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"The Wrecking Crew": A Documentary About Unsung Heros 

Wednesday, Mar 25 2015
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If you've heard any pop music recorded in California in the 1960s or early 1970s, you've heard the work of the Wrecking Crew, a free-floating collective of studio musicians who played without credit on tens of thousands of songs. Danny Tedesco's joyous documentary The Wrecking Crew is a personal, heartfelt tribute to those unsung heroes — especially Tedesco's father, Tommy, whose guitar chops can be heard on both the Ronettes' "Be My Baby" and the M*A*S*H theme, among many other tunes familiar to certain generations. The musicians in the Crew were just happy to get paid to do what they loved, more often than not with friends, such as drummer Hal Blaine, who played on six Grammy record(s) of the year in a row, or bassist and lone female member Carole Kaye, who singlehandedly made Sonny and Cher's "The Beat Goes On" far less boring by funking up the bass line. The Wrecking Crew functions as a historical document on multiple levels; the picture was initially completed in 2008 (including a gala screening at the sadly defunct Bridge Theatre), but never received proper theatrical distribution until now. As a result, certain interviews are borderline eerie, such as the Crew's breakout star Glen Campbell, captured well before his current decline into Alzheimer's. But The Wrecking Crew's belatedness makes it no less vital.

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Sherilyn Connelly

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