viewed though a fan’s eye lens – adam howard’s prints

Cast your mind back, if you will, to November 2014. A mere 5 months ago. This was when the first post on the JansenPhotographyBlog appeared. Somehow seems much longer ago, doesn’t it? Although many of you who are now reading this may not recall those first few posts, as access to the site was initially limited to a handful of people who had expressed an interest through the TMK facebook page. In fact, rather ironically, even Mr Jansen himself would have been unable to view the blog which proudly bears his name, should he have so desired………and because of this, languishing in the depths of long forgotten blogdom are some truly lovely posts by fellow fans who were good enough to support this venture right from the start. So, in the spirit of sharing (and because I haven’t had time to think of anything bright and sparky to write about this week, what with life getting in the way) I have merged together 2 old posts about the Jansen prints Adam Howard owns.

Adam got in touch with me after I had asked for contributions from people who had bought prints from Steve, as I was curious to know why people chose certain images and thought it would make for some interesting discussions. Adam provided me with photos of his framed prints, in situ in his house, and explained his reasons for choosing the 2 he currently owns.

Adam’s first purchase was ‘sylvian on stage during soundcheck (2)’……..

Adam's copy of 'sylvian on stage during soundcheck (2)'
Adam’s copy of ‘sylvian on stage during soundcheck (2)’

“I’ve always been a massive fan of Dave and the boys from a very early age and this image was just perfect.

As he has his back to the camera, I think this is the reason the framers called it ‘Unknown Singer’.  They didn’t ask who it was though which I always found odd….Originally it was displayed in my hidey-hole (office/music room), but when I got another we moved it into the bedroom.  My little one always points and says “Look!” when she sees it, to which we inform her, “Yes, that’s David”..  She’ll definitely grow up with exemplary music taste!”

His 2nd purchase, of 1120 – ‘karn in hotel room, leeds (2)’ came in 2011

Adam's copy of 'karn in hotel room - leeds (2)'
Adam’s copy of ‘karn in hotel room – leeds (2)’

“My second one came after Mick died…

I felt I needed to do something, so I did a couple of things; I learnt how to play bass (badly) and I started the ‘Sons of Pioneers’ website to document and curate the bass lines he created.

I also asked for another print for my birthday from my family who all chipped in; they knew I wanted a Mick one, but the choice was left up to them.

They got me  ‘karn in hotel room, leeds (2)’  At the time I thought it was an odd choice as we are all ardent non-smokers; in all honesty I was hoping for: but I can’t complain as I did leave it up to their discretion.  I’ve grown to appreciate the picture over time, and the whole smoking thing was very ‘Mick’ I suppose.

This one hangs above my drum kit / bass guitar corner, and has Mick’s bass strings I won on eBay and the lovely note from Kyoko Karn sat on top.  It’s there to inspire me to be a better player – well that’s the idea anyway!

It’s funny really, when I first got into Japan aged 9, Mick scared me – he was just too Alien, with the strange movement and his exotic looks (sans eyebrows).  I didn’t appreciate just how cool he was.  I’m not sure when the pendulum swung from being scared to being in awe, but luckily it never swung back!

My biggest regret is letting Mick walk past me in Manchester city centre (the day they supported No-Man at the Jazz Café) because I didn’t want to ‘bother’ him;  sometimes I’m too bloody conscientious for my own good and that’s as close as I’ve ever come to meeting/speaking to any of them.”

Adam went on to explain that his next purchase would probably be for the shot of Richard Barbieri in the Ginza Cafe – “there would be no Japan without his amazing textures, and his post Japan work proves just how talented he is……” and mused upon the fact that “it’s a real shame there are no pictures of Steve of this quality (for obvious reasons!!) as it would have been great to bring them all together in a celluloid re-union….”  However, as we have seen, Steve was not averse to snapping the odd “selfie” so maybe Adam will end up with his wish!

Barbieri in Ginza cafe, Tokyo
Barbieri in Ginza cafe, Tokyo

Signed, limited edition prints are available from Steve’s imageshop here:

1032 – sylvian on stage during soundcheck
1032 – sylvian on stage during soundcheck
self mirrored
self mirrored – recently published on steve’s ‘sleepyard’ tumblr

6 thoughts on “viewed though a fan’s eye lens – adam howard’s prints

  1. I love Adam’s story about how he ended up with the picture of Mick in the hotel. Especially the remark about his family being “ardent non-smokers”, as I am of the same ilk. Adam said it well that the smoking thing was very “mick”. Very much a “Japan” thing for that matter and culturally when I think back to the late 70’s early 80’s and all those crushingly smoke filled clubs. I was definitely in the minority as a non smoker but the cigarette clutch in the pictures certainly takes me back to that time. Seeing these pictures draws me in not only with my eyes but takes me back with feelings and memories of that time.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Great pieces, Adam, I hadn’t read them before! If I were to buy one of Steve’s prints, it would most definitely be one of Mick. And I would probably have let him walk past too! After having made three double-takes, thinking: “nah, can’t be him. Can it?” 😉

    Liked by 3 people

  3. I am now clean. I will always be a smoker but have given up smoking. It is regretful one has to, equally there are worse things you can do. Coke is very moreish! All things in moderation – my Gran used to have one cigarette a day, I could probably do that but I stopped so Rich could stop as he has to eat them or stop. But I am not an anti smoker, more a longing ex smoker who recommends these electric thingies, if Hal’s Dad can give up by using them then we all can.
    Anyway that said I was very moved by this piece. Victoria is a truly natural interviewer and Adam is an excellent subject, he (like Victoria) always speaks from the heart. I have always been touched by Adam’s incredible loyalty to Mick and to be honest he has inspired me, along with many of you who contribute here, by the fact that you very much want to give back to those who had such a profound effect on your lives. Like giving up smoking in reverse I took up facebook because of TMK, something I said I would never do, to be honest but it really works. How else would we all know each other now and be here today, able to celebrate these unique artists and make sure they know how much we love and respect them…whether they want us to or not!? I suppose Japan as a band are the very last group in the world to want fans to bang on about them but re-releases can’t be wrong, right?!
    So well done Adam, thanks for sharing your thoughts and your exquisite photographs. I’m sure I would have done the same and frozen to the spot but equally sure that Mick would have given you a big hug. xx

    Liked by 1 person

  4. The smoking thing is troublesome, isn’t it? We all know the dangers (sadly, some of us more than most) but I still see certain pictures, where the subject has a fag on and think it looks really, really good… makes no sense. I am a fairly bright woman, who should know better, but I don’t, it would appear. There is a fantastic shot that Steve took of Ryuichi, where he is looking straight at the camera, smoking a cigarette. It shouldn’t look so impressive, but it does. Wrong, isn’t it?

    Liked by 1 person

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