Album Cover Hall of Fame News Update and Link Summary for February, 2023 News Logo

Album Cover Hall of Fame’s News Update and Link Summary for February, 2023

Posted February 1, 2023 by Mike Goldstein,

January was a busy month in the world of album cover art and artists and, to be honest with you, it was all a bit overwhelming as I’ve begun to do the work to re-organize ACHOF-related content into the various silos that will ultimately make up the two sites I’ll be maintaining going forward. I’ve spoken with several people whose experience and gut instincts I appreciate and have a pretty good idea as to how to best proceed so, with your support and patience, I think we’ll all be happy with the new/revised formats that will come out of these efforts.

February looks to be chock-full of exciting news to come, first with the announcement of the winners of this year’s Grammy Awards in the Packaging categories (to be posted here on February 5th as soon as they’re announced), which closely follow the Best Art Vinyl Awards results that were posted in early January (click here to see the results, if you missed my original article) and which included some really great examples of human-generated art and design. Voting will also begin soon for another noted industry award – the Making Vinyl Packaging Awards and, as one of the judges on the panel tasked to review the hundreds of submissions received, I’m curious and eager to see what always turns out to me a fascinating cross-section of examples of album covers/packages coming in from all over the world.

Continuing on in this presentation, this month’s newsletter contains nice summary of the news in all of the main topic areas, with updates and info about several new museum and gallery exhibitions, new auctions and sales (along with the results from previous ones) and a impressive number of art and artist-related articles, so I’d like to once again say “thanks” for your help and support, so  let’s get started with some updates on the award shows recently ended and currently in progress:

Special Award Show updates


With the voting for the 18th annual Best Art Vinyl awards having finished in mid-December, we’ve all had to sit and wait impatiently for the announcement of who were the top vote-getters. Well, the waiting is now over, with the winners announced at a ceremony held on the 5th of January 2023 at the Hari London Belgravia.

According to the press announcment on the Best Art Vinyl site, the top vote-getters in this year’s competition were as follows:

1st place was awarded for artwork done by Simon Monk for Black Country, New Road’s album ‘Ants From Up There’;

2nd place was awarded for the artwork produced by Bart Balboa for Birds In Row’s album ‘Gris Klein’

3rd place was awarded for the Illustration done by Jake Blanchard for Richard Dawson’s album ‘The Ruby Cord

According to the contest’s producers, “The winning ‘Ants From Up There’ sleeve design, is just one image from a series of still life paintings inhabiting two worlds at once – one being an every-day reality and one filled with fantasy and imagination.

The album artwork brought the ‘plastic bag paintings’ to a new audience and, for the artist, started as a solution to the problem of how to make a still life oil painting in the 21st century, without it being old fashioned, whilst demonstrating how a painting can dignify a cheap or otherwise insignificant object. Monk’s mission has certainly been achieved here and is enhanced by the additional paintings in the series, which feature on the album’s deluxe box set.

Huge Congratulations to our winner and to the equally engaging artworks for the Birds In Row and Richard Dawson sleeve designs.

A big thank you goes out to our nominations panel and to all of you who voted for your favourites.

You can look at the winning entries on the Best Art Vinyl site via this link – and here’s a bit of additional coverage I found on these awards on the Design Week magazine site –

As mentioned in the previous coverage of this competition, this year’s award efforts were augmented by the fact that, in addition to a public display of the 50 nominated covers, the team at Best Art Vinyl (in conjunction with The Civic Barnsley) curated an exhibition that was on display through the 22nd of January, 2023 at The Collection and Usher Gallery in Lincoln (Lincolnshire), U.K and will be travelling to other venues later in the Spring.

Congratulations to all of the nominees and this year’s winners for jobs well done!

GRAMMY AWARDS update – With all of the publicity focus on the February 5th televised event for this year’s Grammy Awards, some equally-exciting items tend to get less coverage than I think they deserve. For example, there was a pre-show notice that famed musician/photographer/gallerist Henry Diltz will be presented with a Trustees Award from the Recording Academy (AKA the Grammy Organization) on February 4th as a part of the Recording Academy®’s annual GRAMMY® Week ceremonies. According to the pre-show PR, “This Special Merit Award is presented to those who have made significant contributions in the music industry during their careers” and, with over 250 album cover credits, including those for recordings by The Doors, Crosby, Stills & Nash, James Taylor, George Harrison, Jackson Browne, Dan Fogelberg and many others, it’s great to see the Academy bestowing this honor to this very talented and influential individual.

Born in Kansas City, MO in 1938, Henry was a founding member of the Modern Folk Quartet, formed in 1962 in Hawaii, before moving to Los Angeles to become regular performers at The Troubadour, tour the club circuit throughout the U.S.  and release two albums on Warner Bros. Records before disbanding in 1966. His experience as a musician on tour gave him a unique perspective as he’s worked as a visual historian of the last five-plus decades of popular music. The rapport he’s developed with his musician friends, along with his down-to-earth-grin and frequent laugh, enables him to capture the candid shots that convey a rare feeling of trust and intimacy with his subjects. For Diltz, the pictures began with a $20 second-hand Japanese camera purchased while on tour with the Modern Folk Quartet. When MFQ disbanded, he embarked on his photographic career with album covers for The Lovin’ Spoonful, The Monkees, Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young and, as he’s remained active as a photojournalist, over 80 other acts. For over 50 years, in addition to his album cover images, his work has been featured in books, magazines and newspapers. His unique artistic style has produced powerful photographic essays of Woodstock, The Monterey Pop Festival, The Doors, Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, Jimi Hendrix and scores of other legendary artists.

