M usicians -we know them, we love them, and most times, we're obsessed with keeping up with what's happening in their lives. Behind the stage glitz, the riches, and the glamour, most musicians have a secret life we know little about, and this enigma and stardom are precisely what draws people in.
From pop icons to Lady Gaga and Madonna to oldies country stars such as Bob Dylan, we've touched upon five of the most-watched musician documentaries that give us a candid insight into each of these stars' lives.
This 2017 100 minute documentary film by Chris Moukarbel gives us an insight into the woman behind the pop sensation Lady Gaga. It follows her journey as she prepares for her fifth album 'Joanne,' and her groundbreaking Super Bowl halftime show. Gaga: Five Foot Two is a raw, intimate, and honest glance into Stefani Germanotta's vulnerabilities, wit, humor, talent, and personality, allowing the audience to glimpse the real woman outside her pop-diva identity.
Using touching, intimate footage from the Cobain family's personal archives, director Brett Morgan makes Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck a raw exploration of Nirvana's leadman's childhood, successes, downfall, and tragic, untimely death. This documentary is hailed as one of the most intimate, innovative, and watched musician documentaries of all time and allows the audience to understand the enigmatic music legend as the husband, father, and friend he was outside the studio. Using unearthed demos, home videos, and personal notebooks, Morgan brilliantly weaves together the threads of Cobain's musical talent, tragedies, and family life and does full justice to the enigmatic frontman of one of the biggest rock bands of his generation.
Following the pop icon’s international 1990 ‘Blond Ambition’ tour, this 2-hour documentary is one of the most-watched musician documentaries of all time, with actual behind-the-scenes footage of the star’s life with her level of fame. The documentary was endorsed by the singer herself, allowing filmmaker Alek Keshishian to record footage as she reminisced about the tour that got her threats of arrests for ‘lewd behavior’ in Canada and a ban from the pope in Italy. Fully immersed in her self-proclaimed image of ‘girl power,’ the camera captures Madonna in her encounters with famous backstage admirers, alleged affections for married men, and scandalous relationships with her backstage dancers. The pop star has offered a no-held-back look into her life behind the stage, with an unabashed version of Madonna like we’ve never seen before- as an intelligent businesswoman, media sex symbol, performer, musician, dancer, and global star.
With a globally acclaimed and influential director like Martin Scorcese at the heart of this project, No Direction Home is one of the most intimate, touching, and personal films ever made about the Nobel Laureate and one of the greatest songwriters of all time.
The camera follows a fresh-faced Dylan as he clowns about imitating Chaplin, using old home footage to bring out the quiet, intelligent, often over-romanticized man behind the fame and awards. Immaculately tying in bits from Dylan’s “Baby Let Me Follow You Down” and “Like A Rolling Stone,” Scorcese is ambitious and unrestrained in his exploration of the ‘Dylan Phenomenon,’ showing the humble, quiet, and weary man as he was made into a symbol for the revival of folk music throughout the country.
As Taylor Swift’s rerecorded music knocks the global charts off once again, now is the best time to talk about the Lana Wilson documentary about the worldwide star. In this 85 minutes long Netflix documentary, the award-winning singer-songwriter addresses the familiarity and comfort-drawn relationship her fans worldwide have towards her music, holding herself in an almost maternal light.
The camera captures intimate and bold details of Taylor’s life, following her as she is greeted by masses of screaming fans, boards on private jets, opens up about her battle with body dysmorphia, eating disorders, and sexual assault trial, and comments on the never-ending media scrutiny about her love life. It is not only an exploration of the star’s legacy on stage but also the story of a previously apolitical start embracing the power of her voice, making it one of the most-watched musician documentaries of all time.