Album Cover News Recap – February 2014

Album Cover News Recap – February 2014 – Album Cover Hall of Fame

It’s time again for our monthly album cover news recap – if you missed any of this month’s excitement, here’s your chance to catch up on news, info, interviews and other such stuff. February featured news on a number of new exhibitions – both in the U.S. and overseas – as well as a slew of interviews, auctions, new Featured Fan Collection articles and lots of Beatles 50th anniversary items. We’ll keep letting you know what’s up – let us know if there are areas of interest that you want us to cover in more detail and we’ll do our best to give you what you need.

February 3 – Fans of fantasy art will enjoy this interview I found with artist Ken Kelly in Dark Horse’s Creepy Archives Vol. 17 book (nicely done by S.C. Ringgenberg). While most comic and fantasy book fans will know of Kelly’s work, I’m not sure how many music fans were aware of his album cover work for KISS (most-notably, the cover of Destroyer). It was this association that had the most impact on Kelly’s career trajectory (and, thankfully, his bank account). Here’s a link to the Google book page where you’ll find this interview (and discover the shocking news about the whereabouts of the original Destroyer artwork) –

February 4 – Well, I don’t know anyone who DOESN’T own this record…and we all know why! Inspired by the popularity of every 60s teenaged boy’s favorite mystery model, there’s a new exhibition titled “Whipped Cream & Other Delights: Remake/Remodel” premiering today at the historic 701 Whaley building gallery in Columbia, SC. Built around a hoard of records owned by a local retailer, the show features works done on the famous cover, with each participating artist taking a crack at personalizing the image, with the results representing their own unique takes on this iconic image. The show ran thru Feb. 23, but you can catch up on the details in Allen Wallace’s article on the ColaDaily web site –

February 5 – Want to hear about the time that The Doors’ Jim Morrison threw up on photographer Peter Simon? In this recent interview on Fox Boston’s TV 25, Peter talks about some of the items included in his new DVD titled “Through The Lens”, including his experiences while photographing classic musical acts including Led Zeppelin, Bob Marley, The Grateful Dead and Bob Dylan. His album cover images for his sister Carly’s first albums are also quite charming –

February 6 – Hope that you’ll take a look at the newest Featured Fan Collection story that I’ve posted on the ACHOF site. This one highlights selections from the collection of Ed Boyd, CEO of Tymphany, a well-respected maker of speakers (if you’ve listened to Bang & Olufsen, B&W or Beats headphones, you’ve heard Ed’s products in action!) and owner of one impressive album art print collection! You’ll find prints of covers for The Beatles, Hendrix, Led Zeppelin, David Bowie, Pink Floyd, Blind Faith, Janis Joplin, Queen and many others, along with his notes about why he chose these covers to hang in his home. Take a look and feel free to comment (and share info on your own collections) – enjoy!

Fans of guitarist Pat Metheny had the chance to see some great examples of the musician’s album cover art during a recent exhibition at the Azart Gallery in New York. Coinciding with the release of his new album titled “Kin <–>, the folks at the Nonesuch record label turned again to the talented designers at Doyle Partners to craft an impressive collage for the cover (a Metheny trademark). “The Many Faces of Kin <–> was on display at the gallery space located at the Terminal Store Bldg on West 27th St. through until 2/15 – read more in this release on the label’s site –

There’s a nice animation of the cover on the site as well…

February 9 – While many readers were socked in by snow, we wanted to keep them up-to-date on these album cover-related activities –

1) Western Connecticut State University’s Department of Art has curated an exhibition tailor-made for rock music and album art fans. It’s called “It’s Only Rock & Roll: A Behind the Scenes Look at the Artists Who Capture its Spirit and Culture” and it features the works of a host of talented designers, illustrators and photographers, many of whom have contributed some memorable album cover images for musical acts including Levon Helm, The Allman Bros. Band, Hot Tuna and many others. On display now until March 6 in Danbury, you can find out more in Nathan Bruttell’s article on the Daily Voice site –

