Basie at piano from One O'clock Jump.tif

 Year: 2018


Duration: 75 minutes


Eagle Rock Films

for Eagle Rock Entertainment



Producer/Director: Jeremy Marre


Executive Producers: Geoff Kempin & Terry Shand


Supervising Producer: Peter Worsley 

This revealing biography, told in Count Basie’s own words, uncovers for the first time the private passions and ambitions that inspired the world-famous bandleader and pianist.

Until now, little was known about Basie’s private and family life, but director Jeremy Marre uncovered a treasure-trove of home movies and photo albums that expose Basie’s  remarkable relationship with his wife Catherine, whose pioneering support for African-American causes placed her at the side of Martin Luther King, Jr. Through Basie’s intimate footage and letters - and interviews with friends like Quincy Jones and Annie Ross - we discover the Count’s protective love for his disabled daughter Diane who ‘was never out of his heart and mind: the hidden core of his creative life’.

Basie’s musical achievements were remarkable: the first African-American to win a Grammy, he brought the Blues to the big band podium. He was ‘the King of the Swing Kings’. We see rare performances with Sinatra, Billie Holiday, Sammy Davies Jnr. and many others. But this film digs deeper, uncovering the inner motivation and passions that drove Basie’s career as he became a unique link between jazz mand America’s turbulent social history.


Images Courtesy of Getty Images & William J. Basie Trust.

Basie home movie - in sailor hat.tif
Basie home movie - Diane's birthday 1.ti