I started this campaign basically knowing nothing about crowd sourced funding. I had no idea how to get this to go viral or build a support base and the campaign basically stalled after a good first week. I just hooked up with a cool producer who has a much better handle on how to run a campaign than me. We only have 2 weeks left on this campaign and don't expect to make up for all the lost time of me being a luddite. We would love to raise as much as we can in the next two weeks, build a fanbase who will continue to follow and support the film, and will continue to work our asses off moving the film forward, no matter what we raise.
Manhattan Lullaby - About the Film:
Manhattan Lullaby is a feature documentary about one of the last vestiges of the New York that was –a place where music legends, Broadway stars and hopeful artists collided against the thumping of New York's grittiest streets. If you love New York City, if you remember old Broadway, if you know Colony Records this film is for you!
Housed in Manhattan’s historic Brill building, Colony Records has been a mecca for everyone from Miles Davis to Mick Jagger to Bette Midler. The cavalcade of stars who have visited Colony Records over the decades is a veritable who’s who of Broadway, jazz, popular music and rock.
"This place smells like a record store." James Brown exclaimed when he first stepped inside. Replete with star-studded memories and old-school retail philosophies, a veteran staff of hardcore music aficionados have created a unique environment where regardless how obscure the song, or if all you know is one lyric, you will exclaim ‘I found it at the Colony!’ The encyclopedic knowledge of the staff was world-renowned and covered all genres of music. Colony was more than a record store, it was also home to the largest collection of sheet music in the world, one of the only publicly accessible commercial collections of sheet music in the country.
Colony Records is a landmark of New York’s cultural history and one of the last remaining independent music stores in the country. While the Times Square neighborhood surrounding the store has transformed from Tin Pan Alley, to Red Light District, to corporate mega-playground, and music fans have gone from buying vinyl albums to cassette tapes, to CDs, to mp3s, the Colony has stood stalwart - until now.
After 64 years in business serving musicians and music fans from around the world, Colony Records closed its doors forever this fall. This is it. This is the last record store. This is the end of an era.
The Manhattan Lullaby creative team includes:
Director/Producer - Sara Alize Cross
Editor - Alison Shurman
Cinematographer - Hillary Spera
Sara Alize Cross associate produced the Sundance award-winning, Oscar nominated feature documentary Murderball. Murderball was distributed in theatres and aired on A&E. She AP'd 21Up America, part of the US version of Michael Apted's acclaimed 7Up series. 21Up premiered at Silverdocs and aired on Discovery channel. Sara produced The Order of Myths, a feature documentary that won the Peabody award, premiered at Sundance, was distributed in theatres, and aired on PBS. Sara earned her undergraduate degree in Film Studies at Columbia and her masters degree at Oxford.
When Bette Middler found out Colony Records was closing she exclaimed on twitter “OH NOOOOO!!! If it hadn't been for Colony I'd still be in the chorus!!!i”
Manhattan Lullaby has been following the store for the past four years, throughout the struggles to stay in business, the final days and will follow the employees and owner as they navigate the challenges of adjusting to life after decades spent working at the Colony. An up close and personal look at what happens to mom and pop when they have to close the shop, Manhattan Lullaby memorializes a place that had a major impact on music and theatre and represented the fast disappearing uniqueness that made New York City special. With your help we can ensure that the legacy of Colony Records lives on even after the iconic sign comes down.
Press for Manhattan Lullaby & Colony Records
With the help of our first successful kickstarter campaign in 2010, and generous donations of equipment and services we have shot 2/3 of the material we need before moving full time into the edit. We need $50,000 to get to the next phase. Even if we can’t raise all of what we need in this campaign, we will continue to work hard to do the most with what we can raise and keep the project moving forward.
The first $25,000 of funding we raise through this campaign will allow us to:
- Hire our shooting crew to document the dissembling of Colony and the aftermath of its closing for the owners and employees who have worked there for decades
- Travel to Los Angeles to film celebrity musicians who frequented Colony Records during its heyday
- Interview New York – based Broadway stars and celebrity musicians with funny and poignant stories to tell about Colony and what it meant to their careers, the music business and the history of NYC
The second $25,000 will allow us to:
- Hire editor Alison Shurman and an assistant to cut the material into a first assembly
- Bring on a seasoned and savvy archival researcher to help us collect a library of photos and film to illustrate visually the awesome stories told by employees and stars alike
- Continue to build momentum around this film through works in progress screenings, events and grassroots campaign up to the films’ completion
WHY YOU SHOULD CONTRIBUTE:
If you love music. If you love history. If you love the individualism of New York. If you feel nostalgic for a time when people congregated to socialize in retail stores that were owned by a person who worked there everyday. If you miss record stores. If you remember the Colony. If you enjoyed the films I have worked on before. If you think I am smart and talented and deserve a little support for a valuable project that I have literally put every ounce of myself and every cent I could find for the past 4 years. If you want to contribute to a really good film about a really cool place. If you are sad about the corporatization and homogenization of our culture. If you want to support the only documentary telling the story of the Colony and the end of an era.
Other Ways You Can Help:
If you are in a place to contribute financially – amazing! Every dollar, every single dollar is an enormous help to making sure this film is made. But if you are not in a place to do so, another very important way of helping is spreading the word. Please, if you like what you have read and seen, share this link by email, twitter, facebook, in person or any other way you can think of. Follow us on twitter, like our facebook page, tell your friends to do the same. Send this to every self-professed theater geek, musician, composer, and music aficionado you know. And if you don’t feel comfortable tweeting or posting a fundraising page in these hard economic times, here is a link to our website: www.manhattanlullaby.com, fb: www.facebook.com/manhattanlullaby / https://twitter.com/manhatlullaby
Spreading the word is key to ‘going viral’ and that is key to developing the following of fans we need to support this important film at every stage.