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Through the glitter and the grunge, from The Monkees to Coldplay, Rodney Bingenheimer--a.k.a. Rodney on the ROQ--has reigned over the Los Angeles music scene for over two decades. A constantly evolving fixture as rock fan, journalist, promoter, club owner and radio DJ on KROQ, Bingenheimer has helped advance every adventurous rock mutation--California pop, glam, punk, goth, new wave, alternative--since he first hit the Sunset Strip during its psychedelic 1960s heyday.Written by
Sujit R. Varma
After making its world premiere as the Centerpiece Film of the 2003 IFP/Los Angeles Film Festival the movie sold to First Look Media and Lakeshore Entertainment for $1.3 million, making it the second highest selling documentary of all time, next to Michael Moore's Bowling for Columbine (2002). See more »
After the credits, we see the conclusion of the concert by the band X that starts the movie. Then we see Rodney talking with one of X's members, who tells him that he always finds Rodney's radio show, no matter when it airs. See more »
Oscar worthy documentary! See this if you have any ears at all!
Rodney Bingenheimer. I hadn't heard his name before this film, but the friend I went to a pre-screening had. I am not originally from Southern California, but my friend is. I never knew the influences people can have over a scene. I am so glad there are people like Rodney out there. In this world of corporate takeovers and the almighty dollar, I am happy there are people who stick to their guns like Rodney. He is one of the last Djs in America that doesn't have a corporation make his playlist and his life reads like a history of who's who in the rock world. He has been everywhere, with Elvis, with John Lennon, with the Beatles eating up shrimp that should have been saved for the Doors. He was Davy Jones' double on the Monkees. He was in "Rock and Roll High School!" He exposed a lot of music in the punk and new wave eras, that might have not been heard otherwise. He played the Sex Pistols when no radio station would touch them. He took a chance on a weirdo named Bowie. He still takes chances, like playing a local (SD) act called Sin Sin 77, which I will have to check out now!
It is hard to believe at times that so many famous people would seek out Mr.Bingerheimer as a friend, but he comes off in the film and in real life (I was lucky enough to meet him and hear him speak after the film...peaks of being close to LA!) as a sincere person who is in it for the music. He likes people and is almost a reflective elflike Warholesque character. He is an introvert and that is what makes this documentary so intensely real, he makes no pretenses, what you see is what you get.
I didn't know at the time of seeing this pre-screening for free, that Rodney was going to show up along with the director, George Hickenlooper (great names!) but it was a rare treat. A local indie station hosted the evening, gave out CDs and tee shirts...what a great night. I had to run home and write everyone to go see this film and get a rare glimpse into the life of someone who lived in the Hollywood rock scene most of his life and has had such a wonderful influence on modern radio. Now if they would only play Rasputina on K-Roq, that would be something!
Can't wait to go up to LA to one of Bingenheimer's "English Disco" nights. I hope he actually gets Wednesday nights on K-roq because he should get more time then a night owl time on Sunday. But it sounds like his audience is young. Why the corporate machine doesn't grab on to the idea that many young people, such as myself, want to listen to new and different music and try to market radio more towards us, like, umm, giving Djs the right to play their own playlists?
I am so glad to know Rodney's story and see all the old footage of Hollywood and rock bands. It is truly an unique and valuable one! This is a must see and is Oscar worthy in my book!
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