Black Rock and Roll Documentary Electric Purgatory February 23, 2010 Release Strikes Chord in Music World

Share Article

They made music that changed the world, but where have all the black rockers gone? The Electric Purgatory music documentary Feb. 23rd release examines the fate of the black rocker and the rich history of music influencers that should be on the top of your playlist.

“I call this the decade of being black and we’re not invited,” Spacey T of Fishbone and Sound Barrier said.

Black rock and roll pioneers have been beloved by generations of music fans, sold out thousands of shows and influenced countless bands of all skin colors, creeds and genres. Despite leaving musical fingerprints all over the modern music scene, black rockers are notably absent from mainstream music channels and Top 100 Billboard charts.

Electric Purgatory: The Fate of the Black Rocker documentary, released by by MicroCinema International ( on February 23rd, 2010, explores the careers, triumphs and challenges of a vastly under appreciated core of black musicians in the mainstream music world.

Directed by Raymond Gayle, Electric Purgatory takes a look at the black musician’s relevance in a competitive and political corporate music landscape.

“Could the biggest double-standard in music today be about who is more black? Many Black artists resort to minstrel show videos and gimmicks to get their respect and their money,” Electric Purgatory’s Gayle said. “But those who dare to be “real” and in this instance play rock, get their “black card” revoked and their career deep-sixed. “

The documentary chronicles the ups and downs of life as a black rock musician, with gritty and engaging interviews with the black rock elite including Bad Brains, Vernon Reid, ?uestlove of the Roots, Doug Pinnick of King’s X and Jimi Hazel. Electric Purgatory takes a particularly good look at the history of longtime ska, punk rock and funk metal band Fishbone, with black rock insights from lead man Angelo Moore.

“I call this the decade of being black and we’re not invited,” Spacey T of Fishbone and Sound Barrier said in the Electric Purgatory film.

Music and history buffs alike find something to connect with while watching fast-paced concert footage from music industry icons like Little Richard, James Brown, Jimi Hendrix and Prince. Prominent music journalists, like Flip Barnes, Cody Chesnutt, Darrell McNeil and Greg Tate, share their insights on the disappearance of black rockers from the music industry.

Diving into music label politics and black music lovers’ apparent indifference to the black rock and roll genre, replacing it with hip hop and rap, Electric Purgatory goes where few have gone before – deep into the soul, funk and rock of generations of legendary musicians who have missed the spotlight, despite their industry impact and innovation.

“Black Music right now is at very, very, very serious crossroads,” journalist Charlie Braxton said. “And when I say that, it’s partially a lot of music critics want… to blame rap for it. It’s not necessarily rap music that’s doing it. What it is, is this corporate monster; these suits who are not musicians who have no real love for music. Who the only thing they think about is the almighty dollar. They have taken over the record industry….”.

Electric Purgatory has been honored as an official selection of the Turks & Caicos International Film Festival, Roxbury Film Festival, San Francisco Film Festival and more in 2006. The film is featured on YouTube as a spotlighted documentary selection with over 330,000 views, has been aired on Ovation TV and selected as the Fancast Film of the Week in 2010.

The Electric Purgatory DVD Special Features include a conversation with HR of Bad Brains, deleted scenes and Outlets for Change. The DVD will be released by MicroCinema International and is available for purchase on their Web site and the Electric Purgatory documentary Web site

Contact information:
Director Raymond Gayle
Phone: 713-256-5506


Share article on social media or email:

View article via:

Pdf Print

Contact Author

Raymond Gayle
Visit website