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Don Hunstein

Don Hunstein has a knack for being in the right place at the right time. He shot hundreds of record covers and documented the recording sessions of many of the 20th Century’s most important musicians. He is a great photographer, equally skilled in large or small format, in black & white or colour. Rockarchive is honored to have him as a member of our collective.

Born and raised in St. Louis, MO and attended Washington University, graduating in 1950 with a degree in English. After college he enlisted in the US Air Force and was stationed in Fairford, England, and assigned a desk job. His parents had given him a modest camera so he could send pictures of London and the Cotswold village’s home to the family. But when that camera was stolen from the barracks he bought a Leica M3 in the PX, from a shop for GI’s on the base.

Having the M3 in his hands inspired him to get serious about taking pictures and while on a 3-day pass to Paris, he saw in a shop a book of black and white candid “street” photographs by Cartier-Bresson, which added to that inspiration.

In May of 1954 Don returned to the States, first to St. Louis and then to NYC to join a friend who had a job in advertising there. Don’s portfolio of pictures taken in London failed to impress the local photographers. However, he was offered an apprenticeship in a commercial studio, where Don learned to master large format cameras and the use of lighting. A known photographer, who had a studio within the Carnegie Hall building, hired Don as an assistant. Don helped him run his studio and went on location with him. One shoot in particular sticks in Don’s mind: shooting the dress rehearsal for a Broadway musical. It was to be in music photography that Don was to find his niche.

Within a few years Don was ready, at least technically, to have his own career as a photographer. A woman called Deborah Ishlon, who ran the publicity department for Columbia Records, became his mentor. The record business was expanding rapidly at the time and with only two assistants, Ishlon needed someone to help her run the picture library and supply prints to the press. She offered the job to Don. Little by little Don also became the main photographer for the company. As he became comfortable facing the famous names in the music world, putting both them and the new comers at ease in his presence, he developed the ability to see into the character of his subjects and reflect what he saw in the photos he took.  In a distinguished career that spans more than thirty years, Don took pictures of musicians – classical, Jazz, folk and then rock - in concert, at recording sessions, on the road, and in the studio, where he produced portraits for the PR department.

 

Bob Dylan (BD001DONH)

Bob Dylan

Early set of contact sheet photos by Don Hunstein taken of Bob Dylan in his New York apartment on West 4th Street in 1963.

Prices from £2,500.00
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Bob Dylan (BD004DONH)

Bob Dylan

Bob Dylan during his recording sessions for 'Highway 61 Revisited' at Columbia Studios in June 1965

Prices from £375.00
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Bob Dylan (BD006DONH)

Bob Dylan

At Columbia Studios, New York 1963 Bob Dylan tunes his guitar during a recording session for his second studio album 'Free Wheelin'

Prices from £250.00
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Bob Dylan (BD002DONH)

Bob Dylan

Bob Dylan shot while recording his 5th studio album, Bringing It All Back Home, in Columbia Recording Studios in New York City 1965.

Prices from £375.00
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Bob Dylan (BD003DONH)

Bob Dylan

An alternative version to the cover of the Bob Dylan Free Wheelin' album, which was similar, but also in colour.

Prices from £1,750.00
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Bob Dylan (BD005DONH)

Bob Dylan

Bob Dylan recording the Freewheelin' album in Columbia Recording Studios, New York City in 1963.

Prices from £208.33
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Bob Dylan (BD008DONH)

Bob Dylan

Bob Dylan rehearsing to an empty house on the Carnegie Hall stage in New York city, 1963.

Prices from £208.33
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Bob Dylan (BD009DONH)

Bob Dylan

Bob Dylan sitting with his girlfriend Suze Rotolo in their apartment in New York in February 1963

Prices from £925.00
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Johnny Cash (CASH002DONH)

Johnny Cash

Photographer Don Hunstein shot this rural side of Johnny Cash relaxing on his farm in San Antonio, Texas in 1959.

Prices from £208.33
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Johnny Cash (CASH003DONH)

Johnny Cash

Johnny Cash during a recording session at the Columbia Records 30th Street Studios in New York City in October 1959.

