From the inner-city street corners to stages around the nation, Streetlight Harmonies from director Brent Wilson tells the history of doo-wop, a musical movement that began in the post-war era that is seen not only as the origin of other genres such as rock n’ roll, R&B and hip-hop, but also as an aid in the civil rights movement. Streetlight Harmonies conveys its story through various trail-blazing artists who recount their young lives at the beginning of a revolution that has never stopped.

This documentary is truly a joy to watch from start to finish. You get to hear the backstory of some of the most iconic melodies, such as “Why Do Fools Fall In Love” and “I Only Have Eyes for You.” It’s also fascinating to hear from those who formed this movement, as you learn that most of these artists began their musical journey when they were barely teenagers. It feels like a real privilege to hear their stories, as well as to hear from contemporary artists who have been affected by this movement.

Another important aspect of Streetlight Harmonies is that it not only gives a respectful homage to all the musical artists involved, but it also reminds the viewer of the environment that these singers dealt with as emerging teenage artists. It highlights the severely racist, dehumanizing environment that black doo-wop singers experienced while touring the south, and how the universal love of doo-wop had an affect on dismantling some of these racial barriers.

The end credit scene in Streetlight Harmonies serves as a tribute to the great Ben E. King as artists come together to sing a beautiful cover of “Stand By Me.” It is a heart-warming display of just how much these artists will continue to influence generations of musicians to follow.


Available to watch on: VOD


DIRECTOR: Brent Wilson

WRITERS: Brent Wilson, George Bellias

SYNOPSIS: This documentary explores the history of Doo-Wop music through the very artists that defined the genre.