“Little Richard: I Am Everything” is a new documentary that tells the story of one of the most influential figures in rock and roll history. Directed by Lisa Cortés, the film premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in January 2023. It is now available to stream on various platforms.
About Little Richard
The film tells the story of Richard Penniman, the man who would become Little Richard. Little Richard was born in Macon, Georgia, in 1932. He grew up in a poor family and was often bullied for his flamboyant personality. But Richard was determined to make a name for himself, and he eventually found his way to the world of music.
The artist quickly became a star, thanks to his unique blend of gospel, blues, and rock and roll. He released a string of hit songs in the early 1950s. Among those hits are “Tutti Frutti,” “Long Tall Sally,” and “Good Golly, Miss Molly.” His wild stage performances and flamboyant personality made him a sensation. He quickly became one of the most popular musicians in the world.
But Little Richard’s career took a turn in the late 1950s, when he became a born-again Christian. Upon renouncing his rock and roll lifestyle, he began preaching the gospel. Little Richard would return to music in the 1960s, but he never quite recaptured the same level of success.
He once said, “If God can save an old homosexual like me, he can save anybody.” And, according to NBC News, “in a 1982 interview, he told David Letterman that he had been gay all his life but that God had let him know that ‘He made Adam be with Eve, not Steve.'”
Though he appeared to often waver between the sacred and the secular, Little Richard reportedly remained a believer.
Where to Watch It
“Little Richard: I Am Everything” is a fascinating look at the life and career of one of the most influential figures in rock and roll history. The film is full of archival footage and interviews with Little Richard’s friends, family, and collaborators.