Baron Wolman photographed The Rolling Stones in December 1969 at the Oakland Auditorium Arena, later filmed for the documentary Gimme Shelter.

Note Keith Richards at the bottom left. “For me that’s always shown the relationship between Mick and Keith from Mick’s point of view,” Wolman says.With reports of high album sales and high ticket prices in the weeks leading up to the event, The Stones were catching bad press including accusations of being greedy.

To appease fans, they decided to throw a free concert in Golden Gate Park. That venue didn’t work out, so the concert was moved to Sears Point Raceway. However Filmways owned the track which was a problem because concert organizers intended to film a documentary, which became Gimme Shelter.

At the last minute permits fell through and they moved the site to Oakland Auditorium Arena. Grateful Dead had convinced the organizers to hire the Hell’s Angels to provide security. When a fight broke out, The Rolling Stones had to stop halfway through “Sympathy for the Devil” and start over.

It was lucky that they were shooting a documentary. Halfway through the show an enraged fan charged at the Hell’s Angels brandishing a revolver. He was stabbed to death and beaten by Hell’s Angels. His autopsy later showed traces of methamphetamine. Footage from the film led to the Angels’ acquittal in self-defense.

Baron Wolman

Oakland, 1969

Miles Davis liked to work out every day. Photographer Baron Wolman did not. Davis used to joke with him at photo shoots. “Barry, man, you’re out of shape,” Miles Davis said in his husky voice. “You gotta come to the gym and work off that flab with me.” Davis said that he liked to box because it helped with his anger.

Here in October 1969 he brought Wolman to Gleason’s Gym in the Bronx.“If you listen to my music you’ll hear me boxing,” Miles told Wolman during their workout. “I play the trumpet the way I box. You can hear me uppercut and jab through out the song.”

Baron Wolman
New York City, 1969

"I was assigned to do a cover shoot with Michael for life Magazine at Disney World in Orlando. The Epcot Center was coded to the public so he could have privacy. The Disney people treated Michael as if he was Mickey Mouse reincarnated.

I set up the lights and waited. His manage, Frank DiLeo told me Michael was out doing his door-to-door work as a Jehovah’s Witness. He was more than two hours late. How could Michael not think about all the people who’d traveled to Florida with their families for what might be their only vacation of the year and had to wait for the park to reopen?

The moment he arrived he saw on my face how upset I was and said in his super-sweet voice. “Oh Lynn, you are so beautiful.” He smiled. My anger melted. I was a goner, Michael had star power.”

Lynn Goldsmith
Orlando, 1984