Rye Roalition
USA | 2014 | 1:17:25 | Documentary |

When they signed with one of the world’s biggest record labels, New Jersey’s Rye Coalition was primed to finally get their glory, or so it seemed. Like countless rockers before them, childhood friends started a band in a basement with these simple goals in mind: have fun and play good music. This film traces their career (culled from over 20 years of footage) from early days spent blasting through a seemingly endless array of basement shows and dive bar gigs for well over a decade, to their growth as musicians touring on bigger and bigger bills: Mars Volta, At-the-Drive-In, Queens of the Stone Age. After gaining momentum from 2002′s On Top LP, engineered by rock legend Steve Albini, they were signed to Dreamworks Records and none other than Dave Grohl (Nirvana, Foo Fighters) came on as their producer. Then, it all imploded.

Supplemented with the band’s own home movies, the filmmaker has continuously documented these singular rockers for over a decade, brazenly chronicling choice moments with Rye Coalition (and those who know them well) on tour, at home and in the studio. Although the band was praised by critics and supported by an absurdly dedicated grassroots fan base, somehow these Jersey rockers never got their due. Until now.

Winner, Best Documentary Film, New Jersey International Film Festival (2014). Featuring: Steve Albini (Shellac), Dave Grohl (Foo Fighters), Tim Green (Nation of Ulysses), Jared Warren (The Melvins), Allison Wolfe (Bratmobile) & more. 2014; 77 minutes. ryecoalitionthemovie.com

Director & Producer: Jenni Matz

Dave Leto
Jon Gonnelli
Ralph Cuseglio
Justin Angelo Morey
Herbert Wiley
Dave Grohl Sound City, Behind the Music (Motorhead), The 2014 Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony
Jared Warren Kill All Redneck Pricks: A documentary film about a band called KARP
Steve Albini Breadcrumb Trail, Out of Tune, You Weren’t There: A History of Chicago Punk 1977-1984
Todd Abramson
Henry Owings The Comedians of Comedy (Producer), An Evening with P. Oswalt
Allison Wolfe The Punk Singer

Jenni Matz is an Archivist, having spent the past six years as Manger of The Archive of American Television at the Television Academy in Los Angeles. She has interviewed over 100 celebrities and legends of the small screen and stage, including Ernest Borgnine (actor), George Carlin (comedian), Vince Gilligan (creator, “Breaking Bad”), Hugh Hefner (publisher) & Betty White (actress) . She has worked in film/tv for over 15 years as an editor, researcher, and interviewer (for PBS, the History Channel, and many indie projects). In 2006 she received a Masters in Library Science and moved to LA from the East Coast. Her movie about rock band Rye Coalition has been a labor-of-love project, ongoing for many years. This is her first self-produced feature film. Other production credits include:
• Edited “Rye Coalition: Live at Maxwells” a full-length concert feature.
• Edited Music Documentary for Rye Coalition as a DVD bonus feature on “Curses” CD/DVD (Gern Blandsten, 2006).
• Edited Music Documentary for the band … And You Will Know Us By the Trail Of Dead, for their “World’s Apart” CD/DVD. (Interscope, 2005)
• Directed/Edited a documentary film based on oral history interviews with Federal District Judge Mazzone, Sen. Edward Kennedy, Michael Dukakis for “A History of the Boston Harbor Cleanup” (Urban Harbors Institute, 2005).
• Directed/Edited “Abe Lerner: A Life in Books”; a documentary about the AIGA award-winning designer. (Typophiles, 2002).
• Associate Producer/Researcher, HH Productions, “Through the Lens: Dateline- Saigon” (2007)
• Assistant Director, Oregon Public Broadcasting/ Annenberg, “American Passages – A Literary Survey” (2002)
• Line Producer, ABC News/Igor Productions with Diane Sawyer, “Women, Fashion & The Workplace” (1999)
• Production Coordinator/Assistant Editor, WGBH/Firstlight Pictures for The American Experience, “The Hoover Dam” (1997)

This project is an intimate portrayal of what it took to be in an unsigned, DIY touring band in the mid 90s. Rye Coalition are best friends who met in high school and began playing music together in 1993. The troubles and obstacles they faced as a band and as friends earned them the moniker The Hard Luck Five. Still, despite the implosion of the music industry at the exact moment they were poised to make it big;– they persevere. Although the band was praised by critics and supported by an absurdly dedicated grassroots fan base, somehow these Jersey rockers never got their due. The band has granted me access to over 20 years’ worth of home movies, which I have supplemented with my own footage following them onstage and off since the late 90s. It took me almost a decade to edit the film, comprised of unseen tour footage, studio outtakes, and new interviews with the band, their families, and rock legends Steve Albini and Dave Grohl among many others. This is a movie about friendship and rock ‘n roll. I hope you love it!- JM