Photos taken by Tony Wooliscroft
Music has meant everything to me since the age of 13 and I saw my first ever ‘Punk’ gig in my hometown of Stoke on Trent. From then on all I spent my money on was records and going to see as many gigs as I could. Then when I left school and got a job it meant I had the money to travel out of town and see more bands that I was listening to at the time. I met my best friend on the road at a concert, he exactly like me loved going to gigs. I then started to speak to one particular band I used to go and watch everywhere. New Model Army. The drummer became one of my best friends also, and that’s where I kind of fell into my job of the past 30 years, a photographer, music photographer. The first 15 years, Im in my 30th year this year, was in editorial, shooting for magazines and weekly music papers such as RAW, Kerrang, Rolling Stone, Q magazine and loads of foreign titles. You also shot for record companies, press agents and your own agents that represented you worldwide. All this work was on film cameras, but the age of digital was coming very quick. Then in 2006 when I left Kerrang I started shooting for WireImage who were owned by Getty a massive news photographic agency. You had to shoot digitally as the agency wanted the pictures immediately to sell within a few hours. My job mainly is now to tour with artists that employ me direct who want an archive of certain tours and a standard quality of pictures to use on all social media platforms. I have also diversified into shooting biography book cover portraits of ‘Sports’ personalities such as Steven Gerrard and Sergio Aguero two football players I have shot covers for.
I have used this lockdown to go out and experiment with analogue film again. Having just purchased a 35mm canon camera, a Leica 35mm camera and a Mamiya Press 6x9 camera, I am enjoying taking my time shooting at a slower pace that shooting film forces you into. Im also enjoying shooting with different film types such as cinestill 800T which isn’t cheap at £15 a roll but I love the effect it gives the pictures. I've also been shooting video for a local band and we have produced a video to go with the song they are releasing about the strange times we are in called ‘The Time Is Right’.
I think this lockdown has totally changed my relationship to music and my job. At the moment there is no job there. Concerts and tours are on hold for the foreseeable futures. The whole music industry is on hold at the moment.
Check out Tony's work at www.tonywoolliscroft.co.uk