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Muscle Shoals

MUSCLE SHOALS, Alabama helped create some of the most important, resonant songs of all time. Meet Rick Hall, the Swampers, and many musicians who bear witness to Muscle Shoals’ magnetism, mystery, and undeniable influence.

Director: Greg 'Freddy' Camalier
Year: 2013
Time: 111 min

 Muscle Shoals
(2013) on IMDb

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Ways to Influence

Share this film. Give others a chance to learn about the amazing music created in Muscle Shoals.

Support your local musicians. Attend shows and purchase albums directly from musicians when possible.

Incorporate more music into your life. Revisit an instrument you once played, join a local choir, form a band, write a song, dust off your record player, or host a listening party for your new favorite album.

Offer lessons to someone who is interested in learning to sing or play an instrument if you already know how to, especially children whose schools have suffered cuts in Arts funding.

Related Articles and Resources


How Muscle Shoals became music’s most unlikely hit factory

Who is the real star of the film? Read this excellent Telegraph essay, which includes several musical tracks by Aretha Franklin, Clarence Carter, Arthur Alexander, Jimmy Hughes, Wilson Pickett, and the Rolling Stones.

Sundance London: Interview with Filmmaker Greg ‘Freddy’ Camalier

Camalier reveals  the real magic and essence of what the Muscle Shoals music is, and what it isn’t.

Read the interview.

The Cradle of Soul

The New York Review of Books touches on almost every aspect of the film then states what they believe is the film’s greatest virtue.

Interview with Director of Muscle Shoals

A long-overdue love note to the Alabama recording studio where so much music history was made.

Beats Electronics Will Revive the Muscle Shoals Studios

“Dr. Dre’s Beats Electronics will help renovate and revive the legendary Muscle Shoals Sound Studio and FAME Recording Studio. The deal is part of the company’s new partnership with the Muscle Shoals Music Foundation.”

Read more on Rolling Stone.

The Muscle Shoals Sound

VICE traveled to acclaimed recording town of Muscle Shoals, Alabama and talked to some folks who helped establish its distinctive American R&B sound.

Watch the resulting video here.

Music Doc Packs ‘Muscle’ (Plus A Whole Lotta Soul)

“Most fans of ’60s soul know of Muscle Shoals, the tiny Alabama town that produced huge hits. But only the genre’s most studious followers will be able to watch MUSCLE SHOALS without being regularly astonished: Even if it sometimes gets lost in its byways, Greg “Freddy” Camalier’s documentary tells an extraordinary story.”

NPR has the full story.


Listen to our playlist with music from the film on Spotify.

Bono, Aretha, Alicia Keys Sing Praises of Muscle Shoals

“I started in Muscle Shoals because I had no choice,” producer Rick Hall says. “I was rejected in Memphis, I was rejected in Nashville, I was rejected in New York City. I was bound and determined. I really wanted to prove the world was wrong and I was right. I just wanted the opportunity to show my true colors. I felt that once I got it, I’ve got to do everything to make it come true.”

Read the full article.


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