The 15 Best Documentaries About 90s Music

Jul 20, 2023 | Best Of, Music

Do you remember the glory days of 90s music? The unforgettable beats, unforgettable lyrics, and even more unforgettable stars that lit up our lives with their tunes? Well, now there’s a way for you to relive it all – through documentaries about 90s music! Dive into this world of nostalgia as we explore some of the most popular and acclaimed documentaries out there featuring some of the biggest names in 90s music.


1. Hype! (1996)

In the early 1990s, a music revolution was brewing in Seattle. A raw and gritty sound emerged from the city, drawing attention from all corners of the music industry. This was the birth of “grunge” – a genre that would soon take over the airwaves and capture the hearts of millions.






2. Beastie Boys – Rock Legends (2014)

The Beastie Boys were a group that revolutionized the music scene in the early 80s. Despite their privileged backgrounds, Michael Diamond, Adam Horowitz, and Adam Yauch chose to immerse themselves in the underground New York hardcore punk movement.






3. Pearl Jam Twenty (2011)

“Pearl Jam Twenty” is a cinematic tribute to the iconic rock band, featuring over 1,200 hours of exclusive footage and helmed by acclaimed director Cameron Crowe. This captivating documentary offers an in-depth look at the influential group and their illustrious twenty-year career.






4. Rap Sheet: Hip Hop and the Cops (2007)

Uncover the covert files on some of hip-hop’s biggest stars and industry leaders in this revealing music documentary, which includes Snoop Dogg and Eminem. Discover the untold stories behind law enforcement agencies’ detailed dossiers on these influential figures in the world of rap.







The Best Free Documentaries About 90s Music


1. Man In The Box – The Alice In Chains Story

1984 was a special year for music in Seattle, Washington. A group of kids at Shorewood High School formed the band Sleze and began playing covers of some of the most popular glam metal artists. But they were missing something – a singer! Layne Staley’s step-brother Ken Elmer suggested he should audition, so after speaking to the drummer, Layne tried out and became part of the group. From there Alice In Chains emerged as one of the biggest bands from this era with their iconic song ‘Man In The Box’. Learn about their rise to fame in this documentary exploring their story from beginning to end!


2. Electric Dreams – BBC Documentary – The 1990s

The 1990s were a time of great technological advancement, with the internet, mobile phones and more becoming commonplace. In this BBC Documentary Electric Dreams – The 1990s explore how technology changed our lives during that era and hear from those who experienced it firsthand. From the rise of digital music to the birth of e-commerce, this documentary dives deep into the history and culture of 90’s music as well as its impact on society today. Get ready to take a trip back in time!


3. Rare 90s Rappers Untold Stories Hip Hop

The 90s was a golden era for Hip Hop, R&B and Rap music. But what happened to the artists who created some of our favorite songs? This documentary explores the untold stories and forgotten histories of the rappers from this decade, uncovering where they are now! We’ll also be looking at how their music impacted popular culture in an unforgettable way. Join us on a journey through time as we explore these lost gems from one of hip hop’s most iconic eras.


4. Pearl Jam: The Trials And Success Of The Grunge Titans

Eddie Vedder and the rest of Pearl Jam have been making incredible music for over 20 years. From their iconic 1991 album Ten to their constant exploration of new musical directions, they’ve remained one of the most beloved rock bands in history. In this documentary we’ll explore the trials and success of these grunge titans – from interviews with band members to contributions from allies and writers, plus rare performance footage that can’t be found anywhere else! Get an inside look at what makes Pearl Jam so special with this comprehensive documentary on one of rock’s greatest acts.


5. How Aphex Twin Spurned the 90s Dance Mainstream

Aphex Twin was a pioneer of the 90s dance music scene. His unique approach to beat programming and production created a sound that stood apart from the mainstream. This documentary dives into his life and work, exploring how he shaped what we now think of as classic 90s dance music. It shows how he moved away from Eurodance, trance, and drum and bass trends in order to create something completely new – something that would revolutionize the industry forever.


6. Pump Up The Volume – A History of House Music

Dive into the world of house music and explore its evolution from its roots to 2001. Pump Up The Volume – A History of House Music is a documentary that takes you inside some of the most iconic nightclubs like New York’s Paradise Garage with interviews from legendary DJs such as Frankie Knuckles and Derrick May. Get ready for an amazing journey!


7. One Nine Nine Four: 90’s Punk Rock

Take a journey back to the 90s punk rock era with One Nine Nine Four. This documentary takes you on an exploration of the music, culture and personalities that defined this iconic decade. From interviews with some of the biggest names in punk rock to rare footage from underground shows, get ready for an unforgettable ride through musical history!


8. History of Rock & Roll – The 1990s

JT Curtis is here to take you on a journey through the rock and roll music of the 90s! Learn about Grunge, Pop-Punk, and all the variations of Metal that dominated this iconic decade. Get ready for an insightful look at one of the most influential eras in modern music history!


9. The 90s Alternative Music Revolution

The 90s was a decade of musical revolution. From Nirvana to Oasis, the alternative music scene brought us some of the most iconic bands and songs that still stand strong today. In this documentary I explore how these bands changed the music industry forever. We’ll look at Janes Addiction, Beastie Boys, Blur, Marilyn Manson, The Prodigy and more – all from Lollapalooza to Woodstock 94 and everything in between! Plus we’ll check out some of those amazing songs featured on the Clueless soundtrack! Get ready for an epic journey through one of the most influential eras in music history!


10. Nothing Else Matters – The Metallica Story

Formed in 1981, Metallica has become one of the most iconic names in heavy metal music. In this documentary, we explore the remarkable journey of James Hetfield and Lars Ulrich’s band from their beginnings to today. We look at how their fast tempos, instrumentals and aggressive musicianship set them apart as one of the founding “big four” bands of thrash metal alongside Megadeth, Anthrax and Slayer. The film also features interviews with former members such as Dave Mustaine (who went on to form Megadeth after being fired from the band) and Ron McGovney, Cliff Burton (who died in a bus accident in Sweden in 1986), Jason Newsted and long-time lead guitarist Kirk Hammett. Join us for an insightful look at Nothing Else Matters – The Metallica Story!


11. Slayer – Documentary 1991 A Decade Of Aggression

This documentary about the thrash metal band Slayer takes a look back on the group’s first decade of making music, from 1981 to 1991. Hear interviews with members and learn about their history as they rose to become one of the most influential bands in heavy metal. The film was originally broadcast on MTV’s Headbangers Ball program. If you’re a fan of this iconic group, don’t miss this inside look at some of their biggest moments!

Read On – Our Latest Top Documentaries Lists

David B