Unseen photos mark what would have been Joe Strummer's 70th birthday

21 August 2022, 12:00

Joe Strummer in 1989 as pictured by photographer Josh Cheuse
Joe Strummer in 1989 as pictured by photographer Josh Cheuse. Picture: Josh Cheuse

A new book shows the private side of the legendary Clash frontman.

The Clash's legendary frontman Joe Strummer would have turned 70 on Sunday 21st August and to mark the event, a previously unpublished image of the musician has been revealed.

The shot was taken by his friend and photographer Josh Cheuse, and has been releaased ahead of a new hardback book Print The Myth: Joe Strummer Portraits 1981-2002, which will be published later this year by Rocket 88 Books.

The image formed part of the album cover shoot for Strummer's 1989 solo album Earthquake Weather and was taken in Laurel Canyon, California. The album’s title was partly inspired by the earthquake that happened when Joe and Josh were in the recording studio in LA.

Josh remembers: “I was working on art for the cover with Joe while [guitarist] Zander Schloss was tracking guitar parts in the sound booth. My stool started to wobble, and I thought someone was doing it for a joke...

"Suddenly there was a loud CLANG and Zander flew out of the studio into the street. Joe and I followed and watched open-mouthed as the street rippled below us.”

Joe Strummer and photographerJosh Cheuse in a photo taken by Strummer's wife Lucinda
Joe Strummer and photographerJosh Cheuse in a photo taken by Strummer's wife Lucinda. Picture: Rocket 88 Books

Another photo – which is also previously unpublished and taken by Joe’s wife Lucinda – shows Josh and Joe drinking cider in 1996 at the Wilkins Somerset cider farm in Mudgley, Somerset, during the "mad cow" disease outbreak.

Strummer died in 2022, aged just 50 and the new book will feature more than 200 photos, sketches and pieces of artwork of the musician with The Clash plus various friends including Iggy Pop, Jim Jarmusch, Matt Dillon and his former Clash comrade Mick Jones in the Big Audio Dynamite era.

The book is available to pre-order now in three distinct editions via joestrummerbook.com.

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