New Edition and Bell Biv DeVoe superstar Michael Bivins will tell his story in the upcoming documentary The Hustle of @617MikeBiv.
ALLBLK, which is set to stream the film on Aug. 24, unveiled the trailer this week.
The doc explores the Boston native’s life — from his early years in the Roxbury neighborhood’s Orchard Park housing projects, to leaving behind his dream of becoming a professional basketball player, and finding his way into the music industry.
“I did what I had to do, and I did it by any means necessary,” Bivins says in the trailer.
One powerful scene shows him outside on a basketball court, drawing a comparison between the music industry and dealing drugs on the streets.
“The music game is no different than the drug game,” he says — noting that both require hustling skills.
Soon after, Bivins expresses his complex feelings about his career.
“I feel like I went to jail in the music industry,” he says. “I’m mentally institutionalized.”
The trailer offers a look at the highs and lows of his career, and includes interviews with fellow New Edition members Bobby Brown, Ricky Bell, Johnny Gill, Ronnie DeVoe, and Ralph Tresvant.
“He was popular on his side and on my side of the projects,” Bobby Brown says.
Bivins, a 54-year-old singer, entrepreneur, and music executive, gets more praise from rap legend Snoop Dogg, who calls him “one the coolest businessmen in the game.”
Jay-Z, Jermaine Dupri, Doug E. Fresh, Sean “Puffy” Combs, Quincy Jones, Magic Johnson, and Russell Simmons also appear in the film to offer their perspectives on Bivins’ career.
Bivins was an original member of New Edition. He co-founded spinoff group Bell Biv DeVoe with Ricky Bell and Ronnie DeVoe, and signed Boyz II Men to a record deal.
His wife, Teasha L. Bivins, is an executive producer on the documentary. Producers include Bivins’ mother Shirley Bivins, his older sister Tanya Bivins, along with Yvonne McNair, and Brooke Payne.
The Hustle of @617MikeBiv premieres Aug. 24 on ALLBLK. The film will have an encore run on WE tv on Thursday, Oct. 5.
Watch the trailer below: