In Their Own Words: Chuck BerryA riveting ride that explores the rocky life of the father of Rock and Roll. AIRED: Tuesday October 5, 2021 at 9:00 PM ET/PT on documentary Channel
Chuck’s Berry’s incredible life story spans more than seven decades, and begins in the clubs and bars of a deeply segregated St. Louis. In 1955 he arrived at the office of Chess Records and handed Marshal Chess a tape with 4 songs. “Maybelline,” rose to #1 on the R&B chart, and miraculously crossed over, reaching #5 on the top 100 Pop chart. Blending ‘Hillbilly’ music with R&B, and lyrics that captured the zeitgeist of a post war generation, Chuck Berry birthed a renaissance in popular music we now call Rock and Roll. He created a canon of rock standards and a legendary stage presence that would never be matched.
Throughout his career, Chuck endured blistering racism, and learned fast from shady managers and promoters. Despite several incarcerations, and a corrupt business that regularly took advantage of its artists, Chuck Berry died a wealthy man and left a legacy that few can claim.
To his family, Chuck Berry was a sensitive poet and devoted family man – to others, he was a demanding and difficult artist, a “diabolical genius” driven by a voracious appetite for money, and a deep desire for respect and control. He never touched drugs or alcohol, his only vice … women.
In Their Own Words takes a riveting ride on the Chuck Berry train exploring the life, the legend, the music, and the man who is regularly credited as the father of Rock and Roll. We will meet the family who loved him, the players who were there for the rise, and the stars who bow to his inspiration and credit him for their own success.
“If you were going to give rock & roll another name, you might call it ‘Chuck Berry.” - John Lennon