Located on the banks of the Tennessee River, Muscle Shoals, Alabama is the unlikely breeding ground for some of the most creative and defiant music in American history.
Under the spiritual influence of the "Singing River" as Native Americans called it, the music of Muscle Shoals is some of the most important and resonant of all time. "I’ll Take You There", "Brown Sugar", "When a Man Loves a Woman", "I Never Loved A Man the Way That I Loved You", "Mustang Sally”, "Tell Mama", "Kodachrome", and "Freebird" are just a few of the tens of thousands of tracks created there.
At its heart is Rick Hall who founded FAME Studios. Overcoming crushing poverty and staggering tragedies, he brought black and white musicians together to create music that would last for generations while also giving birth to the unique ‘Muscle Shoals sound’ and the rhythm section ‘The Swampers’.
In this movie legendary artists including Aretha Franklin, Greg Allman, Bono, Clarence Carter, Jimmy Cliff, Mick Jagger, Etta James, Alicia Keys, Wilson Pickett, Keith Richards, Percy Sledge, Steve Winwood and others bear witness to the magnetism and mystery of Muscle Shoals and why it remains a global influence today.
"...Mick, Keith, Bono and Aretha are on a roll, man."
- Toronto Star
"If it’s possibly to make a hagiography about a place, Camalier has done it."
"... Muscle Shoals makes a beautiful symbol of the fading American Dream."
"Like the music that came out of Muscle Shoals, Alabama, this doc’s got plenty of soul."
- NOW Magazine
"... a compelling, heartfelt film ..."
- Metro Toronto
CBC As It Happens (Interview with Rick James)
"The recent détente between the recording pioneer and his original band, and how it was brokered, remains as mysterious as the genesis of the Muscle Shoals sound. But we’ll always have the music."
- National Post
"... [Muscle Shoals] deserves a spot ... in the canon of great films about American music of the ’60s and ’70s."
- The Grid
"... Muscle Shoals is essential viewing for music buffs."
"...[Muscle Shoals] will very definitely leave you wanting more."
- Digital Journal
"Muscle Shoals is a joy and has a lot to give. You’ll be mesmerized with how everything has been pieced together by the “magic” Muscle Shoals inhabits right on through to the closing number performed by the talented Alicia Keys. If you’re a fan of music or have ever listened to music, Muscle Shoals is a must-watch."
- Wylie Writes
"...Camalier’s documentary is a vivid, important, and long overdue contribution to the story of American popular music."
- Quip Mag
"It’s a delight for music buffs and casual fans alike."
"...Muscle Shoals belongs in the canon of some of the best music documentaries of all time..."