A Life In The Death...
A life in the death of Joe Meek

A Life In The Death Of Joe Meek


  • Saturday 4 October 17:00 Cineworld


121 mins

Director: Susan Stahman, Howard S. Berger Country: USA
Writer: Original Format: PAL DVCAM
Dir. of Photography: Susan Stahman, Howard S. Berger Print Source: Palmdoor Films
Producer: Susan Stahman, Howard S. Berger
Cast: Alex Kapranos, Keith Strickland, Steve Howe

Film Details

UK Premiere

Short Synopsis:

This feature documentary chronicles the rise, fall and resurrection of Joe Meek, Britain's first independent pop record producer.


From his improvised studio in his flat on Holloway Road – where he used his bathroom as his echo chamber – Joe Meek became Britain’s first independent record producer, recording many of the greatest hit-makers of the day. Long before psychedelia, he wrote and recorded a space concept album called, ‘I Hear a New World’, and the whimsical ‘Telstar’ which would become Britain’s first no.1 hit in the US and sold more than 10 million copies. He was obsessed with both the occult and Buddy Holly and after Holly’s death, he believed he could communicate with him in the afterlife.

He was also gay at a time when homosexuality was a criminal act in Britain, and died in a gruesome murder-suicide, the details of which remain mysterious even fourty years later.

A Life in the Death of Joe Meek takes us from Meek’s childhood, through his start as a sound engineer rebelling against the conformity of British popular music and swinging London when the ‘gay mafia’ ran much of the English rock scene. We see interviews with the people who knew Meek as a child, the bands and producers he worked with, inter-cut with voice-over and home movies of Meek himself, and fabulous archival footage of 50’s and early 60’s London. A Life in the Death of Joe Meek premiered as a short two years ago at Raindance, and Susan Stahman’s new feature is just as informative, poignant, and entertaining.


* There will be a Q&A with the film's directors Howard S. Berger & Susan Stahman after the screening at The Rex Cinema - 21 Rupert Street, W1V 7FE