MetroFocus: November 19, 2020

New EPIX docuseries “By Whatever Means Necessary: The Times Of Godfather Harlembrings to life the excitement of 1960s Harlem and introduces the artists who dared to use their voices, instruments and lyrics to take a stand against systemic injustice. Featuring interviews with Academy Award-winner Forest Whitaker, musicians Gladys Knight and Herbie Hancock, activists Reverend Al Sharpton and Felipe Luciano, former U.S. Representative Charles Rangel and Apollo Theater historian Billy Mitchell and so many more. The series uses archival footage for a look beyond the black and white historical images into the multicolored souls of musicians unafraid to use music as a weapon against change. Tonight, executive producer and director Keith McQuirter and  vocalist Robin Clark takes us on this meaningful musical tour of Harlem.

In the ring Muhammad Ali floated like a butterfly and stung like a bee on his way to becoming an American boxing legend. But what was he really like when the gloves came off? His daughter, Hana Ali, shares the intimate side of growing up with “the greatest.”

TRANSCRIPT

> THIS IS 'METROFOCUS' WITH RAFAEL PI ROMAN, JACK FORD, AND JENNA FLANAGAN.

'METROFOCUS' IS MADE POSSIBLE BY SUE AND EDGAR WACHENHEIM III, SYLVIA A. AND SIMON B. POYTA PROGRAMMING ENDOWMENT TO FIGHT ANTI-SEMITISM, BERNARD AND DENISE SCHWARTZ, BARBARA HOPE ZUCKERBERG, AND BY JANET PRINDLE SEIDLER, JODY AND JOHN ARNHOLD, CHERYL AND PHILIP MILSTEIN FAMILY, JUDY AND JOSH WESTON, DR. ROBERT C. AND TINA SOHN FOUNDATION.

> HI, I'M JENNA FLANAGAN.

WHEN EPIC PREMIERED THE DRAMA - IN 2017, IT NOT ONLY TOLD THE STORY OF ELLIS WORTH BUMPY JOHNSON.

IT PORTRAYED A COMMUNITY PUSHING FOR SOCIAL CHANGE.

AMERICA'S MOST FAMOUS BLACK NEIGHBORHOOD IS KNOWN FOR ITS INNOVATIVE, PROVACATIVE AND GROUND BRACKING SOCIAL SCENE.

IT'S FRONT AND CENTER IN A NEW DOCUMENTARY SERIES ON EPIC.

TAKE A LOOK.

IN HARLEM AND IN THAT TIME, THINGS WERE COMING TO A HEAD.

MUSIC BECAME A GUIDING FORCE.

IT GAIFS A SENSE OF COMMUNITY.

WE STARTED A REVOLUTION.

THERE WAS A TRANSITION HAPPENING.

WHEN YOU LOOK AT HARLEM, THE PEOPLE, THEY WERE TRYING TO BE TREATED WITH RESPECT.

THE ONLY THING EVERYONE AGREED ON, IT WAS TIME FOR REAL CHANGE.

THAT WAS JUST A CLIP OF SOME OF THE FOUR-PART DOCU-SERIES 'BY WHATEVER MEANS NECESSARY, THE TIMES OF THE GODFATHER OF HARLEM.'

I'D LIKE TO WELCOME SERIES DIRECTOR AND EXECUTIVE PRODUCER KEITH McCOURTER.

WELCOME TO THE PROGRAM.

THANK YOU FOR HAVING ME.

AND MUSICIAN AND VOCALIST ROBIN CLARK ALSO FEATURED IN THE SERIES.

ROBIN, WELCOME.

THANK YOU.

IT'S A PLEASURE BEING HERE.

I'M GLAD TO HAVE YOU BOTH ON.

KEITH, I WANT TO START WITH YOU AND ASK HOW DID THIS DOCUMENTARY COME TOGETHER?

THE GOD FATHER OF HARLEM IS AN IMPRESSIVE SERIES ON ITS OWN, BUT WHAT WAS THE INSPIRATION FOR THIS DOCUMENTARY SERIES?

I HAD A CONVERSATION WITH THE PRODUCERS OF THE SCRIPTED SERIES, AND THEY HAD CREATED A REALLY EXCITED FAN BASE FOR THE SERIES, AND THEY WERE GOING INTO THEIR SECOND SEASON.

THEY WANTED TO KEEP THE FANS FROM THE WORLD OF HARLEM.

I PITCHED THE IDEA OF DOING A DOCUMENTARY SERIES AND EXPLORING THE CULTURE AND POLITICS OF THE MUSIC AS A WAY TO TAKE A DEEP DIVE INTO THAT TIME PERIOD.

THAT'S KIND OF HOW IT A ALL CAME TOGETHER AND CAME ABOUT.

OKAY.

AND WHAT STRUCK ME THE MOST WAS THE FRONT AND CENTER LINK BETWEEN MUSIC AND, IF YOU WILL, POPULAR OR POP CULTURE WHICH CAN SOMETIMES BE DISMISSED AS FRIVOLOUS AND THE ROLE THAT THAT PLAYED IN CREATING THE SPACE FOR SOCIAL CHANGE.

