Prem’s collection is a legendary one in rock photography arenas. Featuring iconic snaps of the Stones, The Beatles, Jimi Hendrix, and Bob Dylan among others, his passion has resulted in his identifying the rarest and most captivating photos he could locate. In order to make sure the best photos are accessible to fans, he also works with photographers – representing them, managing their collections and organizing showcases. A true legend, Prem and long-running collaborators San Francisco Art Exchange (SFAe) launched the world’s foremost rock photography show in 1997, highlighting his belief that these photos are in fact fine art. He has worked with many photography icons, such as Gered Mankowitz, Robert Freeman, Michael Joseph, Iain Macmillan, Michael Cooper, Peter Webb, Jerry Schatzberg, Dominique Tarlê, and Terry O’Neill, in addition to Pattie Boyd. The legendary music journalist holds a special spot in his heart for the Rolling Stones, however. Photos such as the ones of the Stones’ 1965 US tour shown at that initial exhibition and those within “The Decca Years”, an exhibition which depicted the Rolling Stones evolution from chart rankers to leaders of the counter culture movement, have stunned audiences and were procured largely because of Prem’s dedication. A read of Keith Richards’ best-selling autobiography Life will prove that many of the photos are credited to ‘the Raj Prem collection’.
Opinions on music are certainly some of the most subjective that exist, and blanket statements about tracks and artists are often difficult to back up convincingly. However, a few are simply inarguable.
One of those particular universally held opinions is certainly that The Rolling Stones are one of the greatest rock and roll bands of all time.
From the musical side alone, a strong argument can be made that band has written some of the most memorable and iconic songs the genre has produced. Despite this, it may be the image of the band that truly sets them apart from any others. The Rolling Stones set the standard for ways that rock bands should present themselves. Now, from German publisher TASCHEN, editor Reuel Golden, and the band members’ personal archives, comes an unprecedented look into their fifty-year history in a collectible book simply titled “The Rolling Stones”. Along with a number of previously unseen images, legendary photo collector and exhibition curator, Raj Prem, has given several revolutionary prints for this definitive book.