WATCH: Jack White, T Bone Burnett, and Robert Redford Team Up for Massive Music Origins Documentary Series “American Epic”

Thanks to PBS, you and your dad will be glued to the couch this fall.

When you hear the word “epic” these days, it’s most likely in reference to something most decidedly not epic at all, like fro-yo, or that test you just failed, but Jack White is not one to give in to the will of the selfie-taking masses, and has now found himself in an executive producer role for a new documentary project boldly attempting to reclaim the “epic” vernacular (and then some).

American Epic is an upcoming three-part mini-series, feature-length movie, and multi-part soundtrack experience on the way for PBS (and BBC Arena in the UK) from Jack White, T Bone Burnett, and Robert Redford. The massive production is an account of the earliest days of phonograph records when trailblazing blues and country artists laid down the framework of American popular music as we know it today.

In a press release, Redford describes it as “America’s greatest untold story,” while Burnett notes that “These musicians we profile are the real American heroes.” White himself makes the point of emphasizing “…how important the fact is that when phonograph records were invented, for the first time ever, women, minorities, poor rural men, and even children were given the opportunity to say whatever they wanted in song.”

As part of the series, modern artists such as Beck, Willie Nelson, Alabama Shakes, Nas, Elton John, and, yes, Jack White were given the opportunity to experiment with a reconstructed “straight to wax” recording machine, the results of which will be released as part of The American Epic Sessions soundtrack, along with restored original recordings. As could be expected, Third Man Records will take care of the vinyl release.

Take a peek at what to expect when American Epic arrives this fall in a teaser below.


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