Their music is famous around the world, though their names are not. Known as the Funk Brothers, they put the backbeat and soul into the countless hits of Motown Records. Creating music that helped to define the era of the 1960s, while also remaining a vital influence to this day, these musicians played on more #1 records than The Beatles, The Beach Boys, The Rolling Stones and Elvis combined. Following the Funk Brothers as they return to the sites of their heyday, the film combines exclusive interviews, archival footage, re-enactments, reminiscences, and thrilling new performances. For their unparalleled contributions to American popular music the Funk Brothers are long overdue their moment to step out of the shadows and into the spotlight. Exhilarating, funny and moving - their story is one of triumph and tragedy, hits and heartbreak.
Combining current interviews with rare vintage footage, Standing in the Shadows of Motown also offers glimpes of their recording session interactions with Motwon superstars, among them Marvin Gaye, Smokey Robinson and a very young Stevie Wonder. As the story unfolds, the Funk Brothers are reunited after three decades and take the stage with contemporary vocalists - including Ben Harper, Me'shell NdegeOcello, Joan Osborne, Chaka Khan and Bootsy Collins - to perform classic songs and generate the unmistakable beauty and authenticity of the Motown Sound.