Arthur Rosato with Bob Dylan by Ken Regan

Arthur Rosato with Bob Dylan by Ken Regan

 Arthur Rosato with Carlos Santana - 1975

Arthur Rosato with Carlos Santana - 1975

A note from behind the lens

Music has always been a major attraction in my life. I've been to many concerts since I was a kid growing up in New Jersey. In the '50s, my family and I would see shows at the Atlantic City Steel Pier; teen idols Ricky Nelson, Bobby Darin, Frankie Avalon; big bands Woody Hermann and drummer Gene Krupa. My family was no different than how I am today.

 I started out as an artist/painter and discovered that a camera was a better tool for me. "Woodstock" became the catalyst for my passion of music and photography. "Altamont" is where I came to understand the intensity of the moment. Rolling Stone magazine in San Francisco, seemed to be the voice of music at the time. They were interested in my photos and I would get assignments to shoot at the Fillmore and over in Berkeley. I used to shoot onstage at the Fillmore all the time, a real privilege, if you knew the restrictions on anyone being there. I asked promoter Bill Graham, years later, why he allowed me onstage? He answered, "You looked like you belonged there." 

My photographic point of view is as if I were a musician and another member of the band. I treat my video work the same way. 

I've been around musicians as an audio engineer, drummer, guitar/drum tech, photographer, and video director. I worked with Bob Dylan (played drums with him too), George Harrison, Carlos Santana, Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young, and many more. I've directed video for numerous festivals; Bonnaroo, Outside Lands, Hardly Strictly Bluegrass, Essence, and the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival. I've directed video for more than 600 different artists. Bob Dylan once said to me "That I was so low key, that I was subterranean." I think that is my approach to documenting the world. I'm not there to force myself on it, but to be absorbed into it.

Project History

  • Assignment photographer for Rolling Stone Magazine
  • Audio Engineer: Santana, Bob Dylan & The Band, George Harrison, 60 Minutes, 60 Minutes ll
  • Staging Director, Co-producer "Street Legal" album, Drummer, All-around Production Interpreter - Bob Dylan
  • Production Manager: Newport Folk Festival, Newport Jazz Festival
  • Video Producer, Director: New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival, Essence Festival - New Orleans
  • Video Director: Bonnaroo Festival, Outside Lands San Francisco, Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival
  • Video Director: Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band "Born In the USA" tour, Crosby, Still, Nash, & Young Tour, Stevie Wonder European & Japan tours
  • Education: San Francisco Art Institute

Equipment

  • Leica M240 M-P
  • Leica M6
  • Canon 5D Mark ll
  • Canon 40D converted to infrared
  • Canon Powershot S95
  • Bronica S2A
  • Mamiya 645
  • Nikon F3
  • Nikon Ftn
  • Polaroid SX-70

Praise

"Springsteen didn't begin coming alive on video until Arthur Rosato concentrated in 1985's "My Hometown" and 1987's "Born To Run" on capturing the intimacy and celebration that this remarkable performer conveys on stage." Robert Hilburn - Los Angeles Times

" 'War' [directed by Arthur Rosato] is a real closeup live video (we even see the veins popping out of Springsteen's neck), yet it avoids all the live video cliches: audience shots with outstretched arms, etc. The result is a powerful statement." - Lisa Robinson - New York Post


I started out as an artist/painter and discovered that a camera was a better tool for me. “Woodstock” became the catalyst for my passion of music and photography. “Altamont” is where I came to understand the intensity of the moment. Rolling Stone magazine in San Francisco, seemed to be the voice of music at the time. They were interested in my photos and I would get assignments to shoot at the Fillmore and over in Berkeley. I used to shoot onstage at the Fillmore all the time, a real privilege, if you knew the restrictions on anyone being there. I asked promoter Bill Graham, years later, why he allowed me onstage? He answered, “You looked like you belonged there.
— Arthur Rosato