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Classic Posters – Bio of Poster Guy Michael Erlewine

Classic Posters – Bio of Poster Guy Michael Erlewine

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Published by Michael Erlewine
These are articles on concert-music posters and poster collecting from the site ClassicPosters.com founded by award-winning archivist of popular culture Michael Erlewine who founded All-Music Guide, All-Movie Guide, Astrologyland.com and many other popular Internet sites. All articles copyright and written or produced by Michael Erlewine. Do visit ClassicPosters.com in its current incarnation.
These are articles on concert-music posters and poster collecting from the site ClassicPosters.com founded by award-winning archivist of popular culture Michael Erlewine who founded All-Music Guide, All-Movie Guide, Astrologyland.com and many other popular Internet sites. All articles copyright and written or produced by Michael Erlewine. Do visit ClassicPosters.com in its current incarnation.

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Published by: Michael Erlewine on Jan 08, 2011
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Classic Posters
 –
Bio of Poster Guy Michael Erlewine
 
Classic Posters
 –
Bio of Poster GuyMichael ErlewineMichael Erlewine is the founder ofClassicPosters.com. Erlewine's interestin posters goes back to the '60s, wherehe performed as a musician at some ofthe famous poster venues, places likethe Fillmore West, the Matrix, NewOrleans House, the Straight Theater,and the Haight A on the West Coast,and all over the Midwest, at venues likeThe Living End, Chessmate, MotherBlues, and of course, the GrandeBallroom, just to name a few.
Michael Erlewine -- A Brief Bio
 
Prime Movers Blues Band at the Living End, 1966 
 Raised in Ann Arbor, Michigan, MichaelErlewine began playing music back inthe early '60s, when fueled by the booksof Jack Kerouac and other beat writers,he dropped out of high school in 1960and traveled to and lived in Venice Westand San Francisco's North Beach. By1961, he was playing acoustic guitarand hanging out with the folk-musicscene, traveling from coast to coast. Hehitchhiked with Bob Dylan in 1961 andhelped to put on Dylan's first concert inAnn Arbor. Michael Erlewine lived inBerkeley for a year in 1964, taking in allthat the Bay Area had to offer, such asthe pure Sandos product. He wasassistant manager of Discount Recordsin Berkeley, and continued to learnabout music and participate in the post-beatnik and the pre-hippie movement.In 1965, Erlewine returned to Ann Arborand during that summer, with his brotherDaniel, formed the Prime Movers BluesBand, one of the first (if not the first)hippie-style band in the region. ThePrime Movers became a local force inthe Midwest. Michael Erlewine was thelead singer and played amplifiedChicago-style harmonica. Iggy Pop wastheir drummer and, in fact, got hisnickname name "Iggy" from his stint inthe group.
 
Classic Posters
 –
Bio of Poster Guy Michael Erlewine
 
Michael Erlewine and Iggy Pop 
 Erlewine's interest in collecting postersstems from those days. In the processof trying to make a living as a musician,to better advertise the Prime MoversBlues Band, he built his own silk-screenshop and learned to design posters,cutting them by hand in Rubylith. Foryears, he designed and silk-screened allof the Prime Movers Blues Band'sposters, which were then postedthroughout the area -- an endless job.As a result of working with posters, fromthe ground up, Erlewine fell in love withconcert-music posters as a pureAmerican art.
Erlewine-designed band poster 
 Because of his band's knowledge ofChicago-style blues, Michael wasnaturally involved in the 1969 Ann ArborBlues Festival, the first major electricblues festival in North America. In fact,for the first several blues festivals in AnnArbor, Erlewine interviewed (audio andvideo) most of the major blues artists,people like Howlin' Wolf, Arthur Big BoyCrudup, Son House, Bobby Blue Bland,Muddy Waters, and dozens of others.He and other band members also wereput in charge of feeding and caring forthe substance requirements of the bluesartists that came to the festivals.See: !A CP000018 001 "A Short Historyof Blues Festivals by Michael Erlewine"Years later, he was appointed theofficial archivist for the Ann Arbor Bluesand Jazz Festival during his stint on thatfestival's board of directors. Erlewinehas served on a number of executiveboards, including that of the historic AnnArbor folk venue, The Ark.When the sixties music scene dried upand his band dissolved, Erlewinecontinued as a single performer, playingpiano and singing in bars. In the early'70s, Erlewine became interested in
 
Classic Posters
 –
Bio of Poster Guy Michael Erlewine
 
computers, at first programminghandheld calculators and then, in 1977,home computers. He founded and builtMatrix Software, which (along with alittle company called Microsoft) are saidto be the oldest extant Internetmicrocomputer software companies inNorth America.
Early photo of AMG archive 
 When music CDs came along, Michaeltried to keep track of which vinylrecordings were on what CDs throughcreating a database of the information.Here was one guy in a small town in theMidwest who had started somethingcalled the All-Music Guide -- AMG.Everyone laughed when he told theworld he intended to cover 'all' music.Today the All-Music Guide(allmusic.com) is the largest musicdatabase on the planet. Erlewine wenton to found the All-Movie guide(allmovie.com), All-Game Guide(allgame.com), and other major Internetsites. As president of that company, hedid contract work for all major onlinecommunications networks, includingCompuserve, AOL, Apple's E-World, theMicrosoft Network, and many others.
All-Music Guide - some of the series 
 There are some thirteen or moreeditions of the All-Music Guide as abook, and a dozen or so CD-ROMs thatErlewine produced as executive editor.AMG has received hundreds of awards,and including a number of prestigiousawards from Yahoo for the best music-data site on the Internet.Over the years, Erlewine's interest inconcert-music posters has never waned.He loved commercial concert-poster artand began to add pieces to those hehad collected from the '60s. As aprogrammer and database-contentexpert, of course he wanted to catalogconcert posters. And so he did.Classic Posters was born as an attemptby Erlewine to share information aboutconcert-music posters with others, muchlike he has done with music, film, andgames. He feels that this is informationthat should be available to everyone.Michael Erlewine is well-known as anarchivist of popular culture. For years,he has carefully catalogued concertmusic posters. When he had troublefinding clear images of posters, he builta studio to photo-document concert

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