Gered Mankowitz: When I went to America with the Rolling Stones, it was just the five of them, me and the roadie, there was nobody else. We were just a group of young men, no entourage, no security, no press, no publicist, no stylist, no make-up, no road crew, no lights, no set: nothing.
Mankowitz was once asked if he thought that his work influenced the image of the Rolling Stones:
I think I contributed a lot when I did the cover of the album Between the Buttons. My contribution in the earlier sessions was based more on an honesty, a desire to communicate something about the Stones as people and not try and mask their personalities with any sort of technical or theatrical embellishments. I think that that’s why (their manager) Andrew (Loog Oldham) liked the pictures and why the band were happy to work with me for such a long period of time, because I photographed them as they were. And then when it came to Between the Buttons, I felt confident enough as a photographer and in my relationship with them to actually make a contribution.
Poker with Patti Labelle and The Bluebells, sharing toffee apples with Bo Diddley, tuning up in locker rooms full of jockstraps and cuddly toys, Mick trying on discarded giant tracksuits. Backstage: The Rolling Stones by Gered Mankowitz, is a fascinating, unguarded photo-essay of these defining days, presented as an ultra-large format signed hardback limited edition.
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