Movies and TV Shows That Celebrate Black Music

Through the good times, the great times, the tough times, and the changing times, music has always had a way of bringing people together. Beyond just a form of entertainment, music tells stories, supports emotions, imparts wisdom, and fosters community. For many communities, music has also been a vital tool for healing, resistance, survival, and bearing witness. While it's clear that music plays a central role in society, it's important to recognize the legacy of our favorite songs and melodies. From Africa to the Americas, the influence of Black music on the world's most popular sounds, styles, and cultures is undeniable. The roots of jazz, pop, rock, gospel, hip-hop, reggae, soul, R&B, and so many other genres can be traced back to Black musicians. From biopics and documentaries about Black legends to musicals and dramas featuring music by Black artists, we've gathered some of the best movies and TV shows to help your family appreciate the contributions of Black musicians. Once you're done here, explore how Black people have impacted STEM, sports, and social justice.

Rise Up, Sing Out Poster Image
TV

Rise Up, Sing Out

age 3+

Fun musical shorts teach about diversity, communication.

Network: Disney Junior, Disney Channel (2022)
See full review
Rhymes Through Times Poster Image
TV

Rhymes Through Times

age 3+

Catchy short lessons in Black history for little ones.

Network: Noggin (2021)
See full review
Motown Magic Poster Image
TV

Motown Magic

age 4+

Thoughtful musical series emphasizes self-confidence.

Network: Netflix (2018)
See full review
Cinderella (1997) Movie Poster Image
MOVIE

Cinderella (1997)

age 5+

Musical take on classic fairy tale is an inclusion landmark.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 1997)
See full review
Take Note poster.
TV

Take Note

age 5+

Diverse, family-friendly musical comedy highlights anxiety.

Network: Peacock (2022)
See full review
The Princess and the Frog Poster Image
MOVIE

The Princess and the Frog

age 6+

First African American Disney princess is a good role model.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 2009)
See full review
Vivo Poster Image
MOVIE

Vivo

age 6+

Touching musical about family and love has a little peril.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 2021)
See full review
Karma's World Poster Image
TV

Karma's World

age 7+

Moral lessons artistically woven in top-shelf show.

Network: Netflix (2021)
See full review
Let It Shine Poster Image
MOVIE

Let It Shine

age 7+

Rousing rap-style musical has family-friendly themes.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 2012)
See full review
Amazing Grace Poster Image
MOVIE

Amazing Grace

age 8+

Aretha documentary has soaring music but no narration.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 2019)
See full review
The Cheetah Girls Poster Image
MOVIE

The Cheetah Girls

age 8+

Singers celebrate diversity and independence.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 2003)
See full review
Imba Means Sing Poster Image
MOVIE

Imba Means Sing

age 8+

Vibrant, uplifting docu about African children's choir.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 2015)
See full review
Sneakerella Movie Poster
MOVIE

Sneakerella

age 8+

NYC Cinderella musical has diverse cast, positive messages.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 2022)
See full review
Soul Poster Image
MOVIE

Soul

age 8+

Amazing animation, serious themes in existential dramedy.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 2021)
See full review
The Wiz Poster Image
MOVIE

The Wiz

age 8+

Jazzy, family-friendly musical remake of classic film.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 1978)
See full review
Thunder Soul Poster Image
MOVIE

Thunder Soul

age 9+

Uplifting docu spotlights legendary high school jazz band.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 2011)
See full review
How It Feels to Be Free Poster Image
TV

How It Feels to Be Free

age 10+

Clear-eyed docu celebrates talented women facing racism.

Network: PBS (2021)
See full review
River City Drumbeat Poster Image
MOVIE

River City Drumbeat

age 10+

Uplifting, heartfelt docu about life-changing drum corps.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 2020)
See full review
Drumline Poster Image
MOVIE

Drumline

age 12+

Outstanding cast, great message, strong language.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 2002)
See full review
Ice Cold: The Untold Story of Hip-Hop Jewelry Poster Image
TV

Ice Cold: The Untold Story of Hip-Hop Jewelry

age 12+

Hip-hop culture doc features drug use, profanity.

Network: YouTube (2021)
See full review