From Ian Curtis's desolate silhouette to Jim Morrison in topless Lizard King mode, there are certain photos in the rock canon that are just as important as the music itself. They satisfy the preconceptions we have about the tunes (yeah, the Clash DOES sometimes sound like a smashed up bass), capture the fleeting energy of performance and give fans another titbit to obsess over (the Beatles Abbey Road shot led to suggestions Paul McCartney had died and been replaced).
To better document rock history, Endeavour London (Getty Images's publishing wing) and live music subscription service Jukely have worked together to track down the most important UK concerts where no photographs have emerged, and to encourage the public to parse their albums, attics, garages and storage in order to fill in the gaps.
Most acts starts off with a small time local status, plus you never know who's going to be the next Beach Boys and who'll be the pub circuit stalwarts. As a result, the early concerts of important bands might have been sparsely attended and poorly documented, with those events only gaining importance later on.
Getty is appealing to the public - i.e. you, your parents, your friends, you get the idea - to help complete its database. If the photo captures a concert where no other images were found, you could see your image included in Getty's archive and granted income for its use, such as in a book compiling the best lost photos. Jukely will collect the photos and debut them on an online gallery.
But just what concerts are they looking for? Read on...
Any Nick Drake performance
Nick Drake is a prime example of a musican whose career took flight posthumously, his struggles with stage fright and mental illness hobbling a career that ended tragically young at twenty six. It is known he played at venues like The Roundhouse in London and the Birmingham Town Hall, but there are no known photographs of either of these appearances.
Otis Redding at the Finsbury Park Astoria, March 1967
Redding's appearance at the Finsbury Park Astoria took place over a seventeen-date tour that coincided with the release of ‘King & Queen’, a duets album and the final studio album he released before his December death in a plane crash. While photos from other UK dates exist, none so far can be confirmed as being from the Finsbury Park date.
The Sex Pistols at Saint Martin’s School of Art, Central London, November 1975
The Sex Pistols's debut live performance has gone down in infamy; they played live for a mere 20 minutes before a member of the concert's headliner, Bazooka Joe, pulled the plug. Some reports state that the packed out venue's audience demanded the Pistols's performance be cut short as they were 'rubbish', but the snub resulted in an on-stage fight. No photos of the event have yet been found.
If you have found photographs of one of the events above, or located other interesting images that you think are unique to the history of British live music, then send a scan of the image and your full contact details to email@example.com or call 0044 207 221 1540.
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