2) On Sunday, Feb. 9th, Myers Fine Art in St. Petersburg, FL auctioned off the original hand-drawn artwork used on Madonna’s 1983 single “Burning Up” done by her friend, the British-born artist, dancer and model Martin Burgoyne. Part of the Lower-East-Side of NYC circle of creative types that included Warhol, Basquiat and Haring, Burgoyne, who died in 1986 at the age of 23, left a legacy and portfolio that’s been guarded by his parents who, now retired in FL, have now decided to offer some of his works for sale. The page has a pre-auction estimate of $2K – $4K – I’m hoping to report back on what it sold for post-auction – more on this on the Art Daily site ––Feb–9-auction-features-Warhol-artwork–unique-archive-documenting-Madonna-s-inner-circle-of-friends  

February 10 – Album cover artists are often called on to design a musical act’s logo and, over the years, many logos have gone on to achieve “iconic” status (as well as making their trademark owners oodles of $$ via licenses). The folks at Goldmine Magazine are currently running a poll asking readers to choose which act’s logo is “most iconic” and, as of today, here are the Top 5:

The Rolling Stones – Lips & Tongue – 34% of the vote;

The Beatles – 14%;

KISS – 8%;

Led Zeppelin – 4%

AC/DC, The Doors and The Monkees – tied at 3%

To see the rest of the list and to add your vote to the tally, follow this link to the Goldmine site –

Now, if we could only figure out some way where many of the designers of these original logos would be able to share in the licensing revenues (most did them as “works for hire” and were paid a flat fee), we could all feel a little better about fairness in the record business, but that’s a story for another day…

February 11 – Of course, I would be remiss in not trying to latch on to the publicity surrounding the 50th anniversary of the Fab Four’s appearance on the Ed Sullivan Show. So, while not exactly album cover-specific (even though the featured photographers have shot many notable album covers), I’d like to point fans to two galleries that are currently showing photo collections specially-curated for the occasion:

1) A winner this year of a special Trustee Award from the Grammy organization, the work of the late photographer Jim Marshall is the subject of a display of Beatles photos – including shots from their last U.S. live appearance at Candlestick Park in 1966 – on display now at the San Francisco Art Exchange –

2) Over at the Rock Paper Photo galleries (Las Vegas, NYC, etc.), you’ll be treated to shots by Henry Grossman of the band’s performance on the stage of the Ed Sullivan Theater, along with photos by Tom Murray and Astrid Kirchherr –

February 12 – The works of two world-renowned fine artists – George Condo and Richard Hamilton – are currently featured in special exhibitions in London and look to be well worth the visit. Condo – a multi-media visual artist with album cover credits for musical acts including Phish, Kanye West and Danny Elfman – is the subject of a show at the Skarstedt Gallery titled “George Condo: Ink Drawings” that runs now through April 5th, whereas the Institute of Contemporary Arts (ICA) is re-staging a show originally mounted in the 1950s before, as an early leader in the Pop Art movement, went on to influence album cover design via his association with Paul McCartney, who hired Hamilton to produce the album cover and poster for the Beatles’ ’68 release known as “the White Album“. The show at the ICA is on now thru April 6th. Links to both exhibits follow –

Hamilton at the ICA – 

Condo at Skarstedt Gallery –

February 13 – The Science Museum of Oklahoma is now hosting an interesting exhibit that looks analytically at “The Science of Rock & Roll“. With a focus on the advances in technology that have helped drive rock music’s expansion into the multi-media extravaganza that it is today, the exhibit also pays tribute to many of the visual aspects of the music industry, with each era afforded a time capsule of mementos of the era – instruments, album covers, gig posters, etc. Taking you from vinyl to tapes to CDs and newer digital delivery systems, the exhibition provides visitors with a very hands-on experience, with a lot of the display devoted to music-making activities. Curated by Elevation Productions, the show is on now thru May 3rd, with more details available via reporter Brandy McDonnell’s article on the NewsOK site –

