The documentary film-maker Albert Maysles died last week at the fine age of 88. Albert and I crossed paths 11 years ago when I was about to release my very first record – ‘Cheap Songs Tell The Truth’ under the name The Music Lovers on Le Grand Magistery Records. I decided I wanted to use a still from the Maysles Brothers documentary ‘Grey Gardens’ on the sleeve.
I approached Albert directly with my request and graciously got back to me almost immediately. He asked me to send him the songs that would be on the EP and if he liked what he heard he would allow me to use the image. Albert’s representative in New York advised me that Albert, though extremely gracious would rarely let people use stills from his films for commercial purposes. So, I sent him the songs and three weeks later Albert responded with…’ Yes, I loved the music. It’s graceful. You have my permission to use the still.’ FYI – I kept the emails.
That the great Albert Maysles would allow a wee indie band and label to use his work was a profound boon to our spirits and spurred our sense of purpose. Thank you Albert. Your generosity will not be forgotten. Thank you too for your moving, inquiring, and exquisite films.
The sleeve was designed by Matthew Jacobson. There are a few copies still available at http://www.darla.com