One of the towering voices of soul and gospel music finally has a proper documentary to showcase her pipes and inspiring life story. And thanks to the 16th annual Sound Unseen festival, we get to see it. The film, “Mavis!” (exclamation point definitely deserved), kicks off the fest Wednesday, with director Jessica Edwards in attendance.
As always, the lineup for the rest of the fest will make music fans do a double take — and that’s a good thing. Prince devotees take note: “Akounak Tedalat Taha Tazoughai (Rain the Color of Blue With a Little Red in It)” is a fun, surprising sub-Saharan take on “Purple Rain” shot in Niger. Following the screening, local band Body Omara will perform — their soulful sound influenced by the “desert blues” of Malian guitarist Ali Farka Toure. Sound Unseen will also pay respects to the late documentary master Albert Maysles, screening three of his films, including the 45th anniversary of “Gimme Shelter.”
The closing night film is “The Damned: Don’t You Wish That We Were Dead,” about the first U.K. punk band to hit the United States. Capping off the film — and the fest’s rocking five days — is an after-party filled with Twin Cities punk bands at Bedlam Lowertown. These are just the highlights — there’s a lot more in between.
(Wed.-Sat. Locations: McNally Smith College of Music, Trylon microcinema, Amsterdam Bar & Hall, Bedlam Lowertown and Bryant-Lake Bowl Theater. Most screening tickets are $10-$12. Shorts program is free. soundunseen.com.)