Photographer Andrew Zuckerman recently released his book Music, a collection of images of 50 eminent musicians, composers and producers who have made major impacts on their genres. Click through this gallery to see some of our favourite shots, including this one of The Strokes front man Julian Casablancas.
In the stunning photography tome, Iggy Pop reveals that he has recorded a few private songs just for himself. “I’d like to be able to sit on the back porch here and watch the river flow by… And that’s completely between me and the guitar.”
Karen O shares that she never intended to be the front person for a rock band. “It’s not that I want to make music; if I don’t make music I become depressed, I have a lot of anxiety, I get down on myself and people around me,” she says. “But as soon as I start making music, that all just goes away.”
Death Cab for Cutie/The Postal Service’s Ben Gibbard talks about his song writing process, what first drew him to the art and his musical abilities. “One of the things that attracted me to songwriting was that there’s a relatively finite amount of space you’re given to make a statement.”
“Music is God speaking to us and letting us know that he’s there,” says Chrissie Hynde. “I don’t think we create music. There is no world without music.”
Vampire Weekend’s Ezra Koenig claims he used to be “a harsh judge of other people’s tastes in music; I think part of it was because I felt that by listening to punk or hip hop or unusual music, it was a way of differentiating myself from other people… But as I grew older, I started to realize that that dichotomy didn’t totally make sense.”
Says Ozzy Osbourne, “I don’t play an instrument. I don’t really know how to sing. But it’s this thing within me. The bad thing about being me is I’ve got this thing in my head, but I can’t always transcribe it…I think to a certain degree, I have to say some of it is channeled. I mean, I don’t understand how it works. One day I haven’t got this song in my head, and the next day it’s finished.”
David Crosby reveals that one of his deepest frustrations is the amount of time he wasted doing hard drugs, instead of creating music.
In Andrew Zuckerman’s book Music, Billy Corgan shares a theory that “art is made to be broken”, and reveals that he has an “obsessive need to be creative”.
“Music is harmony,” says Yoko Ono. “In the big picture, we are just a part of the harmony called the Universe. Imagine standing outside the Universe and listening to the music it creates! It’s nice to know that we are part of it.”
“I don’t want to say music is everything because love, to me, is equally as powerful and I feel like both of those things are God,” shares Jim Jones. “I feel like music’s the only thing that’s ever been there for me all the time, since I was a kid. It could never be taken away and I feel like I just wanted to know it from every angle.”
To Burt Bacharach, music is like tennis. “Being in touch with your music is very key, very important. I don’t think it’s so very different than being a tennis player on the circuit. They take three, four weeks off and they’ll drop out of the top hundred. Just being in touch with your music every day, because you feed on it and you get used to it.”
You can find more gorgeous portraits and essays about music from other musical icons in photographer Andrew Zuckerman’s book Music (published by Abrams books, £30), available now.