Legendary music photographer Kevin Cummins shares anecdotes from his time photographing The Stone Roses at “Sonos presents… The Music, The Myths and The Mayhem.”
Having photographed everyone from The Happy Mondays to David Bowie, Duran Duran and of course, The Stone Roses, Cummins was once described by The Buzzcocks’ Pete Shelley as “sometimes more important than the bands themselves.”
Interviewed by music journalist Lois Wilson (Mojo, Q, Kerrang! and NME), Kevin Cummins talked through the influential late 80s-to-early 90s scene. Starting from his time as a student blagging into gigs with nothing more than an empty camera case all the way to shooting Joy Division in the snow and capturing the iconic Stone Roses ‘splatter shot’ NME cover from 18 November 1989.
“We spent the morning turning the place into a polethene cube so when the band turned up and lay in place, Guitarist John Squire opened a gallon tin of paint and just threw it across them! I kept thinking, “god, this isn’t going to work at all, this is not what I thought it was going to be like! John continued to be build the paint up by throwing it across the band and then tipping it over his head and getting back into the shot so we built it up colour by colour. At the end of the shoot they needed to get showered but I had to break the news to them that there were no showers in the building so they put hand prints all down the stairwell of the building!”
For those who missed the event, here’s the video of Kevin Cummins talking through The Stone Roses iconic ‘splatter shot’.
It’s time for part 2 of the retro postcard series – recreations of historical Roses promotional materials in handy (and printable) 6×4 postcard format.
She Bangs The Drums
Released on 17th July 1989, the She Bangs The Drums single had a variety of advert styles. From the simple black and white text based option, to the Roses lemon and finally a large colour advert which featured stills from the original promo video for The Drums.
Update: Looks like there was another Drums advert featuring Squire’s artwork. I’ve added it to the gallery.
This is the first in an occasional series where I present something a little different.
I have produced a series of postcards that recreate the classic Roses’ adverts from 1989. These were created to promote the Stone Roses’ debut album and associated singles.
If you haven’t seen them, they were particularly iconic and helped to instantly set the Roses apart from their contemporaries.
They have been recreated from those original adverts and reformatted to suit the standard 6×4 photo paper size. You can print your own postcard set and they look excellent mounted in a frame.
Made of Stone
To start the series we have the promo material from the Made of Stone single release. The first image is the advert which appeared in the music press at the time. It features an image from the photo shoot that was also used for the debut album inner sleeve.
The single was also advertised with promotional materials featuring the cover artwork from the single. It was of course designed by John Squire and featured an image from his painting ‘Cody Calling’.