“Miles Davis: Birth of the Cool” is a 2019 Stanley Nelson Jr. documentary about the life and career of the jazz legend. Clocking in at about two hours the film features a collection of clips, photos, and interviews with his contemporaries and collaborators. The documentary doesn’t just tick along the timeline of Miles’ life but rather dives into the highs and lows of his personal life as well as how they affected the creative process behind his music.
“Ray” is a 2004 Oscar-winning film starring Jamie Foxx in a biopic about the life and career of legendary musician Ray Charles Robinson (better known as Ray Charles). Over the course of the film we see how traumatic moments from Ray’s childhood continued to haunt and impact him as an adult. There is also some insight into his career from the perspective of both its creative milestones and business dealings.
A profile of James Weldon Johnson, composer of “Lift Every Voice and Sing” and prominent leader of the NAACP during the 1920s.
“Tina” is a 2021 HBO documentary about the life and career of Anna Mae Bullock better known as Tina Turner. The film covers her tumultuous marriage and professional relationship with Ike Turner that was plagued by domestic violence and other various forms of abuse. It also touched on how her childhood abandonment by her parents filled her with feelings of being unwanted and unloved. It’s a terrible story. And I hate to sound cliché but it’s also incredibly inspiring due to her desire to overcome those obstacles and seeing her achieve her dreams of creating a better life for herself.