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Solid Rock Show Special interview with “Po”

Written by on 19th June 2022

This week there is another Solid Rock show special interview, this time with Aubrey Powell, one of the founders of the graphic design agency Hipgnosis. Hipgnosis were a respected and trusted design company who have created some of the most iconic record sleeves ever, including Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon. The interview is based around a fascinating new book called Through The Prism: Untold Rock Stories from the Hipgnosis Archive published by Thames & Hudson this year.
The show airs on Wednesday 22nd June at 7-9pm with the interview and related music coming in the first hour of the show. In the interview I talk to “Po”, as he likes to be known, about how the company started and he’s very candid about how his friendship with Dave Gilmour and Pink Floyd was the start of it all. The book includes a lot of stories about larger than life characters including Led Zeppelin’s manager Peter Grant, Sir Paul McCartney and Peter Gabriel. But they are all centred around those iconic, narrative and at times surreal covers that created a strange mystique around the artists. We go into detail about Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon and Peter Gabriel’s Scratch, which depicts Gabriel scratching the photograph of himself from inside the picture – wonderfully strange! The company worked without the digital cameras, photo editing and compositing software that is available nowadays. We also talk about the creation of Led Zeppelin’s Houses of the Holy (sent off to be hand-tinted by an expert of the time) and Presence, which features a family at a boat show sitting around a table with a strange black object on it.
I thoroughly enjoyed my conversation with Po, who is also a very entertaining speaker so please do join me this Wednesday.
Steve Ashwell