Housed in Manhattan’s historic Brill building, Colony Records was founded in 1948 by Nappy Grossbardt and Sidney Turk. Remaining a family-owned business, Colony has been a mecca for everyone from Benny Goodman to Chet Baker to Elvis Presley to Mick Jagger to Elton John to Michael Jackson.
Replete with star-studded memories and old-school retail philosophies, a veteran staff of hardcore music aficionados have created a unique environment where regardless how obscure the song, or if all you know is one lyric, you will exclaim ‘I found it at the Colony!’
While the Times Square neighborhood surrounding the store has transformed from Tin Pan Alley, to Red Light District, to corporate mega-playground, and music fans have gone from buying vinyl albums to cassette tapes, to CDs, to mp3s, the Colony stands stalwart.
Colony Records is a landmark of New York’s cultural history and one of the last remaining independent music stores in the country. Amidst the changing landscapes of Times Square and the music business, against a brutal economy, Colony battles to survive.
Manhattan Lullaby is as a feature documentary following Colony’s current life and chronicling the history that has led to this point. Using interviews, verite, archival material, and music the film will trace the evolution of Colony Records, incorporating relevant elements of the histories of Times Square and the music business.
Over the past 2 years we have been able to shoot approximately one third of the film, making the most of limited resources. Your contribution will help enable us to shoot some much needed verite of the store as well as interviews with celebrity fans, former employees, and long-time customers. These next few months of production are crucial to get the film to the next stage of presenting to grantmakers and broadcasters. Every donation helps, no matter how small, and your help is exponentially more valuable the more you spread the word.
The Manhattan Lullaby creative team includes:
Director/Producer - Sara Alize Cross (Producer The Order of Myths, AP Murderball)
Editor - Alison Shurman (Run For Your Life)
Cinematographer - Hillary Spera (Darkon, camera operator The Lie, The Freebie)
Co-Producer - Jennifer Filippazzo (Field Prod The Oath, AP American Radical: The Trials of Norman Finkelstein)
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