WHY WAS THAT PLACED SO FRONT AND CENTER IN THIS DOCU-SERIES?

BECAUSE THERE IS SO MUCH TO LOOK AT WHEN IT COMES TO THE MUSIC AND POLITICS, NOT ONLY IN THE 1960s, BUT TODAY, WHAT'S GOING ON TODAY.

SO 2020 HAS BEEN A YEAR OF CHANGE AND A YEAR -- EYE OPENING YEAR FOR SO MANY PEOPLE ACROSS THE COUNTRY AND THE WORLD.

AND SO TAKING A LOOK AT 1960 AS A PARALLEL WAS AN AWESOME OPPORTUNITY.

SO WHAT WE FOUND WAS, FOR INSTANCE, T'THE TWIST' BY CHUBB CHECKER IS AN INNOCENT POP SONG THAT YOU CAN DANCE TO AND IS FUN.

BUT THERE WAS REAL MESSAGE IN THAT SONG.

IT BROUGHT BLACK CULTURE INTO WHITE HOUSEHOLDS FOR THE FIRST TIME, AND THE WHITE TEENAGERS TOOK ON THIS DANCE CRAZE AND IT WAS UNSTOPPABLE.

SO JAMAL JOSEPH, WHO WE INTERVIEW IN OUR SERIES, A PROFESSOR AT COLUMBIA AND BLACK PANTHER IN THE '60s QUOTED ELDRIDGE CLEAVER AND SAID THE AT WHICH TIME DID MORE THAN LAW, POLITICS AND RELIGION COULD EVER DO.

THAT'S ONE EXAMPLE OF HOW POP CULTURE IS SO INTEGRATED INTO OUR EVERYDAY LIVES THAT WE TAKE FOR GRANTED OFTENTIMES.

AGAIN, THAT'S WHAT I FOUND TO BE SO UNIQUELY INTERESTING ABOUT THIS, THAT DOESN'T SEEM TO BE A NARRATIVE THAT WE REALLY FULLY EXPLORE.

BUT, ROBIN, I WANT TO TURN TO YOU AND ASK, FIRST OFF, HOW DID YOU GET INVOLVED WITH THIS PROJECT?

WE GOT A PHONE CALL FROM ONE OF THE PRODUCERS OF THE SHOW, AND I WAS ASKED TO DO IT.

MY HUSBAND WAS ACTUALLY ASKED TO DO IT.

AND I STARTED TALKING IN THE BACKGROUND, AND THE PERSON SAID CAN I SPEAK WITH YOUR WIFE AS WELL.

THAT'S WHY I'M HERE.

THAT'S HOW I GOT HERE.

THEN, GIVEN YOUR PERSPECTIVE, I'M WONDERING IF THROUGH YOUR PARTICIPATION IN THIS, AND EVEN SOME OF THE POINTS THAT KEITH WAS MAKING, DID IT CHANGE THE WAY THAT YOU LOOKED AT THE ROLE YOUR CAREER PLAYED IN A LARGER MOVEMENT, OR DID IT SORT OF REENFORCE SOMETHING THAT YOU ALREADY KNEW BUT WAS BEING BETTER EXPLAINED TO A LARGER AUDIENCE?

I THINK IT REINFORCED SOMETHING I ALREADY KNEW.

I STARTED IN A GROUP NAMED LISTEN MY BROTHER WITH LUTHER VANDROSS AT THE APOLLO THEATERMENT WE WERE TEENAGERS IN HIGH SCHOOL.

IT WAS A REPERTOIRE COMPANY THAT TALKED ABOUT THE TIMES.

WE SANG SONGS ABOUT THE TIME WE WERE LIVING IN.

SO THEY WERE SONGS OF EMPOWERMENT.

WE WERE EMPOWERED AT AN EARLY AGE.

THE MOVEMENT WAS STARTING TO HAPPEN.

WE WERE TERRIFIED, BUT WE WERE ENGAGED AT THE SAME TIME, AND BECAUSE OF THAT APOLLO THEATER AND THE SONGS AND THE REPERTORY THAT WE DID, IT REALLY GOT US IN TOUCH WITH OURSELVES AND OUR CULTURE AND OUR BLACKNESS.

FOR THE FIRST TIME IN OUR LIVES, NOT BE AFRAID TO SAY I AM BLACK AND I AM PROUD.

UNTIL THEN YOU DIDN'T HEAR A LOT OF 'I'M BLACK AND I'M PROUD.'

SO WE WERE REINFORCED, I WAS REINFORCED AS A TEENAGER IN THE UNDERSTANDING THAT I COULD DO SOMETHING FOR MY CULTURE AND I COULD DO IT THROUGH MUSIC BECAUSE THAT'S WHERE I WOULD GO.

WE HAD BEEN EMPOWERED AT THAT POINT IN TIME IN OUR LIVES.

