Sharon’s spirit and energy are the core of the story here as even after her cancer diagnosis, she carried the pressure of needing to get back to singing and performing so that her band members in The Dap-Kings could earn a living and feed their families.
Born in North Augusta, South Carolina, Sharon was raised in Brooklyn. Her background was anything but privileged, and as an adult she spent years working as a Corrections Officer at Rikers Island, while continuing to sing in her spare time.
In 2014, she won her first Grammy for “Give the People What They Want”, and Ms.Her NYC comeback is impressive and life-affirming, but the highlights are clips of her earlier stage performances … and the most incredible in-church performance you are likely to ever witness. Kopple’s film shines a spotlight on an incredible talent and spirited lady who deserves much more than to have a cult following and be “underappreciated”. Perhaps the film will open some eyes, ears and hearts.
Being described as “the female James Brown” is a double-edged sword. Soul/Funk/R&B singer Sharon Jones doesn’t much care about any of that … and in this documentary we witness both her strength in life and her powerhouse performances on stage. On one side, the talent and stage presence must be obvious.Greetings again from the darkness. On the other side, the burden of expectations that can never be eclipsed is always present.
Filmmaker Barbara Kopple is a two time Oscar winner and here she presents not so much a music or concert documentary, as an intimate look at how a person can be inspired and driven by music to fight through life’s challenges – and even cancer. In 2013, Miss Jones was diagnosed and much of the film follows her through head-shaving, chemotherapy and the battle to regain her voice and strength.