aren't the only ones; indeed, some might argue that they are not even the most representative entries on the resumé of the composer-arranger-producer who has made a career of defying all attempts to categorize and define him. A partial list of the folks who appear in director Ellen Weissbrod's 1990 documentary provides some idea of Jones's stature: Ella Fitzgerald, Ray Charles, Dizzy Gillespie, Miles Davis, Frank Sinatra, Steven Spielberg, Oprah Winfrey, and Barbra Streisand, to name just the biggest of the big. Some of them were involved in the making of Back on the Block, the album Jones was working on at the time and a kind of career summation that included elements of jazz, pop, hip-hop, R&B, and other styles. That recording provides the overall context here, but there's a great deal more, as Jones leads us through his hardscrabble Chicago childhood (his mother had gone to a mental hospital when he was 6 or 7; as a result, "the word 'mother' doesn't have much meaning for me"), the family's move to Seattle, his days as a trumpeter with Lionel Hampton and later as leader of his own big band, his move into production (among his earliest successes, amazingly, was Lesley Gore's It's My Party) and film composing (In the Heat of the Night, The Color Purple, Roots, and many more), his three failed marriages, the effects of race on his life and work, and serious health issues such as the near-fatal cerebral aneurysm he suffered in 1974. Weissbrod takes a creative approach to all of this, eschewing voice-over narration in favor of a more freeform collection of spoken words and images, often commingling and overlapping older footage with moodily lit current interview segments and scenes of "Q" at work in the studio."
Director: Ellen Weissbrod.
VHS: Warner Home Video, 1990, ASIN: B002I2UIYG.
DVD: Warner Bros, 27 January 2009, ASIN: B001JNNE6O.

Trailer (quite a good one, with 2 fragments featuring Ray) here:

Another trailer-like edit (don't miss RC & Q sharing a good laugh!):
The complete film:

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