I WOULD SAY 17, 18, 16, 18 YEARS OLD.

IT JUST REINFORCED WHAT I -- WHERE I STARTED AND WHAT I KNEW.

ABSOLUTELY.

THE NOTION, I THINK, OF BEING THAT KID SOMETIMES CAN AGAIN BE SOMETHING THAT'S EASILY DISMISSED.

BUT IF YOU LOOK THROUGH OUT HISTORY, IT'S FREQUENTLY YOUNG PEOPLE WHERE THESE YOUNG SOCIAL MOVEMENTS GERMINATE.

KEITH, I WAS WONDERING IF YOU COULD TALK, ALSO, ABOUT THE PERSPECTIVE OF THE DOCUMENTARY.

THE THEORY, OF COURSE, IS TOLD FROM VERY MUCH BUMPY'S POINT OF VIEW, WITHOUT GIVING AWAY TOO MUCH, BUT COMING OUT OF JAIL FROM BEING LOCKED UP FOR ABOUT TEN YEARS INTO A TRANSFORMED HARLEM IN THE 1960s.

SO MANY GANGSTER MOVIES, FOR LACK OF A BETTER DESCRIPTION OR SERIES, ARE OFTEN MARKED BY THEIR SOUND TRACK.

I'M WONDERING IF THE SOUND TRACK OF THE MOVEMENT WAS AS IMPORTANT IN TELLING THE STORY.

100%. I THINK WHEN YOU LOOK AT 'THE GODFATHER OF HARLEM,' AND BUMPY JOHNSON'S STORY, LIKE YOU SAID, ABOUT THE CRIMINAL UNDERWORLD OF THAT TIME PERIOD.

BUT THE MESSAGE IN THAT STORY IS A CIVIL RIGHTS STORY, TOO.

BUMPY JOHNSON WAS SEEKING ECONOMIC EMPOWERMENT THROUGH THE CRIME WORLD WHERE A BLACK MAN IN THAT TIME, IN THE LEGITIMATE WORLD AND THE CRIME WORLD HAD LIMITED OPPORTUNITIES.

YOU SEE HIM PLOWING THROUGH BARRIERS.

SO THE DOCUMENTARY SERIES TAKES A LOOK AT A DIFFERENT PALLET.

THE CONNECTING TISSUE IS THE TIME PERIOD IN HARLEM AND A LOT OF KEY PLAYERS IN THE SCRIPTED SERIES LIKE MALCOLM X, CLAYTON POWELL, BUMPY JOHNSON AND SO MANY OTHERS.

SO WE REALLY WANTED TO TAKE A COMPREHENSIVE LOOK OF HOW MUSIC WAS ENGAGING THE COUNTRY THROUGH THE POB OF HARLEM.

YOU LOOK AT 1960 TO 1969, THE EARLY PART OF A DECADE, LOOK AT GOSPEL MUSIC WHICH WAS UNIVERSAL AS FAR AS BLACK AMERICANS ARE CONCERNED, THE CHURCH AND HOW THE CHURCH WAS SO MUCH THE CENTER OF OUR COMMUNITY AND HOW THOSE GOSPEL SONGS TRANSITION TO FREEDOM SONGS DURING THE CIVIL RIGHTS MOVEMENT.

INCORPORATED INTO THE MARCH ON WASHINGTON, SO MANY OTHER MARCHES.

THOSE ARE THE SOUNDS YOU'RE HEARING.

WE CAN GO FROM THERE TO JAZZ AND LOOK AT HOW JAZZ WAS IMPACTFUL, HOW JAZZ TOOK ON ITS ROLE.

FOR INSTANCE, JOHN COAL WHEN THE FOUR LITTLE GIRLS WERE MURDERED IN BIRMINGHAM, JOHN COLTRANE CREATED A SONG THAT FOLLOWED THE SAME CADENCE AT MARTIN LUTHER KING JUNIOR'S SPEECH ON THE FOUR LITTLE GIRLS.

YOU LOOK AT THE EMERGENCE OF THE POETS.

YOU SEE CURTIS MAY FIELD, A COMPLETE TRAJECTORY FROM EARLY PARTS TO THE ENTIRE DECADE WHEN HE WAS MORE POP AND MORE FEEL GOOD.

BY THE END OF THE DECADE HE WAS MORE -- HE MADE A SONG -- IT'S CALLED -- THE INJUSTICES AND THE POLLUTION.

HE'S SAYING, LISTEN, WE HAVE A LOT OF PROBLEMS.

IF WE DON'T FIX THEM, WE'RE ALL GOING TO GO TO HELL.

HE WAS TALKING ABOUT EVERYONE ACROSS THE BOARD.

YOU HAVE JUST THIS BOW OF MUSIC THAT TELLS A STORY OF HOW BLACK PEOPLE WERE STARTING TO BECOME EMPOWERED THROUGH THAT DECADE.

THAT'S WHAT OUR SERIES TAKES A LOOK AT.

