who shot rock & roll


Who Shot Rock & Roll is currently at the Brooklyn Museum, chronicling legendary rockers from 1955 through the present. Pictured above is Amy Winehouse in Miami and Bob Dylan in Liverpool. There’s over 250 shots, including images of live performances, backstage shots,”before they made it” photos and my favorite: portraits.

A great rock n roll photo captures a glimpse into the artist’s brilliance. What I found most intriguing in this exhibit wasn’t the photos that showed the artist’s influence and commanding individual presence, but those that showed the artist’s rare vulnerabilities.

While I thought there were a ton of legendary figures I would have loved to see included that were not, there were sizable sections dedicated to Bob Dylan and The Beatles, which were excellent. I was surprised there wasn’t a section devoted to festivals, namely Woodstock, as far as legends go, and more recent ones like Glastonbury or Coachella.  Overall, however, the exhibit had some amazing pieces.

I couldn’t find my favorite images online, so alas, I could not post them, but my favorites are as follows:

“Bob Marley and the Band” — Odeon Theatre, Birmingham, England, 1975. The image shows the band walking to a gig, carrying their instruments and equipment. The photographer noted he found it odd they didn’t take a limo or car to their show, it never seemed to cross their minds.  They just took all the equipment and walked the mile+ to their gig.

“Joy Division”  — Tottenham Court Road, London, 1979. The photo is a close-up of the four piece band, with Ian Curtis and his trademark stone, distant look in his eyes. The shot was taken in the dressing room 15 minutes after a concert in London.

“Kurt Cobain Crying Backstage” — this was taken after an emotional performance in Seattle at Sports International Garage on September 22, 1990. The photographer, Ian Tilton, noted that Kurt just watched as he shot him, and kept crying.

Nirvana – All Apologies (The Twelves Remix)

The exhibit ends January 31st. If you show your metrocard, its 2 for 1 admission.