King Crimson Documentary To Premiere in March at SXSW Festival

King Crimson In the Court of the Crimson King Documentary

King Crimson has had a long and storied past in its 50 years with multiple lineups and multiple sounds. Now the highly influential progressive rock band is the focus of a new documentary called In the Court of the Crimson King.

Current Crimson bassist Tony Levin shared the news and the trailer for the film, which was made by Toby Amies and will get a world premiere in Austin, Texas at the SXSW film festival in March.

“In the Court of the Crimson King is a dark, comic film for anyone who wonders whether it is worth sacrificing everything for just a single moment of transcendence,” the film description states. “It explores the unique creative environment of King Crimson, one in which freedom and responsibility conspire to place extraordinary demands on the band’s members – only alleviated by the applause of an audience whose adoration threatens to make their lives even harder. It’s a rewarding and perilous space in which the extraordinary is possible, nothing is certain, and not everyone survives intact.”

The bassists from King Crimson’s history are icons of the instrument: Greg Lake, Gordon Haskell, Boz Burrell, John Wetton, Trey Gunn, and Levin. However, it won’t be a general overview of the group, but more of the experience of the band.

Further insight to the documentary was made by former bassist/stick player Gunn, who wrote “It is not historical. It doesn’t remotely touch on any musical innovations. It is simply a document of how musicians do. Or more, how these ones do. I am going to go out on a limb and say that this film and The Beatles ‘Get Back’ are the two most important insights into musicians actually doing. Nothing else has ever come close. Two very, very different films and two very, very different ways of musicking. With “Get Back” you see intense and present playfulness in action. With Crimson you get the other thing.”

Check out the trailer:

As part of SXSW, it will be screened on March 14th and the 18th in Austin. The SXSW website does seem to also show an online screening for March 15th at 9AM.

Get daily bass updates.

Get the latest news, videos, lessons, and more in your inbox every morning.

Share your thoughts