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A hybrid music documentary/concert film featuring Sharon Jones, Charles Bradley and the rest of the Daptone Records family.
A hybrid music documentary/concert film featuring Sharon Jones, Charles Bradley and the rest of the Daptone Records family.
438 backers pledged $42,642 to help bring this project to life.

About this project

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PRODUCTION OF LIVING ON SOUL IS WRAPPED. PLEASE HELP US USHER THE FILM THROUGH POST-PRODUCTION AND FINISH IT SO WE CAN DELIVER IT TO THE WORLD!

In Summer 2014, Daptone Records invited me and my producing partner, Cory Bailey, to come on the road with them as they toured the Daptone Super Soul Revue across Europe. For 10 days, we traveled with more than 40 musicians, slept on Charles Bradley's tour bus, filmed a bunch of Soul Revues and shot hours of intimate behind-the-scenes footage of the Daptone Family.

One memorable afternoon along that journey, at Glastonbury, Daptone Records Co-Founder Neal Sugarman got word that the legendary Apollo Theater in Harlem wanted to host the Revue for a three-night residency that December. We immediately knew we had a movie-in-the-making on our hands - an opportunity to make a special, different type of contemporary music film. Production on Living On Soul had officially begun.

Photos Courtesy of Isaac Sterling
Photos Courtesy of Isaac Sterling

Excited by the opportunity, we also knew that in making this film we had to do something very different. That's because a biographical Charles Bradley film was released in 2012. And because a fantastic documentary exploring Sharon Jones' battle with cancer is currently touring the film festival circuit. Plus I had just come off directing a different Kickstarter-funded record label documentary called Our Vinyl Weighs A Ton. Yet despite these creative hurdles, we believed we had the chance to capture something altogether different: a moment in time shared by a group of brilliant musicians - the entire Daptone Records family.

So we got some money together, crewed up in NYC and set out to make a film in the tradition of The Last Waltz, Monterey Pop, and Soul Power. A hybrid music documentary/concert film that would unearth the anecdotal history of Daptone Records and its artists through vérité-style scenes and live performances from the most iconic soul music stage in the world: the Apollo Theater.

We shot all three sold-out shows on six 4K cameras equipped with the best vintage lenses we could source in NYC. Before, during and after the performances, we also captured the electric atmosphere that was present throughout the Apollo and shared among the artists during those days and nights. The residency was a true celebration and manifestation of the long and arduous road Daptone's artists have traveled together; and the footage conveys that. But we knew we had to go further.

After another small round of private fundraising, we were able to return to NYC in Summer 2015. During this leg of production, we filmed a number of scene-based conversations and interviews to complement and contextualize all of the rich material we shot at the Apollo. And after ten more intensive days of shooting, we were ready to begin the edit.

Since then, Cory and I have been hard at work cutting Living On Soul. The film is coming together beautifully, and we know that with a bit more TLC, it will become the film we'd always hoped to make. That's where you come in. We've put all the money we've raised "on screen" and are hoping your generous donations can help pay for a few major parts of the process we've got left ahead of us in post-production.

The first thing we're looking to do is bring on an outside consulting editor. At this juncture, a fresh pair of eyes and talented hands is exactly what we need to get the film to the next level. Once we picture lock the film, we then have to mix and master it in 5.1 and Stereo for theatrical and home entertainment experiences, respectively. This component of the post-production process is obviously of paramount importance, and as a result is costly to do right.

Simultaneously, a colorist will online edit and color correct the film to ensure it looks its best for exhibition, and a VFX artist will create effects and titles. These creative touches and augmentations in post-production will make for a truly unique cinematic experience - one that takes the audience from their seats right into the room when and where we filmed. It's that intangible, transcendent quality these performances and moments possessed that post-production will heighten and translate to the big screen.

The last step towards our commercial release, then, is clearing all the music used in the film. We are working closely with Daptone Records and their artists' publishing companies to do this, but the fact remains that, justly, a substantial tab will need to be paid.

To help us cover these costs and more that inevitably arise when finishing a film, we're asking you to generously donate to our campaign, and help bring Living On Soul to movie theaters, televisions and digital devices around the world. We truly believe this film has the potential to connect with people everywhere, and we just want to see it get that opportunity.

Risks and challenges

Kickstarter is the most important crowdfunding platform for creative endeavors of all types in the world. For a Kickstarter project to be successful, though, it must be fully funded before the end of the campaign.

So please share this on your social media networks if you feel so inclined, because greater visibility only increases our chances of this campaign being a success.

THANK YOU FOR YOUR CONSIDERATION AND SUPPORT!

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    Digital Download of the Daptone Super Soul Revue Live from the Apollo LP (upon its release)

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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    Digital Download of LIVING ON SOUL (upon its completion)
    + ABOVE

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    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    A Copy of the 2-Disc Blu-ray (Film & the Live CD)
    + WAV Download of a Daptone Album of Your Choice
    + ABOVE

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    Pledge $75 or more About $75

    Limited Edition LIVING ON SOUL Film Poster
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    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    LIVING ON SOUL T-Shirt
    + Daptone Super Soul Revue Live from the Apollo LP (upon its release)
    + ABOVE

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    Pledge $250 or more About $250

    Autographed Daptone Super Soul Revue Live from the Apollo LP (upon its release)
    + Limited Edition Daptone Family Slipmat
    + Daptone House of Soul Tote Bag
    + ABOVE

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    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    Special Thanks in the End Credits
    + Two Tickets to a Non-Premiere Screening of LIVING ON SOUL (location TBD; airfare and/or travel expenses excluded)
    + Choice of 45s Box Set: SJDK "I Learned the Hard Way" OR Saun & Starr "Look Closer"
    + A Limited Edition 24x24 Medium Format Photo Print by Production Photographer Isaac Sterling (whose work appears throughout the campaign page)
    + ABOVE

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    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    Two Tickets to the World Premiere & After-Party of LIVING ON SOUL in NYC (airfare and/or travel expenses excluded)
    + Your Choice of One of the Following Autographed LPs: SJDK "Give the People What They Want" / Budos Band "Burnt Offering" OR an Autographed Saun & Starr "Look Closer" 45s Box Set
    + Charles Bradley Slipmat
    + ABOVE

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    Pledge $2,500 or more About $2,500

    Associate Producer Credit (in the film and on IMDb)
    + Two Backstage Passes to a Daptone Concert (airfare and/or travel expenses excluded)
    + ABOVE

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    Pledge $4,000 or more About $4,000

    Executive Producer Credit (in the film and on IMDb)
    + Lunch and a Tour of the House of Soul Studios in Bushwick, Brooklyn
    + Your Choice of One of the Following Daptone Rarities: Budos Band "Burnt Offering" Autographed Test Pressing, Green-Colored Antibalas LP, Menahan Street Band Instrumentals from Charles Bradley "Changes" Test Pressing OR Charles Bradley "Changes" Autographed Test Pressing
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Funding period

- (31 days)