“Harry was a big bunny….with very sharp teeth.” — Paul Williams (songwriter & friend)

Harry Edward Nilsson III (June 15, 1941 – January 15, 1994) — Over this past weekend I had the opportunity to check out a screening of the new Harry Nilsson documentary Who is Harry Nilsson (And Why is Everybody Talkin’ About Him)? at the Egyptian Theatre, in Hollywood. It was outstanding; both perversely fascinating, and heartbreaking, and much like Nilsson’s music, at exactly the same time.

Written and Directed by John Scheinfeld, the film documents Nilsson’s life from his early childhood growing up in Brooklyn, throughout his career, to his death in California. A tragic figure, Nilsson’s life was, to paraphrase Mickey Dolenz in the film, “500 miles per hour.” The guy didn’t let up, be it creatively, booze, drugs, partying, et al, and Who is Harry Nilsson (And Why is Everybody Talkin’ About Him)? expertly conveys this side of the artist as well as showing us the the quieter, more introverted side of the man.

The storytelling is supported by commentary from a veritable “who’s who” of prominent characters throughout Nilsson’s life. Because of this, the audience gets a rare, candid look into Nilsson’s life both professionally and personally. Highly recommended.

Below: Absolutely check out the trailer for Who is Harry Nilsson (And Why is Everybody Talkin’ About Him)?, and two tracks off Nilsson’s crowning achievement, his 1971, Richard Perry produced LP, Nilsson Schmilsson.

MP3: Harry Nilsson :: Gotta Get Up
MP3: Harry Nilsson :: Coconuts

Video: Nilsson Sings “Good Old Desk” on Playboy After Dark
Video: Harry Nilsson sings “Everybody’s Talking” at the Beat Club
Amazon: Harry Nilsson – Nilsson Schmilsson

official website ++ www.myspace.com/whoisharrynilsson ++ www.harrynilsson.com

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+ Visit The Hype Machine for additional Harry Nilsson MP3s.

6 Responses to “Who Is Harry Nilsson? :: The Documentary”

  1. Nilsson Schmilsson is an excellent album. You can also find the videos for Jump Into the Fire/Coconut/Without You/ here: http://www.beatking.com/forums/index.php?showtopic=23440

  2. What? No “Jump Into the Fire”? He certainly was a under appreciated lost great.

  3. […] wild about Harry Jump to Comments Be sure you stop over at Aquarium Drunkard and read Justin’s excellent post on a newdocumentary about Harry Nilsson, one of our favorites here at AM, Then FM. […]

  4. Thanks for this. I’ve been meaning to get in to him, and after seeing that preview I realize how many amazing songs he’s done. Thanks!

  5. […] 9. Harry Nilsson – The Beehive State Between buzz from the new Nilsson documentary [aquarium drunkard] and an LED Soundsystem cover version of Harry’s powerhouse Jump Into The Fire, Nilsson and the shandemonium shadow pole is back this year. Perhaps his 2007 prowess was spurred on by the late 2006 full album covering of Pussy Cats by a band called The Walkmen. As any of his material from any time is always stunning, and Nilsson is on in general, above is a track from the fantastic Nilsson Sings Newman. […]

  6. I keep hearing great things about the new documentary. I heard it showed here in SF but i found out about it too late. I was hoping it would either go on sale soon, or at least be uploaded as a torrent somewhere… but alas, no… so far. Any ideas?

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