Jon Blistein: Rolling Stone
Nefarious cover-ups, the Civil Rights movement and the music and activism of Sam Cooke converge in the trailer for the next episode of the Netflix docu-series, ReMastered, out February 8th.
Cooke was shot dead at the age of 33 by motel manager Bertha Franklin, who said the singer broke into her office and attacked her. Because of this, Cooke’s death was deemed a “justifiable homicide” and Franklin was never charged. However, the singer’s family has long claimed that Cooke’s death was part of a larger conspiracy due to his prominence in the Civil Rights movement.
The trailer for Cooke’s episode of ReMastered offers a fascinating look at the tensions that defined the singer’s career. Though record executives wanted him to be nothing more than an entertainer, Cooke invited controversy and threats for championing Civil Rights and refusing to play segregated venues. As one interviewee suggests, the bigger a star Cooke became, the more threatening many people thought him to be: “Sam Cooke might be the most dangerous to you because he’s already in white American living rooms.”