Despite his lack of formal training, Diltz easily submerged himself in the world of music: the road, the gigs, the humor, the social consciousness, the psychedelia, the up and down times. Henry Diltz is a partner in and is exclusively published and represented by the Morrison Hotel Gallery. Biographical information excerpted from Mr. Diltz’s bio, along with a portfolio of his work, is available for viewing at

Congratulations, Henry, and keep up the great work.

As a reminder, this year’s Grammy Awards in the packaging categories will be handed out in a special pre-telecast presentation (known as the Premiere show) that takes place several hours before the on-air extravaganza that will take place at the Arena (formerly known as the Staples Center, where several of the local pro basketball and hockey teams play) in Los Angeles, CA on Sunday, February 5th, 2023. The main show will be broadcast/webcast again on the CBS TV network and their sister organization – Paramount + – beginning at 5:00PM Pacific Time, 8:00PM Eastern, with the show slated to run 3.5 hours. Be sure to also take a look in this month’s Items “For Sale/Auctions” section for details on this year’s MusiCares Charity Auction, scheduled to end the 5th of February.

This year’s festivities include a host of nominees from all over the world that are new (to me, at least) and, by the looks of them, continue to carry on the legacy of fine packaging design and imagery that’s been on display since the first Grammy was handed out 65 years ago. Let’s take one last look at the nominees in each of the three Packaging categories:

In the “Best Recording Package:” category, the nominees are –

Beginningless Beginning – Chun-Tien Hsia & Qing-Yang Xiao, art directors (Tamsui-Kavalan Chinese Orchestra)

Divers – William Stichter, art director (Soporus)

Everything Was Beautiful – Mark Farrow, art director (Spiritualized)

Telos – Ming Liu, art director (Fann)

Voyeurist – Tnsn Dvsn, art director (Underoath)

In the “Best Boxed Or Special Limited Edition Package” category, the nominees are –

Artists Inspired By Music: Interscope Reimagined – Josh Abraham, Steve Berman, Jimmy Iovine, John Janick & Jason Sangerman, art directors (Various Artists)

Big Mess – Berit Gwendolyn Gilma, art director (Danny Elfman)

Black Pumas (Collector’s Edition Box Set) – Jenna Krackenberger, Anna McCaleb & Preacher, art directors (Black Pumas)

Book – Paul Sahre, art director (They Might Be Giants)

In And Out Of The Garden: Madison Square Garden ’81 ’82 ’83 – Lisa Glines, Doran Tyson & Dave Van Patten, art directors (The Grateful Dead)

In the “Best Album Notes” category, the nominees are –

The American Clavé Recordings – Fernando González, album notes writer (Astor Piazzolla)

Andy Irvine & Paul Brady – Gareth Murphy, album notes writer (Andy Irvine & Paul Brady)

Harry Partch, 1942 – John Schneider, album notes writer (Harry Partch)

Life’s Work: A Retrospective – Ted Olson, album notes writer (Doc Watson)

Yankee Hotel Foxtrot (20th Anniversary Super Deluxe Edition) – Bob Mehr, album notes writer (Wilco)

You can read through the list of ALL of the nominees in each of the 91 categories as it’s posted on the Grammy site at

Exhibitions and Gallery Show Info (new and upcoming soon)

a) I’ve previously shared news of the new books and record packages that are soon to ship that commemorate the 50th anniversary of Pink Floyd’s 1973 magnum opus The Dark Side of the Moon. It is now my pleasure to share the news that there’s a new exhibition at the Groninger Museum in Groningen, Netherlands that puts the talents of the design team responsible for that album’s iconic (it’s a word I hate to use but, in this case, absolutely fitting) cover – i.e., Storm Thorgerson, Aubrey Powell and the others who contributed to the Hipgnosis design agency, with the initial details reviewed on the ArtDaily site –

The opening of The Art of Hipgnosis coincided with Groningen’s annual international music event Eurosonic/Noorderslag (ESNS), which took place from 18 to 21 January 18-21. ESNS is a conference devoted to European pop music and a showcase festival dedicated to the promotion and discovery of new European and Dutch music. Here’s how the museum describes the show, which will be on display until the 14th of May, 2023 – “Their illustrations have decorated the walls of millions of teenage bedrooms since the 1970s. Yet many people have never heard of the London design studio Hipgnosis. Now the Groninger Museum is honouring the group, which designed legendary album covers for some of the world’s biggest rock acts, with its first ever major exhibition: The Art of Hipgnosis: Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin, Genesis, Paul McCartney, Peter Gabriel & 10cc…produced long before the invention of digital photography and Photoshop, The Art of Hipgnosis gives you an up-close look at the design, process and stories behind the most iconic album covers ever made.”

Groninger Museum director Andreas Blühm curated the exhibition with Hipgnosis founder Aubrey Powell. All the photographs and objects in The Art of Hipgnosis come from Powell’s private archive, and you can learn/see more on the museum’s website at

Photo of the Fotografiska Museum by Paul O. Colliton – Used with permission

b) To follow up their successful NYC display of photos by David LaChappelle that closed in late January, the team at the city’s Fotografiska Museum have just launched a new show built around an impressive collection of historic rap/hip-hop photos – including some from famed photographer George DuBose – that was put together to help mark the 50th anniversary of mostly-agreed-upon date of the event that launched the genre that’s now one of the world’s most impactful (in terms of music, dance, fashion and the visual arts that surround it).