February 14 – Two news items to ponder –

1) Oh, that Nicki Minaj...first, she gets bumped from American Idol for cussing out Mariah Carey, and now she has stoked the flames of controversy by using a photograph of the late Malcolm X – holding a rifle and peering out a window – as the cover image on her latest single. She has since “apologized” for her indiscretion, but it only serves to show you how record cover imagery can effect change and stimulate discussion – more on this at the Ace Showbiz site –

2) Kid Cudi has announced a new record that will be titled Satellite Flight and just released an image of the quite-spacey album cover art that he designed on his own. As more and more musical acts get hands-on regarding their image/public personna (AKA “Brand”), it only makes sense that they use their creative talents in such a fashion. Here’s a link to his premiere showing on the XXL Magazine web site –

February 17 – Interesting interview article on the site written by Richard Dryden about the making of the album cover image for Kanye West‘s 2004 debut record, The College Dropout, with art direction by Eric Duvauchelle and photography by the talented Danny Clinch. They talk about working with Kanye on ideas for the cover, the production process and why it was unusual and/or brave for a new artist to hide his face on a debut record –

February 18 – Not sure how many of you are up Sunday AM for the CBS Sunday Morning show, but they recently ran an interview with former Beatle friend, bassist and album cover artist (most notably, the pen and ink cover for Revolver) Klaus Voorman. During the interview, Voorman talks about meeting the band in the early 60s in Hamburg and introducing them to his art school chums, photographers Astrid Kirchherr and Jurgen Vollmer (who’d later contribute the great cover photo for John Lennon’s 1975 LP titled Rock ‘n’ Roll). He’d later play bass for some of the band members’ solo projects and remains friends with the remaining Beatles to this day. More on this on the CBS News site –

February 19 – I really need to get to the UK more often – while doing some research the other day, I stumbled upon a book that I hadn’t seen before that I wanted to let you know about. To illustrate the impact that some record covers have had on popular design, author/cover designer Simon Robinson (and co-author/collector Jan Bellekens) published a book titled Covered! Classic Record Sleeves & Their Imitators (on Easy on the Eye Books) that includes over 650 images of popular album covers and then the derivative designs inspired by (and/or shamelessly ripped off from) them. While some of these are well-known to album art fans, I was impressed by the sheer number of them I’d never seen before. As they say in the UK – “Absolutely Fabulous”! and fascinating. Here’s a link to the publisher’s site – I hope to feature more from Simon/his books in upcoming articles –

February 20 – 1) Props to Willamette Week writer Martin Cizmar for his latest article on “the making of” the cover for Green Day‘s now-20-year-old (!!) record Dookie. He tracked down artist Richie Bucher – who was introduced to the band via a friendship with their original drummer – and asked Richie to give us a detailed description of many of the intriguing elements featured on the hand-drawn cover art. I have to admit that I never did focus in on the Black Sabbath and AC/DC references – enjoy the tour yourselves at’s_angus.html

2) The work of album cover designer/photographer Ed Caraeff is the subject of a new collection on display on the site. Caraeff is perhaps best-known for his photo of Jimi Hendrix kneeling before his flaming guitar at the Monterey Pop Festival, but you’ll also know his work for albums by The Bee Gees, Rod Stewart, Elton John and Carly Simon’s No Secrets.

February 21 – I’m happy to announce the publication of the new Featured Album Cover Artist Portfolio now on the ACHOF site featuring the work of photographer Kirk Weddle. Best known for the “floating baby” cover image he produced for Nirvana‘s 1993 release Nevermind, Kirk’s portfolio also includes portraiture, advertising, editorial and, his specialty, underwater photography. Hope that you’ll take a look and pass the link on to your friends – you’ll like what you find.

