Director Justin Kreutzmann takes viewers behind the kit in the trailer for his new documentary, Let There Be Drums! Featuring the last interview with the late Taylor Hawkins as well as chats with Justin’s dad Bill Kreutzmann, Ringo Starr, Stewart Copeland, and many more, the documentary is available on Apple TV, Amazon Prime Video, and in select theaters on October 28th.
The feature documentary uses the 2015 Fare Thee Well concerts as a framework, with Kreutzmann documenting his dad, Mickey Hart, Phil Lesh, and Bob Weir for what was billed as their final performances together. Using that as a springboard, Justin adds in a bit of his personal history growing up on tour with the Grateful Dead, often watching the band from his dad’s drum riser as a child. It was there that Justin spawned the idea for Let There Be Drums! as the filmmaker examines the art of drumming, those who practice it, and the impact it has on their families.
Let There Be Drums! also hosts interviews with Mickey Hart, Chad Smith (Red Hot Chili Peppers), Adrian Young (No Doubt), Tre Cool (Green Day), Steve Ferrone (Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers), John Densmore (The Doors), Matt Sorum (Guns N’ Roses), and Stephen Perkins (Jane’s Addiction). Additionally, the documentary includes footage of Keith Moon in outtakes from The Who‘s 1979 documentary The Kids Are Alright as well as John Bonham (Led Zeppelin) talking about fatherhood, No Doubt performing in a basement before its big break, and more.
The film takes its title from Sandy Nelson‘s 1961 album and song of the same name. Nelson was an influential drummer of the late 1950s whose jazz style served as an inspiration for the rock drummers who followed in the 1960s and ’70s. Kreutzmann was able to sit down with Nelson before his death in 2022 to talk about the influence he and other rhythm makers of his generation had on later artists.
“It started as a fun little film with all the drummers I’ve gotten to know over years,” Kreutzmann told Rolling Stone back in July. “It wasn’t until Taylor Hawkins stopped our interview and said, ‘Maybe this isn’t for this documentary, but what was your home life like?’ I found from then on, I was having a dialogue with these amazing drummers instead of just a Q&A. They were as interested in hearing about my dad, Jerry Garcia, and the Grateful Dead as I was about their bands and their lives. So a really interesting thing happened, the film became more about family, but these families just happened to be drummers.”
Check out the trailer for Let There Be Drums!
Let There Be Drums! | Trailer