Hip Hop: Conscious, Unconscious opened the weekend of January 23rd with a star-studded event (see photo, above) and will be on display at the venue landmark building on Park Ave. South through the 21st of May of this year. According to the Museum’s website, the show was co-curated by Sally Berman and Sacha Jenkins, Chief Creative Officer of media giant Mass Appeal and “presents images ranging from iconic staples of visual culture to rare and intimate portraits of hip-hop’s biggest stars from legendary pioneers including Nas, Tupac, Notorious B.I.G, and Mary J. Blige to modern icons such as Nicki Minaj, Megan Thee Stallion, and Cardi B.

The works on view traverse intersecting themes such as the role of women in hip-hop; hip-hop’s regional and stylistic diversification and rivalries; a humanistic lens into the1970s-Bronx street gangs whose members contributed to the birth of hip-hop; and the mainstream breakthrough that saw a grassroots movement become a global phenomenon.” In addition to George’s works, you’ll find over 200 photos taken by noted photographers including Campbell Addy, Charlie Ahearn, Janette Beckman, Johnathan Mannion, Theo Wenner and many others, with more details available at

Here’s a nice overview of the exhibition found in TimeOut Magazine

Thanks again to George DuBose and Paul O. Colliton for the photo they shared of the Museum opening night.

c) Another interesting show, this one featuring 14 examples of works from the 1960s and 1970s produced by celebrated music photographer Barry Wentzell, just opened at The Portsmouth Music Experience at the Portsmouth Guildhall in Portsmouth, Hampshire, U.K. –

Running through the 30th of June, 2023, ‘Icons of Rock: Portrait & Performance’ offers visitors “a rare opportunity for music and photography fans to see some of Barrie’s works in the flesh. The exhibition has been arranged by a lifetime fan and follower of Barrie’s work, Nigel Grundy, Curator of the Portsmouth Music Experience, who was also a music photographer during the 1960s.” Wentzell is perhaps best-known as the chief staff photographer for Britain’s Melody Maker music magazine for many years and he also contributed to the retail packaging of records from top performers including YES, Cat Stevens, John Mayall, Wishbone Ash, Fleetwood Mac, Rory Gallagher, Eric Clapton, Jimi Hendrix and many others.

Learn more about this show, which is free and open to the public, on the venue’s website at

d) I recently learned about a new(ish) museum (opened in 2021), “located in an undisclosed, non-descript building -one that used to be a funeral home – located on the South side of Chicago” and called The Museum of Post Punk and Industrial Music. Birthed and curated by musician/artist/designer/collector Martin Atkins (of Public Image Ltd., Ministry, Killing Joke, Nine Inch Nails and the supergroup Pigface), the collection is built predominantly from memorabilia he’s collected over the past 40+ years working in the music business. Atkins moved to the Chicago area in 1989 as he considered it to be the home of industrial music,

The 1200 Founders of the Museum have been the principal source of funding for the museum’s efforts so far, and you can become one to when you purchase a “founder’s pack” ($125.00)  that includes a Founders Edition Museum of Post Punk and Industrial Shirt (sizes S to 4XL), a signed letter and numbered pass that “gives you lifetime access to the museum (by appt.) invitations to exclusive events and more. The package was recntly expanded to include a 24″ x 36″ PPIM Poster as well, so if you’d like to support their efforts, please visit –

Here’s a link to an article on the WXPN website (an NPR affiliate) – that includes Stephen Kallao’s 12 minute interview with Mr. Atkins about his new enterprise.

I recently reached out to Martin – Chicagoan to Chicagoan – to learn more about the new museum and hope to be able to share more with you soon.

e) Happy to announce that there’s a new Markus Klinko exhibition that will be launching in Houston, TX on February the 4th –  Having been introduced to rocker David Bowie after shooting the cover photo for his wife Iman’s 2001 book (I Am Iman), Klinko made such a good impression on the man that he was then hired to photograph Mr. Bowie for the cover of his 2002 record Heathen, and since then, Klinko’s portfolio has grown to include portraits of many other musicians and celebrities and cover/promo images for Mariah Carey, Beyonce, Lady Gaga, Kanye West, Mary J. Blige and countless other stars from all areas of the entertainment world.

The Nicole Longnecker Gallery is located in the ALARA Garage complex in the West Houston Heights, with more info on this show, including hours, dates and appointments, available at

Ongoing and Upcoming Exhibitions:

CLOSING FEBRUARY 5, 2023 – Jay Blakesberg’s photo show currently on display at the Morris Museum in Morristown, NJ will end with a bang that weekend with the photographer being on-hand to lead visitors through the exhibition in person! Originally from the area, Jay’s talents – with his pro career now in its fifth decade – has produced images of many of rock’s best-known acts that have appeared in nearly every major music/entertainment-related publication there is, with over 120 of his shots included in this current retrospective. Local coverage contributed by Kevin Coughlin can be read here – with more info and schedules available on the museum’s (a Smithsonian affiliate) website at

CONTINUING THROUGH FEBRUARY 5, 2023 – Pink Floyd’s travelling immersive exhibition – Their Mortal Remains – moved to a new venue in Montreal, Canada for an extended run (through February 5th, 2023) at the Arsenal Art Centre there. Coverage of the show – which included an appearance by the band’s drummer Nick Mason on opening night – can be found at  and further information about what remains are on display can be found on the Museum’s website at

On a related note, a podcast hosted by Andrew Carter recently included a short interview with Hipgnosis/Pink Floyd designer Aubrey Powell regarding the show, which he was involved in organizing and whose works are included in the displays –

