Hometown Legends Highlighted in “Backstage Pass”
Janis Joplin, Johnny Winter and Edgar Winter are three home-grown musicians highlighted in “Backstage Pass: Baron Wolman and the Early Years of Rolling Stone.”
This temporary exhibit will turn the Museum of the Gulf Coast’s Museum of the Gulf Coast Dunn Gallery into a Rock and Roll Hall of Fame from Nov. 2 through Jan. 4. Iconic photographs show performers in a variety of settings, invoking the era of their original publication in the magazine.
From blues legend Mississippi Fred McDowell – who wrote “Baby Please Don’t Go” and influenced the Rolling Stones – to a boyish Mick Jagger, an inquisitive Jim Morrison and an at-home George Harrison, candid photos of musical legends have taken residency in the gallery.
Musicians were captured at a variety of ages and at the peak of their careers live on stage, in the studio or in candid, relaxed poses. A shot of McDowell portrayed a weathered and tired-eyed blues man, and the accompanying literature told his story of farming and doing menial labor until he first recorded in 1959 at age 55. A youthful Pete Townsend was captured in the studio, cradling a beer at a production board, when the Who was recording “Tommy,” and an almost impressionist image of Tina Turner showed the electricity she brought to the stage.
Intimacy and Skill
Wolman captured these legends at amazing moments with intimacy. Critics say the composition is amazing and the lighting is perfect, demonstrating Wolman’s skill with the technology of his time. Photographers then developed their film and saw what they came up with later, adding excitement to the work. The Tina Turner shot is blurry, yet captures her action and madness
“Backstage Pass: Baron Wolman and the Early Years of Rolling Stone” opens with a reception at Museum of the Gulf Coast, from 2 to 4 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 2. Be sure to head upstairs to visit the Museum’s permanent music hall of fame, that includes tributes to the Winter brothers, Joplin and many other music legends from Southeast Texas.