drummer Max Roach behind a barely visible drum set smiling while playing

The groundbreaking sounds of bebop pioneer in “Max Roach: The Drum Also Waltzes” on AMERICAN MASTERS – Oct. 6 at 9 pm

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American Masters

“Max Roach: The Drum Also Waltzes”

Friday, October 6 at 9:00 pm

Experience the groundbreaking sounds of bebop pioneer, virtuoso percussionist and bandleader Max Roach

View from behind a drum set with drummer Max Roach's left hand acknowledging someone off screenExplore the extraordinary life and musical career of the legendary drummer, composer and social activist. The film follows Roach’s career and personal struggles and triumphs, across a series of masterful musical innovations and artistic reinventions. His creativity and unshakable sense of mission kept him at the forefront of music and activism across seven decades–from the era of the Jim Crow south, to the Civil Rights years… from the heady days of post-war modern jazz, to the hip hop-era and beyond.

Roach’s far-reaching ambitions were inspired and challenged by the inequities of the society around him. His political consciousness, expressed in his groundbreaking Freedom Suite and other works, made him a fierce advocate for change at a time when the nation was steeped in racism.

Max Roach: The Drum Also Waltzes premieres Friday, October 6 at 9 p.m. on PBS, and the PBS App.