The artist formerly known as Elliot Gleave has history with GQ. Back in September 2006, when he was still signed to Mike Skinner’s label The Beats, he was photographed by legendary lensman Mick Rock in the 100 Club. “The way he shot me was almost like chatting me up,” laughs the Hammersmith-born rapper, slouching in an Obey T-shirt and Levi’s jeans. “He kept saying, ‘Yeah! Show me them lips!’ I can just imagine him in the Seventies being completely off his nut taking pictures”.
It is with the heaviest of hearts that we share our beloved psychedelic renegade Mick Rock has made the Jungian journey to the other side. Those who had the pleasure of existing in his orbit, know that Mick was always so much more than ’The Man Who Shot The 70s.’ He was a photographic poet — a true force of nature who spent his days doing exactly what he loved, always in his own delightfully outrageous way.
The stars seemed to effortlessly align for Mick when he was behind the camera; feeding off of the unique charisma of his subjects electrified and energized him. His intent always intense. His focus always total. A man fascinated with image, he absorbed visual beings through his lens and immersed himself in their art, thus creating some of the most magnificent photographs rock music has ever seen. To know Mick was to love him. He was a mythical creature; the likes of which we shall never experience again.
Let us not mourn the loss, but instead, celebrate the fabulous life and extraordinary career of Michael David Rock. While you do so in your own way, we must ask that the privacy of his nearest and dearest be respected at this time. Therefore, there will be no further comments.
Photo: Nathalie Rock