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Summer of Soul (Or, When the Revolution Could Not Be Televised)

Season 1, Ep. 101

Summer of Soul, the directorial debut from Ahmir "Questlove" Thompson, takes us back to Harlem in 1969 for a series of concerts that included a who's who of brilliant Black artists, from Stevie Wonder to Nina Simone to Sly and the Family Stone to Mahalia Jackson, among many, many more.


Tim, Aaron and Keith had pretty different reactions to the film, which almost never came to be: For more than 50 years, the footage languished, rejected by white executives who didn't think there would be a wide audience for a film about "the Black Woodstock."


We also talk about the unrest in 1969 compared to the racial dynamics in America today, and why the George Floyd murder captured people's attention — at least for a time — when so many others didn't.


Also: Tim wrote this about why Jimi Hendrix couldn't play the Harlem Cultural Festival, and Keith is sick of so many movies taking place in New York and L.A.