Why this Springsteen photo is one of the most...

Gallery 5.9.1974 believes we have one of the most important photographs in Rock and Roll history. Why?

• This photograph is believed to be the ONLY media from the concert on May 9,1974 at Harvard Square Theartre in Cambridge, Massachusetts where Bruce Springsteen opened for Bonnie Raitt.

• This photograph captures Springsteen performing when Rolling Stone and Real Paper writer Jon Landau was in the audience.

• This  performance is the one Landau later wrote his famous "Rock and Roll future" article about.

• Landau also calls out this precise song... For You, " He took his overpowering story of a suicide, “For You,” and sang it with just piano accompaniment and a voice that rang out to the very last row of the Harvard Square theatre."

• This photograph was taken LIVE. This moment happened, then vanished.

• The famous photographer Henri Cartier-Bresson coined a term,  "the decisive moment". "Life is once, forever", he is quoted as saying. This photograph is that.

• The image composition is stunning. The lines, the concentration of light, the shapes, the blacks and grays, there are many things in this photograph that are technically perfect.

• It was shot in 1974, in a performance space converted from a movie theater for 2 nights.

• The lighting...look at the lighting. The physics of this photograph are baffling. It appears 2 lights illuminate this image, and yet they perfectly define Springsteen's form.

• This photograph has not been retouched. The contact sheet reveals the reflected and direct light for all of the images taken from this particular angle were influenced by something close to magic.

• The piano light is a miracle. It centers the shot, it's perfectly exposed, it illuminates Springsteen's face...it is the essence of photography.

• No one knew Bruce Springsteen then. Yes, there were deeply committed early fans, but this photograph was unknown and under appreciated for 35 years.

• Bruce Springsteen, 23 and full of talent, vision, inspiration and energy, was a performer like few others. See the Hammersmith Odeon concert in 1975 to get a sense of the power of the young Springsteen live. 

* Read Landau's article.

The Financial Times has an article about the growing value of music photography. Rock and roll is one of the major arts of our time. Images of this art form are as important as amplifiers.

You can purchase a collectors edition of the print here, or see more sizes and images at photographer Barry Schneier's site here.