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'Charles Bradley: Soul of America'

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Reviewed by Amy Smith, Fri., March 16, 2012

SXSW Film

Charles Bradley: Soul of America

24 Beats Per Second
D: Poull Brien

Charles Bradley knows a thing or two about hard knocks. He's spent most of his life on and off the streets while struggling to launch his music career. With his talent and a little luck, he finally realizes his dream at age 62 with the 2011 release of his first album, No Time for Dreaming. In this moving documentary, Poull Brien chronicles the months leading up to the album's release, deftly capturing Bradley's pureness in the kindest, most honorable light. Not only is the film – Brien's directorial first – a visual and audio joy; it also shines a light on the tortuous journey of an artist trying to see his way out of poverty. We're rooting for Bradley throughout, and we know how the story ends – with Bradley landing a deal with Daptone Records – but we're nonetheless left with damp eyes and a renewed appreciation for those trying to make it in the music industry.


Saturday, March 17, 7pm, Alamo Lamar

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