Rolling Stone’s First Staff Photographer, Baron Wolman Passed Away At 83

Dianne Duenzl, his longtime assistant announced that Baron Wolman died on Monday following a battle with ALS. He was 83. Baron Wolman is a photographer whose images of Grace Slick, Jimi Hendrix and others. He got the immediacy of rock culture and translated it to silent paper.

Rolling Stone’s first staff photographer started a career as a photojournalist in the late 1960s in San Francisco. Baron Wolman is a music lover, his images appeared in virtually every issue. At first, he worked for free and instead he retaining the rights to his images. The photographer had a knack for candid photographs. He could expose a subject’s spirit and character without formally posing them or using elaborate lighting equipment.

Baron Wolman Passed is dies at 83

Baron Wolman Passed Away At 83

Classic Rock & Other Rollers, Rolling Stone founder Jann Wenner expressed Wolman as one of the unsung heroes of the magazine’s early days in his introduction to Wolman’s 1992 book. Wolman’s mission for the first issue of Rolling Stone was to shoot the Grateful Dead. The band’s members, who’d not yet heard of the new publication, assembled warily on the steps of their group house, several holding firearms. This story told of a police raid on the house just days before. In addition, Baron Wolman made even cantankerous subjects feel comfortable. He’s responsible for many memorable photographs of Miles Davis – with his then-wife Betty Davis.

Ahead of his death, the photgrapher posted an update to his Instagram accounts on Oct. 5: “Just as the sun sets over the Pacific, so, too, is it about to set over my life. A few of you know that a year ago I was give the formal diagnosis of ALS.” In which he, per his motto, mixed “business with pleasure since 1965.”

 

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