Ron Geesin: An Improvised Life

Something different, but I’m sure of interest to many, is a new documentary by Tom McInnes about the incomparable Ron Geesin, perhaps best known for his tremendous contribution – as co-composer and orchestrator – to Pink Floyd’s experimental 1970 Atom Heart Mother album and, more recently, the delightful aphorisms that kept plenty of us giggling long after leaving London’s Cadogan Hall back in June 2008.

David features in the film, along with Nick Mason, Robert Wyatt, Peter Gabriel, Pete Townshend and others.

There is also exclusive footage from said Hall, where the ‘Atom Heart Mother’ suite was performed in all its glory by Mun Floyd, accompanied by David, choir, brass ensemble and the wonderful Caroline Dale on cello.

The film is being screened at the Picturehouse Central, Piccadilly, as part of the Doc’n Roll Film Festival, on Saturday 3rd October at 5pm, followed by a Q&A with Ron and the film’s director/producer, Tom McInnes.

Short listed for the festival’s Best Documentary Award, it sounds like a fascinating story about a fascinating man. All the details can be found here.

If you go along, do let us know how you enjoyed it.

Lastly, don’t forget to tune in to BBC2 this evening at 10pm (later in Northern Ireland) for Later… with Jools Holland. David will be performing live. The extended edition follows on Friday at 11.30pm.

Author: FEd

Features Editor of David Gilmour’s official blog, The Blog (‘Features’ previously being its rather naff title), affectionately – or lazily – shortened to ‘FEd’.

43 thoughts on “Ron Geesin: An Improvised Life”

  1. Thanks for the heads up, FEd! I’ll pass on the info on the Ron Gessin doc, and especially the Jools Holland performance! Think he’ll do ‘Girl in the Yellow Dress’ with Jools on piano?

  2. Jools on box now. Thank you Fed, would never have known. Said I needed counselling and you just provided it, LOL.


  3. Just jumped on here to see what the news was and saw about Jools Holland, switched over and David was on. Fate.

    Also good to see he is a FitBit wearer (or what looked like).

      1. You haven’t seen the catchy advert? It’s a tracker that counts your steps, monitors your heart rate, sleep patterns, etc. As well as a watch, of course.

        1. Aha! Thanks for this. Next time I jump out of an aeroplane and want to know how fast my heart is beating I’ll be able to tell!!

    1. RAH was better though. 🙂 Sound quality from Jools’ show is always awful. I bet David’s crew could fix it.


  4. Has anyone ever listened to ‘Atom Heart Mother’ performed at the Théâtre du Châtelet, France on January 12th, 2012 by the Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, with Ron Geesin on piano?

    The concert was organised in partnership with the Ministry of National Education who had decided that Pink Floyd’s ‘Atom Heart Mother’ should be studied (along with Bach, Schubert, Varèse and Dalbavie) for the Baccalauréat 2012 (the equivalent of UK ‘A’ level, I think).

    I love the cello (Jean-Claude Auclin).


    1. I read that they were studying the work of Ron Geesin in French schools and thought that was pretty amazing.

        1. That is fantastic, Michèle…..beautiful…That’s it…I have to go see the Ron Geesin film tomorrow. Check this out….

          1. And to think that David said in the past that it was “a load of rubbish” (if memory serves me well), while it has been an inspiration for so many people, old and young.

            Maybe he has changed his mind, now…

    2. Some of that show is featured in the film, Michéle, and indeed they do study AHM as part of the baccalaureate in France.

      I had the pleasure of working on this film, and you should really try and see it if you can! I believe it will be at other festivals after this one!


  5. Will this film come to the USA? Sure hope so. Sometimes this blog makes me wish I lived in Britain.

    1. Dan, just saw this and thought of you. Could be of interest? And a lot closer than London.

      ICYMI: New York Taken by Storm, November Release for Jaco Documentary

      Taken by Storm is finally getting a New York cinema run, with launching a proper cinema run with other cities expected to follow. The Museum of Modern Art will screen Roddy Bogowa’s elegant and incisive portrait of the brilliant album-cover designer Storm Thorgerson, he of Dark Side of the Moon, Houses of the Holy, and countless other iconic sleeves, on October 2-8 – rather incredibly, the film’s East Coast premiere.

      1. A block away from the office, need an excuse to escape for an hour and a half and need to clear my mind — will take the 4:00 pm viewing on October 5. Thank you for posting this … would never have seen as I’ve flagged all promotional emails from the standards (MoMA, TriBeca Film, etc. as spam because they’re constant!). Shame, it’s been a long 3 years for Roddy trying to raise funds through a Kickstarter campaign and then there was a sponsor. Would’ve come in on Sunday but just cannot see dragging my sorry rump back to the city over the weekend unless I absolutely have to. 🙂

      2. That IS a lot closer than London!! I hope this film gets a real run in these United States.

  6. According to the BBC site the Jools episode is due to air on Friday the 2nd Oct.

    Anyway, I would just like to say that I have completely fallen in love with this album. Dancing Right In Front of Me is off the scale brilliant, the guitar solo at the end of In Any Tongue for me has got to be one of David’s finest yet.

    As for the live show I attended on the 24th, if you look carefully at the ceiling of the RAH you should see an outline of my body as I was bouncing off the ceiling, it was that good. I wonder if I could talk the wife into a romantic trip to America say next April or so. 😉

    A big thankyou to everyone involved in this whole adventure (including you f’ed and the posters on here) I like to read and lurk.


  7. Ron Geesin is my music teacher on AHM (my favourite ever PF album)…I am very tempted to go to this as I will be meeting French friends in London on that day…they are going to RAH and I was going back to Brum….but being as I adore Ron Geesin, I will endeavour to attend.

    I presume it is open to the public.

    1. Please do, Julie. It looks like a really interesting film.

      Open to everyone. Tickets available from the Picturehouse link above.

  8. Oh, sorry for being off topic, but I just discovered ‘Summer 68’ played by children too at Festival de Nice in 2012! Love it!

    Summer 68 РHommage aux PINK FLOYD РFestival acad̩mique de Nice РJuin 2012

    It’s written ‘Extrait du DVD Concert PINK FLOYD (Seeneo Productions) – Le 6 juin 2012, 250 collégiens et lycéens de l’académie de Nice, choristes et musiciens rendent hommage au groupe mythique des PINK FLOYD’. Please, do you know anything about this DVD?

  9. … hate having to use a proxy and not getting the show without interruptions… After the n-th try I got to see David and Band, though. 🙂

  10. Hey there, just curious to know if there are any plans for a live DVD from any of the shows. I don’t think I saw any at the concert I was at but perhaps there’s something being planned for the shows in the Americas?


  11. Well what a day, parking ticket, lost wallet, 2.59 in pocket enough for Costa Coffee and can’t access the chat. Stupid Android, no support for Java or Flash. One of those days.


  12. First, need to say massive thanks to David and all the band for the most AMAZING night of our lives at the Albert Hall. …I can’t put into words how breathtaking it was to be there. It has left us needing more!

    Any clues as to where and when info for the Poland date will be released? We just have to witness this again….The feelings of euphoria from RAH will live long….simply Amazing. Thank you.

      1. Thank you Fed, we hope so too! It was simply fabulous in every way. We were hoping to try and get to Poland to see David next June……any idea when tickets will be released/details etc? Hopefully there will be some more UK dates too……here’s hoping.

  13. And some of us who missed the starting gun are still hoping to hear about a 3rd NYC date……….


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