Since the inception of rock and roll, the genre has perpetually evolved. Musically, we saw rockabilly of the 1950s develop into the psychedelic wave of the 60s. By the 1970s and 80s, some of the most influential classic rock bands enveloped American culture. Finally, the 1990s brought grunge and a much heavier, sludgy sound. And today, we’ve witnessed the rise of indie rock, yet there is no distinct sound—rock music is a part of a multitude of sub-genres, from electronic music to noise punk.
And yet, despite the era’s musical changes, there are fundamentals of rock and roll that have never changed—things that define the very meaning of the genre: rebellion, destruction and the meaning of the album cover. Throughout history, photographs have captured and documented these aspects. But today, with no definitive rock and roll sound, how are these elements visualized and captured? For our Summer 2015 “Rock and Roll Issue” cover story, photographed by Natalie Brasington, we looked to three emerging Brooklyn-based rock artists—Meredith Graves of Perfect Pussy, Fort Lean and The Prettiots—for the answer.
Beginning July 13, you can visit the Resource Mag Shop to pick up a copy! Enter coupon code “SUMMERTIME” for a 30 percent discount on one-year subscriptions. Additionally, the magazine is distributed in major photo studios, gear rental locations, prop rental houses and Barnes & Noble across the US and Canada.
Also in this issue:
How Video Made Rock America’s Most Beloved Genre. Since MTV first aired in 1981, the network instantly became a hit. But what its early viewers may have not realized, is that these videos would transform music perhaps more than it revolutionized television. With comment from the most famed music video directors in history including Nigel Dick, Geoff Moore and Mark Pellington, find how video changed the way rock and roll is interpreted, remembered and loved.
Productions of the World: Namibia and Beyond. Resource Travel Editor and Photographer Michael Bonocore embarks on a photographic journey through Namibia, Africa. From the wildlife to the desert landscapes and ancient ruins, this travel guide traces Namibia’s hotspots, geography, dining/lodging, survival tips and more. Read the article and see the photos here.
PLUS. A curation of rock and roll photographs taken by Danny Clinch and Charles Peterson. Music photographer Koury Angelo teaches you how to shoot a music festival. The Kills’ Jamie Hince reveals the behind-the-scenes life of rockstar with photographs he captured on tour. Explore the season’s most high-end photo and video gear on the market and get the buying advice you’ll need to make a purchase in our TECH section, photographed by Greg Neumaier. And of course, be sure to check out our usual crop of insider photo and video industry tips, reviews and news.
See more photos, a quote/unquote recap and read our editor’s and publisher’s letters below!
Letter From the Publisher
We’ve recently been doing talks about the characteristics that separate a GOOD photographer from a GREAT photographer. This led to me think beyond just what makes a GREAT photographer, and more about what makes a GREAT human being. I’ve always strived to be great with the things I do and have little tolerance for those who allow laziness to get in their way. We’ve looked at some inspirations in our industry, such as Casey Neistat, Peter Hurley, Jeremy Cowart, Chase Jarvis and others who are ruthlessly creative, inspirational and simply unbelievable people. They pursue huge passions and ideas through tenacious levels of creation, hard work and discipline. I admire this and live my life in a very similar way. We have one chance in this world and we should #makeitcount (Casey reference).
The “Rock and Roll Issue” came along and offered a little lemon twist to that cocktail. As I was curating the IMAGE section, I began looking for the “human” side of some of these musicians and rock stars—things that most of us would see as normal or flawed. When it came to nearly all the “greats,” even in their most vulnerable moments, there was still something I could only describe as magic. A brew of something that was just right—right time, right person, right sound, right place, right soul… None of this necessarily connected to a rigorous exercise routine, disciplined blogging times, or obsessively productive schedules. Essentially, is just dwindles down to one thing: a larger-than-life passion.
Sure, this sounds cliche’, but the truth is passion is one thing that cannot be replicated or learned. I’ve learned, practiced and preached many habits of successful people such as productivity, risk, discipline, persistence, consistency—all of which I believe are key to being successful. But the spark of that flame is passion. Passion is the what lies deep within the core of what we interpret as the magic of a person. So whatever road you take and whichever tool you choose, what does it all mean if there’s no passion behind it?
“Rock’n’roll saved my soul.” -Thurston Moore, Sonic Youth
R.I.P. BB King, this issue is dedicated to you.
– Alexandra Niki, CEO/Publisher
Letter From the Editor
Back in the early 2000s, I was just barely a teenager when I watched MTV for the first time. Though many will say that by then the MTV era had ended, it was one of the most pivotal points in my creative journey. As a child obsessed with both listening to and playing rock and roll, the visual interpretation of music transformed my perception of the medium; it showed me a side of music I never knew existed.
Not long before we went to press on the “Rock and Roll Issue,” I was promoted to editor-in-chief of Resource Magazine. We had just finished shooting our cover feature, “The Visual Evolution of Rock and Roll,” when my boss, Resource CEO Alexandra Niki, approached me. She said she was impressed with my work this past quarter, and believed I could own the title. To be quite honest, I thought it over for a day before my acceptance. With each minute that passed, the remaining divide between myself and my work grew smaller. And by the time I uttered the words, “I accept,” I realized I will never not be the editor-in-chief of Resource Magazine. My job and my conscience had now fused into one.
With our rock and roll theme fresh in my mind, I thought back to my initial discovery of MTV. Although my focus was on the music, watching imagery transpose sound into a new, immersive experience has never left me. In essence, it’s become the core of my work—to take a universal idea, and then reveal its connection to the photo and video worlds. I’ve found, if you look carefully, it’s something that can be discovered in almost anything. And it’s why I believe The Future is Visual. Enjoy the “Rock and Roll Issue.”
– Billy Murray, Editor-in-Chief
“Whether it’s music videos, film, television or anything recorded, everything is accessible in today’s day and age of the Internet… I think there will always be the visualization of songs and a generation of artists, filmmakers and video artists, or just kids and people, who want to understand a song beyond listening to an mp3 or being at a club, or even just the oral aspects of it.”
Renowned music video director Mark Pellington on how video transformed the perception of rock and roll.
…How Video Made Rock America’s Most Beloved Genre
“….this is where lead singer of punk-rock noise band Perfect Pussy Meredith Graves comes in. Of late, she has emerged as not only a singer, but a culturally defiant voice on topics such as body image, gender and sex. More than just a feminist, she is a masterful bullshit-detector with an equal hatred for contempt of all types.”
Billy Murray on Meredith Graves’ modernized take on rebellion
…The Visual Evolution of Rock and Roll
“The Pentax is as close to perfection as you’re going to find in digital photography today, and being several leaps beyond the next closest competition, Pentax has produced a true gem for the first time in years. Comparable in price with the most high-end Canon or Nikon DSLRs, there is no real reason why professional shooters shouldn’t use the Pentax. Give it a shot: the Pentax 645z will make a believer out of anyone. Welcome back to the top Pentax, it’s where you belong.”
Jaron Schneider on reviewing the Pentax 645z medium format digital camera
…Gearheads: Pro-End Systems Go
“I like the aspect of not approaching [photography] as something people will see—it’s much purer for me. I’m not doing it as a job or for public consumption. It’s a very honest thing.”
Jamie Hince of rock band The Kills on why he takes photographs on the road.
…The Unseen Life of a Rockstar
The “Rock and Roll Issue” is available online at www.resourcemagshop.com. Download our free iPad app for access to the release of our fully-interactive digital edition. The cover of this issue was photographed by Natalie Brasington.