Recording artist whisperer and all-around wizened sage Rick Rubin contemplates life and art on the stunning cliffs outside his Malibu residence in this short film by Alison Chernick. The mogul ruminates on living in harmony with nature, the importance of recreating its perfection in art, and the transcendental power of sound before leading us into a guided meditation, a practice he has followed since becoming fascinated with yogis as a teenager. His trademark beard, untouched since he was 23 years old, pays clear homage to their spiritual influence. The story of Rubin’s beginnings at Def Jam Records with Russell Simmons in 1984 from his New York University dorm room has become the stuff of legend. He has since become one of the most influential producers in the history of pop music, producing seminal hip-hop albums by artists such as LL Cool J, Run-D.M.C., and The Beastie Boys, with an unparalleled knack for genre-bending and critically acclaimed covers. He has also masterminded the late-career resurrection of a number of artists via American Recordings, exemplified by Johnny Cash’s victorious comeback. Add to that eight Grammy awards, being named one of Time’s most influential people in the world, and a co-presidency of Columbia Records, and Rubin has more than earned his magic reputation. “He is on a journey through the spiritual and creative wilderness,” says Chernick. “It’s transformative to witness.”
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