HOLLYWOOD—Who doesn’t know who Clive Davis or Barry Gordy is? They are two of the most well-known names in the music industry. Some of the record labels such as Columbia Records and Motown are responsible for the soundtracks we grew up with. Of course depending on your age bracket, if you are in a certain age group you will know the music of Janis Joplin, Bruce Springsteen, The Jackson 5, and The Supremes.
One of the biggest names was Neil Bogart, the legend behind Casablanca Records. He’s responsible for giving us, Kiss, The Isley Brothers, Donna Summer and Parliament. In the biopic titled, “Spinning Gold,” you will see the lows and highs of Neil Bogart, and his all-too-brief life story. It all begins with a reimagined dramatization of enticing the Edwin Hawkins Singers to sign with Buddha Records with nothing more than a handshake and a briefcase full of cash.
In the film, you see his humble beginnings in the Flatlands of Brooklyn, which Neil grew up wanting to be more than his father, who spent his time getting beat up by loan sharks. The ultimate dreamer put stock in his charisma and made people believe that music, especially from indie labels without the deep pockets, was the heart and soul of the universe.
For most of the film, his debt mounts up, bottoming out at $6,500,000, but it doesn’t dampen his spirit, although it does break a few bones. The was the wild history of Casablanca Records. Bogart’s music went from hard rock to disco and funk. “Spinning Gold” keeps you entertained, with singers like Jason Derulo as Ronald Isley, Casey Likes as Gene Simmons, Tayla Parx as Donna Summers and Wiz Kalifa as George Clinton. Each performer, is fantastic with their own spin on the classics that made them staples on the radio.
Neil Bogart drifts from one wild idea to another. His family was his support system, made up of family and close friends, his wife Beth (Michelle Monaghan) and his sister-in-law, Nancy (Peyton List), Cecil (Jay Pharoah), Buck (Don Fogler) and Frankie (Chris Redd) are important to how his story plays out because it’s hard to do impossible on your own. Not sure, if this would be Oscar worthy, maybe it’s never too early to say. His sons, the writers and executive music producers, Timothy Scott Bogart and Evan Bogart idolize their father how they want. It runs a little long at 127 minutes, but there’s a lot of cloud-reaching mania. The film is rated R, for certain sexual scenes and mob violence.
The movie opened last week and will play in theaters for 45 days before heading to VOD and then streaming. Bogart is also eager to present the show on Broadway, with plans to open a musical in 2024. This rags-to riches saga is very interesting and in the end, pays off at the end when Bogart is able to sell half-interest in the company to Polygram in 1977 for a huge profit.
Bogart, bet heavily on the popularity of disco music, a format that didn’t feature too many acts with lasting shelf-value and would see its bottom fall out within a couple of years. There was more success with KISS, when they starting selling merchandise. Everyone knows that these days the artists make their money on concerts and ticket sales. They are choosing stadiums over arenas. Interestingly enough, stadium tours were pioneered by The Beatles in 1965.
Some of the biggest stars know that the stadiums can hold over 60,000 people, which they can really rake in. The stars are putting more effort into staging and production, which means lots of trucks. Some artists are coming in with lots of trucks in the parking lot. Stadium tours show no signs of stopping, however the pricing of tickets are extremely.
Rose’s Scoop: Media tycoon Rupert Murdoch who announced his engagement last month, abruptly called it off. We don’t know why, as of press time. Wishing everyone a Happy Passover and Happy Easter!