After more than a decade of production, a powerful new documentary will trace the path of country icon Randy Travis, from stardom to stroke and beyond.
Titled More Life and set to premiere on the Circle Network February 10, the film will feature some of Travis’ last recorded performances before his life-threatening stroke in 2013, and much more.
In announcing the project, Travis and his team say More Life will be a celebration of the “Forever and Ever, Amen” singer’s formidable music legacy — but it will also give viewers a better understand of the stroke that nearly killed him. Work on the documentary began in 2011, with producers hoping to create “an intimate concert special honoring the 25th anniversary of Randy’s iconic album Storms of Life.” But after filming that show and getting to work editing, disaster struck. It has taken 10 years to tell the full story.
Randy Travis broke out in 1986 with his seminal Storms of Life album, which featured the North Carolina native’s broad baritone and a sound that mixed classic country with gospel. He was immediately hailed and enjoyed success throughout the ’90s, but after a series of public setbacks off the stage, was just beginning to stage a comeback of sorts when he was admitted to the hospital for an upper respiratory infection, and then suffered a massive stroke.
With severe swelling of his brain, Travis lost the ability to speak and became physically impaired, but has battled back to resume public life, releasing a series of previously-lost recordings and even being inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 2016. With an eerie sense of foreboding, More Life will lay out the whole tale, and Travis hopes to share some powerful lessons learned.
“Though this documentary began as a 25th Anniversary special, it quickly pivoted into a chronicled celebration of life’s setups and setbacks, after my massive stroke in 2013,” he says in a prepared statement. “The planned few months of composing, turned into 10 years—Mary and I thank the perseverance and patience of the wonderful team that waited and believed in it until completion…the ones that care and protect the legacy of my music.”
He continues, “With the colorful life I’ve lived and four rollercoaster decades in the music and movie industry, there are infinite stories to tell in a finite timeframe. As I watch and listen to the cadence of kind words, special memories, and well-wishes from friends and colleagues, captured in the documentary, I am reminded of the blessed life God has given me. I appreciate those who gave ‘More Love’ along the way, and the fans that continue to shed ‘More Light’ along my path. There aren’t words that express the gratitude I have for the ones that came along when the day was dim, the future unknown…that gave me ‘More Life.’
“Not feeling is final…and, I’m feeling great!” Travis adds. “Enjoy!”
Randy Travis’ More Life will premiere on Circle All Access Thursday, February 10 at 8:30 PM ET.