BUILDING ON THAT, BECAUSE EARLIER YOU DID MENTION THAT A LOT OF THE THINGS THAT HAPPENED IN THE '60s IN TERMS OF CULTURE AND MUSIC HELPED CHANGE THINGS.

THAT'S STILL TRUE FOR TODAY.

EVEN JUST IN YOUR DESCRIPTION OF BUMPY JOHNSON, A BLACK MAN COMING OUT OF JAIL WITH NOT A LOT OF OPPORTUNITIES, HONESTLY SOUNDS LIKE THE BIO OF SOME POPULAR RAPPERS TODAY.

I'M WONDERING IF YOU SEE ANY SIMILARITIES AT ALL OR ANY COMMON THREAD BETWEEN THE MUSIC AND THE CULTURE AND THE SOCIAL MOVEMENT THAT SORT OF FUELED THEM OR VICE VERSA AS OPPOSED TO TODAY, THE '60s VERSUS NOW.

YOU KNOW, HIP-HOP HAS ALWAYS BEEN FRONT AND CENTER WHEN IT CAME TO ACTIVISM AND SPEAKING TRUTH TO POWER AND SPEAKING PLAINLY WHAT ONE EXPERIENCES FROM THEIR NEIGHBORHOOD.

SO IT WASN'T ALWAYS AN INCLUSIVE ART FARM.

IT WAS VERY SPECIFIC TO A POPULATION, AND THAT'S WHAT MAKES IT SO STRONG AND SO GREAT.

BUT NOW I THINK BEYOND HIP-HOP, REMOVING -- WE'RE SEEING AN EMERGENCE OUT OF POP CULTURE WHERE PEOPLE ARE NO LONGER PLAYING THE BUSINESS CARD AND SAYING I WANT TO BE KIND OF FREE OF THE POLITICS.

THEY'RE DIVING RIGHT IN.

IF YOU LOOK AT BEYONCE, ONE OF THE BIGGEST POP STARS WE HAVE, HER MUSIC HAS HAD ITS OWN ART, RIGHT?

WHERE SHE IS NOW UNAFRAID TO SPEAK TO POWER.

HER PERFORMANCE AT THE SUPER BOWL A FEW YEARS BACK WAS VERY MUCH AN EMPOWERMENT PERFORMANCE.

IF YOU LOOK AT J. LO, THE SAME THING, HER PERFORMANCE AT THE SUPER BOWL THIS YEAR WAS A DIRECT -- WAS SPEAKING DIRECTLY TO THE ISSUES HAPPENING AT THE BORDER THIS YEAR AND HOW IMMIGRANTS ARE UNDER ATTACK UNDER THIS CURRENT CLIMATE.

SO THE LIST IS LONG.

WE'VE SEEN A PROLIFERATION OF ARTISTS KNOWN AND UNKNOWN WHO ARE MAKING MUSIC IN HIGH NUMBERS LIKE YOU'VE NEVER SEEN BEFORE.

AND THE '60s WAS ONE MAJOR STEPPING STONE FOR ARTISTS TODAY TO COME -- WHERE THE ARTISTS TODAY CAME FROM.

IN THE '60s THEY'RE DOING IT IN WAYS WE HADN'T SEEN BEFORE THAT TIME.

ACTUALLY, ROBIN, I WANT TO BRING YOU IN ON THIS AND ASK, AS A MUSICIAN, ARE THERE ANY ASPECTS OF THE RHYTHMS AND THE BEATS AT THAT TIME THAT YOU STILL HEAR CARRYING THROUGH TODAY, JUST MUSICALLY?

ABSOLUTELY, ABSOLUTELY.

MARVIN GAYE IS THE SOUND TRACK OF THIS GENERATION AS WELL AS MY GENERATION.

MARVIN GAYE, HIS SOUND TRACK.

ARETHA FRANKLIN, THE IMPRESSIONS, AGAIN, JAMES BROWN, HUGE INFLUENCE IN HIP-HOP.

SAMPLED OVER AND OVER AND OVER AGAIN.

THAT MUSIC FROM THE '60s TOTALLY INSPIRED HIP-HOP MUSIC.

THE LAST POETS --

I WAS GOING TO SAY, THE LAST POET.

FATHERS OF HIP-HOP, RIGHT?

I CAN'T EVEN -- THE FOUNDERS -- THE FOUNDING FATHERS OF HIP-HOP, ALONG WITH, BELIEVE IT OR NOT, CAB CALLOWAY.

YOU CAN GO BACK THAT FAR.

THIS MUSIC THAT'S HAPPENING NOW, THE NEW GENERATION OF MUSIC, THE HIP-HOP, THE R&B THAT'S HAPPENING NOW, IT'S ALL RECYCLED.

A LOT OF RECYCLING GOING ON.

YES, THE LYRICS ARE ABOUT THE TIME WE'RE LIVING IN.

I'VE BEEN IN THE MUSIC BUSINESS FOR 51 YEARS, SUNG FOR A LOT OF PEOPLE.

