Tuesday, March 22, 2011


People that some might think it somewhat unlikely that I've photographed, but I was invited/employed to do so: from upper left, Samuel L. Jackson, Clint Eastwood and Robert Rodriguez amongst other notables, Prince, REO Speedwagon, Wire, Girlschool.

Random stories behind the photos: the mighty Samuel L. Jackson seen at a charity benefit organized by his fellow actor Danny Glover: Clint Eastwood and others, (images owned by Billboard magazine/The Hollywood Reporter, fair usage insertion) my photographs of their Film & TV Music Conference throughout the page shown; that's a pistol-shaped microphone in Prince's hand. Difficult shoot: media limited to 1 and 1/2 songs, the first of which found Prince wholly masked throughout, with unidentified goons rushing all press photographers off the premises entirely afterwards, unusual treatment. I made my "escorts" work for it, whining that I had to go the loo, and staying in there for fifteen minutes, relaxing, re-doing my makeup, futzing with my camera equipment; REO Speedwagon looking very relaxed in their manager's lovely, verdant back yard; lastly, Wire and Girlschool looking, according to the record company personnel way too relaxed, the excuse given for not wanting me to shoot their parties again.
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Sunday, March 20, 2011

STRAY PORTRAITS, sometime in the 2000s and 1980s

I didn't recognize my neighbor when he showed up for his portrait with his newly shorn Mohawk. Now I don't even remember his name. Nor do I recall same of the fashion model below, and she was stunningly beautiful...


Thursday, March 17, 2011


Steve Jones, esteemed guitarist, former Sex Pistol and very popular current radio DJ (LINK) who programs all his own music, seen during his leonine mane period headlining his own combo on New Years' Eve 1989 at the Hollywood Palladium. One lucky concert-goer to this very bike-y themed gig during the Golden Age of Hair Metal won a Harley Davidson motorcycle that evening purchasing but a single raffle ticket. I was one of the few there of the XX chromosome persuasion dressed for work that did not involve pole-dancing. Note genuine audience adoration below.
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Wednesday, March 16, 2011


My late
grandmother, a theatre enthusiast, saw Isadora Duncan dance towards the end 
 of her career. Duncan's myriad tragedies such as her children drowning via her chauffeur's negligence (he'd leftthe children in the car and the carin gear which then plunged to the bottom of a river) and assorted lost loves must have taken their toll, as my grandmother described her as somewhat bovine andgraceless at that point. (My grandmother much preferred the Dolly
Sisters, who as the quintessential young hotties du jour presumably were not
tainted so with life's burdens.)
Left, Isadora
Duncan. Right,the Dolly Sisters.

Duncan and Ruth St. Denis were alone in their championing true modern dance in that era. St. Denis today mainly is remembered for sponsoring a very young Martha Graham, and kicking an equally young Louise Brooks out of her dance troupe for insolence. I didn't know enough about the stirrings of modern dance in the Belle Epoque when she was alive to ask her about others. I did love to listen to her talk firsthand about theatre and pop culture of her eras.

I have one of her book-bound compendiums of Theatre Magazine, which included the silent film stars of the day as well, and such gorgeous high-end full color lithography with real gold leaf! May 1916 cover of The Theatre magazine featuring Ruth St. Denis (bane of young dancer Louise Brooks) from my grandmother's custom-bound collection of the periodicals.
Her well-to-do physician father raised her sister and her after their mother died quite young. My grandmother was indulged with copious niceties, such as the all satin riding habit pictured above second from the top (which, when I queried her about same, turned out to have been made not for equestrian activities but for a 1917 black and white-themed ball to which all other guests would have worn formal attire albeit black and white,) plus its pricey photo studio commemoration. Her costume as a newspaperboy is seen below. She liked to dress up: I inherited that, her sense of fun and shortness from her.
Tiring of the socialite circuit, she was engaged to a brave young pilot, a soldier who had survived The Great War (WWI.) But he did not survive the 1918 Spanish Influenza that ended up killing far more millions than the war's own casualties (I believe the total mortality rate was estimated at one sixth of the world's population.) She volunteered as a Red Cross assistant shortly thereafter (1919 top photo above with Vodka, the Borzoi.)

She then met the owner of Vodka, my grandfather (see "Adventurous Relations" LINK,) a patient at her father's doctor office and they wed. They lived in a tiny farm town in the midst of nowhere, albeit in style (see LINK.) When younger, she made the three hours each way trip from the farms to Memphis at least once a week to catch theatrical shows and assorted shoppings. With two children, her more adventurous days of probably being the second Southern belle after Zelda Fitzgerald to bob off her long hair, or going barnstorming up in the clouds of assorted beaux' biplanes, dissipated, all gone with the wind as well. Always very kind to me (and everyone,) she allowed me when I'd visit to bring assorted baby farm animals like piglets and goat kids into the stately plantation home to watch television with us despite this gross breakage with propriety.

She did enjoy traveling around the world with my very successful farm-owning grandfather, although he outlived her by 25 years. And she did, however, to the envy of virtually everyone to whom I've related same, find the perfect way out. She had a very normal schedule that day: she played bridge and other card games with her girlfriends whom she jokingly deemed "the Go Go Girls," attended to her normal household routines, since it was autumn probably watched a baseball game (her secret passion) on television, went upstairs and took her normal afternoon nap. And never woke up.