CONTINUING THROUGH FEBRUARY, 2023 – On now for your viewing pleasure at the Centre Pompidou in Paris is a display of the work of an artist whose shared his passion for pop culture – as well as album cover imagery as one way it’s represented – in those works. Christian Marclay was one of the first artists to incorporate album images into his fine art collages, sculptures and video installations, and it was learning about an early 2015 exhibition at the White Cube Bermondsey gallery in London that first introduced me to the breadth of his work. Early in his career, he put out a series of works titled “Recycled Records” in which he cut and then reassembled vinyl discs that, when played, took listeners on a wild sonic ride, but it was his early 1990s “Body Mix” series of album art collages that borrowed on the efforts of early 20th century surrealists to collaborate by having one artist begin a composition and others add their own embellishments to finally create a finished object (called “Exquisite Corpse” artwork. This would later be reprised on a web site called “Sleevage” in which contributing artists would incorporate one or more album covers into photo-collages that were often funny, but always fascinating). Marclay’s visuals have been used on 20+ album packages since 1985, including covers for a continuing series of …Live At The White Cube recordings from The Vinyl Factory featuring music made for various artists’ installations at the gallery.

In the new show, which runs through the 27th of February, 2023, the curators have included a wide range of examples of Marclay’s multi-media work, including some newer examples of his collage work that, in my opinion, would make great album covers, so if you find yourselves in Paris sometime over the next couple of months, you owe it to yourself to take a look, with more info available on the museum’s web site (in English and French) –

CONTINUING THROUGH LATE FEBRUARY, 2023 – The wonderful show I had the pleasure of visiting this past October is still up and running at New York City’s Universal Hip Hop Museum. The show’s titled “[R]Evolution of Hip Hop: Golden Era 1986-1990” and makes note of the fact that “the artistic and technological advancements made during the years of 1986 and 1990 were remarkable. The lyrical skills of Rakim, Kool G. Rap, Big Daddy Kane and others would transform the definition of an MC. The production mastery of chopping up beats and sampling sounds by the likes of Marley Marl, Prince Paul and the Bomb Squad would redefine the sound of Hip Hop forever.”

Fans of the genre will be able to revisit many of the highlights of the era, one which “established rap as a commodity and its acts as marketable stars that could sell products like the Adidas they wore on their feet…From the city streets and the clubs of New York to the suburban neighborhoods of Compton, California, Hip Hop expanded by leaps and bounds as regional sounds and styles established themselves. The phenomenon of Yo! MTV Raps would further intensify this expansion on a worldwide basis between 1988 and 1990…experience the street fashions of Dapper Dan, the beats of DJ Scott LaRock, the rhymes of Biz Markie and the culture of Hip Hop that was chronicled by Video Music Box, Word Up Magazine, the Source, The Arsenio Hall Show and scores of other outlets. The show has been enjoyed by thousands (including me!) since it opened to the public this past June and is running thru 2/28/23, with info/tix available at

As I mentioned in my intro last month, I had the pleasure of touring the current “pop-up” exhibition and the construction site for the UHHM NYC at the Bronx Terminal Marketplace with the museum’s executive director Rocky Bucano and will be reporting on that visit soon. In the meantime, I’d like to share a link to a video in which the mayor of NYC shares the good news regarding the city’s partnership with Rocky and his team as part of a city-wide initiative to promote its history as the hotbed for hip-hop music and culture –

CONTINUING THROUGH MARCH, 2023 – The New York Public Library for the Performing Arts’ Music & Recorded Sound Division acquired the late musician Lou Reed’s archive in 2017 and, in early June, to correspond with what would have been Reed’s 80th birthday, they launched a new show – Lou Reed: Caught Between the Twisted Stars – that’s set to run through March 4th, 2023 in the library’s Donald and Mary Oenslager Gallery.

According to the show’s advance PR, “the exhibition will showcase rare and never-before-displayed material from the Lou Reed Archive at the Library for the Performing Arts, spanning Reed’s creative life from his 1958 Freeport High School band, The Shades, to the Velvet Underground, to his solo albums and tours, to his final performances in 2013. Highlighting his life and work, the exhibition will feature audio and video of performances and interviews, photographers’ original prints and contact sheets, handwritten lyrics, personal correspondence, studio notes, album proofs, press, tour posters, and Reed’s personal record collections”.

The show is curated by Lou Reed Archive archivist Don Fleming and Jason Stern, who worked as Reed’s technical director. More info about this exhibition can be found on the venue’s website at

Ben Sisario covers the music industry for the NY Times and published an article recently about his visit to the show – – that includes a photo of a sweater Reed received as a gift that is decorated with the cover art from his Transformer album, featuring a photo by the late Mick Rock. The show also includes examples of the covers produced by the Drate/Salavetz design firm, who sent along several photos of their own recent visit to the show. Two of the works they produced that were used to package a couple of Mr. Reed’s memorable albums on Sire Records were included in this show’s display, including the covers for the 1989 release  New York (Art Direction & Design by Spencer Drate, Judith Salavetz and Sylvia Reed, with photo by Waring Abbott) and 1992’s Magic & Loss, again by the team of Drate/Salavetz/Reed, with this image including a shot by French photographer Louis Jammes.

Show PR –

CONTINUING THROUGH JUNE, 2023 – Now at the Grammy Museum in Los Angeles – the organization is currently staging a show built around the late photographer Jim Marshall’s portfolio of shots he took of the Rolling Stones back in 1972 and described in a posting on the site –

According to the museum’s promo text – “In early 1972, the Rolling Stones were putting finishing touches on Exile on Main Street, one of their greatest albums that lead to one of the most raucous, star-studded, and drug-fueled tours in history. The Stones’ trips to Los Angeles – to both record and later perform the album – had one thing in common: photographer Jim Marshall was there to document them. Now you can see never-before-released photos from that period of the band’s history, going behind the camera lens as Marshall’s masterful eye and unlimited access allowed him to capture The Stones’ wild rock and roll energy at their best.

