Someone 2 Know: Ian Wright
If you're a fan of the Beatles, you're going to love this story. In 1963 British born Ian Wright was one of the first photographers to capture the band on stage before they were famous. Now in his 70's, Wright has retired in Reno.
In 1963 a young British teenager was one of the first photographers to capture the band on stage before they were famous.
At a special display filled with Beatles memorabilia, Ian Wright holds a photo from the day John Lennon was shot; "…death of a hero. He wasn't a hero, he was a legend."
Wright remembers the day he met the not-yet-famous Beatles at a small concert in northern England. It began with music from a harmonica...
"Wah, wah - wah, wah , wah, wah,” Wright imitates the sound and beat for us. “And then bang, it went into the song and I thought who the hell are these guys?!”
Just 16 years old at the time, the fledgling photographer had to carry all his equipment on a bicycle. Wright still has much of it on display, along with the images he captured more than 50 years ago.
Pointing to a large black and white image, Wright says, "and that photograph we've got up there - February the 9th, 1963, is possibly the first photograph, ever, of the Beatles live on stage."
Soon after, the musicians’ world tour kicked off, and Beatlemania was born. Wright was there to document the fever.
Wright, smiling, shows us some of his original supplies. "Telexes, glass plates, telexes."
The boys in band nick-named him "Wrighty" and he became friendly with John Lennon. "And he said 'Wrighty, you took us out of the dark room, into the spotlight' …what a quote"
Photojournalism took Ian Wright all over the world - immortalizing singers like Johnny Cash, Roy Orbison and Mick Jagger, and capturing the royal wedding of Princess Diana he says modern photographers can do the same.
“You've got to put all other things out of your mind if you're gonna get to the top.”
Wright believes patience, politeness and perseverance are what it takes to get there. "and you're gonna get a front row seat to every world event - and you're gonna get paid for doing it”
Ian Wright is hoping to work with art town or the museum in order to have his photographs on public display here in northern Nevada.