Emmett has been my role model for as long as I can remember. But it's not just me. He's developed a world following among musicians, yet most people still have no idea who he is or what The Stick is.
Emmett's story is a rich, colorful history, born of hardship and insecurity that lead to his searching for and achieving acceptance. His support has grown and continues to grow from a community that he personally built, "stick by stick." This is a true grassroots movement with an unlimited variety of sounds and stories about people from all walks of life that have one thing in common, The Stick. A lot of the people who play it are individualistic like Emmett, so there is much original music to be heard. But seeing it played is the only way you'll believe that so much music can come from one thin instrument.
Emmett embodies The Stick. The Stick is an authentically unique creation, born out of the hope and idealism of the "freedom generation" at the end of the '60s. A lot of cultural upheaval was going on then. At that time he was a jazz guitarist, playing the tradition of Barney Kessel. Then along came the wild breakthrough of guitar virtuosos, Jimi Hendrix, Eric Clapton and John McLaughlin. That was it! Emmett was stimulated to pursue a new way to play strings. This decision changed his life forever and those around him. It took amazing courage to keep going in the face of resistance by the musical establishment. There have been a lot of battles, some won and some lost.
Dan Chapman has been an artist all his life and has been working in the film industry for 26 years. His work as a poster artist has won numerous awards and is included as part of the permanent collection in The Library of Congress. He spent 15 years as a creative executive working in motion pictures advertising for every major studio in Los Angeles. In 2002 he started his own design company. His graphic work can be seen at: www.chapman-design.com
In 2004, Dan began his first documentary, EMMETT and formed his production company, Chapdoc. Visit: www.chapdoc.com
This film is for all audiences, especially those who feel that art is not a competition. There's a natural audience of musicians who are already interested in this subject. More info on Emmett can be found at: www.emmettchapman.net and on The Stick at: www.stick.com
Technical: Documentary work-in-progress. Production started 11/04; Region produced: Los Angeles; Language: English; Shoot format: DV; Aspect ratio: 16:9; Edit System: Final Cut Pro; Intended run time: 90 minutes; Intended final format: 35mm