MusicDish e-Journal - October 24, 2016
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Searching For Sugar Man: Story Of A Forgotten Prodigy
Sixto Rodriguez will no doubt go down in history as a music icon
By Varsha Srivastava
(more articles from this author)
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Being admired and recognized for creating brilliant music is every musician's dream, but what if a such a musician came and went unnoticed? You may be asking yourself, how can that be? How can someone so incredibly gifted not gain recognition? Well, this was the case with Mexican-American Sixto Rodriguez, who's remarkable story is like no other.

Rodriguez was discovered in a Detroit bar by two successful producers, who signed him on and recorded his 1st album, Cold Fact. Shockingly enough, the album was a complete failure. An album and a half later, Rodriguez supposedly committed an on-stage suicide and was forever lost in the sea of unaccomplished artists, or so it would seem. After a bootleg recording of Cold Fact arrived and spread in South Africa, Rodriguez was an instant star, and two fans set out to uncover the truth behind his disappearance. Searching For Sugar Man, a film by Malik Bendjelloul, documents this mission, and the unbelievable discovery made on the way.

If you are someone who loves and appreciates Sixto Rodriguez's music, Searching For Sugar Man will only accentuate those emotions. It was very difficult for me to believe that the talent who wrote songs such as "I Wonder," "Crucify Your Mind," and of course "Sugar Man" initially bombed. What were those people listening to?! The film takes the viewer on a heartfelt journey to solve the mystery of the unfortunate prodigy. Conversations with Rodriguez's relations and acquaintances reveal the true artist behind the music, not to mention his profound, soulful and exceptionally catchy songs heard at various points of the film. Bendjelloul, along with all others involved in the making of this film, deserve a standing ovation for presenting to us an extraordinary legend in plain sight.

I would highly recommend this film to anyone looking for inspiration. It is riveting from beginning to end, and will change your attitude toward life. Sixto Rodriguez will no doubt go down in history as a music icon. The moving quest that is Searching For Sugar Man is sure to bring a tear to your eye, and a song to your heart.

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