MVD Entertainment GroupNew DVD and Blu-ray versions of the 1984 documentary Gospel According to Al Green, which examines the Memphis soul legend’s decision to abandon his pop career to become a preacher and gospel singer, will be released on July 7.

The film, which was directed by Robert Mugge, features Al Green leading a special seventh anniversary church service at his Full Gospel Tabernacle in December 1983, as well as interviews with the singer, Hi Records producer Willie Mitchell and Philadelphia music critic Ken Tucker.

The documentary also includes footage of Green rehearsing in a studio with his backing musicians, and performances from a February 1984 concert Al gave for non-commissioned officers at Bolling Air Force Base in Washington, D.C.

The film also includes appearances by Green’s frequent songwriting partner and Hi Records session guitarist Mabon “Teenie” Hodges and Al’s longtime band director and one-time Jimi Hendrix rhythm guitarist Larry Lee.

In addition, the new version of Gospel According to Al Green contains a number of extras, including a new 17-minute feature on the making of the documentary, audio of the entire interview Green gave for the film, extended footage of one of Al’s performances during the December ’83 church service and a personal telephone message Green recorded for Mugge in the mid-1980s.

Among the many highlights of the movie is Green’s recounting of the dramatic incident that motivated him to give up pop music: a spurned girlfriend poured boiling hot grits on him while he was showering at his home, and then shot and killed herself.

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