The VINYL word Al­bum art rocks own worth

CHB Mail - - News -

The leg­endary Pink Floyd’s al­bum cover for their Dark Side of the Moon LP is con­sid­ered by many as one of the most iconic al­bum covers of all time.

The orig­i­nal art­work for the al­bum is thought to be the sin­gle most valu­able art­work in rock his­tory and is be­ing ex­hib­ited at a San Fran­cisco Art Gallery, along with 100 other clas­sic orig­i­nal al­bum de­signs, in­clud­ing The Bea­tles’ Abbey Road and Rub­ber Soul, The Rolling Stones’ Beg­gars Ban­quet and Bob Dy­lan’s Blonde on Blonde.

It got me think­ing about record al­bum de­signs and just how im­por­tant they are in mu­sic and their cul­tural sig­nif­i­cance.

At the time of its re­lease, The Bea­tles’ Sgt Pep­per al­bum was the most ex­pen­sive al­bum cover ever made. It cost around £3000 where most al­bums at the time cost about £50.

The al­bum cover went on to win a Grammy award for its de­sign­ers, Jann Howarth and Peter Blake, in 1967 not sur­pris­ingly for Best Al­bum Cover — Graphic Art.

An­other iconic al­bum cover that comes to mind is Fleet­wood Mac’s Ru­mours. The art­work is quite sim­ple with Mick Fleet­wood and Ste­vie Nicks pos­ing to­gether.

Ste­vie is dressed as the Welsh Witch “Rhi­an­non” and Mick is in some very tight Tu­dor style pants. What makes it iconic though, is the two balls dan­gling to­gether on a toi­let chain be­tween Mick’s legs.

Ac­cord­ing to Mick Fleet­wood, the wear­ing of the balls dates back to an early Fleet­wood Mac gig where he had “one or two ales” and ripped the wooden balls from the toi­let chain and dan­gled them be­tween his legs. To this day the leg­endary drum­mer wears the at­tach­ment when he is on stage.

I men­tioned the Rolling Stones’ Beg­gars Ban­quet al­bum cover. The orig­i­nal cover was em­broiled in many months of con­tro­versy in 1968. Back then it was very taboo to fea­ture toi­lets in any kind of pub­lic­ity, but the Stones went ahead and fea­tured a toi­let wall cov­ered in graf­fiti. The ac­tual photo was taken at a Porsche Deal­er­ship in Los An­ge­les. The al­bum was de­layed for months and the orig­i­nal art­work didn’t sur­face un­til the 80s.

Clas­sic al­bum covers don’t just de­fine the mu­sic but also de­fines an era whether it is 60s, 70s or to­day.

A book called Art Record Covers by Francesco Spamp­inato fea­tures more than 500 covers and for any lover of vinyl it is worth adding to your mu­sic li­brary.

Brian Kelly is a host on Coast Break­fast ra­dio.

Photo / Getty Images

al­bum cover. Left: Pink Floyd’s David Gil­mour, Roger Wa­ters, Nick Ma­son and Rick Wright.

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