johnny winter down and dirty

Johnny Winter: DOWN & DIRTY Documentary Film
+ Extensive Bonus Footage
Set for Release on DVD & iTunes March 4, 2016 via Megaforce

Intimate Look at Grammy-winning, Texas Blues Legend’s Life by LEMMY Filmmaker Greg Olliver

“The late Johnny Winter combined flashiness and heart like no other guitarist…a genuine phenomenon…” – David Fricke, Rolling Stone

“I’ve had a great life… I’ve been through a lot of shit.” – Johnny

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More than 60 years ago in Beaumont, Texas, renowned bluesman Johnny Winter was kicked out of the elementary church choir for singing too loudly.  “I said, I’m not singing too loud, these other fuckers are singing way too quiet, you can’t even hear ‘em.”

“I always like stories about people that drink and have drug problems and women problems,” Johnny says in his film Down & Dirty.  “It’s just interesting.”

Johnny Winter:  Down & Dirty, the definitive, feature-length documentary by acclaimed Lemmyco-director and producer, Greg Olliver, will be available worldwide on March 4, 2016 on DVD and iTunes. The package will feature never-before-seen photos and bonus footage, including extended interviews and his final studio performance, a solo resonator version of the Son House classic, “Death Letter.”

Produced independently through Secret Weapon Films in NYC, director Greg Olliver was welcomed into the Johnny Winter family during the final two years of Johnny’s life, where he captured the making of his Grammy-winning album Step Back (Best Blues Album, 2015) and travelled the world from Beaumont to Hong Kong.

Winter continued to perform over 200 sold out shows a year until his death on tour in Switzerland in 2014.

Down & Dirty is an intimate portrait of Johnny and the blues (“guitar is the only thing I was ever really great at”); his childhood (“I got in a lot of fights…Just ‘cause you’re a different color, they don’t like it?  You don’t like black people because they’re black?  They didn’t like me because I was too white?”); friendship and loss (Muddy Waters, John Lee Hooker); relationships (Janis Joplin and his current wife of over 20 years), and his crushing addiction to heroin and methadone (learn how his manager and bandmate Paul Nelson secretly weaned Johnny off a 30-year addiction).

“I grew up in Houston listening to the blues, so making a film with Johnny is a dream come true for me,” says Olliver, who premiered the film at SXSW to critical acclaim.  “At the SXSW screening, Johnny was having so much fun.  He was sitting behind me with a big tub of popcorn laughing at his own jokes.  He was really psyched to see himself on the big screen.  At the time, there weren’t many blues icons left out there, I feel very honored to have worked with him.  His is a story that needs to be told!”

Down & Dirty features Clive Davis, Edgar Winter, James Cotton, Billy Gibbons, Warren Haynes, Luther Nallie, Joe Perry, Tommy Shannon, Susan Tedeschi, Derek Trucks and more.

In 1968, Rolling Stone introduced Johnny as “a cross-eyed albino with long, fleecy hair, playing some of the gutsiest, fluid blues guitar you’ve ever heard.”  Jimi Hendrix sought him out as a sideman, his friend John Lennon wrote “Rock and Roll People” in his honor, and he revived the careers of friends John Lee Hooker and Muddy Waters through Grammy-winning collaborations. Muddy recognized Johnny’s talent at first glance, sparking one of the great friendships of their lives.   Johnny reflected, “It’s the most fun I’ve ever had playing music.”

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