America’s Musical Journey celebrates the unique diversity of cultures and creative risk-taking that
characterize America, as told through the story of its music. The film follows Grammy Award®-
nominated singer and songwriter Aloe Blacc as he traces the roots of America’s music through
the colorful locales and cultures where it was born. Visiting iconic cities such as New Orleans,
Chicago, New York City, Nashville, Memphis, Miami and more, America’s Musical Journey
explores the collision of cultures that gave birth to America’s diverse musical heritage. America’s
Musical Journey is a MacGillivray Freeman film produced in association with Brand USA and
presented by Expedia. KIDS FIRST! Film Critic Benjamin P. comments, “America’s Musical
Journey is a visually breathtaking, insightful documentary about the power of music and its
importance in U.S. history, especially in some of its best-known cities.” See his full review below
America’s Musical Journey
By Benjamin P, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 12
Link to Video Review: https://youtu.be/xVXWumBr2uk
America’s Musical Journey is a visually breathtaking, insightful documentary about the power of
music and its importance in U.S. history, especially in some of its best-known cities.
America’s Musical Journey follows singer-songwriter Aloe Blacc’s journey across the U.S.A. as he
visits towns and cities important in music’s history. We visit places such as Nashville, Memphis,
Miami, Chicago and see flash mobs, acrobats, dancing waiters and meet talented musicians
along the way. Morgan Freeman narrates the journey and his deep and iconic voice is a perfect fit
to accompany this colorful film. I appreciate that this film shows its audience the music of different time periods.
This shows younger audiences how much music has changed in only a couple of decades and should remind
older audiences of the powerful legacies of artists like Elvis Presley and Louis Armstrong. This
film helps keep those artists’ spirits alive so that their mark on the music industry never
My one complaint about this film is that it is too short for all it tries to accomplish. America’s
Musical Journey introduces a person or location and then immediately moves on, leaving some
parts of the film more interconnected than others. In this way, the film can be like one of the jazz
pieces described in the film: sometimes all over the place, but always with lots of thought and
creativity put into it.I enjoyed seeing all the various locations larger than life on-screen. I like learning about towns I
didn’t know about and, even more, about ones I thought I did and how important their imprint on
music is. I was especially happy to see my own hometown of Washington D.C. featured in the film
in a particularly flashy fashion.
The lesson of this film is that music is an important part of our past and present and, who we are
as a country. Music can transport us to different worlds, tell stories and portray realities. Music
does this in a way that is different from any other art form and holds a critical role in our culture
for a long time.I recommend this film for ages 3 to 18. It is educational and everyone will get something out of it
in one way or another. I give it 4 out of 5 stars.
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