Documentary On Anderson Fair Gets Thumbs-Up From Hollywood Reporter

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For the Sake of the Song , the documentary on Montrose's legendary Anderson Fair, is about to make the festival rounds; this week it had its world premiere at SXSW.

The influential trade publication Hollywood Reporter reviewed the Austin showing and was enthusiastic, which is always a good thing.

The doc views the singer-songwriter scene via the tiny stage at Anderson Fair, an eccentric cafe in Houston's bohemian Montrose neighborhood that has survived for decades while making barely enough money to keep the lights on. Interviews with those who have volunteered over the years paint a lively portrait of a family-style business where nobody gets paid but everybody -- musicians, especially -- gets a bellyful of whatever's on the stove....

Funny and deeply in love with the troubadour tradition, the film keeps its focus tight on this place and its evolving cast of characters. That single-mindedness may limit the movie's appeal but makes it quite satisfying for music lovers wanting a better understanding of what makes Texas-bred folkies tick.

Screenwriter Jim Barham hadn't seen the review when we called, but was happy to get the good word.

He says the film is starting to make the festival rounds, including here at the Houston Worldfest April 10.

"We're going to Houston and the Nashville fest and we've entered in a couple of others," Barham says. "We're just taking them one at a time as the deadlines occur, and we'll see what happens.

For the Sake of the Song has gotten financial help from local institutions, including the Houston Endowment and the Houston Arts Alliance. It features interviews with Lyle Lovett, Lucinda Williams and Nanci Griffith.

This isn't the official trailer, which isn't embeddable, but it's a compilation of some of the people interviewed:


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