Over forty years ago, the very first ever Doobie Brothers album was released. Since that first release, this iconic band has gone on to release twelve more full length studio albums and has toured the world in support of each one. Those travels and albums have produced more than their share of stories, and probably more than can be put to a single documentary. But on the band’s new documentary, Let The Music Play: The Story of The Doobie Brothers, the band and Eagle Rock Entertainment have made a valiant attempt to tell as many of those stories as possible.
Let The Music Play: The Story of The Doobie Brothers is a good introduction for anyone who is new to the music of the iconic band that first came to fame in the 1970’s. It culls interviews with the band’s members, its manager and those closest to them as the band’s story is told including both its good times and bad. And it’s all set against the backdrop of the band’s biggest hits, including ‘Listen To the Music’, ‘China Grove’ and so many others. The main feature documenting the band’s journey through each album runs a little less than two hours. In that time, newer fans are welcomed into the world of The Doobie Brothers with just enough information to hook them and reel them in. For the more seasoned fans of this veteran rock act, it’s more of a trip down memory lane so to speak. It’s a reminder of what made this band so great in its heyday and what still makes it such an important band to this day.
The documentary focusing on the career of The Doobie Brothers is obviously the primary feature of this new release. The stories are entertaining and at times tough to hear. They do their part in making this a nice watch for fans of all ages. It’s just one part of the whole. Along with the main presentation, Eagle Rock has also included a near hour long set of live performances from The Doobie Brothers. To some this collection of songs is just bonus material, as noted on the case for the disc. But they’re more than that. The live performances included with this new release serve as an accompanying piece to the documentary. They help to illustrate the band’s memories of performing. So in its own right, the collection of live performances included here is actually not just a bunch of songs, but a visual aid that helps to bring full circle what the band discussed in the documentary.
So few people give the bonus features of any DVD and/or Blu-ray the credit that they deserve. But this presentation is one more that proves the importance of bonus features. And there is at least one more bonus feature not on the disc that makes the entire Doobie Brothers experience presented here even richer. That feature is the included booklet. Most people in general are quick to just skim through liner notes and booklets that come with DVD’s, Blu-ray’s and CD’s. But were they to take the time to read through said notes and booklets, they might find out some interesting facts. This Blu-ray’s booklet is a prime example of that. San Francisco Chronicle writer Joel Selvin opens his notes on the band by explaining how this very project came to being. He writes, of how Pat Simmons started working on this documentary after stumbling across music from The Doobie Brothers. Selvin goes on to explain that the music was from TV shows, movies and lots more, thus leading Simmons to start working on this project. Selvin goes into even more depth with his liner notes of sorts, thus providing a solid prologue to the presentation. Yet again, it’s one more piece of the puzzle that makes this a whole work that’s worth at least one watch by all fans of The Doobie Brothers.
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