Prime Rocks

9:30pm Monday, November 8 on Prime

Documentary

Our background and cultural influences shape the people we become, but Freddie Mercury balanced out the public accessibility he had to endure as a superstar with a protective wall of silence around his family, friends and personal history. Tonight’s PRIME Rocks documentary goes behind that wall and tells the untold story of the man behind the myth, as recounted by its main characters. After his childhood days in Zanzibar and schooling near Bombay, Freddie arrives with his parents and sister in England to start a new life from scratch.

He goes to art college in London; he joins his first bands Ibex and Wreckage; he attains true stardom with Queen; he works on his legendry costumes; he parties; he moves to New York and then Munich and goes solo; he achieves his dream of recording with Montserrat Caball�; all of this whilst remaining the front man of one of the most successful rock bands ever. Tonight’s doco enables us to reflect on this showman’s career, sexuality and sensitivity. We meet his family, confidants and friends who shared his extraordinary life and ultimately cared for him during his long illness leading to his death from AIDS on November 24th 1991.

9:35pm Monday, November 1 on Prime

Documentary

During the 60s the ‘fab four’ were sweeping the world – with the exception of the Soviet Union. The Beatles were banned from the USSR, and were never allowed to play there. Yet they still managed to have a huge impact on the lives of generations of youngsters living under the soviet regime. On a journey through the former Soviet Union, from Moscow to St Petersburg, Kiev to Minsk, this PRIME documentary meets the people whose lives have been changed by the Beatles, the fans and musicians of the Soviet Beatles Generation. In St Petersburg, at his ‘John Lennon Temple of Peace and Love’ we meet Beatles Superfan Kolya Vasin who tells of his years of struggle with authority.

We join him and his fellow Beatles followers for a day-long party to celebrate John Lennon’s birthday, where 11 bands perform some of the group’s most famous songs. In Moscow, Putin’s Deputy Prime Minister, Sergei Ivanov tells how he learned his impeccable English from smuggled Beatles records in the 1960s, while Russian rock gods Boris Grebenshikov and Andrei Makarevich of the bands Mashina Vremeni and Aquarium describe how and why the Beatles were their inspiration, and how they defied the authorities to make their own guitars, risking arrest to play secret concerts. Moving, funny and revealing, tonight’s PRIME Rocks documentary depicts the power of music to shift the world, and hears how many in the former Soviet Union insist the Cold War was won with music from four boys from Liverpool, as much as with Nuclear missiles.

9:40pm Monday, August 16 on Prime

Documentary

After a break of 25 years, 2006 saw the original members of Roxy Music return to the studio to record new material. With the promise of a new album and with exclusive access to the band members, all the key characters and never before seen footage, this is the definitive Roxy Music story. Roxy Music exploded onto the music scene in 1972 like Aliens from another planet, combining music with art and fashion, and such was the impact that their influence can be heard in bands such as Siouxsie and The Banshees, The Sex Pistols, Duran Duran, Chic, Human League and U2 and can still be heard today in bands such as Goldfrapp and Franz Ferdinand.

Roxy Music: More Than This examines and traces the musical development of the group and the stories that surrounded them. With exclusive contributions from past and present members of Roxy Music and from people who worked with them and from luminaries who loved them, plus archive performance with brand new footage from the studio, the story of Roxy Music is told from 1972 up to the present day, and we discover how Roxy Music influenced generations of musicians and why they are still a musical force to be reckoned with today.

9:40pm Monday, August 16 on Prime

Documentary

Our background and cultural influences shape the people we become, but Freddie Mercury balanced out the public accessibility he had to endure as a superstar with a protective wall of silence around his family, friends and personal history. This documentary goes behind that wall and tells the untold story of the man behind the myth, as recounted by its main characters. After his childhood days in Zanzibar and schooling near Bombay, Freddie arrives with his parents and sister in England to start a new life from scratch. He goes to art college in London; he joins his first bands Ibex and Wreckage; he attains true stardom with Queen; he works on his legendary costumes; he parties; he moves to New York and then Munich and goes solo; he achieves his dream of recording with Montserrat Caball�; all of this whilst remaining the front man of one of the most successful rock bands ever.

The Untold Story enables us to reflect on this showman’s career, sexuality and sensitivity. We meet his family, confidants and friends who shared his extraordinary life and ultimately cared for him during his long illness leading to his death from AIDS on November 24th 1991.

9:30pm Wednesday, June 23 on Prime

Documentary

Cat Stevens was one of the most successful singer/songwriters of the 1970s, and several of his soft, romantic, and sometimes mystical singles were Top 10 hits. After eight gold albums in a row, his star began to fade, and in the late ’70s, following a near-drowning, he converted to Islam, changed his name to Yusef Islam, and dropped out of music. 1960s and 1970s pop sensation Cat Stevens had sold 40 million records when he decided to turn his back on the music business. In a quest for his true identity he changed his music, his religion, and even his name. His devoted fans were mystified, but now, for the first time, Yusuf Islam sets the record straight and tells the story behind the music of Cat Stevens.