I'VE HEARD THE SAME THEMES RUNNING THROUGH THE MUSIC FOR DECADES.

UNFORTUNATELY WE ARE GOING TO HAVE TO LEAVE IT THERE, ALTHOUGH I COULD ABSOLUTELY CONTINUE WITH THIS CONVERSATION.

KEITH, VERY QUICKLY, FOR PEOPLE WHO WANT TO BE ABLE TO SEE THIS DOCU-SERIES 'BY ANY MEANS NECESSARY, THE LIFE AND TIMES OF THE GODFATHER OF HARLEM,' WHERE CAN YOU FIND IT.

EPIC.COM, STREAM IT AND YOU CAN GO TO AMAZON PRIME AS WELL AND STROOEM STREAM IT THERE.

KEITH McCOURTER, THANK YOU FOR BRINGING US THIS DOCU-SERIES.

ROBIN CLARK, YOUR CONTRIBUTIONS NOT ONLY TO THE DOCU-SERIES BUT MUSIC ARE IMMEASURABLE.

THANK YOU VERY MUCH FOR JOINING ME.

> ATHLETE, ACTIVIST, ICON, THE GREATEST.

FORMER HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPION MOHAMMAD ALI WAS ALL OF THOSE THINGS.

FROM HIS CHILDHOOD IN THE SEGREGATED SOUTH TO HIS FINAL FIGHT WITH PARKINSON'S DISEASE, MUHAMMAD ALI NEVER BACKED DOWN.

BANNED FROM BOXING DURING HIS PRIME BECAUSE HE REFUSED TO FIGHT IN VIETNAM, HE BECAME A SYMBOL OF THE ANTI-WAR MOVEMENT AND DEFENDER OF CIVIL RIGHTS.

AS THE GREATEST, HE WAS A BOXER OF UNDENIABLE TALENT AND COURAGE, AND IN THE RING, ONLY ALI COULD FLOAT LIKE A BUTTERFLY AND STING LIKE A BEE.

WHAT WAS ALI LIKE AT HOME AS A FATHER AND A HUSBAND?

THE ANSWERS CAN BE FOUND IN THE NEW BOOK 'AT HOME WITH MUHAMMAD ALI: A MEMOIR OF LOVE, LOSS AND FORGIVENESS' WRITTEN BY HIS THIRD YOUNGEST CHILD, HAN TNAH I AND BASED ON 80 HOURS OF VOICE RECORDINGS A DAD LEFT FOR HIS DAUGHTER.

WELCOME TO THE PROGRAM.

THANK YOU FOR HAVING ME.

THIS IS REALLY AN AMAZING COLLECTION OF STORIES YOU WERE ABLE TO TELL ABOUT YOUR FATHER.

FIRST I WANT TO ASK YOU, WHAT WAS YOUR INSPIRATION TO DO THIS BOOK?

OH, MY GOSH.

I HAD A FEW.

THERE WAS A SITUATION WITH MY FATHER.

I ALWAYS SAY HE BELONGED TO THE WORLD.

PEOPLE LOVED HIM AND THEY WERE ALWAYS SHARING STORIES ABOUT HIM AND ASKING QUESTIONS.

THE QUESTION WE GET THE MOST IS WHAT WAS HE LIKE AT HOME, AS A FATHER?

WAS HE THAT BOASTFUL AND BRAGGADOCIOUS.

I WANTED TO SHARE THAT SIDE OF MY FATHER WITH THE WORLD.

I LEARNED A LOT FROM THE AUDIO RECORDINGS.

I WANTED TO SHARE THAT INFORMATION.

SHARE MY MOTHER'S STORY AND THEIR RELATIONSHIP AND MY RELATIONSHIP WITH MY FATHER.

SO WHILE THIS IS A BOOK, SO OBVIOUSLY WE AREN'T GOING TO HEAR AUDIO RECORDINGS, BUT THERE ARE TRANSCRIPTS IN THERE.

WHAT I THOUGHT WAS SO INTERESTING WAS THAT HE, MAYBE NOT INTERESTING, WOULD FIT WITH THE CHARACTER, THAT HE HAD THE FOR SITE TO MAKE SOME OF THESE AUDIO RECORDINGS, HE THOUGHT IT'S IMPORTANT TO MAKE SURE SOME OF THESE ARE PRESERVED FOR TIME.

YEAH.

PEOPLE DON'T REALIZE THIS, BUT HIS GREATEST -- IN HIS MIND HIS GREATEST ACCOMPLISHMENT WAS BEING A FATHER.

HE LOVED BEING A FATHER.

THEY USED TO SAY HE'S THE DADDY TO THE WORLD.

HE NOT ONLY WANTED TO BE OUR FATHER, BUT THE WORLD'S FATHER.

HE ACTUALLY WAS A HOME BODY.

HE LOVED BEING AT HOME.

HE COULD SIT IN HIS OFFICE FOR HOURS AT A TIME ON THE PHONE TALKING.