The Rolling Stones 1972: Photographs By Jim Marshall is on display on the museum’s Fourth Floor Mike Curb Gallery until June 4th, 2023, with more info and tickets available via the link –

Notable examples of Marshall’s album cover work – Allman Brothers Band – Live At Fillmore East; Moby Grape – Moby Grape and Commander Cody’s Country Cassanova, among others. Born in 1936 in Chicago, Illinois and spending his early years in the pro photo business shooting memorable images for record labels such as ABC, Columbia and Atlantic Records and also The Saturday Evening Post newspaper, ehe 1970s found Jim continuing his streak of award-winning images, many of which graced the covers of Rolling Stone and LIFE magazines, including photos of the Rolling Stones, Willie Nelson, T-Rex, Joni Mitchell, jazz greats Carmen Mcrae and Dizzy Gillespie and Karl Malden and Michael Douglas on the set of the TV series Streets of San Francisco. Jim died in 2010, but you can still page through his portfolio and purchase prints on his “official” web site –

CONTINUING THROUGH JULY, 2023 – The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and Museum in Cleveland, OH is hosting a new version of the Bruce Talamon photo exhibit titled Hotter Than July that, according to the museum, is “an ethnographic study of a visual representation of blackness and personal analysis of a culture during the golden age of Soul, R&B and Funk (1972 – 1982).” I’d written about the previous iteration of this show that was presented at the Grammy Museum in Los Angeles (which closed August 1st), so I won’t rehash that info, but the show – which will be up until July of 2023 – has generated a lot of local press attention, which I’m happy to share with you below:

Local news coverage video –

Mr. Talamon has also shared some additional info on the show on his own site –

Artist News and Interviews

a) To follow-up on something I reported on last October, here’s an update on Anton Corbijn’s new film about the talented team of designers at Hipgnois called Squaring The Circle, which had it’s premiere – to rave  reviews – at the recent Sundance Film Festival –

As I said earlier, while this isn’t the first full-length feature about Storm Thorgerson, Aubrey Powell and the others who’ve contributed to the sterling reputation of this studio, Squaring The Circle (not to be confused with the 1980s film by the same name about Lech Walesa and the “Solidarity” trade union’s fighting the then-Communist dictatorship in Poland) is one man’s effort to lionize a group of talented people who, like Corbijn himself, were instrumental in convincing the world that the album cover art form was almost as important to record buyers as the music packaged inside the sleeves they were packaged in. The Dutch shooters portfolio of work in the album cover arena includes seminal images such as those on the packages for Depeche Mode’s Songs of Faith and Devotion, Exciter and Sounds of the Universe; U2’s War, The Unforgettable Fire and The Joshua Tree; One Night Only, Still Waters and Number Ones for the Bee Gees; Fine Young Cannibals – FYC; REM’s Automatic For The People and Art of Noise’s 1984 debut album Who’s Afraid Of The Art of Noise?

b) Sometimes, I marvel at what it is that I’m NOT aware of when it comes to the coverage of album cover art/artists available on the Internet. I’ve been pondering the notion of creating a podcast based on some of the interviews I’ve done with folks in the business and have wanted to see whether others have had any success doing their own casts. I’ve been a fan of podcasting – when done well – since they’ve hit the interwebs and listen to several of them religiously. There are people that do them so well – Ira Glass’ This American Life, Alec Baldwin’s Here’s The Thing, the talented team at Smartless, etc. – that I’ve started and stopped working on my own production several times, unhappy to this point with I’ve been able to produce. Now that I’m getting the urge to try again, I thought that I’d scour the globe to see if anyone else has done anything like this and, lo and behold, I found a few one-offs and, of course, the interview podcast from GOLDMINE Magazine that has, on occasion, posted interviews with album cover artists, but then – THERE IT WAS! As it turns out, someone on the other side of the world’s produced more than 2 dozen episodes of a show he calls “Undercovers” and has interviewed some of the same people I have, along with a number of others, several of whom I’ve not heard of up until now.

From Vibe Machine Media, here’s a link to Josh Kiff’s series, which broadcast its first episode of the three-season show (which ran through Summer, 2020) a few years back –

Not sure what the future holds for this series, but I do hope to learn more and share what I can when I get it.

c) You can’t always get what you want, but if you try sometimes – you STILL don’t get what you want! Jimi Hendrix had great control over how his music was put to record but, as you’ll read in this new article on the Showbiz Cheatsheet site, he faced having his music packaged in sleeves he was not happy with –  Having interviewed photographer Karl Ferris on this topic a number of years back, his telling of the story about how he began to work with the late guitar slinger supports this contention –  I’m happy that, at the end of the day, Jimi got what he wanted, as did we.

d) In last month’s issue, I wrote about the extended coverage that GOLDMINE Magazine gave to the work of designer/art director Ernie Cefalu and that they were also offering collectors with the chance to pick up a package of limited-edition prints of some of his best-known covers –   Cefalu, whose work both as an artist and art director/studio head has been found on a long list of famous album packages, including those for Black Sabbath, Alice Cooper, Iron Butterfly, Aerosmith, the BeeGees and the soundtrack for Jesus Christ Superstar, to name just a few, was the subject of Ivor Levene’s nearly 20-page illustrated overview of Ernie’s career as a designer working first in the madcap agency world (with Craig Braun) before starting his own firm – Pacific Eye & Ear, where he teamed with several notable artists including Drew Struzan, Ingrid Haenke, Carl Ramsey, Joe Garnett and others to create a whole host of famous album cover images – and then later on his own to continue his string of “hits” (over 245 covers and counting!).

