“I’d always been into music—printing up fake press passes and sneaking my camera into concerts since the day I first picked up a camera,” the …
“I’d always been into music—printing up fake press passes and sneaking my camera into concerts since the day I first picked up a camera,” the photographer Laura Levine told me. “Typical New York City kid. I worked for all of the usual suspects—Rolling Stone, Creem, Trouser Press, Spin, Sounds, the New York Times—and, later, the record labels. But the publication I ended up working most closely with in the early eighties, during its brief but crucial existence, was the New York Rocker.
Post-Punk’s Visual Chronicler: Interview with Laura Levine
Laura Levine’s work is too varied and voluminous to be hemmed in to one particular time, scene, or discipline — the bio on her website rightfully describes her as a “cross-disciplinary visual artist” — but I’m assuming many readers of this site discovered her work the same way I did: via her photography in the pages of several music publications during the ’80s, including the Village Voice, Trouser Press, Musician, Rolling Stone, and especially New York Rocker, where she served as chief photographer before becoming Photo Editor. Levine’s photography resumé reads like a Who’s Who of those loopy years following punk and disco: from early snaps of Prince and Madonna (pre-world domination) to photogenic weirdos like Captain Beefheart, August Darnell (a.k.a. Kid Creole), and Bow Wow Wow’s Annabella Lwin to No Wave shit disturbers D.N.A. and Glenn Branca to “new romantic” mop-fops Yazoo to rap icons Run-D.M.C. and Afrika Bambaata to hardcore visionaries Black Flag and X to… well, you get the picure.