In the clip, premiering exclusively on Rolling Stone, Jones rehearses with her band, the Dap-Kings, and opens up about her hopes of finding “a new Sharon” onstage. In the process, she discusses her fears of performing in front of people after undergoing treatment for pancreatic cancer. “I know how my mother’s hair was falling out, and how she looked, so when I see that, I see myself, I see my mother,” Jones says backstage, wiping away tears. “I think that’s what bothers me too: all this stuff I’m trying to hold it in, and it keep going. It’s a lot.”
Another clip from the film finds Jones in somewhat brighter spirits as she tries on an array of wigs, from a Tina Turner-esque do that gets her singing “Rolling On the River” to a Jheri curl she laughs off. But even after finding a hairpiece that works, Jones shares a small, affecting moment with her manager, Alex Kadvan. “It’s like another chapter, you know?” she says.
Jones was first diagnosed with cancer in 2013. Over the next year, the singer underwent an invasive surgery and grueling chemotherapy before uniting with her band and finally releasing her 2014 LP, Give the People What They Want. That journey was captured by Barbara Kopple for Miss Sharon Jones!, though at the film’s 2015 premiere, Jones revealed her cancer had returned.
Miss Sharon Jones! was released last week, with a digital, on-demand and home video release scheduled for the fall. As for Jones, she recently told Rolling Stone she’s still undergoing chemo, but continues to tour and hopes to record a gospel album with the Dap-Kings. “I have this saying: I have cancer; cancer don’t have me,” she said. “I’m gonna keep on going. I’m gonna take this medicine, and it’ll be alright.”