SHORELINE, Wash. — Longtime shoreline rock and roll photographer Steve Schneider just published a book that's the perfect gift for this person:
"Anybody who likes live music, concerts, and rock and roll photography -
there's over 350 photos in the book and probably 90 percent of them have never been seen before," said Schneider via Zoom.
It's called "The First Three Songs" and the name is a reference to the realities of shooting at a concert.
"The first three songs are basically all you get when you get press access," said Schneider.
Working behind the camera since the early 70's, Schneider's an expert at using that limited amount of time to get the perfect shot. His tips?
“Keep their mouth away from the mic. And action. And just shoot shoot shoot."
He's been front and center with his camera for Soundgarden at Seattle's Paramount Theatre and Pearl Jam at the Mercer Arena. But he doesn't hesitate when asked who his favorite artists are — and they're all pre-grunge.
"Grateful Dead, Neil Young, Carlos Santana, I’ve shot the Grateful Dead more than anybody, I’ve shot Santana probably about ten times," said Schneider.
His images of artists we've lost are bittersweet: Petty storming the Gorge.
David Bowie holding a guitar at the Paramount: "He had a big smile and that 12 string is so pretty."
"The First Three Songs" is a celebration of generations of artists joyfully making a living with rock and roll. And that joy is what Schneider captures so effectively because he loves what these artists create.
"Music, live music. Music is good for your soul."
The First Three Songs costs $60 and is available at schneiderphotographystore.com