In 1974 a 15 year old boy from Calgary Alberta, Canada, named Ian Mark received his first camera, a 35mm SLR Pentax, as a gift from a relative. A few weeks later a high school friend invited Ian to an upcoming rock concert being held at a local hockey arena, where Manfred Mann was headlining with Savory Brown and an unknown band at the time called KISS to open the show. The ticket price for the three act concert was only $4.00, so he accepted the invitation, and on May 20, 1974, armed with his new camera, Ian Mark photographed his first concert.
Ian was hooked, and it was the beginning of a decade long journey that would see him shooting countless photographs of some of the biggest names in Classic Rock as well as other genres.
Ian has now recently published a new book titled "Adventures Of A 70's Rock Photographer" featuring live concert photos of acts such as The Who, Queen, Fleetwood Mac, Styx, Eric Clapton, Suzi Quatro, Blue Öyster Cult, and many more.
ClassicRockA-Z's Bob Wallace had the privilege to talk with Ian Mark about the book and some of the great stories that accompany those photos.
Read about some of the events that led to the publication of this awesome book in the interview below.
HI Ian, Welcome to ClassicRockA-Z, Thank you for talking with me today.
"It's always great to talk to such a huge fan of Classic Rock."
I got to tell you, as a huge fan of Classic Rock, it takes a bit to impress me, but I was quite impressed with this book.
"I am glad that you are impressed with the book as it was a labour of love and more work than I thought. It brought back a ton of memories. It even made me find a few shots of bands I didn't even know I had photographed like Bob Seger."
I love the shot of Suzi Quatro on the cover, how did you decide on this photo for the cover?
"To be honest I wanted to put Rush on the front of the book but they gave me too many legal headaches. They sent me threatening letters demanding I stop selling their photographs from 1975 and 1977 concerts. When I tried to pay them a commission they countered with an offer to buy my photographs. This I refused. As a result, I began to think of performers who would be well known, yet not so high and mighty that I could work with them. One night I thought of Suzi Quatro. She has stared in T.V as well as her career as a singer. Not to mention one of the few females to head up a band in the 70's. I googled her that night and to my surprise she responded and asked me what I wanted. I told her I wanted to put a photograph I took of her in 1975, when she opened for