Once in a while a photographer gains the trust of an artist or a band, and his work fuses with that of the artist in such a way that the two become married in the public consciousness. One can think of David Duncan's pictures of Picasso at work or Alfred Wertheimer's pictures of Elvis backstage in 1956. Elliott Landy's chronicle of The Band from 1968-1969 is of similar importance. He was trusted so deeply that this group of photographs is as intimate a portrait of a group of musicians inventing a new music as you are ever likely to come across.
Today we call that music “Americana ” and it is played all over the world by everyone from Mumford and Sons to the Zac Brown Band. But in 1968, when Elliott first started making these pictures, it was played by six musicians in the town of Woodstock, New York – Bob Dylan and a group called The Hawks. They later changed their name to The Band. They had been The Hawks for five years when Bob Dylan pulled them out of Tony Mart's dive bar on the Jersey Shore to be his band.
Elliott Landy (Woodstock, NY) is one of the first music photographers to be recognized as an “artist.” His images of Bob Dylan and the Band, Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix, Jim Morrison, Joan Baez, Van Morrison, Richie Havens, and many others documented the music scene during that class rock and roll period which culminated with the 1969 Woodstock Music Festival, of which he was the official photographer. His photographs have appeared on the covers of major magazines such as the Life, Saturday Evening Post and Rolling Stone and in all media internationally for the past forty years. He is author of six books including Woodstock Vision, The Spirit of a Generation.