As an admirer and novice aficionado of legendary Jazz music, I found the sizzling story of legendary great jazz saxophonist, Frank Morgan, both intriguing, suspenseful, and of obvious interest. It was the obscured, interwoven, and yet, often tragic story of this remarkable artist, and all that he accomplished, despite spending 30 years of his life in San Quentin prison.
This film is the sort of docudrama, all too rare these days, chronicling the life of Frank Morgan, whose sounds are comparable to Charlie Bird Parker and Duke Ellington. Directed by N.C. Heikin, who worked with producer James Egan and writer Michael Connelly, this film was so apropos to screen here at the Los Angeles Film Festival, because of Morgan's strong ties to this city. The illustrious jazz clubs that once lined Central Ave. in LA, lended to the city's rich 'blues-centric' history, and this story truly opened my eyes and ears to a fascinating piece of music lore.
Listening to the actual music played by Morgan was an added bonus, adding to the audience's delight, as they vicariously live this musician's haunting and ethereal journey. One will not help but feel transported back in time, feeling all the richer for hearing and learning about this tormented soul's amazing music and the story behind it. This movie is not just for jazz musicians, but for the general audience, who will take away a glimpse of oral and documented history of Frank Morgan, surely deserving of this magnificent tribute.
Sound of Redemption: The Frank Morgan Story @ LA Film Fest