Biography

In 1995 Bob was Series Director and Writer on the Beatles Anthology. This ground breaking 8 x 60’ series was the first time that the surviving Beatles had talked collectively on film since their break-up in 1970 and the first time that any music act – before or since – was afforded eight hours of prime time television around the world. Airing on ITV in the UK and on the ABC network in the USA, the series would go on to win several awards, including the Grammy for best long form Music Video.

In 1998 he received his second Grammy for ‘ Jimi Hendrix Band of Gypsies’.This film told the story of Hendrix’s short-lived Band of Gypsies, although the band only performed a handful of concerts, the mix of Blues, Soul, Jazz and Funk would prove to be one of Hendrix’s most successful musical endeavours. Fellow musicians such as Lenny Kravitz and Slash paid testament to the lasting importance of the group.

He gained his first theatrical film credit in 2004, as director of the feature documentary, ‘ Festival Express’. First shown at the Toronto Film Festival, it was subsequently released theatrically in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, The Netherlands, Luxembourg, Belgium, and Scandinavia. According to the film website Rotten Tomatoes, Festival Express was the second most critically acclaimed film of 2004.

From 1997-2009 he was one of the principal directors on the award winning Classic Albums TV series, for which he made documentaries on artists as diverse as The Band, Meat Loaf, Lou Reed and Simply Red. His film on Elton John’s Goodbye Yellow Brick Road album was nominated for an Emmy.

When the Spice Girls re-formed in 2007, he was approached by the group’s manager Simon Fuller to make a film that would tell the groups story, from their early days, through the break up in 1997 and how they came to reform ten years later. The narrative for the film was provided entirely by the Spice Girls themselves.

In 2009 he directed the Emmy nominated Beatles on Record for BBC2. This film would set a trend for heritage artists not appearing in vision in documentaries. The narrative came through audio interviews only, with the Beatles appearing on screen in archive clips and photographs from the period 1962-1970.

During 2010, to coincide with the 40 th anniversary of the death of Jimi Hendrix, he directed Jimi Hendrix-Voodoo Child, a feature length documentary on the life of the legendary guitarist. This highly acclaimed film told Jimi’s story entirely in his own words, as voiced by music legend, Bootsy Collins.

The following year he directed Mark Knopfler-A life in Songs, an intimate portrait of the former leader of Dire Straits for BBC4, returning to the channel in 2012 with Squeeze-Take Me I’m Yours, a one-hour documentary, about the band’s principal songwriters, Chris Difford and Glenn Tilbrook and how, despite their often fiery relationship, they were able to write some of the most endearing pop songs of their era.

During 2013 he directed the Emmy Award winning Jimi Hendrix, Hear My Train A Comin’ a feature length documentary for PBS’ acclaimed American Masters series.  In the UK it aired on BBC1 as part of the flagship arts series Imagine. Hear My Train A Comin’ was also nominated for an Eddie Award, and was a Cinema Eye Honors‘ finalist.

His 2015 feature length documentary The Jam About the Young Idea was shown on Sky Arts during September of 2015 and achieved the highest viewing figures of any documentary on Sky since the channel began. The documentary was also screened to great acclaim on Showtime in America.

Bob directed the pilot episode for the Sky Arts series A Life On The Road that was presented by AC/DC’s Brian Johnson. The series aired to great acclaim during 2017.

In the early part of 2018, Bob relocated to Australia for 18 months and it was during this time that he completed his memoir, From Benwell Boy to 46th Beatle and Beyond. The book was published by Heddon Publishing in 2019.

Bob’s Classic album documentary on the Who Sell Out album was filmed during 2020 and was broadcast in April 2021. He is presently completing post production on a feature length film about Creedence Clearwater Revival, which tells the story of the group from their early days in El Cerrito and culminating with their legendary concert at London’s Royal Albert Hall during April 1970.