We all have musicians that we wish everyone else knew about. THAT person who deserves a wider audience, but life circumstances didn't allow for it. Knowledge of that musician seems to be like the secret handshake into a special club. Nick Drake was one of those people until a TV car advertisement that used his music got more people curious....thank goodness.

Judee Sill's music is not likely to be used in a car ad.

Welcome to episode 116 of See Hear Podcast.

When people talk about the musicians of the American West Coast in the early 70s, they talk about Jackson Browne, Carole King, James Taylor, Linda Ronstadt, CSN or Bonnie Raitt. Few people beyond the faithful have spoken about Judee Sill. This leaves fans of Sill scratching their heads because even among those more well known musicians, they recognise Judee was a master songwriter, orchestrator and arranger. Her early life was one filled with abuse, drug use, prostitution, armed holdups, and prison time. It's amazing to think that the lady who lived that life wrote some of the most beautiful music of the pop era (I'll stand on my soapbox and suggest The Kiss is one of the most beautiful songs ever written – change my mind). She mixed country and Bach and gospel into one beautiful package. Sounds unworkable? Check out her albums and get back to me.

A new documentary was released this year about Judee called Lost Angel: The Genius of Judee Sill. This episode of See Hear features guests associated with the film. Kerry, Tim and I chat with one of the two directors of the film, Brian Lindstrom. He describes the process it took to make this great film, working with Judee's relatives, the nature of creativity, what her music has meant to current performers, and a lot more. This could easily have been a dark film (and it has its moments), but it really is a celebration of Judee's life and work. Brian and his co-director Andy Brown have made a wonderful tribute to an artist that will hopefully now find a wider audience.

But wait.....there's more. The film's music supervisor is Pat Thomas. Pat has quite a few strings to his bow – drummer, album reissue supervisor, historian and author. He joins me for a discussion on the role of a music supervisor in film and specifically what he did for this documentary.

Kerry, Tim and I are hugely grateful for the time Brian and Pat gave to us. Give this a listen, then absorb yourself in the albums of Judee Sill.

As of May 2024, the film is streaming on Prime, in North America only (grrrr), but I am informed that moves are being made to get a wider distribution for the film....and of course you can always get the DVD anywhere in the world.

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