Freddie Mercury, 1979, via queenphotos
Stevie in red
Freddie Mercury live at the Hammersmith Odeon, 1979, my edit of original via queenphotos
Todd Rundgren with David Johansen at New York City punk mecca, Max’s Kansas City, by Bob Gruen, via dietcokeandsympathy.
Todd on producing the Doll’s eponymous debut album in 1973:
The New York Dolls weren’t presented to me – they were just part of the milieu I was involved in at the time. I was still living in New York in an apartment that was walking distance from Max’s Kansas City which is where everything was happening. There was no CBGB yet.
For the most part I went through David. I used him as a translator to get to the rest of the band. The challenge of making the record was that the control room was a freaking circus; everyone wanted to know what was going on with The New York Dolls – the critics’ favourite band.
I was pretty sober throughout the entire thing, my only working drug was pot. While these guys would smoke pot they would also do everything else. The sessions involved politics, psychology and crowd control. And at a certain point I had to surrender to the process and accept that the surrounding insanity was going to be a part of the character of the record.
More on New York Dolls and other Todd productions in a gloriously wide-ranging interview at Louder Sound.
The section on recording that album at Wikipedia is also unusually entertaining. Famously fastidious in the studio, Todd is reported to have yelled at one point, “Get the glitter out of your asses and play!”, but it’s overall very clear that the chaos was part of the appeal for Todd in working with them, and at the heart of what he was trying to capture on the record. A highly underrated album and collaboration, imo, very much worth another spin.
Outrageous and onstage in October 1974. Fashion designed by the legendary Bob Mackie. 🚀
John Deacon and Roger Taylor, from “I’m Going Slightly Mad”, 1991, via queenphotos
Marvin getting help wiping the sweat off his face by a fan while performing Let’s Get It On during an appearance on Soul Train by Bruce W. Talamon, February 16, 1974
Remarkably one of only two appearances on Soul Train! (The other coming in 1977.)
(Okay, this is embarrassing – I found this in a pile of old scans, and I have NO IDEA where it came from anymore. Anybody got any clues for me????)
Informed that they were almost out of film and needed to get this in one take, Jimi is unsure where to begin: the guitar belonged to director Peter Neal, and Jimi had never played one like it before.
He looks up after picking around for a few bars and is startled to see the camera rolling. Clearly flustered, he stops. “Don’t waste all that film there! Stop it for a second! ‘Cause I was scared to death. Can I do it just one more time though? Can I do it just one more time?”
This time, his exploration starts on a little firmer footing as he eases into his never-quite-finished original composition, “Hear My Train A Comin’”.
(For that matter, he never quite settled on a title. In virtually every live performance, Jimi introduced it as some variation of “Getting My Heart Back Together Again”.)
Finding his way along as he bends the strings to follow his voice, and vice versa, he ends three minutes later with a laugh. “Did you think I could do that?”
The answer seems obvious in retrospect, but Peter was honest later that he had no idea what to expect. “It was just one of those magic moments that happen sometimes.” More of Peter’s story behind the shoot here.