Earlier this year PBS announced the production of a major new television series entitled: ON RECORD: THE SOUNDTRACK OF OUR LIVES. The eight-hour series will trace the history of recorded music and its impact on popular culture. Featuring hundreds of artists from all genres of music, it will air nationally in the near future as a primetime series.
Sir George Martin, legendary producer of the Beatles, will host. Two-time Academy Award-winning actor Kevin Spacey will narrate.
This television series is an extensive educational outreach initiative, and will include an upcoming companion Website on pbs.org, a companion CD box-set, a 12-hour DVD box set, and a comprehensive book. It will also be presented as a multi-genre worldwide radio show, and be broadcast globally via the internet.
This is a project I have been developing for over five years,” said Sir George Martin, recipient of the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award and producer of more than 50 number-one hit records. “I am just thrilled that PBS has joined as our primetime broadcaster. ON RECORD affords me the opportunity to tell a story that has never been told in such a comprehensive way. Music is the only common thread and universal language that binds us together, regardless of race, nationality, age or income. And recorded music is how we experience it and what makes it accessible.”
“I’m delighted to be a part of this remarkable, definitive series for PBS,” said Spacey. “ON RECORD illustrates how in a little more than a century recording technology has moved from wax cylinders to digital downloads. These extraordinary changes have come to define not only music, but who we are as individuals and as a society.”
ON RECORD will feature artists from all genres of music including pop, jazz, classical, R&B, folk, rock and country. Told as a narrative tapestry weaving the words of today’s living legends with memorable musical moments, landmark cultural events and inspiring inventions/innovations. The production will feature new interviews with top music icons and legends, historic archival performances and never-before-seen footage.
Hundreds of artists will be featured, including the Beatles, Frank Sinatra, Eric Clapton, Bob Dylan, Aretha Franklin, Benny Goodman, Quincy Jones, Joni Mitchell, Elton John, B.B. King, Alison Krauss, Paul McCartney, Les Paul, Paul Simon, Louis Armstrong, Miles Davis, the Carter Family, Bessie Smith, Robert Johnson, Enrico Caruso, Luciano Pavarotti, Muddy Waters, Stevie Wonder, Peter, Paul & Mary, Woody Guthrie, John Denver, Loretta Lynn, Buddy Holly, Leadbelly, Pete Seeger, Jay-Z, the Rolling Stones, Michael Jackson, Ella Fitzgerald and scores of others.
ON RECORD should prove to be a fascinating, informative, and highly entertaining history-making event. Bravo to Sir George Martin and PBS!