Rick Diamond, originally from Ft. Lauderdale, Florida moved around 1974-75 to Atlanta, GA.
His photography career began shortly after attending an Allman Brothers concert in 1970 in Ft. Lauderdale. He recalls being completely blown away by the guitar solos and Gregg Allman’s voice. The Brothers returned to Ft. Lauderdale soon after, and Rick went backstage where he met Twiggs Lyndon (tour manager) they became friends. Rick would sometimes hitchhike his way to shows just to help sweep and prepare stages with Twiggs and Andy his brother. They would allow Rick to shoot on show days, mostly stadiums. Tampa was one of his earliest memories. He soon became a familiar all-access photographer in South Florida for all the venues and promoters, Leas Campbell, Howard Stein, Jon Stoll, and Mitch Fennell. A few years later about 1974-75, he relocated taking a job processing E-6 film for a large company in Atlanta.
After about 6 months, Rick discovered Alex Cooley’s Electric Ballroom, The Great Southeast Music Hall, and Richards. He recalls that the music scene in Atlanta was unbelievable. He had Carte Blanche in all those clubs. Meeting Alex Cooley & Rich Floyd who gave Rick access to all their shows at The OMNI, Fox Theater, and many stadium tours. Rick states, “Alex and I became very good friends and I consider him the #1 reason I have the long career I still enjoy.” Governor Jimmy Carter was running for President and after meeting his son Chip and then the rest of the family, Rick became his campaign photographer. “President and Ms. Carter are to this day the most decent honorable people I have ever had the pleasure of knowing and working with.” Early on I met Mike McCarty (An airbrush artist) he did 100 or so Album Covers. And he used me on many of his projects. Having a studio in Buckhead I would shoot local band promo 8x10s this went on every year for years. I lucked into landing the largest PR/Media firm in the Southeast thanks to one-time GF Karen Hatchett who introduced me to Michael Parver & Associates. MPA handled almost every movie premiere including everything film for Burt Reynolds and when the Disco craze arrived it seemed he was opening a club a month for about 2 years. I DID NOT add dancing shoes to my collection. The LIMELIGHT was the best of the best place Celebrities would show up like Andy Warhol, Grace Jones, Village People, Madonna, Tom Cruise, and more I became the house photographer lots of very late nights/mornings.
By 1977, Rick was fortunate enough to land almost all the Record Label accounts in Atlanta, CBS, Warners, MCA, Polydor, and many more. He had so much work, he added three photographers to his team. In 1979 & 80 Rick’s friend Andy Slater was offered a gig to go on the road with The Eagles as a journalist. He recruited Rick as his photographer. After 3 dates, Don and Glenn said YES he became the official tour photographer and Andy was the official journalist on “The Long Run” tour flying with the band from city to city.
In the 1980s for about 7-10 years, Rick photographed The NFLPA NFL Players Association, where he did 5-7 events a year all over the country starting each year at the Super Bowl.
In the late 1980s there was a record recession the record companies stopped (not completely) spending money, so things slowed down. Rick’s fortune continued when he landed gigs with all the major Radio stations. Don Benson at STAR94-WQXI was a large supporter where he hired me for big weekend events and Friday Happy Hour parties, Portraits of DJs, and Morning Crews.
1990-91 Rick was recruited by long-time friends Rob Senn (who hired me for my first paid record company gig at that time he worked for Atlantic Records) Then Rob Senn, and Mike Green with support from Joel Katz hire him to shoot the Grammys in LA. He became the official photographer for The Grammy Awards. That came to an end around 2000 when the transition to digital happened. He became part of a large team from WireImage and then Getty who hired him as a full-time staff photographer around 2005. “I spent more than 200 days a year in Nashville, covering everyone, everything, every day. I shot the CMT Awards, ACM Awards, The Ryman, and every club. In 2017-18, I retired. I currently shoot mostly in Atlanta and events closer to home. I love songwriter festivals, so I shoot 30A Songwriter’s Festival, Opelika Songwriter’s Festival, and Gatlinburg Songwriter’s Festival. I have also been shooting at clubs such as City Winery when friends come through to play.
"Seems I was always in the right place at the right time.”