Magical mystery tour: Exhibition reveals unseen Beatles and Rolling Stones images - Features - Art - The Independent

Magical mystery tour: Exhibition reveals unseen Beatles and Rolling Stones images

view gallery VIEW GALLERY

As their manager, Bob Bonis travelled America with The Beatles and Rolling Stones. Now his treasure trove of pictures is revealed for the first time.

Look at these spoilt, naughty youths giving a photographer the finger as they loll beside the pool and sip martinis at a hotel in Clearwater, Florida in the mid-Sixties. Something about the floppy hair and hedonistic grins seems familiar – and gosh, it's Keith Richards and Brian Jones sucking up the good life of Rolling Stones when they'd just hit the big time. And here is John Lennon, brooding in granny glasses and candy-striped jacket, backstage in a locker room at JFK Stadium, Philadelphia.

These photographs of the two most successful British pop groups of the Sixties were taken by Bob Bonis, who had the distinction of being road manager to both. He took the Stones on their first US tour in 1964, after they were named Best New British Group by Melody Maker. So reportedly well-behaved were Jagger and Co in America that Brian Epstein, the Fab Four's manager, signed Bonis to manage the Beatles' US tour.

Bonis took 3,500 pictures of his charges, and a selection has gone on show at the Not Fade Away Gallery in Chelsea, Manhattan, under the title The British Are Coming: The Beatles & The Rolling Stones 1964-66. Alongside standard zany Hard Day's Night-style poses, there are some real gems. Mick Jagger shaking his maracas to "Not Fade Away" and trying out the androgynous dance moves that wowed a generation. A dreamily unfazed Ringo Starr looking down the barrel of a gun held by the Beatles' chief fixer, roadie and bodyguard, Mal Evans, later to be shot dead by the LA police in 1976. Keith Richards giving Charlie Watts a haircut before a concert. Jagger again, a skinny, pale English kid in red trunks, getting the feel of transatlantic glamour at only 21.

Bob Bonis died in 1991, aged 59. His pictures came to light only recently, when his son Alex discovered them at the bottom of a bag filled with Beatles and Stones memorabilia. Some of the pictures had appeared in music magazines in the late 1960s, but the majority have never been published before. They are, says the Not Fade Away Gallery's owner Larry Marion, "the largest single trove of such important, unknown photographs ever uncovered".

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Some might argue that a fleeting moment in the actor’s scintillating, silver-tongued company is worth every penny.

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Colin Firth stars as master magician Stanley Crawford in Woody Allen's 'Magic in the Moonlight'

film
Arts and Entertainment
U2 have released Songs of Innocence in partnership with Apple

musicBand have offered new record for free on iTunes
Arts and Entertainment
Brad Pitt stars in David Ayer's World War II drama Fury

film
Arts and Entertainment
Top hat: Pharrell Williams

music
Arts and Entertainment
Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum star as undercover cops in 22 Jump Street

film
Arts and Entertainment
David Bowie is back with fresh music after last year's hit album The Next Day

music
Arts and Entertainment
Keith Richards is publishing 'Gus and Me: The Story of My Granddad and My First Guitar', a children's book about his introduction to music

music
Arts and Entertainment
Calvin Harris has generated £4m in royalties from the music platform

music
Arts and Entertainment
Jenna Coleman stars as the Time Lord's companion Clara in Doctor Who

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Time and time again: the popular daytime quiz has been a fixture on Channel 4 since 1982

TV
Arts and Entertainment

To mark Tolstoy's 186th birthday

books
Arts and Entertainment
Rachel McAdams is reportedly competing with Mad Men's Elisabeth Moss for a major role in True Detective

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Sam Smith returned to the top spot with his album 'In The Lonely Hour'

music
Arts and Entertainment
Steve Backshall is set to dance with Ola Jordan on Strictly Come Dancing. 'I have a friend who's a dancer and she said to me 'You want Ola because she's a fantastic dancer and she can make anyone look good' meaning 'even you'!' he said.

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Sting and Paul Simon on stage together at Carnegie Hall in New York

music
Arts and Entertainment
music
Arts and Entertainment
The Strictly Come Dancing 2014 contestants and their professional dance partners open the twelfth run of the celebrity ballroom contest

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Robin teaches Clara to shoot an arrow
doctor who
Arts and Entertainment
Queen Christina left the judges baffled with her audition
X Factor
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

    A shot in the dark

    Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
    His life, the universe and everything

    His life, the universe and everything

    New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
    Save us from small screen superheroes

    Save us from small screen superheroes

    Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
    Reach for the skies

    Reach for the skies

    From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
    These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

    12 best hotel spas in the UK

    Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
    These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

    Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

    Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
    Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

    Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

    Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
    How to make a Lego masterpiece

    How to make a Lego masterpiece

    Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
    Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

    Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

    Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
    Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

    Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

    His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam
    'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

    'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

    Exclusive extract from Janis Winehouse's poignant new memoir
    Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

    Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

    The Imitation Game, film review
    England and Roy Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption in Basel

    England and Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption

    Welbeck double puts England on the road to Euro 2016
    Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

    Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

    Pictures removed from public view as courts decide ownership
    ‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

    ‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

    Donatella Versace at New York Fashion Week