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Pride and Joy: The Story of Alligator Records

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Pride and Joy: The Story of Alligator Records

Current Status:
In Season
Lonnie Brooks, Koko Taylor

We gave it a C+

For more than two decades, Alligator Records has been introducing young, mostly white music fans to contemporary hard blues. The label’s success story — captured in this 87-minute documentary — involves equal parts nostalgia, clever marketing, and a genuine labor of love. Director Robert Mugge (Deep Blues) places Alligator in the context of the Chicago blues scene, interviews key players, and presents some enthralling live performances. But Pride and Joy still suffers from the perfunctory: In band interviews, Alligator artists reveal a good-natured sincerity without ever digging deeper than Taylor’s remark, ”We ate it. We slept it. We was born with the blues.” C+