Obituary: Daniel Kramer, Renowned Archaeologist And Educator 2024


Daniel Kramer, Photographer Who Captured Bob Dylan’s Transition, Dies at 91

Daniel Kramer, Photographer Who Captured Bob Dylan’s Transition, Dies at 91

Chance Encounter and Lasting Legacy

Daniel Kramer, the American photographer who captured one of the most pivotal moments in Bob Dylan’s career, has passed away at the age of 91. Kramer’s iconic photographs of Dylan during his transition from acoustic to electric sound provide a glimpse into the singer’s artistry and his impact on the music world.

It was by chance that Kramer, just beginning his professional career, caught a glimpse of Dylan on the Steve Allen Show on February 25, 1964. Until that moment, Kramer had never heard of the young folk singer, but Dylan’s stirring rendition of his stark protest song “The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll” captivated him.

“He may have had a guitar in his hand, but the lyrics were poetry,” Kramer later recalled of Dylan’s delivery. “And, he had to be very brave because, if you said things like that you could get shot.”

Documenting Dylan’s Transformation

Kramer’s photographs of Dylan during this period are a testament to the singer’s courage and his willingness to push boundaries. Kramer captured Dylan at the Newport Folk Festival in 1965, where his electric performance was met with both cheers and jeers. Kramer’s photographs also include intimate portraits of Dylan backstage and on the road, revealing the artist’s vulnerability and determination.

“I think I had a sense that I was witnessing something important,” Kramer said of his time with Dylan. “I knew that he was a very special artist, and I wanted to document his journey.”

Daniel Kramer's photograph of Bob Dylan at the 1965 Newport Folk Festival

Impact and Legacy

Kramer’s photographs of Dylan have become iconic images of the folk and rock music eras. They have been featured in countless publications, books, and exhibitions, and they continue to inspire and influence musicians and photographers alike.

Kramer’s legacy extends beyond his photographs of Dylan. He went on to have a successful career as a photographer, working with a wide range of artists, including Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix, and the Rolling Stones. He also taught photography at the International Center of Photography in New York City.

Daniel Kramer’s contributions to the world of photography are immeasurable. His photographs of Bob Dylan during a pivotal moment in the singer’s career provide a lasting record of one of the most important and influential artists of the 20th century.