PHIL OCHS DOCUMENTARY OPENS FRIDAY! “THERE BUT FOR FORTUNE”

March 3, 2011

The wait is over The Phil Ochs documentary, “There But For Fortune” is opening at Laemelle theaters in L.A.on Friday March 4th! It has been breaking records in New York since it opened last month.

A few weeks ago I had dinner with some friends that included former publicist/ archivist, Michael Ochs, brother of Phil Ochs, one of the most important voices of the ‘60s and ‘70s. I knew Phil slightly, but had a great respect for him as an artist and as a man. I asked Michael for a little info on the making of the documentary and a little insight into his brother

 AW- How long did it take to make the film?

 MO- Ken Bowser and I actually first started shopping it 19 yrs ago and got no interest at that time.  However, 6 yrs ago three separate documentarians contacted me wanting to do a doc. on Phil.   So, I went back to Ken and asked if he was still interested.  Not only was he interested but he was willing to put up his own money to start the ball rolling.  Two yrs into the project, Michael Cohl (ex CEO of Live Nation) agreed to back the project

 AW- How about an interesting story?

 MO- I had actually approached Michael Cohl when I was selling the Archives to see if he would be interested.  He had absolutely no interest in buying the Archives but had heard about the doc. Ken and I were working on. Turns out Cohl started in the biz with a folk club in Toronto and had booked Phil early on.  Cohl said he loved Phil as an artist and as a person and would love to back the film.  So, inadvertently, my selling the Archives got this film done.

AW- With the current political unrest in the US, which of Phil’s songs should be re-examined?

MO-  A good percentage of the topical songs still apply.  You might have to change some names to not protect the guilty.  Eddie Vedder did that with “Here’s To The State Of Mississsippi” by making the song about Bush. Or to be more specific as to timeliness, try “I’m Gonna Say It Now” (1965):

“I’ve read of other countries where the students take a stand

They’ve even helped to overthrow the leaders of the land.”

 AW- What can be learned from the film

 MO- It’s possible for the individual to effectuate change.  And, don’t follow leaders or parking meters!

 Thanks to Michael Ochs for mini-interview… Now here’s a preview of the film.

KPFK Radio will be hosting a special screening of Phil Ochs: There but for Fortune Thursday March 10th at Laemmle’s Monica 4-plex 1332 2nd Street in Santa Monica. at 7pm

There will be a Q&A after the screening with KPFK’s Roz Larman host of Folkscene and Michael Ochs, brother of Phil Ochs and one of the producers of the documentary.The film opens in Laemmle theaters on Friday March 4th, more info available at firstrunfeatures.com/philochs
and for more information about KPFK’s special sceening of Phil Ochs: There but for Fortune Thursday March 10th at 7pm go to www.kpfk.org

Copyright 2011 by Artie Wayne- https://artiewayne.wordpress.com/about-artie-wayne/

CLICK HERE TO READ SALLY STEVENS EXCELLENT REVIEW OF “TROUBADOURS” ON PBS!  http://rockphiles.typepad.com/a_life_in_the_day/2011/03/troubadours-the-movie-review.html

BACK TO ARTIE WAYNE ON THE WEB! https://artiewayne.wordpress.com

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One Response to “PHIL OCHS DOCUMENTARY OPENS FRIDAY! “THERE BUT FOR FORTUNE””


  1. Artie,
    Phil was a great influence on my life and my music. I’m an old friend of Sis Cunningham and have known Sonny for years. Wanted to get permission to post a tribute I performed for Phil on May 1, 2011 in Asbury Park when I performed “Power and GLory”. Have not heard back from Sonny. Wondered if I could reach Michael. Would never post the performance w/o permission. I appreciate your help.
    peace,
    Sharleen


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