Press Release | Mon March 04, 2019, 05:56 PM EST
Radio legend Dick Biondi called Michael G Bush “The greatest rock & roll photographer in the country."
Zhou B Art Center, (1029 W 35th St., 773-523-0200) in Chicago’s Bridgeport neighborhood, presents 61 at 61, a debut solo exhibition from photographer Michael G. Bush, showcasing his forty years of shooting big-name Rock & Roll concerts. 61 at 61 is an explosive debut for Bush, with “61 at 61” referring to both the 61 photos being exhibited and the photographer’s age. The exhibition presents, for the first time ever, the best of Bush’s extensive collection of onstage and offstage images. 61 at 61 will be on view on the second-floor exhibition space from March 15 to April 5, 2019. Exhibition hours are Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
On opening night, March 15 from 7-10 p.m., Bush will be joined by Gary Lewis of Gary Lewis and the Playboys for a free meet and greet. The photographer also will be attending the exhibit from noon to 5 p.m. on all three Saturdays, March 16, 23 and 30 during the exhibition's run. Members of famed Chicago-area rock bands of the 1960s may also attend the exhibition to honor Bush, their longtime friend and photographer.
Armed with his trusty Nikon camera equipment and his film of choice (Fujichrome), Bush captured musical moments in time that can never be replicated or duplicated. All photographs in this exhibition were taken with a hand held 35mm film camera with no automatic settings, a challenge that propelled Bush to learn and strive for excellence all on his own.
“I am proud to be partnering with the Zhou B Art Center to host my first ever photo exhibition,” said Bush. “I have personally handpicked my images of the hitmakers, idols and legends from the original Rock & Roll era, and I'm excited to be finally sharing them with the world. With no formal photography training, I thrust myself into the Rock & Roll world, and learned by trial and error. I witnessed firsthand the ‘Sex, Drugs and Rock & Roll’ lifestyle, and managed somehow to stay in the background and just take my pictures."
Bush has been photographing live concerts since the late '70s. He has shot superstars like The Rolling Stones, Elton John, Queen, The Who, The Bee Gees, Marvin Gaye, Bob Dylan, Rod Stewart, Stevie Wonder, Santana, James Brown, Paul McCartney and David Bowie, but he was partial to the Pioneers of Rock 'n' Roll like The Everly Brothers, Carl Perkins, Roy Orbison, Bo Diddley, Ray Charles, Jerry Lee Lewis, Fats Domino, Little Richard, and Ricky Nelson. When Chuck Berry’s 1987 autobiography was published, Bush had more of his photos included than any other photographer.
The Beach Boys used his photographs in their press kit, and he was the featured photographer in their 25th Anniversary tour program. Bush’s portfolio reads like a Who’s Who of the Original Rock 'n' Roll Era, shooting nearly every charting act and teen idol of the '60s from Herb Alpert to the Zombies, as well as Doo Wop legends, the '60s Chicago music scene and hit-makers of the '70s and '80s, including Alice Cooper, Ted Nugent, Cheap Trick, Joan Jett, The Police and KISS (without makeup).
Bush also has been a road photographer for several tours, traveling with The Monkees during the '80s and '90s and providing photos for their official tour programs. Bush was so popular with the fans that in 1988 a fan club was started for him and he also appeared in "16" magazine.
He has formed close friendships with many of the artists and has been called “the best kept secret in Rock & Roll photography.” His work also has been featured on album covers, in newspapers, magazines, and on many artists’ websites. A Chicago native and resident, Bush is planning to publish a series of books and limited-edition prints featuring his photography.
Gary Lewis (and the Playboys) said: "Mike and I have been friends since 1985. I met him when he was taking photos of the first Happy Together tour and doing a great job of it. His stuff is all quality, and I've used many of his photos on my website and for promo shots. I will be there to wish him well on his first showing!"
David Somerville (lead singer of The Diamonds) – called MGB: “The rock star of rock photographers.”
Davy Jones (of The Monkees) – called MGB: "The best kept secret in rock & roll photography."
Radio legend, Dick Biondi - called MGB: “The greatest rock & roll photographer in the country."
Jim Peterik (Grammy winning member of The Ides of March, formerly of Survivor, and of .38 Special fame): "I've known Mike Bush since 1983, and was immediately impressed by his amazing eye behind the camera to capture the very essence of live performance. That is a talent that goes beyond mere technique and goes deeper to his appreciation of music and a passion that rivals the passion of the performers onstage. '61 at 61' will prove to be a must see treat for everyone that shares the same enthusiasm for capturing those magic moments".
Jimy Sohns (The Shadows of Knight): "Michael is an amazing photographer. He has the ability to capture every side of me, and there are many! He captures the soul of everyone he photographs. MICHAEL G. BUSH FOR MAYOR! I'd vote for him..."
Ronnie Rice (The New Colony Six): "Anyone who's met Michael knows he loves his craft, and it shows in his photos. He's a nice guy with a big heart, and he's been a loyal friend."
Carl Giammarese (The Buckinghams): "The artistry that Michael Bush shows in his photographs is because of his innate talent and his devotion to the music of our generations. Combining his devotion to his art and love of music, Michael channels his focus on the heart and soul of the performers he photographs. His pictures have that “something else” factor that distinguish his talent. For four decades, The Buckinghams have enjoyed his photographs and our friendship. I look forward to his “Legends” photo exhibit at the Zhou B Art Center."
TOMMY JAMES (Shondells): "I have known Mike for decades, and he is without a doubt one of the most talented and nicest people you are ever going to meet...He has a way of getting intimate expressions and moments from the people he photographs, and really captures who they are. I am very proud to call him my friend and wish him great success on this wonderful project."
Press Release | Mon March 04, 2019, 05:56 PM EST