Always one to drink my own medicine, I knuckled down and bought one of the 20 sets of prints that was being offered and will look to share some of my impressions of it as soon as I can.

Brief bits:

e) New Jersey is rightly proud of the long and prolific career of photographer Ernie Panniccioli, whose portfolio of images of many of the players in the rap/hip-hop genre have served as the basis of many an article/book/tv show on the subject, as is evidenced by the nice write-up he’s given on the web site –  He also shares some of the details on some upcoming projects built around his work, which I’m very eager to see…

f) Making her first and only visit to Tulsa, OK – accompanying Punk Magazine’s founder/reporter John Holmstrom on the trip – photographer Roberta Bayley shares her memories about her assignment to shoot the last Sex Pistols show at Cain’s there in January, 1978 (the last date on their seven-date American tour, which was their last –  Here’s a link to a recent interview with John H about that ill-fated tour on the TulsaPeople site –

g) Meet Brian Cannon, the designer of all of your favorite Oasis album covers –

h) Interview with photographer Kevin Cummins re: his photo shoots for Joy Division – including one he took of the group as they posed on the Epping Walk Bridge in Hulme, Manchester for an NME cover feature and which was also used on 2008’s The Best of Joy Division album cover

i) The latest string of album art-related features on the Muse By Clio site finds the editorial team behind the “Art of the Album” series asking several artists/production execs/album art fans to share some of their favorite covers and why it is that they stand out amongst all others.

First, there’s 10 Great Album Covers, Chosen by Aleena Bissett of HiFi Project – Kate Bush, Sade, Rufus Wainwright and more

Which also includes Dolly Parton’s 9 To 5 and Odd Jobs, with Rockwell-esque cover art and imagery by George Corsillo – art direction, design; Tom Bryant – art direction and Ron Slenzak – photography

Based in LA, the company provides its clients with services that include composition, sound design, music supervision and much more, and Aleena is HiFi Projects’ COO as well as a producer and music supervisor. Next, there’s 10 Great Album Covers, Chosen by Musician Abe Partridge – The Louvin Brothers, Germs, Talking Heads and more

A former fundamentalist preacher based in Alabama whose love of art and music lead him to a new career in folk music, Partridge’s tastes vacillate between the classic late 1960s albums (Beatles, Hendrix, Flying Burrito Brothers) to more obscure acts from all eras, plus one cover from the 1950s that shows up a lot on lists of the strangest album cover images. In the last installment titled 10 Great Album Covers, Chosen by Ross Clugston of Superunion – Cardi B, Miles Davis, Madvillain and more – – design/creative chief Ross Clugston and his crew at Superunion in the Los Angeles, CA area have done multi-media projects for clients including Coca-Cola, Mazda, Microsoft and NASA and his album cover tastes run from Victor Moscoso’s trippy cover for Herbie Hancock’s Head Hunters thru H.R. Giger’s always-disturbing imagery for Danzig’s 1992 album III: How the Gods Kill to Marcelo Cantu’s slightly-surreal double-tongued illustration for rapper Cardi B’s 2020 record with Megan Thee Stallion titled “WAP”, with the covers for the musical CATS and Miles Davis’ Bitches Brew (done by the late great Mati Klarwein) rounding out the group.

Items for Sale and/or at Auction

a) There’s still time to bid to take home a souvenir from this year’s Grammy Awards festivities – one of the biggest fund-raising events that corresponds with annual awards show is the MusiCares auction, hosted again this year by the venerable Julien’s Auction House. The MusiCares organization provides programs that support both music education and health care for those working in the industry without it, so it’s always great to see the support given the group by the people who both donate items for the auction and those who bid big for the chance to take something unique home.

Here’s a link to the auction site, where you can see if there’s something you’d like to bid on – and here’s another to an article on the hoity-toity Robb Report site where they describe some of the lots featured in the auction – Highlights include a guitar fully-signed by Fleetwood Mac, a signed Taylor Swift guitar featuring the cover art from her mega-selling Evermore album and signed artwork by David Lee Roth, Ron Wood and Joni Mitchell.

As donations continued to come in for this auction, the writers on the ArtNet new site posted an article highlighting some of the newer highly-desirable items that will be available for bidding, including some fancy sneakers donated by Eminem and some nicely-decorated (and autographed) guitars signed by some of the many top acts nominated in this year’s award show –

b) Available for pre-order now through the 17th of February is an exceptionally-cool clothing item, the purchase of which serves also to support a UK-based charity that fights suicide and mental health issues. Designed by the world-famous Peter Saville and based on an image he created for the New Order single “Blue Monday” and “using the colour code that featured on the 12 inch sleeve and video, the t-shirt carries the message ‘16th January’ – a nod to the myth that has now become widely regarded as the most depressing day of the year – Blue Monday.

New Order are ambassadors of CALM, and Warner Music UK Ltd will donate £10 (only £25, with the shirts shipping in late March) per t-shirt to Campaign Against Living Miserably, charity number 1110621.

