Carol Kaye and Bill Pittman in the Wrecking Crew era.
Denny Tedesco's documentary on the Hollywood and West Coast session musicians who played on countless hit records in the 1960s and 70s will be released in theaters and on demand on March 13. The film has been inching toward getting finished since at least 1995, when Tedesco began filming interviews with his ill dad, guitarist Tommy Tedesco, and with other musicians from the legendary stable of talent that came to be unofficially dubbed The Wrecking Crew. There was a trailer posted a couple of years ago, and in 2013 Tedesco mounted a Kickstarter campaign to raise $250,000 to finish licensing the music. I guess he cleared that obstacle — as he wrote then, "The story of these musicians cannot be told without the music."
There’s a lot of it and music costs money....I was told from the beginning, “You won’t get the labels and publishers to agree on favorable licensing fees." Well, you know what? I proved everybody wrong. I didn’t give up. The record companies and publishers have been incredibly supportive and have agreed to extremely favorable terms. However, there are over 120 music cues in the film and that adds up to a huge amount of money.
The film includes interviews with, among others, Brian Wilson, Cher, Nancy Sinatra, Herb Alpert, Glen Campbell, Roger McGuinn, Gary Lewis, Dick Clark, Al Jardine, Peter Tork, Micky Dolenz, and Leon Russell. Musicians were featured on six consecutive Grammy winners for Record of the Year in the late 1960s and early 1970s. On the film's website, Tedesco explains how he got the project started.
I brought my father, drummer Hal Blaine, bassist Carol Kaye and saxophonist Plas Johnson together. Earl Palmer was the other great drummer of the time and was supposed to be there but was unfortunately got sick. He was truly missed.
I was inspired to have a round table from the Woody Allen Film, "Broadway Danny Rose". If you remember, a bunch of old agents sit around a coffee shop and they just tell stories about this character, Danny Rose.
Well that's what it was like when you get musicians together. I always loved listening to my father and his friends bullshit about anything and everybody. And at the same time, musicians have a certain dark sense of humor. So I wanted to set this round table up and try not to interview them. I would ask questions but they would take it for ten minutes and go to all kinds of places. It was gold. I wanted to be a voyeur and wanted the audience to feel they were on the inside watching.
Here's a new poster from Magnolia Pictures via Billboard.