Prices from £375.00
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Johnny Cash (CASH004DONH)

Johnny Cash

Johnny Cash in New York with his wife June Carter while recording together at Columbia Recording Studio in New York City 1975.

Prices from £125.00
print
Johnny Cash (CASH005DONH)

Johnny Cash

Johnny Cash at home on his farm in San Antonio, Texas in 1959. He always had a fondness for San Antonio.

Prices from £208.33
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Johnny Cash (CASH006DONH)

Johnny Cash

Johnny Cash at home on his ranch in San Antonio, Texas in 1960, he always wore black, because he identified with the poor & the down trodden

Prices from £375.00
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Miles Davis (MD001DONH)

Miles Davis

Miles Davis with John Coltrane during the recording sessions for 'Kind of Blue' at Columbia Studios in New York in the Spring of 1959

Prices from £375.00
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Miles Davis (MD002DONH)

Miles Davis

Miles Davis during the recording sessions for 'Kind of Blue' taken in New York in the Spring of 1959

Prices from £375.00
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Featured Prints

Bob Dylan (BD003ROSA)

Bob Dylan

In the studio in Santa Monica, California in 1980, Bob Dylan is captured whilst leaning on his guitar case.

Prices from £291.67
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Annie Lennox (EU001SR)

Annie Lennox

This photo session was for No.1 Magazine (long since extinct) on a Eurythmics press day, they’d been doing interviews all day.

Prices from £125.00
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Sex Pistols (SP001VT)

Sex Pistols

Sex Pistols on the set for the 'Pretty Vacant' video shoot at the ITN Studios, London in June 1977

Prices from £291.67
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Fall, The (FALL001KC)

The Fall

Early shot of The Fall at Central Station Car Park, Manchester in the summer of 1978

Prices from £291.67
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Beatles, The (TB009WHIT)

The Beatles

Shooting promotional films for the singles Rain & Paperback Writer at Chiswick Park Gardens in May 1966

Prices from £750.00
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AC/DC (ACDC002JA)

AC/DC

Angus Young, from AC/DC, captured in a small street outside a press meeting in Copenhagen in 1977

Prices from £291.67
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Featured Artists

Ramones, The

The Ramones

The Ramones' loud, fast, straightforward musical style was influenced by music that the band members grew up listening to in the 50s & 60s.

artist
Fleetwood Mac

Fleetwood Mac

Fleetwood Mac are one of the world's greatest rock bands having sold over more than 100 million records over the last 50 years

artist
Lou Reed

Lou Reed

Lou Reed was one of music's most influential icons. His music defied all definitions of genre & left a legacy that has inspired generations

artist
Who, The

The Who

The Who are an English rock band that formed in 1964 & are considered one of the most influential rock bands of the 20th century.

artist
Smiths, The

The Smiths

Critics have called The Smiths the most important alternative rock band to emerge from the British independent music scene of the 1980s.

artist
Madness

Madness

Madness are an English band from Camden Town, London & one of the most prominent bands of the late 70s & early 80s 2 Tone ska revival.

artist

Featured Collections

Contact Sheets Collection

Contact Sheets Collection

Our contact sheet collection is a rare opportunity to look back at the hidden moments surrounding some of rocks most iconic images.

collection
Jill Furmanovsky Collection

Jill Furmanovsky Collection

Jill Furmanovsky is one of the greatest ever rock & roll photographers with a huge archive of iconic shots of the world's best music artists

collection
David Bowie Remembered

David Bowie Remembered

We are all still reeling from the tragic loss of David Bowie. Here is a wonderful tribute from one of our photographers, Mark Mawston.

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Born In The USA

Born In The USA

The USA has given us many of the world's greatest music artists - we celebrate the best of the best

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Great Prints for £250 or less

Great Prints for £250 or less

Check out our great range of authentic fine art photographic prints available for £250 or less.

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The Duffy Archive Collection

The Duffy Archive Collection

For eight years photographer Brian Duffy worked with David Bowie and shot his most iconic and enduring images. View his fantastic collection

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