HE THOUGHT THE LITTLE FLEETING MOMENTS WE TAKE FOR GRANTED WERE SO BEAUTIFUL AND IT TOUCHED HIM.

HE KNOWS THAT ABOUT HIMSELF.

HE WAS TELLING US ALL YOU'LL BE SO GLAD I THOUGHT ABOUT THIS.

I'M SO GLAD I'M HISTORY CONSCIOUS.

IT'S SO GOOD I KNOW TO THINK ABOUT THIS AND PREPARE FOR THE FUTURE.

I WISH I HAD TAPES OF MYSELF WHEN WE WERE YOUNG.

LIFE IS SO BEAUTIFUL AND LIFE IS SO SHORT.

HE JUST WANTED TO CAPTURE THOSE MOMENTS THAT WERE GOING TO PASS.

I WANT TO TAKE A MOMENT FOR OUR AUDIENCE TO HEAR ONE OF THEM, SUCH A PRECIOUS MOMENT.

YOU AND YOUR DAD SINGING 'THIS IS DEDICATED TO THE ONE I LOVE.'

READY?

YEAH.

♪ THIS IS DEDICATED TO THE ONE I LOVE ♪ ♪ EACH NIGHT BEFORE YOU GO TO BED, MY BABY ♪

ONE OF THE THINGS I FIND SO INTERESTING IS THAT OFTENTIMES WHAT LITTLE THE PUBLIC KNOWS, PARTICULARLY ABOUT A SPORTS FIGURE IS WHAT WE READ THROUGH THE SPORTS PRESS.

WAS IT IMPORTANT FOR YOU TO MAKE SURE THAT THIS WAS A CHANCE TO ACTUALLY SHOW THE HUMAN BEING BEHIND THE, IN SOME WAYS, DTHE MAN YOUR FATHER WAS, BUT ALSO IN TERMS OF THE CHARACTER HE WAS PLAYING FOR THE PRESS.

YES.

MY FATHER, HE WAS ALWAYS OUTGOING AND REALLY GREAT AT MARKETING.

HE KNEW HOW TO MARKET HIMSELF AND SELL TICKETS.

THAT WAS A LARGE PART OF WHAT HE DID.

HE WAS ALSO TRYING TO PROMOTE BLACK LOVE AND SELF-PRIDE.

HE WAS ALSO VERY HUMBLE.

UP UNTIL HIS LAST DAYS, HE WOULD BE, DOES PEOPLE STILL REMEMBER ME?

HE WAS EXCITED TO KNOW HE WAS STILL MAKING NEWS.

DADDY, ARE YOU KIDDING ME?

YES, THEY REMEMBER YOU.

IT WAS GENUINE.

HE KNEW HE WAS GREAT, BUT HE NEVER TOOK IT FOR GRANTED AND HE WAS ALSO VERY HUMBLED BY IT.

HE NEEDED PEOPLE'S LOVE AND ATTENTION LIKE HE NEEDED AIR TO BREATHE.

HE GAVE THAT LOVE RIGHT BACK TENFOLD.

OUR DOOR WAS ALWAYS OPEN.

IT WAS A NORMAL OCCURRENCE TO COME HOME AND FIND HOMELESS FAMILIES THERE, NORMAL TO PICK THEM UP AND PUT THEM IN THE BACK OF THE CAR.

WHEN WE WERE EATING AND HE SAW SOMEONE REFUSED SERVICE, HE BROUGHT THEM IN AND THEY ATE WITH US.

I'M TALKING HOMELESS PEOPLE SLEEPING ON THE STREETS AND HADN'T HAD A BATH IN GOD KNOWS HOW LONG.

HE NEVER MADE A FACE AT THEM.

HE WOULD HUG THEM.

I KNOW THIS IS GRAPHIC BUT EVEN WHEN I WAS A LITTLE GIRL, HE MADE ME FEEL SO LOVED.

I WOULD BE FIVE, SIX YEARS OLD, PE PEE IN THE BED.

HE WOULD LAY DOWN AND KEEP HUGGING ME.

THAT'S A BIG DEAL.

YOU FELT SO LOVED.

THERE WAS NEVER A TIME WHERE HE WOULD SEND YOU AWAY OR PUT YOU OUT.

I WAS AN ANNOYING LITTLE GIRL.

SOME OF THOSE TAPES, HE'S ON THE PHONE TALKING ABOUT FREEING HOSTAGES IN TEHRAN.

HE WOULD BE LIKE PLEASE SHUT UP.

YOU HAVE THE HOUSEKEEPER, HEY, YOU WANT ME TO COME GET HER.

I'LL LET YOU KNOW.

I JUST GOT FINISHED DISTURBING HIM.

GIVE ME TALKIE, DADDY.

I HAD THAT FEELING AND THE TAPES VALIDATED IT.

THAT'S WHY I HAD THE EVIDENCE.

THAT WAS ONE OF THE THINGS, SO MUCH OF THE BOOK, IT WAS LIKE GOING WITH YOU THROUGH AN OLD FAMILY PHOTO ALBUM.

