Jim Shea on Photographing Music Industry Giants with ‘Prine Time’

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Podcast host Billy Prine talks with his old friend Jim Shea about his career in music photography. They talk about Jim’s work with John Prine, Steve Goodman, The Eagles, James Taylor, Fleetwood Mac, Pablo Cruise, and Jackson Browne. They also cover Shea winning the Grammy Award for Album Cover of the Year for Linda Ronstadt’s Simple Dreams album. Billy and Shea then discuss how the music business changed in the 1970s, which led to the formation of Steve Goodman’s Red Pajama Records and John Prine’s Oh Boy Records.  And, for good measure, there’s a story about Bob Dylan. The music clips are from The Mercy Brothers’ Strange Adventure album. This is part one of Billy’s conversation with Jim Shea. Part two will be in one of the many upcoming episodes of the Prine Time Podcast.

More about Jim Shea:

Award-winning director and photographer, Jim Shea travels the world with his camera capturing images and providing content for the advertising and entertainment industries.

Born in Manhattan, Shea’s training ground was New York’s Madison Avenue where he began his commercial career as an advertising photographer. Work soon prompted his move to Los Angeles where be began shooting celebrities for the entertainment industry, creating album covers for such noted artists as Linda Ronstadt, Aerosmith and the Eagles and lensing editorial assignments for a variety of publications such as Rolling Stone and Interview magazines.

His directing career began when Shea was recruited by record labels to film music videos for artists such as James Taylor, Aretha Franklin, Joni Mitchell and Barbara Streisand. After opening a production company, Planet Pictures, his work evolved to include directing commercials, TV films and creating title sequences for motion pictures.

As the Executive Producer and President of Planet, Shea’s role in the film-making process expanded to writing and producing music films and documentaries. In addition to creating music videos and commercials, Planet produced many long-form films and documentaries such as Olivia Newton John’s Live at the Sydney Opera House with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra, Amy Grant’s Building The House Of Love, Dan Fogelberg’s Greetings From the West, Jimmy Buffett’s Live From Margaritaville and Rhythm, Country and Blues, a documentary featuring filmed duets with such artists as Al Green and Lyle Lovett, B.B. King and George Jones.

His work has earned many awards including those from the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences, the Country Music Association and the Academy of Country Music.

Listen to Linda Ronstadt’s Simple Dreams below and find more of Jim Shea’s work here.

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