Dir. Alfred George Bailey, UK, 2016, 90min
Hull - 3pm, 14th May - Tickets here
London Hackney - 8.30pm, 25th May - Tickets here
Film followed by Q&A with the filmmakers
Directed by former musician and accomplished photographer Alfred George Bailey this feature film was shot over four years and spans the life and career of the breakthrough star. New interviews and archive footage chart Gregory’s incredible journey from humble beginnings in Bakersfield, California, to stage, studio and beyond, with his remarkable story underpinned by exclusive access during recording of the new Grammy winning, TAKE ME TO THE ALLEY - Best Jazz Vocal Album. The film features contributions from Gregory Porter’s brother Lloyd Porter and sister Lawanda, musical luminaries including Don Was, Hubert Laws, Van Morrison, Jools Holland, Gilles Peterson, Jamie Cullum, Jana Herzen and many more – as well as an account in Gregory Porter’s own words.
It is an intimate portrait of an incomparable talent that explores some of the trials that Porter has encountered in his life: the absence of his father growing up and how jazz music filled the void, racial hostility in his hometown, and his triumphant journey to musical success.
The film touches on universal themes of fulfilling one’s promise, the hardest and most important lessons gleaned from life, and how success can come calling for you at any time. Above all it speaks of the redemptive, all-conquering power of a mother’s love - the inspiration that would ultimately lead him back on the path to his destiny.
The BFI is funding ‘Transformative Film Culture For Hull', as part of its National Lottery-funded BFI Film Audience Network and led by its lead partner BFI Film Hub North. Delivered through Hull 2017 and by Hull Independent Cinema and a unique partnership of film festival, educational and archive partners from across the north, the film programme will bring a packed programme of more than 400 screenings, one-off events and film festivals throughout the year to Hull and the region. The programme reflects the BFI’s activities across the UK to bring film to audiences where there is less opportunity for them to experience and engage in film, and to support local film networks and audience initiatives. There will be much to explore, celebrate and enjoy.