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Tony Mottram

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Tone is legendary. I mean, he really is. Sit him down and he’ll start a story with the sentence “I was once on tour in South America with Iron Maiden…” and off he’ll go on a sex and drugs and rock ‘n’ roll anecdote that will make your hair curl. Which is exactly as it should be. He’s been there, seen it and done and now through DJTees, he’s got the t-shirt.

Very much from the school of to-shoot-it-you’ve-got-to-live-it, Tony started his career in the late 70s shooting punk and then heavy metal bands. His work appeared in every major music publication, but perhaps he’ll be most fondly remembered for his work in in Sounds, RAW and Metal Hammer back when he was forever on the road with one bunch of long-haired reprobates or another.

From his studio in the 1980s emerged wonderfully sensitive and yet tough portrait photos of all the rock stars of the day, as well as a massive portfolio of live shots too. Who’s he photographed? Everyone. Everyone from Johnny Cash to Nirvana, to Ozzy, REM, Buddy Guy, Deep Purple, Pat Travers, Iron Maiden, AC/DC, Metallica, Aerosmith, Manic Street Preachers, Prince, Lemmy, Bon Jovi, Bruce Springsteen, Stevie Ray Vaughan and the Black Crowes. He even shot Guns ‘n’ Roses first UK Show at the Marquee in 1987. He counted many rockers as friends, especially Ronnie James Dio, who he worked with on the Holy Diver video back in 1983.

These days, when he’s not taking photos, he’s playing bass in cracking R & B band 58 Deluxe. Still full of huge passion and enthusiasm for the music and the people who make it, Tony remains a proper rock and roll man.

Take at look at the t-shirts inspired by Tony’s photographs

And read of Tony’s adventures in Photographer Tales – Tony & The Purps

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