We are currently working on a documentary about Joe Capers, affectionately known as “Blind Joe”. The film will follow the life and untimely death of this unsung hero\musician\producer.
Through the use of interviews with his friends, family, recording artist, and fellow musicians, we will unveil a man who overcame his sightlessness and went on to affect a plethora of people in all walks of life. We will uncover the many layers of Joe Capers persona and find out what a rich life a blind person can lead. Our film will show that blind people have needs and desires just like people who are sighted.
Joe was married, had a child, and a successful business. We will hear about Joe ‘s affects on the artist he encountered, and how he helped to shape the “Oakland Sound” of a flourishing Hip Hop and R&B culture in the early 80’s. His stand out work with major recording artist like MC Hammer, Digital Underground, and Tony! Toni! Tony!, as well as lesser know local Oakland talent will be spot lighted.
Our film will show a man who saw music as a way out of a life of poverty and hardship for many Oakland youth who were on the streets engulfed in a criminal culture. You will hear accounts of Joe taking youth off the troubled streets and teaching them to record, and mix music in his J Jam studios in East Oakland California. Quite often, he allowed them to live in his home for free until they could get back on their feet.
We will visit “The Orientation Center for the Blind”, as well as the “Guide dogs for the blind”, to uncover yet another aspect of Joe’s life, and his move towards independence. We are working to have city leaders recognize and make official “Joe Capers Day” in Oakland, and will film the event if so awarded.
We will also host and film a Joe Capers fundraising concert. It is our goal to educate the audience about Joe’s great work, and the everyday struggles he went through to succeed. Our film will be inspirational to people of all walks of life, in California and worldwide. We have asked recording artist, and youth on the streets of Oakland if they have ever heard about Joe Capers, and if they knew what Joe meant to the rich musical legacy they take for granted.
Most times that answer was no. We seek to change that. Joe is an individual who deserves to be recognized, and remembered in Oakland, California, and else where people will benefit from a true American inspirational story.
Produced by: Naru Kwina
Co-Produced by: Leroy Moore
For more information, contact: