All About Jazz

Home » Musicians » Patrick Gleeson

Patrick Gleeson

Patrick Gleeson (born November 9, 1934) is a musician, synthesizer pioneer, composer, producer and engineer, from California, USA.

Gleeson began experimenting with electronic music in the mid-'60s at the San Francisco Tape Music Center using a Buchla synth and other devices. In 1968, “upon hearing Wendy Carlos' Switched-On Bach”, he bought a Moog synthesizer and opened Different Fur Recording in San Francisco. which had its 50th anniversary in 2018. Gleeson has said, “It was just this little one room studio in the Mission but somehow it became an institution,” responsible for many ground-breaking albums and film scores, including Herbie Hancock's Headhunters and Sextant, Brian Eno and David Byrne's My Life in the Bush of Ghosts and Apocalypse Now (where Gleeson led the team of synthesists that created the score).

Gleeson worked extensively with Hancock in the 1970s, touring with the Mwandishi Band - pioneering the use of synthesizers in jazz performance – and appearing on Crossings, Sextant, Sunlight and Death Wish. Gleeson has performed, produced and recorded with many other jazz musicians, including Lenny White, Freddie Hubbard, Charles Earland, Bennie Maupin,Wallace Roney, Eddie Henderson, Julian Priester, Joe Henderson, Ron Carter and Geri Allen. His rock credits include Journey, Jefferson Starship and Sammy Hagar.

Gleeson has recorded a number of solo albums, starting with Beyond the Sun: An Electronic Portrait of Holst's “The Planets” in 1976, to which Wendy Carlos contributed the sleeve notes. The album was a final nominee for “best engineered recording-classical” Grammy. Gleeson has has composed music for many television series, several of them Grammy-nominated, including Knots Landing.

Read more
”When I first heard what Patrick had done (on Crossings) it blew me away. There had never been anything like it.” Herbie Hancock.

“Where would electronic music be today without Patrick Gleeson,?” Derek Opperman, writing for Red Bull Academy Daily.

Gleeson's work in jazz has also been written about extensively in “Possibilities,” Herbie Hancock; “You'll Know When You Get There,” Bob Gluck and “HeadHunters: The Making of Jazz's First Platinum Album, Steven Pond.

View More Photos

Shop for Music

Start your music shopping from All About Jazz and you'll support us in the process. Learn how.