Two Pink Floyd/Hipgnosis items for your enjoyment –

1) St. Paul’s Gallery in Brimingham, UK is hosting an exhibition that began in late February featuring the works of the famed design team Hipgnosis, famous for their covers for Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin, 10cc, Muse and many others. Designer Aubrey Powell was on hand that Saturday – along with Graham Gouldman of 10cc – to discuss album cover design from the standpoints of both the designer and his client. Stop by if you’re in the area –

2) My friend Stan in Florida was kind enough to pass on a photo he took of a display in the Wynwood area downtown (near all of the graffiti walls) at the recent Art Miami show. I didn’t realize that Floyd’s audience reach extended all of the way to Heaven – I wonder if he got it autographed? Thanks, Stan!

Pink Floyd, Jesus, Dark Side of the Moon

A heavenly reinterpretation of a classic album cover (photo courtesy of Stan Schachne)











February 24 – Fans of rock and roll art in the NY metro area should scurry on up to the gallery at Higgens Hall at Western Connecticut State University in Danbury between now and March 6th to view the “It’s Only Rock & Roll: A Behind the Scenes Look at the Artists Who Capture its Spirit and Culture” exhibition on display there. Its a group show that includes photos and graphics by a host of area notables, including photographers Allan Tannenbaum and Mallory Corr, of Manhattan, and Bibiana Huang Matheis, of Pawling, N.Y., along with illustrators Mike DuBois, of Woodstock, N.Y., and AJ Masthay, of Hartford, CT. The show was curated by Melissa Ralston-Jones, who teaches the university’s “gallery experience” class. Read more in writer Sandra Diamond Fox’s article on the site –

February 25 – Nice interview recently on Charlie Rose with photographer Bruce Weber. Weber is best-known for his work in the fashion world (Versace, Calvin Klein, Ralph Lauren, others) and magazines (Vogue, GQ, Vanity Fair, Rolling Stone and many more), but he’s also earned credits for shooting nice album cover images for Chris Isaak, Janet Jackson, Marianne Faithful, Jackson Browne, Harry Connick, Jr. and Edgar Winter, among others. Music video credits, too – Pet Shop Boys, Chris Isaak, and Will Young. Quite the history, and Mr. Rose does a nice job covering his latest work –

February 26 – I must note with some sadness the unfortunate passing of Grammy-winning album cover art director Ian Cuttler. I’d interviewed Ian back in 2006 after he’d won the Grammy for “Best Boxed or Special Limited-Edition Package” for his work on The Legend – Johnny Cash on Columbia Records/Legacy Recordings and was impressed by the young AD’s talent and commitment to his work…Here’s a link to a special page on the Grammy site with an announcement of his death and cudos for his work –

I’ve also re-posted my interview with him so that you can learn a bit more about the artist and his approach to his award-winning project –

R.I.P., Ian. MG

February 27 – When The Roots released their 1999 album titled Things Fall Apart, they asked their art director Kenny Gravillis to help them create five limited-edition album covers for the release and he responded with a series of images that served to raise the public’s awareness that, despite the booming economy, all was still not quite right with the world and that peoples’ prejudices and ignorance was still having a negative effect on many aspects of our daily lives – read writer Richard Dryden’s interview with Mr. Gravallis as we note the record’s 15th anniversary –

Also – R.I.P. Paco de Lucia – we’ll miss those fleet fingers of yours…

February 28 – I’m always proud to show off the work of people in the music business who understand the power and importance of smart marketing, particularly when it involves the use of album cover art! Here’s a feature I just completed highlighting the work that singer Pozzie Mazerati did to promote her latest album – titled Red Arrow – using variations on the Red Arrow cover artwork to expand her fan base both here and overseas. Talent is important, but so is a dedication to doing whatever it takes to both raise your visibility and do something memorable for your fans –

Be sure to visit our Home Page to see the daily news feed updates, or subscribe to our feed. If there’s album cover news to be found, you’ll find it here at the Album Cover Hall of Fame site!

2 responses to “Album Cover News Recap – February 2014

  1. I am truly delighted to glance at this weblog posts which
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  2. simon robinson

    Thanks for the kind comments on the Covered! book! Would you believe none of the UK rock press even reviewed it? It’s no wonder it’s the world’s best kept secret! But it’s a long long time since I laughed so much while working on anything…