Wednesday 23rd June 10.50pm

SGU

Light

The Destiny is still without power and an attempt to alter their collision course with a star has failed. The situation is now critical. A plan is born to abandon ship using the last working shuttle, with the hope that one of three planets in close proximity will be habitable. Although this strategy initially raises the crew’s spirits, it is short lived when Col. Young announces there is only room for seventeen people and a lottery will determine who goes and who stays. Stunned by the implication of this news, everyone considers his or her fate. Some, including Dr. Nicholas Rush and Col. Young, opt to stay on board. Others, determined to survive, vie for a seat on the departing shuttlecraft. In the short time that remains, alliances are forged and others damaged while Eli tries to create a message in a bottle with the aid of a Kino. But, unbeknownst to all, forces are at work that no one could have foreseen.

9:30pm Wednesday, June 16 on Prime

Documentary

Tonight’s Prime Rocks doco relives the career of the world’s most successful rock band, Pink Floyd. The band members take us on a journey from their humble beginnings in 1965 when fallen star Syd Barrett fronted the band, through a turbulent career spanning four decades and ending with 2005’s Live 8 reunion performance. Through interviews with David Gilmour, Roger Waters, Nick Mason and Richard Wright, plus archive performance footage and promo videos, the real and sometimes very honest Pink Floyd story is told. This documentary starts at the very beginning of newly formed Pink Floyd with Barrett at the song writing helm. His songs had a distinctively British quirky edge and the band soon moved away from their underground beginnings, producing hits such as ‘Arnold Lane’ and were snapped up by EMI in 1967 on the back of the single. However cracks started to show with Barrett’s mental state as he was pushed further into the limelight.

With Barrett sliding out of the picture and very much in his own world, in came David Gilmour and so began the transition from the British psychedelic music to the extensive sound of prog rock. The documentary takes us through the changes, from Arnold Lane to Atom Heart Mother to the legendary The Dark Side of the Moon and the huge success that was The Wall. Personal accounts and stories guide us through these transitions, discoveries and arguments which led to strained and broken relationships amongst the group. The result was Waters walking away from the group and the beginning of a new chapter in the Pink Floyd story. Finally, here is the full and official Pink Floyd story. What really happened and what does the future hold for one of the greatest rock bands in the world?

9:30pm Wednesday, June 9 on Prime

Documentary

Fleetwood Mac is a remarkable testament to rock and roll survival. Forty years, some 16 different band members, and several divorces and group break-ups later, this Anglo-American group endures as one of the world’s most popular groups, selling more than 100 million albums to date. Born out of the English blues movement pioneered by John Mayall in the mid-Sixties, Fleetwood Mac found its artistic niche in soft rock driven by haunting lyrics and female vocals. Two individuals, Mick Fleetwood and John McVie, remained constant fixtures in the group, overseeing the thread of hits in the late 60s and early 70s. McVie’s wife and later ex-wife, Christine McVie, rounded out the sound and began the transition to softer rock. With the arrival of American vocal duo Lindsay Buckingham and Stevie Nicks in the mid-70s, Fleetwood Mac had its signature sound.

9:30pm Monday, September 14 on Prime

Documentary

Guns N’ Roses were the bad boys of rock and roll. Axl Rose, Slash, Tracii Guns and their mates took the music world by storm with their aptly titled first album, Appetite for Destruction featuring the hit single Welcome to the Jungle. Bringing new influences such as blues, classic rock and punk to heavy metal, their fans embraced their authentic sound. No less an expert than Ozzy Osborne called them the next Rolling Stones. But ultimately internal pressures blew the band apart. Axl Rose is the only original member still with the band, in the last decade the band has played a sporadic concert schedule. Will the band ever regain the magic of its early albums? And, just who is Axl Rose?

9:30pm Monday, September 7 on Prime

Documentary

The king of Welsh pop, Tom Jones, encourages his celebrity audience to rock ‘n’ roll along to some of his most famous hits. A dazzling, star-studded occasion encapsulating all that Tom stands for – unmissable entertainment.

This is a one-off spectacular that spotlights the legend that is Tom Jones. The Welsh singing sensation performs an array of his greatest hits in front of a celebrity audience. Special guests include Robbie Williams and Mick Hucknall.

9:35pm Monday, August 31 on Prime

Documentary

Roxy Music exploded onto the music scene in 1972 like aliens from another planet, combining music with art and fashion, and such was the impact that their influence can be heard in bands such as Siouxsie and The Banshees, The Sex Pistols, Duran Duran, Chic, Human League and U2 and can still be heard today in bands such as Goldfrapp and Franz Ferdinand.

This Prime Rocks examines and traces the musical development of the group and the stories that surrounded them. With exclusive contributions from past and present members of Roxy Music and from people who worked with them and from luminaries who loved them, plus archive performance with brand new footage from the studio, story of Roxy Music is told from 1972 up to the present day, and we discover how Roxy Music influenced generations of musicians and why they are still a musical force to be reckoned with today.

Other contributors include Bono, Steve Jones of the Sex Pistols, Siouxsie Sioux, Nile Rodgers of Chic, John Taylor of Duran Duran, Alison Goldfrapp, Gary Tibbs, Martyn Ware of Human League, producers Chris Thomas and Rhett Davies, mix engineer Bob Clearmountain, artist Tim Head, journalists Richard Williams and Tim de Lisle, writers Simon Reynolds and Michael Bracewell.