Saturday, June 18, 2011

"Jonathan Livingstone Seagull, I presume..."

This Thursday (June 23) we will have another trip into the ambient world by hearing the music that was inspired by a best-selling book...

Jonathan Livingstone Seagull will be remembered in different ways - as a wonderful soundtrack by those who first watched the movie, and as a philosophy by those who first read the book written by Richard Bach.

Richard David Bach (born 23 June 1936) is an American writer. He is widely known as the author of the hugely popular 1970s best-sellers Jonathan Livingston Seagull, Illusions: The Adventures of a Reluctant Messiah, and others. His books espouse his philosophy that our apparent physical limits and mortality are merely appearance. He claims to be a direct descendant of Johann Sebastian Bach.

He served in the United States Navy Reserve, then later in the New Jersey Air National Guard's 108th Fighter Wing, 141st Fighter Squadron (USAF) as a F-84F pilot. Afterwards, he worked a variety of jobs, including technical writer for Douglas Aircraft and contributing editor for Flying magazine. He later became a barnstormer. Most of his books involve flight in some way, from the early stories which are straightforwardly about flying aircraft, to Stranger to the Ground, his first book, to his later works, in which he used flight as a philosophical metaphor.

In 1970, Jonathan Livingston Seagull, a story about a seagull who flew for the love of flying rather than merely to catch food, was published by Macmillan Publishers after the manuscript was turned down by many other publishers. The book, which included unique photos of seagulls in flight by photographer Russell Munson, became a number-one best-seller. The book contained fewer than 10,000 words, yet it broke all hardcover sales records since Gone with the Wind. It sold more than 1,000,000 copies in 1972 alone.

In 1973, the book was turned into a movie, Jonathan Livingston Seagull, produced by Paramount Pictures Corporation. The movie included a soundtrack by Neil Diamond.

Tune in to SoundScape on Yarra Valley FM 99.1 Thursday from 9 pm to hear some music from the movie, or get it streamed live from the website.

This week's Goon Show (at 10 pm) will be "The Personal Narrative Of Capt N Seagoon".

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