Rock legends in new light
A young Joe Cocker learns
She Came in Through the Bathroom Window from George
Harrison in the Beatles' Apple Studio. This is one of 38
digitally restored photographs taken by Bridgewater
resident Eric Hayes on exhibit at Viewpoint Galley on
Gottingen Street in Halifax.
Jimi Hendrix performs in
February 1969 in London's Royal Albert Hall.
Janis Joplin raved after her
April 21, 1969 show at the Royal Albert, 'Nobody, nobody
ever, anybody ever thought it would be that good!'
Bridgewater photographer goes back to
'60s for first exhibit
By Renee Stevens
Bridgewater - Eric Hayes lived the life of a rock star in
the '60s but unlike the legends he travelled with, he has
photographs instead of sketchy memories to show for it.
The Bridgewater photographer had dreams of being a musician
but soon realized that his true talent was best expressed
through the lens of a camera. That didn't stop him from being
part of shows and recording sessions and hanging out
He started his career in England at the age of 23
photographing the likes of George Harrison, Jimi Hendrix and
the Rolling Stones. And he did get to grace the cover of
Rolling Stone magazine with his work anyway.
"I got to go on some wild adventures," he recalled
Saturday. "And now when I look back at the pictures, it's the
most awesome thing. It's like I'm looking at someone else's
life, but it's mine. It's like the song says - those were the
days, my friend."
These rarely seen prints are now the focus of the artist's
first show, Legends of Rock and Roll, at Viewpoint Gallery in
Halifax. It features 38 digitally restored photos from the era
when the greats lived wild and sometimes short lives.
Hayes says this show is a sort of therapy for him as not
only were some of his subjects lost, but also a good portion
of his work.
"I moved back to Canada and left the majority of my
negatives with a friend in England to make me some money and
he got sick and spent a couple of months in the hospital,
couldn't pay his rent and the landlord threw everything out,
so they are now lost," he said. "So the show is closure.
"The loss of those negatives haunted me for years.
Abandoning them in England was a terrible thing to do."
As the photographer matured, so did his work, affording him
a photojournalism career that took him from the Toronto Star
to many Canadian magazines, and then to Nova Scotia, where he
remarried, tying the knot with photographer Mary Dixon.
He is still very much a photographer, but is now getting to
take some time to explore other aspects of his art.
"I was too busy before, being an artist," he said. "Now I
have time to devote to the art that I created, so it's
One of the things he is now devoting time to is showcasing
his art in shows like the one at Viewpoint Gallery. About 150
people attended the opening on March 6 to get a glimpse of the
Hayes already has plans for his next show in 2004. In Their
Own Skin focuses on a nude cruise on a tall ship.