As an immigrant always seeking to connect with locally produced content that tells me more about Canadian stories, “Drop De Needle: The Eugene Tam Story” served as an eye-opening experience.
The documentary spanning a little less than 120 minutes thoroughly captivates with his journey from establishing a small record shop at Yonge Street(behind his dad’s store) to transforming it into a recording studio and a learning institution – the renowned “Play De Record.”
Throughout the film, Eugene’s humility(“Maybe’s” ..Maybe we did it…Maybe we did have something to do with it.. Maybe..)and unwavering dedication to connecting record labels with listeners is very evident and continually stands out. His resilience, drive, and innovative spirit shine through as he navigates the challenges of the music industry with new competition being just around the corner(TRAX) and with CDs, MP3 and the launching of the internet in the early 2000s.
Specially what also stands out is the immense narrative from the plethora of influential figures in the Canadian music scene, including Jug-E, Russell Peters, DJ-X, Aki Abe, Jason Pama, Peter Primiani, Shams Tharani, David Cooper, Jester, Marcus Visionary, Skratch Bastid, Michele Geister, Starting from Scratch, Nav Sangha, Melboogie, David ‘click’ cox, Spade, Nick Holder, DJ Grouch, DJ Dopey, Frankenstein, DJ Kemo, David Ahmad, Ron Nelson, Dan-e-o, Denise Benson, Jonathan Ramos, Mr. Attic, Matt C, George Lycouras, Agile, DJ Power, Kardinal Official, Maestro Fresh Wes, Saukrates, Spin Supreme, and Alex Greggs.
Three tracks that I loved from “Drop the Needle” are Monopoly Money by Citizen Kane(Cannot find on Apple Music), Super Educated by Arcee and Take a look by Infinite.
The film stands as an ode to those who have embarked on new beginnings in Canada, whether 50 years ago or recently. It becomes clear why Toronto must continue telling its stories, especially those that showcases the tremendous impact of local talent on the global scene.
Yugbodh (YB) is a contributing writer at Onside Media, he skillfully weaves captivating stories. For him music and movies serves as an escape, and he finds them fascinating as they constantly evolve. If you have interesting tales to share, feel free to reach out via email at: email@example.com