Dr. Patrick Gleeson
Patrick Gleeson, Ph. D.
Patrick Gleeson introduced electronic instruments into jazz (on the pioneering 1970 Herbie Hancock album Crossings), and was master synthesist and arranger of the equally ground-breaking all synthesizer score for Apocalypse Now.
While teaching at San Francisco State in the 1960s he joined a small group of avantgarde composers at the Mills College Tape Music Center. Out of this seminal group came, among others, Steve Reich, LaMonte Young, and Terry Riley with whom Gleeson scored Bruce Conner’s monumental underground film of the atomic bomb tests, Crossroads.
Then Gleeson went in another direction. He quit teaching and began playing synthesizer on various rock and R &B records. After introducing a large Moog modular synthesizer to jazz on Crossings, he joined Herbie Hancock’s innovative electronic jazz sextet.
Since then has received awards from NARAS, a composition grant from the National Endowment, has played on and/or produced over a hundred jazz, R & B, and rock records and has composed scores for feature films and 9 television series.
In 1996 he and jazz saxophonist and composer Bennie Maupin formed
He and Pat Gleeson, also an innovative Herbie Hancock alumnus who first introduced synthesizers into serious jazz recording and performance, have formed their own recording and performing group, Driving While Black, which revisits (and renews) some of the territory explored in Bitches Brew, and the Headhunters and Sextant albums, which updates the electronic jazz tradition which, together, they helped form. The group’s first single was released on Virgin in 1996; their first album was released on Intuition in 1998.