Rockin’ The Shots: Music Photography Exhibits In L.A. This Summer

Elvis is in the building. So are Amy Winehouse, the Ramones, Frank Zappa and other rock luminaries. And the house in question is the Annenberg Space For Photography. The Annenberg’s current exhibit, Who Shot Rock & Roll: A Photographic History, 1955 to the Present, offers a dynamic selection of awesome rock images shot by such ace photographers as Diane Arbus, Anton Corbijn, Henry Diltz, Lynn Goldsmith, Bob Gruen, Dennis Hopper, Annie Leibovitz, Jim Marshall and Mark Seliger. Besides the over 150 prints, the show also features an original documentary containing interviews and more photos as well as a Henry Diltz slideshow and music videos.

Courtesy of Ian Dickson/
The Ramones at Eric’s Club, Liverpool, England

Annenberg has made this exhibit something more than just something to look at. A weekly lecture series is bringing in a stellar lineup of top photographers to discuss their work. July 19 has a visit from Henry Rollins, while future lectures include Michael Ochs (Aug. 9), Henry Diltz 16), Mark Seliger (Aug. 30), Lynn Goldsmith (Sept. 20), Bob Gruen (Sept. 27) and an MTV panel featuring Penelope Spheeris, Liz Heller and Gale Sparrow (Aug. 23).

The Annenberg also has partnered with KCRW for some really special shows outside the museum. On July 21, Portugal. The Man headlines a 40th anniversary salute to the T. Rex classic album, The Slider while Bob Dylan’s music will be feted on Aug. 4 by the likes of Band of Skulls and Raphael Saadiq. For more information on the exhibit, which runs through Oct. 7, visit

If you are interesting in looking at some jazz photos on a summer’s day, then the  Grammy Museum will be the place to be. Opening later this month is a cool exhibit spotlighting the work of Herman Leonard. Leonard, a legendary chronicler of American music, passed away in 2010 and the Grammy Foundation has helped to fund the Herman Leonard Jazz Archive. This exhibit features just a tip of the iceberg from this collection (which would be even larger had not Hurricane Katrina destroyed thousands of Leonard’s prints). You can see jazz giants like Duke Ellington, Etta James, Billie Holliday and Miles Davis as captured through Leonard’s lens. Learn more about Herman Leonard: Documenting The Giants of Jazz, which opens July 26 and goes through Feb. 2013, at

More work by photographers from both exhibits can also be viewed at the Peter Fetterman Gallery in Bergamot Station. The Gallery’s show, Forever Young: The Art of Music Photography, include wonderful images of Jimi Hendrix, Frank Sinatra, Bob Marley, Johnny Cash and many other musical greats. More details on this show, which is up until Sept. 8, can be found at

About Michael Berick

I am a longtime writer, and lover, of music and pop culture. I have written for Entertainment Weekly, the Los Angeles Times, the LA Weekly, the San Francisco Chronicle, Cleveland Scene and more places (that I wouldn't take up more of your time mentioning now).
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