Photographer Danny Clinch Talks Bruce Springsteen, Bob Dylan, Eddie Vedder and Reviving Art in Asbury Park

posted by Andrew Magnotta - 

New Jersey-based photographer Danny Clinch has photographed rock stars, artists and even a sitting U.S. President. 

He dropped by "Out of the Box" with Jonathan Clarke to talk about some of his experiences with some of the biggest artists in rock and roll, including Bruce Springsteen (who wrote the foreword to Clinch's book), Eddie Vedder (who appears on the cover of the book), Keith Richards, B.B. King and Bob Dylan

You can see many of his shots in his new book, Still Moving by Danny Clinch, which is available now.

Clinch described to Clarke how his love for photography developed at an early age, and how he got started as a "rock" photog.

"How I started, pretty much, was by sneaking my camera in [to concerts]," he tells Clarke, describing how (in an age before iPhones) he would take apart his camera and have each one of his friends sneak in a part for him. 

"So I'd get in, I'd have the camera body down my pants. I'd collect all the stuff from my friends [i.e. lenses and rolls of film], and they would know that I would disappear. And I would try to sneak into the front row somehow, and I always made it up there. [That accounts for] the first time I photographed Bruce Springsteen, Van Halen, etcetera...then I started to get assignments."

Clinch says his philosophy is to always have his camera with him because he can always potentially run into someone interesting.

"I felt like if I could get two or three frames off...I could get some magic, and hope for that magic to happen."

To Clinch, he sees his own art as documenting art as others create it.

"I love the real stuff," he says. "That's why I love being in the recording studio when someone's making a record or backstage when someone's writing a set list...walking to the stage. Those things feel so real to me. They're things that people don't get to see."

He also discussed the advent of digital photography and how it has helped photographers like him capture candid moments that rarely occur in an ideal lighting circumstance.

"The possibility of shooting in low light has changed immensely; you don't have to carry a flash everywhere, and I was never fond of the flash. I happen to like existing light and dark corners. I've spent a lot of time on dark tour buses, dark backstage rooms and dark hallways, really hoping for the best. And that creates some beauty too, but now you have the opportunity to choose."

Still Moving by Danny Clinch has a lot of all of those scenes, including many photos you may know well. You can see more of Clinch's work in an exhibit at the Asbury Hotel in Asbury Park, NJ, through September 15, 2017, at his official website, dannyclinch.com, or on his Instagram page.

Keep up with Clinch's band, The Tangiers Blues Band, here.

Watch the full interview above.

Right before the curtain rises - Southside , Bruce , and Little Steven . Very few knew Bruce was there until the curtain opened . It was so cool . This was NJ rock n roll dreamland in Asbury Park that night ! Note Bruce is playing a Gibson Les Paul like the one he was playing in the Upstage era circa 1970 - One of my favorite photographs from that night - #asburyparkmusicandfilmfestival #asburypark #transparentclinch #springsteen #gibson #gibsonlespaul

A post shared by Danny Clinch (@dannybones64) on

Photos: Sam Valorose

Jonathan 'JC' Clarke

Jonathan 'JC' Clarke

ON AIR: Sundays 7PM - 9PM. Jonathan Clarke joined Q104.3, New York's Classic Rock, as an on-air personality in 1997 and continues to be a mainstay there. Also, since March of 2001, he has hosted and executive produced his top rated 'Out of the... Read more

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