This feature documentary chronicles the rise, fall and resurrection of Joe Meek.
It shows, due in equal measures to his pioneering DIY recording techniques, hit-making philosophy and a life full of social, psychological and sexual obstacles, how Joe managed to leave an indelible stamp, not just on the recording industry, but on modern pop culture as well.
Born in 1929 and raised in rural Newent, England, Joe Meek spent his youth working on his family’s farm while dreaming of recording sound, creating music and making records. Realizing that he didn’t fit in, either socially (he was a closeted homosexual) or professionally, Joe eventually made the necessary move to London to explore his true, driven ambition.
By the mid-1950′s, Meek was one of the UK’s most requested recording engineers (working for producers like George Martin) – an upstart talent who refused to play by anyone else’s rules in an industry that was ALL rules.
By the end of the decade he had broken away from the major studios and did the unthinkable: he became England’s first independent pop record producer. By the early 1960’s, he was recording #1 chart hits from a converted home studio in a then-dodgy area of London – including his masterpiece, TELSTAR; to this date the most successful pop instrumental ever recorded.
Considered a Svengali by some in the industry, Joe nurtured hundreds of teen artists such as Jimmy Page (later of The Yardbirds and Led Zeppelin), Steve Howe (of Yes and Asia), Ritchie Blackmore (later of Deep Purple and Rainbow), session guitarist extraordinaire Big Jim Sullivan and Chas Hodges (of Chas ‘n Dave) that helped define new, exciting, commercial sounds and produced pop/rock records that were the first specifically targeted at the post-WWII teen market.
By 1967 he was dead.
Over 40 years after his tragic and mysterious death, Meek has been reborn as an inspirational icon for anyone in search of the Independent Spirit.