The collection of Raj Prem is of mythical reputation in rock photography circles. Featuring snaps of the Rolling Stones, The Beatles, Hendrix, and Dylan among others, his life’s work has been tracking down the rarest and most captivating images he could find. In order to provide access to the best images for fans, he also collaborates with photographers – representing some, managing their archives and hosting exhibitions. A true entrepreneur of photo collecting, Prem is a long time collaborator with the San Francisco Art Exchange (SFAe), and launched the world’s first rock photography show in 1997, highlighting his belief that the best photos are indeed fine art. He has worked alongside many great photographers, with Gered Mankowitz, Robert Freeman, Michael Joseph, Iain Macmillan, Michael Cooper, Peter Webb, Jerry Schatzberg, Dominique Tarlê, Terry O’Neill, and Pattie Boyd among them. Prem holds a special feeling for the Rolling Stones, however. Photographs such as those from the Stones’ 1965 US tour shown at that very first exhibition along with those from “The Decca Years”, an exhibition which depicted the Rolling Stones climb from chart toppers to leaders of the counter culture movement, continue to wow fans and were procured largely because of Prem’s insistence. In Keith Richards’ best-selling autobiography Life, a large number of the photos are credited to ‘the Raj Prem collection’.
Month: May 2017
Musical opinions are without a doubt some of the most personal that can be made, so personal statements about songs and bands are often difficult to convincingly maintain. However, there are a handful that are simply impossible to argue with. One of which is certainly that The Rolling Stones are one of the greatest rock and roll bands in history. Musically, a compelling case can be made as the band has created many of the most celebrated songs the genre has seen. However, it may be public image of the band that really sets them apart from the herd. The Rolling Stones generated the standard for how a rock band should look and present themselves, and now, German publisher TASCHEN and editor Reuel Golden have teamed with the band itself to offer an unprecedented look into their fifty-year history in a collectible book named aptly “The Rolling Stones”. And along with pictures and illustrations from the member’s personal stash, many previously unseen, acclaimed photo collector and exhibition curator, Raj Prem, has supplied a number of extraordinary prints for this collectible book.
Among diehard fans, musical opinions are some of the most subjective that exist, making all-encompassing statements about songs and artists hard to back up convincingly. There are a few, however, that are truly impossible to argue againt. One of those rare universally held opinions is surely that The Rolling Stones are one of the greatest rock and roll acts of all time. First, from a musical perspective, a compelling case can be made as the band has created some of the most celebrated and iconic songs the genre has seen. But it may be the visual aspect of the group that truly puts it above any other. The Rolling Stones set the precedent for how rock musicians should conduct themselves. For their true fans, German publisher TASCHEN, editor Reuel Golden, and the band itself will be releasing an unparalleled look into the fifty-year career in a collectible book titled simply “The Rolling Stones”. Complementing photos and illustrations from the musicians’ personal archives, many of which are previously unreleased, renowned photo collector and exhibition curator, Raj Prem, has allowed a number of his legendary prints to be used for this definitive book.
It comes as no surprise, then, that when the those assembling this iconic volume were collecting what needed to be the ultimate in Rolling Stones photographs, they quickly included Prem. Presenting over 500 pages of images from some of the band’s most famous photographers, The Rolling Stones will include a limited collector’s edition run of only 1,500 units – each individually numbered and autographed by the band. Further, six art editions will feature runs of only 75 units per and include a photographic print. The fact that the amount of photos from Raj Prem’s collection, taken by Philip Townsend and Peter Webb, are so prevalent in this book, which seeks to tell the tale of the Stone’s fabled history, is something that truly means the world to Raj Prem and fits perfectly with his ethos, because he has been famously quoted saying: “It’s the back stories I find really interesting.”
It is of little surprise, then, that when the band and the publishers of this definitive volume were collecting what needed to be the ultimate in Rolling Stones prints, they quickly contacted Prem. Containing over 500 pages of images from some of the time’s most iconic photographers, The Rolling Stones will consist of a limited collector’s edition run of 1,500 units – each one numbered and signed by the band. Further, six art editions will feature runs of only 75 each and come with a photographic print. The fact that number of photos from Prem’s collection, taken by Philip Townsend and Peter Webb, have been included in this book, which seeks to tell the tale of the Stone’s storied history, is something that truly means the world to the collector and fits perfectly with his ethos. As he has been quoted saying: “It’s the back stories I find really interesting.”