"Linda could literally sing anything," says Dolly Parton, just one of the famous fans offering a reverent word in the new documentary 'Linda Ronstadt: The Sound of My Voice'.
Premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival on the 3rd May, the screening was followed by a tribute set from fellow star and admirer Sheryl Crow, performing some of Ronstadt's best known hits, like her remakes of 'When Will I Be Loved' and 'You're No Good'.
Directed by Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman, both of whom were huge fans as teenagers, the film is based on Linda Ronstadt's 2013 book 'Simple Dreams: A Musical Memoir' which was published after her retirement from music.
Linda Ronstadt was diagnosed with Parkinson's in December 2012, which has rendered her unable to sing as she used to. So in the absence of her voice, the documentary aims to reclaim Ronstadt's rightful position as one of the most gifted vocalists of our time.
Admirers and collaborators who appear in the film to assess the importance of her work to the pop-rock milieu, and in particular to women in the industry, include Bonnie Raitt, Karla Bonoff, Dolly Parton and Emmylou Harris. Raitt, Harris, Crow and Stevie Nicks are also among those seen performing at Ronstadt’s Hall of Fame induction in 2013 during the film's end credits.
Describing the vocalist's emergence as a solo artist in Los Angeles clubs after her initial sucess with the Stone Poneys, the film goes on to cover Linda's superstardom of the 1970s and her later work. Linda's producer Peter Asher, David Geffen, Cameron Crowe, Jackson Browne, Ry Cooder, Aaron Neville, Don Henley and her former house mate J.D. Souther all give on-screen memories in the film.
Billboard says the film "makes a succinct, powerful case for Ronstadt’s status as a twentieth-century music icon," with Variety saying "The movie is mostly content to be a portrait of Ronstadt the artist, and it’s more than satisfying on that front."