With additional coverage of the effort found on the 98 KUPD (“Arizona’s Real Rock”) website at

To find out more about more about the charity or for help and advice, click on over to

c) Since we’ve previously discussed the new retrospective show now on display in the Netherlands on the subject of Hipgnosis-produced album art, I’d like to point you to this updated bit of info and a review of the upcoming Mark Blake-penned book on the famed design group –

d) Here’s some advance news about a new picture book featuring photographer Fin Costello’s deep catalog of his photos of the Canadian power trio RUSH. Due out in May, 2023, Portraits of Rush is being published by Rufus Publications and will be available in a selection of different collector’s editions, including the £477.00 (approx.. $592.00 US) “Epic Leather & Metal Edition”, one “bound in recycled leather with gold and white foil deboss and supplied in a hand welded, aluminum slipcase.” Individually hand-stitched, with only 50 numbered copies being released, the package also includes a fold out poster. The crew at LA rock radio station KLSX share a brief bit about the book –  , with pre-orders and further descriptions available on the publisher’s web site at

e) CIT, the company that created an entire series of collector’s coins around the imagery of rockers AC/DC (no longer available except on secondary market – has just announced the availability of the fifth coin in another series aimed at metal heads, this one featuring the cover image on Iron Maiden’s Fear of the Dark, which is celebrating it’s 30th anniversary. The coins – legal tender in the Cook Islands and featuring the engraved profile of the recently-departed Queen of England on the front – are made of one ounce of pure (0.999) silver and have a face value of five dollars.

These limited-edition coins can be seen online at

Iron Maiden – Fear of the Dark

and you can also watch a fancy promo video for the coin on YouTube –

f) It seems that Iron Maiden has become the center of the universe for government-backed collectibles this month as, in addition to the previously-mentioned coin from the Cook Islands, Britain’s Royal Mail has recently released a set of postage stamps, along with an entire series of collectible items, all featuring examples of the band’s memorable artwork –  

In addition to postage stamps (in both standard and special-edition packages), fans/collectors can buy such items as postcards, limited-edition silver, gold or platinum-plated collector’s stamps and even a framed, signed limited-edition Senjutsu stamp. Eddie and the band in all forms and colors…

Loudwire’s Joe DiVita shares the details in his article on the topic – along with info about the band’s plans for touring in 2023-24.

g) To follow up on an article that first appeared here last August about a book that hit the shelves late last year, here’s a review on the site by contributor Min Chen of the Mark Chusid-penned/edited book about the artwork that appeared on the covers of half-man/half-alien (?) musical wonder-being Sun Ra – According to the the writer, Sun Ra: Art On Saturn “features the sleeves of the 70 albums that Ra released on his independent record label, Saturn, from 1957 to 1988. They were designed by artists such as Chris Hall and Claude Dangerfield, whose creative processes are documented in the book.”

Auction Results Updates:

h) In a brief update about an auction item I reported on back in November and December of last year, it turns out that the Sugar Shack painting by Ernie Barnes – the one that served both as the cover of the 1976 Marvin Gaye album I Want You and the backdrop in the credits roll for the hit TV series “Good Times” was, in fact, a duplicate that Barnes made after finishing the original back in in 1976. Who owns the original? Well, as you’ll see and hear in this clip from a recent episode of the Jimmy Kimmel Live! TV show, another famous comedian/actor purchased the original from Marvin Gaye’s estate – Wow, he must be really rich!

i) George Hardie’s original cover art for Led Zeppelin sold for nearly $50K at a recent auction –

The original cover artwork for the album – done in acrylic paint, ink and graphite on board – for the soundtrack to the 1976 film ‘The Song Remains the Same’ by Led Zeppelin, created by Hipgnosis alum Hardie – had a pre-auction estimate of $50K – $80K, so while the results weren’t in the stratosphere as we’ve seen many such images recently, it was a respectable sum. Hardie’s artwork for Led Zeppelin’s debut album sold for $325,000 back in June, 2020 and his album cover credits also include the many-times-aforementioned records for Pink Floyd – The Dark Side of the Moon, Wish You Were Here and A Nice Pair – along with works for Genesis, Black Sabbath, Wings, The Alan Parsons Project and many others.

Miscellaneous Items and other Brief Bits:

As always, I’m going to have to keep these short-and-sweet (well, most of them, anyway):


Carin Goldberg, a well-known and prolific designer whose career began as a staff designer for CBS Records and Atlantic Records before establishing her own firm, Carin Goldberg Design, in 1982 and also teaching thousands of young designers as a member of the faculty at the famed School of Visual Arts in New York, died on the 19th of January at the age of 69. Her album package credits include work for Madonna (her debut album), The Wallflowers, Chic, the J. Geils Band, Janis Ian, Carl Perkins, Peabo Bryson and many others.

You can read more about her accomplishments in the obit her school published soon after her death –, with the local paper (i.e., the New York Times) also publishing one of their own –

Henry Grossman, a photographer who was a fixture on the classical music scene but who is perhaps best-known for his candid shots of The Beatles while working as a staff photographer for LIFE Magazine, died last Nov. 27th in Englewood, NJ at the age of 86. His album cover/package credits include images for all of the top-tier classical/operatic performers (Beverly Sills, Luciano Pavarotti, James Levine, Isaac Stern and many others, with the occasional foray into covers for rock/pop stars including George Harrison and Barbra Streisand. Grossman co-authored two books built around his photos of The Beatles – Kaleidoscope Eyes: A Day in the Life of Sgt. Pepper. The Photography of Henry Grossman, published in 2008 and Places I Remember: My Time with the Beatles, released in 2012 with an intro by Paul McCartney. Read more about the man and his career in this article on the ArtDaily site ––photographer-of-celebrities-and-Beatles–dies-at-86#.Y7tFknbMK00

RIP also to musicians David Crosby and Tom Verlaine; Herbert Deutsch, the co-creator of the Moog Synthesizer and, in an instance of my coming across some info about an old cohort who died this past summer (another COVID-related fatality), the very talented and generous music producer Michael James Jackson. I’d worked with Michael when just getting started with my rock art gallery in the mid-2000s (he had partnered with Graham Nash on a series of limited-edition products called “Manuscript Originals”) and always appreciated the time, advice and friendship he gave me.

