Saturday, 30 June 2012

Dizzee Rascal Portraits;

I was watching The South Bank Show on Sky Arts this week, the episode was all about UK Grime music. It was an interesting documentary on the origins of the sound and interviews with its pioneers, including Dizzee Rascal. I photographed Dizzee Rascal in 2004 in London around the time of his debut album 'Boy in da Corner'. I'd loved his track 'Fix Up, Look Sharp', with its edgy sound and attitude, it felt like London, it wasn't trying to be American - the UK now had a young rapper who could compete with anyone and had his own voice. Dizzee was still young but you could tell from his music and from talking with him that he'd seen a lot already.
This documentary came at a funny moment as in the same week I'd been sorting through my portraits of Dizzee as I was re-editing a lot of my work for my new website (going live in a couple of weeks). Only two of these have been seen much before, so I thought I'd take this opportunity to show the portraits here as an expanded set.

Dizzee Rascal, London © Michael Robert Williams



Thursday, 28 June 2012

Famous Music Locations In London;

Music is something I'm extremely passionate about, and it's a large part of my work. Something I do sometimes when I'm out and have some time is to photograph London locations which have become famous in music. I'm getting quite a collection now gradually but I've also recently started taking quick photos using the Instagram app while I'm taking the main photographs. I thought I'd share a few of the quick ones here.

A London location made famous in music;  'Savoy Steps' - The alley in London where Bob Dylan made the Subterranean Homesick Blues promo video, filmed by D. A. Pennebaker. It was one of the very first music promo clips and the cue cards idea in the film has been 'borrowed' by many others.

'Savoy Steps, London' 2012 © Michael Robert Williams
Shot using Instagram.

'Denmark Street, London WC2'.
'Denmark Street' gave it's name to a song by The Kinks, but the street itself has a long history with British music dating back to the 1950's. The Rolling Stones recorded their first album at studios on Denmark St, Jimi Hendrix too, and Elton John wrote 'Your Song' there. It's also home to a number of music shops.

'Denmark Street, London' 2012 © Michael Robert Williams