Music: What Difference Does It Make?

What Difference Does It Make: A Film About Making Music – is a free documentary film that delves into the challenges and triumphs of living “a life in music.”

The documentary traces the stages of development that musicians experience, and goes beyond the topic of music to explore questions ‘about life itself.’

The film features interviews with dozens of seasoned music professionals including Brian Eno, Giorgio Moroder, Nile Rodgers, Skream, Richie Hawtin, Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry and James Murphy, among others.

The movie is available as a free stream (above).

The movie was shot at the 2013 Red Bull Music Academy in New York by director Ralf Schmerberg, and was produced by his Berlin-based artist collective Mindpirates.

For more information about the movie and its cast, the companion book, For The Record, as well as the Red Bull Music Academy and its 15th anniversary celebrations, check out the Red Bull Music Academy website.

11 thoughts on “Music: What Difference Does It Make?

  1. looks provocative! anyone else having problems downloading the film from the site? it just downloads as a document, not quicktime or avi or anything…. trying from 2 different browsers osx….

    1. Yep. I too had a 4gig document I didn’t know what to do with.

      After some wild stabs, I found that adding a .mov extension to the end of the filename worked.

  2. Music for music’ sake? Haven’t seen this but am a little nervous and unsure about whether I want to. I wonder who the audience of this documentary is? If the audience is supposed to be musicians, isn’t that preaching to the choir so to speak? I love music more than almoatcanythin in my life but I do worry about it as a respected medium of art. I guess that’s a load of crap in a way though as music will always survive. Even as people disrespect it and even as it’s treated by soulless people as just another product, music will live to see a better day. There’s so much great potential in that making music seems to be able to reach so many more people than ever before. It’s not relegated to the offspring of the rich as it was before, and you don’t necessarily have to be born into the accepted family just to touch. A djembe drum for example as it was the case for hundreds of years. I think the concern is really that many people are so distracted from focusing on any particular one thing. Musicians who want the recognition that artists they grew up listening to had in the recent past, feel a sense of nostalgia for that same recognition and for a united sort of monoculture. It’s just not going to happen for most musicians any more. Society is more fragmented. And yet, it’s also disconcerting when artists strive for that level of fandom by merely rehashing and copying ideas from other ‘hit’ songs. Music of the soul will always find a way to survive because people in touch with their soul will always try to find it…or make it themselves. However, there’s a growing number of people who are not in touch with their spirit who treat music like a cheap commodity. And there’s is more recorded music than at any time in history. It can be listened to by anyone with an internet connection. It’s just a shame when people treat it cheaply.

  3. Its nice that Red Bull supports this kind of thing ….. But this film is worthless. Not one new thought, bored me to death … just a giant waste of time and breath.

  4. I FFWD to Eno’s interviews(mostly because you can always get an interesting quip out out him)& I did enjoy him talking about his intro to technology(uncle’s projector) and how it was an initial spark to create. I think after spending years digging through the latest gear & fretting over their +’s & -‘s, sometimes it’s important to reflect WHY you started to make music in the first place. Most of the rest of the interviews seemed detached from the subject matter.

  5. I’d pay good money to have 1.5 hours worth of Eno just talking. There’s good and bad in this, but I watched it and while some of the interviews were not the best, I didn’t feel like it was a complete waste of time.

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