WHEN YOU LOOK BACK AT SOME OF THOSE PHOTOS, THE MEMORIES OF THIS TIME AND THIS PLACE AND THE PEOPLE THAT YOUR PARENTS WERE AS THEY GREW AS ADULTS, I'M WONDERING WHAT WAS IT, ASIDE FROM THE GREAT TALKING, WAS THERE ANYTHING ELSEWHERE YOU THOUGHT, I ALMOST COMPLETELY FORGOT ABOUT THAT?

YES.

THINGS I LEARNED, TOO, AND DIDN'T KNOW ABOUT.

I NEVER SAW MY PARENTS ARGUING.

AND I DON'T REMEMBER -- I COMPLETELY BLOCKED OUT MOVING AND THE LAST NIGHTS AT THE HOUSE, ALL OF THAT.

I WAS TEN YEARS OLD.

I SHOULD HAVE MEMORY OF IT.

I REMEMBER MY PSYCHOLOGIST AT THE TIME, I WAS STRUGGLING WITH WORRYING ABOUT MY FATHER SO MUCH.

TELLING ME HOW YOU FEEL ABOUT YOUR PARENTS DIVORCED, AND I BLANKED OUT AFTER THAT.

MY MOTHER WOULD SAY YOU BOTH LIKE -- WHY CAN'T YOU GET ALONG OR BE TOGETHER.

THERE WAS NO MEMORY OF THEM ARGUING.

MY MOTHER GREW OUT OF HER FATHER AND WANTED TO GET OUT ON HER OWN.

SHE MET HIM WHEN SHE WAS 18.

LONG LIFE WITH HIM AND INFIDELITIES, EVEN THOUGH THEY WERE GOOD FRIENDS.

WE DISCOVERED THE LETTERS HE WROTE TO HER IN 2012 OR '13.

SHE NEVER SAW THEM.

I LEARNED ABOUT THAT, AND THEN, ALSO, AS I WAS COMING HOME WITH ALL THESE NEWSPAPER CLIPPINGS AND REMEMBERING LITTLE BITS OF HISTORY, I WAS LEARNING SOMETHING MORE.

SOME THINGS WERE INACCURATELY RECORDED.

I WOULD GO TO MY MOM AND WE TALKED IT THROUGH.

IT WAS BORN ON ITS OWN AS I WAS WRITING IT AND I WAS LEARNING AS I WAS ACTUALLY WRITING IT, TRYING TO SHARE THE STORY WITH EVERYONE.

IT WAS VERY OVERWHELMING AND I HAD TO FIGURE OUT HOW TO TELL THESE STORIES COHESIVELY AND IN A WAY THAT WOULD MAKE PEOPLE INTERESTED AND STILL NOT TORE GET TO INCLUDE ME IN A MEMOIR THAT'S SUPPOSED TO BE ABOUT PERSONAL FAMILY.

IT WAS A HUGE ACCOMPLISHMENT FOR MYSELF.

I CONSIDER IT MY GREATEST ACCOMPLISHMENT.

I DON'T KNOW HOW I GOT THROUGH IT, GUYS.

THAT'S SOMETHING REALLY IMPORTANT.

FREQUENTLY, THE TRIAL OF A CELEBRITY WHO WANTS TO MAINTAIN THAT CELEBRITY'S AURA OR THEIR LEGEND, ET CETERA, MAYBE THERE ARE SOME THINGS THAT ARE STILL IN THE HOUSE THAT WE'RE GOING TO KEEP TO OURSELVES, IS HOW A LOT OF PEOPLE WOULD APPROACH IT.

YOU SPOKE ABOUT EVERYTHING.

I DID.

IT'S FUNNY.

IF THERE ARE SECRETS THAT I'M NOT EXPOSING, THEY'RE JUST NOT MINE TO TELL.

IT'S NOTHING THAT WOULD ACTUALLY MAKE MY FATHER LOOK BAD.

IT'S STUFF THAT WOULD REALLY, HE WOULD LOOK A LOT BETTER.

BUT I ADDRESS THAT SOMETIMES, SOME OF THESE AREN'T MINE TO TELL.

BUT THEY'RE NOT REALLY ABOUT MY DAD, PER SE.

IT'S HIM PROTECTING OTHER PEOPLE.

DADDY LIVED HIS LIFE LIKE AN OPEN BOOK.

EVEN WHEN HE WAS WITH MY MOTHER HE WAS MARRIED.

HE DIDN'T HIDE HER.

THERE'S NOTHING THAT THE WORLD WILL EVER REALLY FIND OUT ABOUT HIM THAT HE DIDN'T ALREADY SHOW TO THE WORLD IN THAT REGARD.

I THINK HOW WE ARE AT HOME AND AROUND THE HOUSE AND THE STRUGGLES HE WAS DEALING WITH.

THE WORRIES AND CONCERNS HE HAD, HE WAS A HUMAN BEING LIKE ANYONE ELSE.

HE WASN'T AFRAID TO SHARE IT OR SHOW IT.

