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Directed by Robert Philipson

United States 2016 60 mins.

The story of Body and Soul, one of the most recorded songs in the Great American Songbook and a jazz standard, illustrates the complex musical interplay between Jewish and African American cultures. Written by Jewish songwriter Johnny Green and introduced on Broadway by Jewish torch singer Libby Holman in 1930, it was first recorded as a jazz piece by Louis Armstrong. Philipson examines the song’s timelessness, its role at the heart of both black and Jewish music, and cultural links both complementary and contentious. Interviews with experts and historians combine with rare archival footage and diverse performances to celebrate an ageless classic.

The Northwest Film Center recognizes and honors the Indigenous peoples of this region on whose ancestral lands the museum now stands. These include the Willamette Tumwater, Clackamas, Kathlemet, Molalla, Multnomah and Watlala Chinook Peoples and the Tualatin Kalapuya who today are part of the Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde, and many other Native communities who made their homes along the Columbia River. We also want to recognize that Portland today is a community of many diverse Native peoples who continue to live and work here. We respectfully acknowledge and honor all Indigenous communities—past, present, future—and are grateful for their ongoing and vibrant presence.