Competition Documentary Feature
Born Into the Gig
Directed by: Kate Davis
USA, 2019, 90m
Nepotism isn’t all that it’s cracked up to be. Born into the Gig documents the lives and unfulfilled musical careers of five music-royalty offspring. While they have the genes for pop stardom and recognizable last names, crafting careers in the shadows of their parents’ greatness hasn’t been easy. Featured here are Chris Stills (son of Stephen Stills), Skip Marley (grandson of Bob Marley), Ben and Sally Taylor (children of James Taylor and Carly Simon), and Kori Withers (daughter of Bill Withers). All share stories of absentee or unsupportive elders who are either dismissive (Mr. “Lean On Me” Withers) or actively hostile (like Mr. Stills, who reportedly greeted his son’s ovation-worthy set at a CSN concert by shouting “Fuck You!” as his kid leaves the stage). Directors Davis and Heilbroner include tons of terrific archival footage from the parents’ careers to remind audiences how talented these folks were. But being talented doesn’t always translate into being excellent parents. Gifted as the kids are, this film makes you wonder if they would have gotten further in the biz had they NOT been related to music icons. Perhaps being born into the gig doesn’t punch one’s ticket to stardom.
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