This rich portrait tells the story of Reverend Gary Davis, the great blues, ragtime and gospel musician. Tracing his journey from the tobacco warehouses of the rural South to the streets of Harlem, the film is a loving biography of an artist whose unique style and remarkable skills on the guitar made him an icon in 1960s New York and inspired a generation of musicians. Harlem Street Singer celebrates the beauty and spirituality of his music as well as the human qualities that made Reverend Davis a much beloved teacher and minister. Featuring performances and interviews with musicians he influenced and taught, including Bob Weir of the Grateful Dead, Jorma Kaukonen of Jefferson Airplane, David Bromberg, Stefan Grossman, John Cohen, Happy Traum, Woody Mann, John Hammond, Roy Book Binder and Peter Yarrow of Peter, Paul and Mary. This is the story of an American master whose legacy continues to live on in today’s music scene. This DVD contains over 2½ hours of previously unreleased material, including rare footage of the Reverend in concert in Montreal, as well as performances by John Cephas, David Bromberg, Jorma Kaukonen, Roy Book Binder, John Dee Holeman, and the Empire Roots Band featuring Bill Sims, Jr., Dave Keyes, Woody Mann and Brian Glassman. Additional interviews include many of the film’s main characters, plus outtakes from interviews with Peter Rowan, Ernie Hawkins, Tokio Uchida and Wavy Gravy. Audio recordings of Woody Mann’s guitar lessons and jams with the Reverend are also included.
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