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Monday, March 14, 2011


pictured in the above screen capture,* offered below lies the only known film footage of me before assorted 2002 horse shows (representational still photo, right.) Timings of same are as follows, since the appearances are limited to mere seconds. This 1975 post-student film epic opus paean to Bruce Lee "The Adventures of Ozzie Twightly" stars a future network television director alongside his future ex-wife (portraying "Granny") with, as "Twang" in the flowered kimono, a future tv horror show host (and bane of my adolescence LINK) alongside his first wife.

8:46 (me- long brown/black hair, sitting on the floor in black Glam trouser outfit)

9:03 (me- wearing then habitual platform shoes)

Today all I have in common with this person remains status as a female carbon-based life-form...
*Thank you Tim Weston for the proper nomenclature denoting my "Mimsy Farmer/Riot On Sunset Strip scowl" seen in screen capture.

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Saturday, March 12, 2011

Fashion: 1960s cool- BUFFALO SPRINGFIELD and 1970s "SUNSET STRIP"

My above photos of Buffalo Springfield (one third of the trifecta of the best 1960s players live along with Moby Grape and The Jeff Beck Group. Few others could duplicate their complex recorded sounds effortlessly) in action were shot in 1967 at the Shrine Auditorium (which later helmed the Academy Awards/ Oscars Ceremony.)

Bolstering my contention that the best place to spot rockstars (accompanied by their tailors/clothing designers) in the mid to late 1960s in Los Angeles was Home Silk Shop, domain of exotic fabrics, it's representative of what cool rockers wore to be cool: custom threads. Richie Furey's (far left) Nehru-collared, paisley-patterned frock coat appears to have been made from a contemporary cotton Indian bedspread; in those pre-diversity days some domestic artifacts but little clothing made its way to our shores from India.

Stephen Stills' leather jacket was an unusual choice at the time, as was Neil Young's Native American suedewear with long beaded fringe, perhaps purchased at a reservation store in his Canadian homeland.

The costuming ideas may have originated via the burgeoning young rock stylists of the era such as Genie the Tailor, a popular young woman who died young in a auto crash with members of the band Fairport Convention (which at least spared future stars Richard Thompson and Sandy Denny.) She is fictionalized into the character "Tammy" in the film in the trailer below, a fascinating, unheralded movie depicting our regional Hollywood music scene of the early 1970s.

"Sunset Strip" should be viewed as a character study companion piece to "Almost Famous" with far more accurate verisimilitude. "Famous" is a wondrous pastiche, lotsa entertaining bang for your buck. But "Sunset Strip" represents the real shit. I know. I was there. And here's why you should take my anonymous online word for it.

When I first saw this movie I was astonished that I didn't recognize the name of its writer, for I recognized every one of the personnel depicted, literally as well as figuratively. The writer obviously was exactly the same age I was, worked in the exact aspects of the entertainment industry that I did, at the exact same time in the early 70's at the exact same spots in Hollywood and knew the exact same people I did (or knew of.) Anna Friel portrayed Genie the Tailor. The geeky manager was seemingly an early Geffen-esque clone. The dissolute songwriter was a Warren Zevon-alike, while Jared Leto became, dare I say, a completely interchangeable popstar type of the era. My own future better half, rockstar of that era himself, lived in the exact same Laurel Canyon mountaintop aerie depicted in the film (replete with benevolent landlord), while I worked as a music photographer amongst the scene of the main protagonist's doppelganger. And I did know who he was. He was one of the names you'll recognize on photo credits of the era, who now owns a major restaurant here. But he didn't want his name on the writing credits, so I'll respect that.

"Sunset Strip" remains a highly entertaining ensemble depiction of souls on the perimeter or the earliest stages of ascent of the music scene in Los Angeles in the early 1970's. It's all true. And we did go out there every night. . .

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Thursday, March 10, 2011


photo (C) 1973 Heather Harris
Dick Dale and the Del-tones, The Surfaris, Jan & Dean and GLITTER? Yes, I took this photograph in 1973 at the First Surf Revival at the Hollywood Palladium featuring the above artists during the original era of Glam in Hollywood. I remained impressed with the juxtaposition of the correctly trendy couple versus the genuine surfing accoutrements (my pics of Dick Dale leaping a piano at that very show here LINK.)

The trendy young lady sports a smart suit, Art Deco accessories and the latest perm as popularized by the nascent Bette Midler and assorted Rocky Horror Show (pre-film) characters, and quite the sea change from long hippie tresses and dresses. The young gentleman proffers the proverbial perfect haircut of the times, then known as a shag (see Rod Stewart and Faces, #9 at LINK.) The contingent at the surfboard table evinces looks more popular with those immune to what's now termed Glam but then was Glitter (which is to say the rest of the world save nano-portions of L.A., NYC, London and Paris) during the early to mid 1970s.
Notable here is the fluidity with which all musical, fashion and lifestyle mindsets intermingled in 1973, unlike, say, today.

Friday, March 4, 2011


The Zeros circa 1977 in my book "Punk Rock 'n' Roll" (alongside illustration by Gary Panter) and circa 2009 at the Troubadour, West Hollywood, on a bill with Javier Escovedo's brother Alejandro Escovedo and band, plus my favorites/friends The Dogs, photographs by me. Although many offshoots abounded in the intervening 31 years such as Robert Lopez' "El Vez" revue, The Zeros' perseverance has paid off bigtime as they play again to enthusiastic audiences domestically and internationally. See LINK and LINK for more live photos from different gigs.

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