Music gift guide: DVDs

The Rolling Stones
Irish Photo Archive
The Rolling Stones

Frank Sinatra, “Primetime” Especially popular in the 1960s, the prime-time TV special for pop stars is a lost art. Even Frank Sinatra got into the act, and this DVD collects three programs: “Francis Albert Sinatra Does His Thing” (1968), “Sinatra” (1969), and “Sinatra and Friends” (1977). The latter is the real gem, featuring Dean Martin, Tony Bennett, Natalie Cole, John Denver, and Loretta Lynn (doing a jaw-dropping disco duet of “All or Nothing at All”).

Various artists, “Something From Nothing: The Art of Rap” Directed by Ice-T, this lovingly made documentary gets to the root of how and when rap became an art form straight off the streets. Featuring interviews with – and lots of raps from – the likes of Melle Mel, Nas, Eminem, Kanye West, KRS-One, Mos Def, and MC Lyte, among many others.

The Beach Boys, “Live in Concert” and “Doin’ It Again” Missed the Beach Boys on their recent 50th anniversary world tour that featured the remaining original members? These two DVDs capture some of that magic, in addition to behind-the-scenes footage and new interviews with Brian Wilson and Mike Love.


LCD Soundsystem, “Shut up and Play the Hits” The dance-rock band’s 2011 farewell concert at Madison Square Garden is captured over the course of three discs. On the first, Dylan Southern and Will Lovelace’s documentary combines before-and-after footage of bandleader James Murphy, interview excerpts, and highlights from the performance. The other two discs present the three-hour-plus concert in full.

Get The Weekender in your inbox:
The Globe's top picks for what to see and do each weekend, in Boston and beyond.
Thank you for signing up! Sign up for more newsletters here

O.A.R., “Live on Red Rocks” In July, the ever-touring roots rock quintet made a stop at one of the country’s most venerated concert venues, the Red Rocks Amphitheatre in Colorado. The DVD release of the show includes the complete performance, plus the 40-minute documentary “Standing on a Burning Hot Sun,” which follows O.A.R.’s 2012 summer tour.

Crosby, Stills & Nash, “CSN 2012” This three-disc set offers the first live video of the legendary trio in more than 20 years. Two CDs come loaded with more than 20 live recordings, and a DVD features on the road interviews with the band and crew, special performances and exclusive conversations with the headliners.

Coldplay, “Coldplay Live 2012” In the band’s first concert film in nearly a decade, “Coldplay Live” follows the group on its “Mylo Xyloto” world tour, everywhere from Paris to Montreal. Frontman Chris Martin cites the tour, a psychedelic display of pyrotechnics and lasers, as “the most fun we’ve ever had as a band.”

Diana Ross, “Live in Central Park” “There isn’t going to be any rain, so let’s not worry about it.” Director Steve Binder remembers these famous last words during his fascinating commentary track on this famously drenched 1983 performance before 400,000. Ross — in great voice and a fab orange jumpsuit — faces down the rain and controls the crowd with diva fierceness.


The Beatles, “Stories: A Fab Four Fan’s Ultimate Road Trip” and “Magical Mystery Tour” Roll up for two new options for Beatles fans: “Stories” a fun interview compendium of folks who crossed paths with the band from Ben Kingsley to Henry Winkler and a spiffed-up version of their 1967 film with commentary from Paul McCartney.

The Rolling Stones, “Charlie Is My Darling, Ireland 1965” This documentary offers an intimate glimpse into the group’s early years, with illuminating interviews and backstage footage providing a palpable sense of life inside the rocket ride. It comes as both a single disc and a deluxe box with extra goodies like a soundtrack CD and 10” vinyl LP of live tracks.