As my career got started, I started shooting as many bands as I could get access to. I figured out that by going to as many shows, and meeting as many people as I could, I could build up a contact base that would help me in the future. One of the first people I met was Ted Nugent’s mom, Marion Nugent. Ted was a pretty big solo star at the time, selling out arenas.
He was also starting his crazy Ted days. When I would go to the Nugents’ for dinner, the meal always included something that Ted had shot with his hunting bow. Along with the food at the table, would be a picture of Ted standing in the woods with the carcass of the animal we were about to eat, holding his bow over his head in triumph!
I would occasionally get a call from her at 9 on a Sunday morning. The conversation would start with her saying, “Hey, what are you doing? I’ll pick you up in an hour. Let’s go see Ted!”
So I would jump in her Blazer and we would head for Michigan, or Wisconsin to see her son play some rock and roll.
One of the first things I figured out was that there was always an opening act (and they were all pretty good). I would always go up to the singer, and say, “Hey get your guys together, let’s do some pictures.” Some of those bands turned out to be pretty good!
I tried to remain friends with them throughout their careers, and in the case of the band with a singer named Jon, I’ve remained friends with them to this day…
Talk to you next week! Same time, same channel.
About Paul Natkin
Paul Natkin learned photography in the trenches, working with his father, the team photographer of the Chicago Bulls. He shot sports in the Chicago area for five years before he discovered music photography in 1976.
Since then, he has photographed most of the major music stars of the last half of the 20th century, shooting album covers for artists such as Ozzy Osbourne and Johnny Winter and magazine covers for Newsweek (Bruce Springsteen), Ebony (Tina Turner), People (Prince), and music magazines around the world. See his work online at natkin.net.