Exhibition: Michael Putland

Featuring portraits of David Bowie, Nina Simone and the Rolling Stones, a new exhibition charts Michael Putland's 50-year-long career in music photography

An exhibition of works by the British music photographer Michael Putland opens this week at Lucy Bell Fine Art Gallery.

Off the Record: Michael Putland displays images from Putland’s 50-year-long career as a photographer. It features portraits of David Bowie, Marc Bolan, the Rolling Stones, Nina Simone, Bob Marley and Prince, among others.

Born on the outskirts of London in 1947, Putland took his first pictures at the age of nine. He left school at 16 to become an assistant in a photographic studio, working with the likes of Time-Life photographer Walter Curtain and motor racing specialist Louis Klemantaski. In 1969, Putland set up his own studio and started shooting for a handful of British music magazines.

During the 1970s, he became highly sought after as a music photographer, travelling all over Europe, Japan, Australia, South America and the US, and working for major record labels including CBS, WEA, Polydor, RCA and EMI. In 1973 he was hired as the tour photographer for the Rolling Stones’s European tour, beginning a lifelong relationship with the band. In 1977, Putland moved to New York, where he shot now-famous images of artists such as Billy Joel, the Clash, Bruce Springsteen and the Bee Gees.

Off the Record: Michael Putland will also include a collection of Putland’s previously unexhibited contact sheets of backstage and tour shots.