HE WOULD CRY AND NOT BE EMBARRASSED BY IT.

TEARS WOULD FALL.

YOU'D SEE A TEAR AND LOOK AROUND, DADDY IS CRYING, THERE MUST BE SOMETHING AROUND THAT MADE HIM SAD OR MADE HIM HAPPY.

A LOT OF MEN ARE AFRAID TO SHOW THEIR EMOTIONS.

I ALWAYS THOUGHT TRUE STRENGTH WAS BEING ABLE TO OWN IT AND EXPRESS IT AND BE COMFORTABLE WITH ALL YOUR EMOTIONS.

THAT'S HOW MY FATHER WAS.

HE WAS VERY AFFECTIONATE, VERY OPEN WITH EVERYTHING, HIS LIFE, HIS FEELINGS.

IN THE BOOK I TRIED TO SHOW THAT SIDE OF HIM BECAUSE HE WAS STRUGGLING WITH A LOT, IF HE SHOULD COME BACK AND FIGHT LARRY HOLMES AT A TIME WHEN HE JUST RETIRED.

HE KNEW SOMETHING WASN'T RIGHT WITH HIS HEALTH BUT HE COULDN'T PUT HIS FINGER ON IT.

THEY THOUGHT HE HAD PARKINSON'S SYNDROME BUT IT WAS REALLY THE DISEASE.

EVEN THE SPRINGS FIGHT HE HAD PARKINSONS.

WHEN HE STARTED SLOWING DOWN, IT LOOKED LIKE HE WAS TALKING AT REGULAR SPEED, BUT REALLY HE WAS SLOWING DOWN.

IT GOT TO THE POINT WHERE YOU COULDN'T DENY IT.

EVEN ME AS A LITTLE GIRL, I'D SEE HIM STUMBLE, FIND HIM SLEEPING ON THE SOFA OR ON THE COUCH ON THE FRONT PORCH.

HE DIDN'T WANT TO DISTURB ANYBODY.

HE HAD THIS WEIRD THING OF NOT WAKING PEOPLE.

IF SOMEONE WAS TAKING A NAP, SHH, IT COULD BE A STRANGER.

WE'D BE WAITING FOR A FLIGHT IN THE PRIVATE ROOM AND SOME STRANGER IS ASLEEP ON THE SOFA, HE'LL TELL US SHH IF HE SEES ONE IS TRYING TO REST.

SHARING HIS FOOD.

IF HE WAS EATING, IT DOESN'T MATTER WHO YOU ARE, HE WOULD HAND YOU FRUIT FROM HIS PLATE.

IN RESTAURANTS, HE'D HAVE PRE-SIGNED AUTOGRAPHS AND START PASSING THEM OUT, HERE YOU GO, GOING TABLE TO TABLE.

THANK YOU MUHAMMAD ALI, THANK YOU.

DADDY WAS SO DOWN TO EARTH.

THERE WAS NO WAY YOU COULDN'T SHARE HIM WITH THE WORLD THAT HE ALWAYS BELONGED TO AND GAVE HIMSELF TO FULLY.

I SHARE A LOT OF STUFF.

EVEN SOME THINGS THAT PROBABLY SHOCK PEOPLE THAT ARE A LITTLE PERSONAL.

MY DAD LIVED HIS LIFE LIKE AN OPEN BOOK.

THE WORLD WAS FAMILY TO HIM.

HE LOVED PEOPLE.

I THINK THAT'S A WONDERFUL NOTE TO LEAVE IT ON.

THAT I THINK ENCAPSULATES REALLY WHAT THE STORY WAS.

THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR TAKING THE TIME TO JOIN US.

THIS IS SUCH A GREAT BOOK.

THANK YOU.

SUCH A DIFFERENT LOOK AT A MAN THAT WE ALL THINK THAT WE KNOW.

THANK YOU.

> 'METROFOCUS' IS MADE POSSIBLE BY SUE AND EDGAR WACHENHEIM III, SYLVIA A. AND SIMON B. POYTA PROGRAMMING ENDOWMENT TO FIGHT ANTI-SEMITISM, BERNARD AND DENISE SCHWARTZ, BARBARA HOPE ZUCKERBERG, AND BY JANET PRINDLE SEIDLER, JODY AND JOHN ARNHOLD, CHERYL AND PHILIP MILSTEIN FAMILY, JUDY AND JOSH WESTON, DR. ROBERT C. AND TINA SOHN FOUNDATION.

Funders

MetroFocus is made possible by Sue and Edgar Wachenheim III, the Sylvia A. and Simon B. Poyta Programming Endowment to Fight Anti-Semitism, The Peter G. Peterson and Joan Ganz Cooney Fund, Bernard and Denise Schwartz, Barbara Hope Zuckerberg, The Ambrose Monell Foundation, Janet Prindle Seidler, Jody and John Arnhold, the Cheryl and Philip Milstein Family, Judy and Josh Weston and the Dr. Robert C. and Tina Sohn Foundation.

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