83 minutes | International Premiere | Rating: PG
Conrad “Prof” Johnson composed original funk songs and arranged fantastic stage antics with Houston’s Kashmere High School Stage Band. He became the first black high school band leader with an all-black high school band to win the Texas state championship in the 1970s. His “give it all you got” attitude made the group unstoppable, leading them to win 42 out of 46 contests over the course of the decade and establishing them as international funk legends with tours in Paris and Japan. Thunder Soul combines archival footage of the kids in action, showing off their James Brown showmanship, platform shoes, and Bootsy Collins-type rhythms, with the band members’ recent reunion. With nothing but love for the father of funk from their youth, they practise for the first time in three decades, hoping they “still got it” enough to perform a tribute show for the ailing 92-year-old Prof. - Dannielle Dyson
Co-Presented with Co-presented with Fusicology Canada.