Like a slide plucked from a reel of film, Brad Elterman’s photographs open a window to decades passed. Each photograph, interrupted from the flow of time, lays littered as a personal homage to the rock and roll scene of the 70s and 80s. From behind the camera, Brad pulls you inside, as if rummaging through someone’s memories. Saturated in soul, each image is a story captured; a personal memento embalmed to be untouched. A moment stolen from time. Unfiltered and raw, the unfamiliar now becomes the familiar as history unfolds, revealing a life not only documented, but lived.
Brad Elterman’s career started with a borrowed camera at the age of 16. His first photo, of Bob Dylan performing onstage, was published in 1974.
That lead to endless nights of covering the rock scene in Hollywood encompassing pop, punk and rock bands including Joan Jett and The Runaways, Rod Stewart, David Bowie, the Sex Pistols, Kiss, Queen, Blondie, the Ramones, the Bay City Rollers, Abba, Boney M, Kenny Rogers, The Who, Leif Garrett, Michael Jackson, etc.
“It was my education in life,” says Brad, who left school to travel with bands and visit European magazine editors at the age of 19. “I had a front row seat in life which took me everywhere from Munich to Tokyo to Rio.” Brad toured Japan with teen idol Leif Garret, traveled to South America with German pop stars Boney M, and did tour dates with The Eagles and Rod Stewart, just to name a few.
Some of the magazines that Brad contributed to include:US: Creem, Circus, Rolling Stone, People Magazine, Hit Parader, Phonograph Record Magazine, Rock Magazine, Rock Scene, New York Post, JAPAN: Music Life, Rock Show, EUROPE: Muzeik Express, Photo Foto, Pop, Pop Rocky, Bravo, Das Freizeit, Magazun, Popcorn, Poster Magazine, Oh Boy, Fabulous 208, Jackie, Sounds, New Musical Express, Melody Maker. Often Brad was hired to do official publicity photos by major record labels including RCA, Warner Bros, MCA, Mercury, Columbia, RSO and Capitol Records.
In 1980 Brad formed one of the first Los Angeles-based photo agencies, California Features International, Inc. which specialized in providing celebrity coverage to magazines and newspapers worldwide. Brad covered Award Shows including The Oscars, Awards, American Music and Grammy Awards countless times.
In 1992 Brad co-founded Online USA, Inc. one of the first Digital Photo Agencies employing some of the finest American and British photo-journalists, again specializing in photos of celebrities. Online USA was subsequently purchased by Getty Images in 2000, in a deal that CBS MarketWatch called “the deal of the day”. Brad remained with Getty Images as a consultant for a year following the sale.
The last couple of years Brad has been busy organizing his archives and doing select photo exhibitions in Los Angeles, Switzerland and in the winter of 2010 at Tabloid Museum, Tokyo. Apple has invited Brad to speak and show is photographs at their Apple Store Tokyo Ginza, New York SoHo and London Regent Street. Brad was honored to speak at various photography classrooms including the prestigious Art Center, Pasadena.
In 2011 Brad released a coffee table book, “Like It Was Yesterday published by Seventy Seven Press LLC and printed by Toppan of Japan. The limited edition ( 500 copies ) signed and numbered book is available at LEADAPRON Los Angeles, Ralph Lauren Madison Ave, Book Marc New York and Colette Paris. Photographs from the book are highlighted in Purple Magazine’s Summer 2011 issue.
Today Brad is a prolific blogger on his tumblr site posting his iconic seventies photographs and his new modern day pop culture imagery. His blog, www.bradelterman.tumblr.com has over 20,000 followers and growing. Vice Magazine honored Brad as the # 2 Photo Blogger for 2010.
In the fall of 2012 Brad will team up with Swiss artist Marco Pittori for a series of exhibitions in Basel, Zurich and Berlin.
Brad is the co founder of Buzz Foto, a celebrity photo agency that deals in iconic Paparazzi photographs with their emphasis of “Paparazzi As An Art Form”.
Photographers who influenced Brad were Helmut Newton and Ron Galella.
“Brad’s photos provide a rare, often raunchy glimpse into a rock and roll history where it seems Brad is always at the right place at the right time, camera ready. There is even a photo of Dylan posing with a young Deniro at The Roxy in 1976! There might be a better chance of quadruplet albinos being born under a solar eclipse, than a cosmic opportunity like that happening again in a young photographer’s career.” – DiscoSalt 2010