I took this shot of T-Model Ford at ArthurFest Los Angeles in 2005. Running around with Josephine Foster, playing with Vetiver as the sun streamed down and Comets on Fire started playing across the way, sets by Cat Power, Devendra, and Yoko Ono…a magical time I’ll never forget. I also got to this this man perform. Here he is hanging out backstage.
I shot the cover of the Chris Robinson Brotherhood 7” that came out on Record Store Day 2012. I love working with these guys.
Only 2 months after Bert Jansch’s passing, his wife Loren followed. They were a true team, a loving and inspiring couple. I feel blessed to have gotten to know them in the past few years. Please enjoy these photos and also check out the album Bert & Loren made together in 1985 (After the Long Night/Playing the Game).
R.I.P. Bert Jansch
To my friend Bert: Thank you for being such an inspiration to myself and so many of my musical compadres. For being playing songs you wrote 40 years ago with those of us who were born much later. For being humble and funny and so exceptionally talented.
I will always cherish moments I spent with Bert: at the Bridge School Festival where he was re-introduced to Neil Young after 40 years and played guitar with him on “Ambulance Blues”, in my kitchen drinking tea with him and his wife Loren, and driving down Highway 1 from Santa Cruz to San Francisco looking for a beautiful spot to take some photos between shows.
Over the last couple of years, Bert was so happy to be playing shows with Neil & Pegi Young, and I’m so grateful the Youngs not only gave Bert the opportunity to play for so many people in beautiful venues, but gave their audiences the chance to experience Bert’s music for the first time. I know that he appreciated the opportunity immensely.
During the encore of the Bridge School Festival, where all the performers get up to play “Keep On Rockin’ in the Free World”, Bert took his guitar out of his case to go onstage. Lacking a strap, I said, “Bert, where’s your strap?” He said, “I don’t have one.” “Why not?” He laughed and said, “Because I’ve never played guitar standing up before!”
Another funny Bert story I’d like to share reveals his sense of humor about the hard-partying life he notoriously led as a younger man: in Santa Cruz at the Brookdale Lodge, where he played a show with Meg Baird and Mariee Sioux, we were hanging out after the show on the balcony of the hotel there. Bert was passed a spliff, and he politely declined. “Oh, no thank you, that was the first thing I gave up.” So I laughed and said, “Oh yeah? What was the last thing you gave up?” and he looked at me with that mischievous twinkle in his eye, chuckled, and said, “Speed.”
Perhaps his hard-living ways ended his life it a bit earlier, but he certainly lived to the fullest, traveling and performing until the very end. I’m so glad I got to spend as much time with him as I did while he was here with us.
I love you friend. Rest in peace.
A slideshow with some additional photos I took of Bert from 2006-2011 can be found here:
So the Jayhawks have a new album out called “Mockingbird Time”. I stumbled upon the album cover and was more than a little surprised by the similarity of the shot to a publicity photo I took of Vetiver in 2008. Coincidence?
The Vetiver shot was taken by me, The Jayhawks shot by photographer Steven Cohen.
My photo of Vetiver appears in Rolling Stone this month! HOT.
Last Ave Group Show:
Location: Hotel Biron, 45 Rose St. (between Market & Gough), San Francisco, CA.
Opening: Thurs. April 14th, 7 - 10 p.m.
Hours: Everyday 5 p.m. - 2 a.m.
My photo of Joanna Newsom (2004) is featured in the NY Times review for “The Family Jams”.