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Our favorite music documentaries and movies on Netflix

 By Zach Goins

February 2, 2019

If this year’s award season has taught us anything, it’s that people are all in on movies about music right now. Movies centered around music? Love ‘em. Movies about bands and musicians? Yes please. Movie musicals? The more the merrier!

With A Star Is Born, Bohemian Rhapsody and Mary Poppins Returns racking up awards nominations left and right and rolling in cash at the box office, it’s clear that audiences are eating these movies up.

But if these hits still haven’t fulfilled your music craving, look no further. There’s no need to venture out to the theater when there are so many options available to stream on Netflix, all from the comfort of your own couch.

Here are some choice Netflix picks for music lovers:

Stretch and Bobbito: Radio That Changed Lives

This documentary tells the story of legendary radio personalities DJ Stretch Armstrong and Bobbito Garcia, hosts of the Stretch Armstrong and Bobbito Show. Dubbed “The Best Hip Hop Radio Show of All-Time,” Stretch and Bobbito were responsible for introducing the world to some of hip hop’s biggest artists in the 1990s.

Quincy

This documentary details the extraordinary life of entertainment mogul Quincy Jones. Co-directed by his daughter, Rashida Jones of Parks and Recreation fame, this film covers the artists’ over 70-year career influencing the music and film industry.

FYRE: The Greatest Party That Never Happened

Didn’t get an invite to the most “exclusive” gathering of social influencers ever? Turns out, that was probably a good thing. Relive the disastrous events of 2017’s Fyre Festival, an elaborately planned but poorly executed music festival where everything that could go wrong, did go wrong.

Gaga: Five Foot Two

Speaking of A Star Is Born, take a look at what Lady Gaga was up to before she teamed up with Bradley Cooper. This documentary lets viewers see Gaga like never before, as she gets ready to release a new album and preps for her halftime performance at Super Bowl LI.

Taylor Swift Reputation Stadium Tour

If you weren’t able to make it to one of the 53 stops on T-Swift’s 2017 stadium tour, this one’s for you. Don’t expect many behind the scenes looks – it’s not much more than just the concert, but it’ll definitely provide a better view than those hundred dollar nosebleed seats you were considering.

Springsteen on Broadway

This is The Boss like you’ve never seen him. After a 236-show run on Broadway, Netflix shared his final bow with the world, so everyone could hear the intimate stories and acoustic performances from the living legend’s one-man show.

Mamma Mia!

With the sequel hitting theaters last summer, why not revisit where it all started? This ode to ABBA is guaranteed to have viewers up off the couch and dancing to all the band’s classic hits. Now that’s something you can’t do in the movie theater.

Rapture

While this one is a documentary series and not a singular film, it treats each episode like its very own miniature movie. The series’ first season features eight episodes where each one takes a look at how a different rap artist got to where they are today. With rappers like Logic, T.I., Rapsody, and 2 Chainz, to name a few, this docuseries examines each artists’ history and their impact on the culture of hip-hop.  

Amy

This documentary covers the tragic life and death of 27-year-old singer-songwriter Amy Winehouse. Featuring rare home video footage, interviews, and never-before heard songs, Amy offers an extensive inside look at the star’s troubled life.

High School Musical 3

This one’s for everyone who felt cheated by the fact that HSM3 had a theatrical release. After the first and second films went straight to Disney Channel, fans had to make the trek to the theater to witness the trilogy’s conclusion. But by that time, it wasn’t cool to like High School Musical anymore, so Netflix is here to help all the closet East High lovers figure out what exactly went down between Troy and Gabriella.

How the Beatles Changed the World

Before NSYNC, the Backstreet Boys or One Direction ever existed, there was the original boy band that had teenage girls around the world swooning. Take a look back at the history of The Beatles, from the group’s formation to its everlasting impact on the music industry.

Reincarnated

Remember back in 2012 when Snoop Dogg tried to go reggae and rebrand himself into Snoop Lion? Did you ever know the reason behind his transformation? Reincarnated shares the story of the artist’s trip to Jamaica and subsequent rechristening by a Rastafarian priest. To be honest, I’m not really sure what he’s called anymore, so we’ll just stick to Snoop.

Mr. Dynamite: The Rise of James Brown

This doc recaps the Godfather of Soul’s ascension to the top of the music world, from his humble beginnings in rhythm and blues all the way to funk. With Oscar-winning documentarian Alex Gibney at the helm, Brown’s legacy is in good hands here.

Bad Rap

After Awkwafina’s explosion onto the film and music scene in 2018, take a look back at the obstacles she faced to get there. Chronicling the story of four young Asian-American rappers trying to get their big break in an industry stacked against them, Bad Rap tells the story of artists on the outside looking in. 

Miss Sharon Jones!

After Sharon Jones, lead singer of R&B band Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings, was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, the Grammy-nominated singer became determined to keep her band together for an emotional comeback tour. This inspiring documentary tells the story of the late Sharon Jones’ fight during the most challenging year of her life.

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