Searching for Sugarman

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yentek
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Searching for Sugarman

Post by yentek » Sun Sep 02, 2012 7:06 am

Every member of this forum must see the documentary movie "Searching for Sugarman". It is a movie about a Detroit singer-songwriter, Sixto Rodriguez, who released two albums, in 1970 and 1971. The albums were total failures in the USA and world-wide, and he drifted into obscurity, but, in the mid- to late 1970s he became a superstar in South Africa among young anti-apartheid white youth. His success in South Africa was not revealed to him until decades later, and the royalties from those sales were misappropriated by his record company. The movie is breathtaking - the music remarkable - and it plays more like a detective mystery than a documentary. I attended the movie with a South African, who had no idea about the content - but she lived there in the 1970s and she remembered every song. Rodriguez sold a few hundred albums in the USA - his sales in South Africa are estimated between 500,000 and one million. Probably the highlights of my life over the past few years have been the LC concerts I've attended - and plan attend later this year. "Searching for Sugarman" is the only musical experience over that period that comes close to matching Leonard's concerts. It is evidently an early favorite for the 2012 documentary Oscar and I cannot recommend it highly enough.
Tripping
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Re: Searching for Sugarman

Post by Tripping » Thu Sep 27, 2012 9:53 am

I saw this movie last night. It was excellent.
Marseilles 2010, Barcelona 2012, London 2013, Amsterdam 2013. Hoping for more ..
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mutti
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Re: Searching for Sugarman

Post by mutti » Thu Sep 27, 2012 10:04 pm

My MD is from South Africa and just told me about this movie and about Sixto Rodriguez. He will be here in Seattle October 12th.
I put the movie on my netflix list and will try to make the concert.
Leslie 8)
1988 Vancouver
2009 Victoria/Seattle/Almost Red Rocks/Las Vegas/San Jose.
2010 Sligo x 2/Victoria/Vancouver/Portland/Las Vegas x 2.
2012 Austin x 2/Seattle/Vancouver/Montreal x 2.
2013 Oakland x 2/New York City x 2/Winnipeg...
yentek
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Re: Searching for Sugarman

Post by yentek » Tue Oct 09, 2012 10:44 pm

Did anyone see Rodriguez profiled on 60 Minutes on Sunday? He now has the #2, 3 and 6 best selling albums on Amazon, doing better than Dylan, Van Morrison, Barbra Streisand and Taylor Swift.
yentek
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Re: Searching for Sugarman

Post by yentek » Tue Feb 26, 2013 11:56 pm

Well Searching for Sugar Man won the Oscar for best documentary on Sunday. Those who have not yet seen it should try to. A remarkable movie.
sue7
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Re: Searching for Sugarman

Post by sue7 » Wed Feb 27, 2013 2:58 am

yentek wrote:Well Searching for Sugar Man won the Oscar for best documentary on Sunday. Those who have not yet seen it should try to. A remarkable movie.
Yes, it's well done and powerful.
But the claims the movie makes for Rodriguez and his relationship to the anti-apartheid struggle in South Africa are overstated at best, and seem to have led to a fairy-tale like story about him in this regard. The article about him on Wikipedia, for instance, claims that his songs were anti-apartheid anthems. I am ready to stand corrected by someone who might have attended anti-apartheid rallies in the 1970s or after where Rodriguez's songs were indeed sung or celebrated: as someone who lived in South Africa at that time this is surprising news to me.
I certainly knew his songs, as did the people around me, but at no time was he an anti-apartheid figure of any kind that I was aware of. I suspect that the community for whom he occupied this position was quite small and did not represent "anti-apartheid white youth" in any significant sense.
The movie would have been stronger if it had stuck with a more realistic version of the story, which seems powerful enough in its own terms. It also did not tell the story of his tours of Australia in the late 1970s and early 1980s... a rather more complex and nuanced picture of Rodriguez's fame/obscurity emerges with this piece of the story.
Sue
zeehaen
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Re: Searching for Sugarman

Post by zeehaen » Tue Mar 19, 2013 3:54 pm

I saw this film recently and just loved how completely humble Sixto Rodriguez actually was. He didn't seem phased by the absent money at all - but that still left me questioning where those fiances went? Apparently he sold around half a million records in South Africa and the money went to a bankrupt record company... so what happens next?

I certainly hope he tours soon, that would be great!
yentek
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Re: Searching for Sugarman

Post by yentek » Tue Mar 19, 2013 4:55 pm

Zeehaen - Rodriguez is currently on a world tour. I believe he is now in New Zealand and Australia, then on to the US and Europe. You can check dates on: www.sugarman.org.

Sue7 - I agree that the role of his music in fermenting the anti-apartheid movement is greatly overstated in the movie, but the music did I think play a significant role in liberating many minds, particularly among Afrikaans-speaking youth. Here is an interesting article:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/barbara-n ... 90787.html
sue7
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Re: Searching for Sugarman

Post by sue7 » Fri Mar 22, 2013 6:42 am

yentek wrote:Sue7 - I agree that the role of his music in fermenting the anti-apartheid movement is greatly overstated in the movie, but the music did I think play a significant role in liberating many minds, particularly among Afrikaans-speaking youth. Here is an interesting article:
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/barbara-n ... 90787.html
Thanks, yentek, an interesting article. I would certainly have been happier if the movie and the subsequent statements of his importance had been as carefully circumscribed as this article was. As an white anti-apartheid English-speaking South African, I can honestly say that although we enjoyed Rodriguez's music I did not know a single person who was or felt liberated in any way by the influence of Rodriguez. He was simply part of a larger musical context of many bands and musicians.
Leonard Cohen, on the other hand, for a 16-year-old in South Africa in 1973 was a different story.... :D
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sturgess66
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Re: Searching for Sugarman

Post by sturgess66 » Sat Apr 06, 2013 11:01 pm

To whom it may concern - :D
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u8hVJEI_PGc

Crucify Your Mind - on Jools Holland
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mr9peut6brI


For those still in town - post Leonard Cohen show(s) -
Sixto Rodriguez is playing NYC - the Beacon on the 7th, and Town Hall on the 10th

Both shows are currently sold out at official ticket site - but tickets might be available somewhere - or might appear even at Ticketmaster links ...

http://www.ticketmaster.com/Rodriguez-t ... st/1300544
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Inna
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Re: Searching for Sugarman

Post by Inna » Sat May 04, 2013 10:15 pm

I saw the documentary yesterday. Fascinating story. I am a fan now. I listened to some short interview where he says he's got new material he's working on. Looking forward to that.
"climb on your tears and be silent, like the rose on its ladder of thorn."
Paris 07/07/09, Tel-Aviv 24/09/09, Salzburg 27/07/10
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