L'HOMME AU BANJO



DVD CoverDerroll Adams (Portland, Oregon, 1925 - Anvers, 2000) avait choisi de s'établir en Belgique pour y passer plus de quarante ans. Folk-singer américain engagé dans la contestation, tout comme Woody Guthrie qu'il fréquenta en Californie, joueur de banjo, troubadour errant, auteur-compositeur, poète et peintre talentueux, il débarqua à Londres en 1957, pour y rejoindre son compère "Rambling" Jack Elliott. En plein vague du skiffle qui sévissait alors, ils firent découvrir à une génération de jeunes artistes des musiques du répertoire traditionnel américain qui leur étaient quasiment inconnues. Derroll Adams s'installa ensuite à Bruxelles, en 1958. Lié à William Burroughs, Allen Ginsberg et les papes de la beat generation, il véhicula les préceptes du mouvement beat auprès des habitués du célèbre Welkom Café. Puis, en 1967, Il rejoignit Ferre Grignard à Anvers, pour y enchanter pendant près de trois décennies les scènes de la musique folk en Europe.

Le film est le portrait d'un personnage sensible tout droit issu de l'univers de Jack Kerouac, au charisme rare, et au rayonnement souterrain immense. On ne compte plus ceux qui furent profondément influencés par sa manière de vivre et de voir le monde. Quelques-uns se livrent ici pour un hommage constitué d'interviews, de nombreux extraits musicaux, des documents originaux et des archives filmées inédites.

Sont présents: Donovan, Jack Elllott, Finbar Furey, Herta Geer, Arlo Guthrie, Frank Hamilton, Wizz Jones, Youra Marcus, Arlette Reinerg, Pete Seeger, June Shelley, Allan Taylor, Hans Theessink, Colin Wilkie, Tucker Zimmerman, etc...

Photos : Somogy & Michel Baudour

Production : Caboose Productions – CBA – Cinemotion – L’Archipel – RTBF (Belgium, 2005)

Réalisateur : Patrick Ferryn
Directeur photo : Michel Baudour
Son : Alain Sironval – Richard Verthe
Montage : Denise Vindevogel
Mixage : Alain Pierre

Promotion et contact: Gabriella Marchese
Tél: + 32 2 227 22 34
email: promo@cbadoc.be
website: http://www.cbadoc.be

Caboose Productions
Contact : Patrick Ferryn
Bruxelles, BELGIQUE
email : caboose.productions@skynet.be


  DIRECTOR’S NOTE  

This film comes right from the heart and is a true labor of love which took seven years to be achieved. At the time the project started, nobody in Belgium was interested to spend a dime in such a production, for the reason that Derroll Adams was sick, old and almost forgotten by the media. With the generous assistance of some friends, all well decided to pay a tribute to the legendary "banjoman with the tattooed hands", we started filming long interviews with Derroll Adams in Antwerp, in 1998, eventually becoming our own producer. Unfortunately Derroll’s poor health condition deteriorated and he passed away in February 2000. Then, we were lucky to get the support of prominent long-time companions and musician friends of Derroll and found the opportunity to visit and film them in the US, in England, Ireland, Denmark, France and Belgium. Finally, some years later, when the filming was entirely done, the CBA (Centre a Bruxelles pour l’Audiovisuel), the French-speaking and the Flemish Belgian TVs (RTBF and VRT), and the Danish TV became interested in the project, giving me the possibility to finalize the postproduction of the film.

It’s not all about folk-music; of course there is a great deal of music, performed by magnificent artists, but at the same time it’s a kind of road-movie through the time of the Depression, the McCarthyism period, the Korean war, the beat movement and the folk revival of the Sixties; the journey of one of the greatest authentic American artists, unjustly underestimated, and little known in the States (as he spent more than forty years in Belgium), for who folk-music was a way of living. In the mid-Fifties, Derroll Adams composed "Portland Town" (also covered later by Joan Baez, the Kingston Trio, Bob Harter, Dick Weissman, Josh White Jr., Barbara Dane, Arlo Guthrie, Van Morisson, Colin Wilkie & Shirley Hart, Marianne Faithfull and many others), a moving anti-war song, a simple statement against the cruel stupidity of war. That was just after the Korean war. Alas, to paraphrase Bob Dylan: "Times have not changed"! I would be more than very proud if "Portland Town" could resonate again in Derroll’s own country and home town in Oregon.

Patrick Ferryn



Interview with Patrick Ferryn,
filmmaker of folk musicians like Allan Taylor and Derroll Adams
Director: Jean-Michel Vlaeminckx
Cameramen: Géraud Vandendriessche & Arnaud Crespeigne

Patrick Ferryn is the director of these two beautiful documentaries:
- Derroll Adams, l’homme au Banjo / Derroll Adams, I Was Born In Portland Town (2005)
- Allan Taylor - Endless Highway (2009).


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