My journey into the world of photography began in the late sixties while living on the upper West side of Manhattan. I was fascinated with New York’s parks, architecture, and landmarks, and spent a great deal of time photographing my neighborhood on the upper west side, West End Ave, Riverside Park, along the Hudson River.
After a while I began to focus more on the street life of the city. I photographed the shop owners, the pizza guys, street musicians, street people, and artists of New York. My work as an actor and musician gave me access to people and places that were off the beaten path, allowing me to photograph the rehearsals, and performances of musical comedies, clubs, and lounges around town.
After resettling in Los Angeles, a chance meeting with John and Jeanne Pisano, led me to an enclave of the finest jazz musicians to be found anywhere. John Pisano started his Guitar Night soon after our meeting. John Invited me to the first Guitar Night, and on a whim, I brought my camera. That was more than eleven years ago and you can count on one hand the Guitar Nights I have since missed.
As of this writing, I have photographed over 120 of the finest, and most famous jazz guitarists, along with countless bass players, drummers, horn and reed players, keyboard artists, and of course, the vocalists.
With the visibility I was gaining, came advertising work, newspapers, magazine and CD photo art. In the last 11 years I have contributed covers and inside photo art for over 60 CD’s including Kenny Burrell’s CD, "Lucky So and So" - Rosemary Clooney’s "Sentimental Journey" - Dianne Schuur / Maynard Ferguson’s "Swingin’ For Schuur".
My friend and mentor the late, noted jazz photographer Ray Avery called my photos "Performance Portraits". It is the description that most satisfies me. With the exception of the studio, and PR photography, all the photos you will see were taken during live performances in available light.
I am presently a member of the Milt Hinton Award committee, for excellence in Jazz photography. The award is given out every two years, presently in NYC under the auspices of Jazz at Lincoln Center / Winton Marsalis.
I published the John Pisano Guitar Night Calendar, and I am presently working on a photo essay book called Guitar Night- "The Brotherhood".
For information on purchasing photos from "The Bob Barry Jazzography Collection", please click on the Jazzography Store link located on the menu bar, or contact us directly at: firstname.lastname@example.org