Veteran singer/songwriter Sandra St. Victor, lead singer of The Family Stand, had a great project she wanted to get off the ground. She wanted to bring together the daughters of various soul legends for a unique documentary. But producing a documentary is a major undertaking, so St. Victor decided to go the crowdfunding route. She created a campaign on Pledgemusic .com to not only organize the documentary but also a soundtrack and tour featuring six artists.
Now the campaign is entering its last month. “At first, I really didn’t want to do the crowdfunding route, but it is actually people getting together to help get a project completed,” says St. Victor. “Before, I didn’t like the idea of crowdfunding but really at the end of the day all successful careers are crowdfunding in a different way and the concept actually allows people to get more involved.” So far the crowdfunding has been very successful and has almost neared its goal.
Daughters Of Soul is actually a venture St. Victor has been doing for 11 years, just in a somewhat of a different form. Initially, it was a special two-hour collaborative concert which has performed everywhere from Spain to The Netherlands to London. It is a European concert series that St. Victor founded in 2004 with the goal to carry on R&B’s influential legacy. “I had been doing the tour for a while and lately the offers we were receiving just covered the costs. Then when I was approached about this documentary and I went back to some of the same venues, I was getting 50 percent less for the show so I started to think about the documentary and the possibilities.”
Through the documentary project, the Daughters of Soul honor their legendary parents. The artists include Lisa Simone, daughter of Nina Simone; Lalah Hathaway, whose father is Donny Hathaway; Indira Khan, the daughter of Chaka Khan; Kori Withers, Bill Withers’ daughter; Phunne Stone, her father is Sly Stone; and Syl Johnson’s daughter Syleena Johnson.
“Some of the women were on tour with Daughter of Soul and I noticed how they bonded. All these women can relate to their shared experiences of growing up with legendary artists and then being recognized on their own for their talents,” says St. Victor, who was inspired to do the documentary from her long-running Daughters concert series. “I had been sitting around for years in hotel rooms and on the bus, at the airports with these women and listening to these women and their stories and it was enlightening. What I saw was so amazing, this bond, that I wanted to find a way for others to see.”
The documentary will tell the story of each of the artists as well as share their thoughts and, in some cases, their moments with their legendary parent(s). There will also be concert footage as well.
Since 1990, Lalah Hathaway has constantly released recordings such as her latest release: “Lalah Hathaway LIVE!”
Syleena Johnson has released six well-received albums and starred in two hit TV reality programs, “R&B Divas: Atlanta” and “Couples Therapy.” Her latest album is “Chapter 6: Couples Therapy.
Indira Khan, daughter of Chaka Khan and former member of the Motown act Pretty In Pink, has worked with artists ranging from Johnny Gill to Paula Abdul, also fronting the new edition of her mother’s former group, Rufus.
Artist, performer, actor and songwriter Lisa Simone recently released “All Is Well.” As a fierce artist, performer, actor, and songwriter, Lisa Simone’s latest release is “All Is Well.”
Sylvette Phunne Stone (aka Raw Syl) is a multi-instrumentalist specializing in vocals, keyboard, guitar and composition.
Kori Withers started out singing in choral music at church and in school ensembles. Today, Kori plays piano and guitar, and the music she writes weaves soul and jazz styles with pop influences.
What makes the documentary unique is that it will also examine what it is like to grow up as the daughter of a musical legend. “How do you grow up in a house of a legend; how do you learn to navigate that; and how do you separate who you are and what people expect of you because of your last name?” asks St. Victor. “This can be especially difficult if you decide to go into the same career. The documentary is not just about their parents but it is about these women. I hope folks will see the daughters and their relationships on a personal level. It’s not about their DNA, but their experiences.”
St. Victor has teamed up with Zeppers Film + TV, an award-winning film company based in Amsterdam, to produce the documentary with help from the Dutch Film Commission. Filming is slated to start in 2016.
For St. Victor, this is a project of passion–and her mission to educate people about the history of soul music. “When I look now and I see our kids and what they don’t know about our history, it saddens me,” she says. “I think it is important that we correct this. When I ask a child who Sly Stone is and they don’t know, I am deeply annoyed…the kids of Rolling Stones fans know who the Rolling Stones are. That’s what we have to work on. You can be sure my kids know who Sly Stone is and Stevie Wonder is.”