Martin Scorsese Presents:

The Blues: Piano Blues

A Clint Eastwood Film


"The blues has always been part of my musical life

 and the piano has a special place, beginning when

my mother brought home all of Fats Waller's

records. Also, the music has always played a part

in my movies. A piano blues documentary gives

me a chance to make a film that is more directly

connected to the subject of the music than the

features that I have been doing throughout my


Director Clint Eastwood















Directed by Clint Eastwood

Director — and piano player — Clint Eastwood (Play Misty for Me, Bird, Unforgiven) explores his life-long

passion for piano blues, using a

 treasure trove of rare historical foot-

age in addition to interviews and performances by such living legends

as Pinetop Perkins and Jay McShann,

as well as Dave Brubeck and Marcia


Dr. John, Clint and Bruce

visit website and buy this DVD and

find a huge selection of music

and historic treasures...





Fats Domino came to the plains of the Grand Tetons in Wyoming when we were making Any Which Way You Can. He started playing one of his songs, "I Want to Walk You Home," on a grand piano. All of a sudden everyone stopped and looked over the side

of the hill and there were about ten elk. They were all standing there with their heads tilted to where the sounds were coming from — as soon as Fats stopped playing, they left. They were fascinated. Everybody likes the blues.

Directed by:  Clint Eastwood

Produced by:  Clint Eastwood, Bruce Ricker

Director of Photography:  Vic Losick

Edited by:  Joel Cox, Gary Roach

Additional Photography:  Stephen Campanelli,

Ronald Kienhuis

Associate Producers:  Salimah El-Amin, Agnes Chu

Featured Performers:  Marcia Ball, Pinetop Perkins,

Dave Brubeck, Jay McShann, Ray Charles, Dr. John


  • Jimmy Yancey – How Long Blues
  • The Boogie Woogie Boys – Boogie Woogie Prayer Part 1
  • Count Basie & His band – How Long blues
  • Johnny Moore’s Three Blazers – Driftin’ Blues
  • Fats Domino – The Fat Man
  • Art Tatum - Tatum Pole Boogie
  • Professor Longhair – Tipitina
  • Ray Charles – What’d I Say, Parts 1& 2
  • Otis Splann – Good Morning Mr Blues
  • Duke Ellington, Chas. Mingus & Max RoachBackward Country Boy Blues
  • Thelonious Monk – Blue Monk
  • Big Joe Turner & Jay McShann – Piney Brown Blues
  • Jay McShann & Dave Brubeck – Mission Ranch Blues
  • Joe Turner – The Ladder
  • Dr John – Honey Dripper
  • Henry Townsend – World Full of People
  • Dr John – Big Chief
  • Joe Willie "Pinetop" Perkins & Marcia Ball – Carmel Blues
  • Dave Brubeck – Travellin’ Blues
  • Dr John, Pete Jolly & Henry Gray – How Long Blues
  • A life-long pianist, Clint Eastwood frequently has turned to jazz and blues recordings to craft the soundtracks for his films. In Piano Blues, he utilized a mixture of archival material and new footage in order to explore fully the relationship of his chosen instrument to the genre’s growth and development. Presented nearly in chronological order, the album’s 20 tracks cut a wide swath through the history of blues and jazz, covering a 65-year span of time that runs from a 1938 tune by the Boogie Woogie Boys to a pair of tracks featuring Dr. John that were captured just a few months ago.

    At first glance, the music showcased throughout Piano Blues may appear to paint the portrait with too broad a brush stroke, but upon further inspection, it proves to be a very carefully conceived collection. At the root of the set is Leroy Carr’s How Long Blues, which is featured in three extremely different interpretations: Jimmy Yancey’s sprightly solo rendition, Count Basie and His Orchestra’s easy-going swing arrangement, and a playful performance by a trio of pianists (Dr. John, Pete Jolly, and Henry Gray). Along the way, a few other well-chosen odds and ends — such as Art Tatum’s Tatum Pole Boogie and Johnny Moore’s Three Blazers’ Driftin’ Blues — are added in order to push the story along a straight line of thought. As a result, it’s a simple matter to hear from where artists like Fats Domino, Professor Longhair, Ray Charles, Duke Ellington, and Thelonious Monk came as well as how they incorporated their own ideas and influenced the next generation. In truth, one can’t ask much more from a compilation than to be as enjoyable and insightful as Piano Blues turns out to be.