ARTICLE UPDATE – Since the initial posting of my recent article about Chat/Art/Music/Writing bots – , I’ve seen some other articles on the topic that you might also want to read to learn even more about the latest advancements in the field and how people are reacting to them –

a) Artists fighting back against AI-generated images, using various methods – Support Human Art – AI is Theft campaign –

b) A young engineer tried out several different AI platforms for text and graphics and submitted this report on the site –

c) Of course, it was only a matter of time before an established musical act turned to AI art for the cover image for his/her/their latest record release, so here’s a link to an article about rap superstar Little Yachty’s Let’s Start Here album and the somewhat disturbing (disturbed?) board of directors pictured on the cover – Armon Sadler of VIBE Magazine does the honors –

OMG, PLEASE STOP – It seems as though there’s at least one article I find every month on the topic of album cover design that offers an intriguing title but next-to-nothing in terms of original content. Since I’ve been exploring the use of AI in the creation of bits of journalism, I’m actually wondering whether this article was generated by an AI bot. Written by the “Happy Sharer” on The Enlightened Mindset site, it reads as though the author went to an AI article generator and typed in the phrase “write an article about the process of making album cover imagery for a boogie music act” and this is what it spit out –

Am I right? I suppose I could write the author to see if he/she/they are a real person, but I’m not quite ready to invest the time…

More Legal Case Updates – Still waiting for a decision from the U.S. Supreme Court in the copyright/fair use case of the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Inc. vs. photographer Lynn Goldsmith…the parties are anticipating to hear from the Court before their June, 2023 recess. It’s an important case on a number of levels, so we’ll do our best to keep you up-to-date on whatever we hear.

a) Update on the lawsuit between Jay-Z and photographer Jonathan Mannion, first reported on in our July, 2021 newsletter (these things take time, you see)  – now to be settled out-of-court – with the details of the original kerfuffle between the photographer and his famous subject available for review at 

b) It seems quite clear that certain decisions by the US Courts do little other than to motivate those who feel that they’ve been “wronged” to push ahead with their lawsuits. In some cases, these suits/countersuits serve the purpose clarifying areas of the law that have yet to be well-defined (ala Lynn Goldsmith’s case vs. the Warhol Foundation), where in other cases it seems that someone “just ain’t happy” and has the resources to keep his/her/their case in court. Take, for example, the man with the back tattoo (Kevin Brophy) who lost his case against mega-popular rapper Cardi B and then learned in late December that he’d lost his appeal (is there a better way to say that?)  –

Well, in late January, 2023, there was a headline on the Digital Music News site stating that “Cardi B Faces Yet Another Round in ‘Back Tattoo’ Lawsuit: ‘A New Trial Should Be Ordered’” –

As you’ll read, Brophy and his legal team believe that he didn’t get a fair trial and, even if the judge doesn’t think that he deserves a new trial, that isn’t right, either. So, in other words, the only “fair” trial is one in which the court sides in your favor. Where have I head that before? It was recently, I think…

Brief Bits:

c) XXL Mag summarizes feedback they’ve received regarding album art that fans seem to dislike intensely –

d) New from Far Out Magazine – part of the ongoing The Cover Uncovered series (this installment penned by Aimee Ferrier) – brings readers the dark truth regarding Sonic Youth’s Goo

e) Sorry, but I missed this in late October – “most-iconic designer list” – UdiscoverMusic – by Martin Chilton

f) A look at some of the best Led Zeppelin album covers, according to ShowBiz Cheatsheet’s Jason Rossi –

g) CLICK BAIT ALERT!! – In the December newsletter, I waxed on (and then waxed off) about a click-bait article featuring “the 55 best album covers” on a site called Music Grotto and, rather than move on to another subject, the site doubled down on its inanity by publishing the long-awaited follow-up “55 Best Rap Album Covers Of All Time” – again, no methodology or reasons as to why there are 55 and why #1 is better than #55 so, this time, I’m not even including a link. If you’re so intrigued, you go find it…

h) The very goofy music satire publication Madhouse Magazine recently posted another of its famous “this can’t be real, right?” articles, with this one the first I’ve seen that combines politics with a proposed answer to the never-quite-fully-agreed-upon question of “just whose tight pants are featured on the cover of Sticky Fingers by the Rolling Stones – Not sure if I’m fully convinced, but it does offer a somewhat reasonable explanation to the long-unsolved mystery (I’m sure that newly-minted U.S. Rep. George Santos would beg to differ – it was him, I’m quite sure).

Lastly but not Leastly:

Beatles bassist nearly killed making an album cover! Sir Paul McCartney was nearly run over working with his daughter to recreate the famous zebra-crossing stunt first shown on the Abbey Road LP (and done again by Macca on his 1993 Paul Is Live album, with this photo from the same August 1969 Iain McMillian photo session as the photo used for the Abbey Road album cover, with some digital trickery applied.  and

The initial crossing fueled a whole host of conspiracies –

That’s all for now – stay tuned and be on the lookout for the timely news alerts you’ll find on our news feed (sign up below to get an automatic email every time there’s something new on the ACHOF site). I’ll be returning at the end of February (short month, so sooner that you realize) with another update and so, until then, enjoy your Winter season with whatever else brings you and yours endless warmth, happiness and fulfillment.

Peace and Love to you all,

Mike G

Unless otherwise noted, all text and images included in this article are Copyright 2022-2023 Mike Goldstein and – All Rights Reserved. All of the trade names mentioned in these summaries are the properties of their respective owners and are used for reference only.

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