“This Ain’t No Mouse Music” is a new documentary about Chris Strachwitz by Chris Simon and Maureen Gosling. The filmmakers have known Strachwitz for many years. Strachwitz is a San Francisco bay area resident and an icon in the world of music.
“This Ain’t No Mouse Music” traces the journey of Strachwitz’s obsession with finding and recording blues, zydeco and roots music in America, especially from the South. We see how he tirelessly and patiently travels to different parts of the country in search of music that is yet to be discovered. And when he finds that new music you should see the utter joy in his face. It is like he won the California SuperLotto!
He is often compared to Alan Lomax, who famously collected recordings of unknown musicians and created a vast repertoire of music. But there is an important difference when folks make that comparison between Strachwitz and Lomax. Strachwitz goes in search of musicians, and records their music. But then he goes one step further – he produces and distributes the music through his Arhoolie Records.
Strachwitz started his record label in 1960. Today it is considered one of the leading labels for blues, zydeco and roots music. Arhoolie Records music has influenced musicians like Ry Cooder, Bob Dylan and Bonnie Raitt.
But, what is mouse music? We were curious to find out what it meant and we got answer from the filmmakers and the subject of the documentary. Take a look at this short video, we have a longer interview with the filmmakers and Strachwitz coming up. Don’t miss watching that one.