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You may not know this, but a film’s “star” rating on the IMDB database is an important factor for streaming video services like Netflix and Hulu, who use it to decide what films to license and for how long.

The process is simple and you don’t even need to have an IMDB account to do it. Simply go to the film’s IMDB page and click where it says “rate this film. Here’s a screen shot to help you.

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MVD Visual, a division of MVD Entertainment Group of Oaks, PA, has picked up North American distribution rights for Troubadour Blues on home video, download and streaming platforms. MVD is a family-owned company that got its start in the heyday of MTV, distributing music videos on VHS to the burgeoning video rental market — they are music people and will help get this documentary into appreciative hands.

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Looking at the date on that last post, I really need to catch this blog up to date. I’ll be screening Troubadour Blues Thursday, Feb. 23, at the Folk Alliance International Conference in Memphis, and Saturday, Feb. 25, at the Winter Roots and Blues Roundup in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada — and then sticking around to talk to music and filmmaking students on Monday and Tuesday.

Here’s an ad that’s running next month in Video Librarian, a magazine for media buyers at library systems and university libraries.

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Erie friends, you’ll get your chance to see Troubadour Blues for the first time Friday, Oct. 28, at the Erie Art Museum, with special musical guest Mark Dignam.

Doors open at 7, and you can get a drink and look at art until Mark plays a short set at 7:30. The screening will begin at 8, with a Q&A and more music afterwards. There’s a suggested donation of $10, but we’ll let you in for whatever you can contribute. Proceeds will help put Troubadour Blues on the road to Nashville, Austin, Boston, Washington, Columbus and many more places.

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“Troubadour Blues” has been selected as the Opening Night film for the 2011 Buffalo International Film Festival. This will be the world premiere of the film as well as the official DVD release date.

Buffalo International Film Festival logo

Two-time Grammy nominee Peter Case, one of the main subjects of the film, will be on hand for the festivities, including a 6 p.m. reception and an Opening Night party after the 7:15 p.m. screening. The event will be held at The Screening Room, 4524 Bailey Ave., Amherst, NY (enter through the Arthur Murray Dance Studio).

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About the Film

Troubadour Blues is a feature-length documentary that explores the fascinating world of traveling singer-songwriters. We see them in a variety of situations: impromptu performances, concert stages, formal and informal interviews and songwriting sessions. This is a story that needs to be heard. In our media-saturated age of instant pop stardom, there is real danger that the tradition of the itinerant working musician -- the tradition of Woody Guthrie and Leadbelly -- is being diluted or lost. Troubadour Blues explores the hidden corners of our culture, where honest, authentic songs reflecting the human experience are still being made up and sung.

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