||BLACK & WHITE & WEIRD ALL OVER HIGHLIGHTS RARE
OF "WEIRD AL" YANKOVIC'S COMIC GENIUS
Book Features Unreleased Black-And-White Photographs
Yankovic Drummer Jon "Bermuda" Schwartz
"See funny music's greatest star as he bursts into fame! Weird Al's drummer takes you into the studio, backstage, and offstage for the making of a superstar. Hey, I was there too-but Bermuda brought his camera!"
- Dr. Demento
"This book will undoubtedly appeal to both Weird Al completists and those who enjoy black-and-white photographs taken by drummers."
- "Weird Al" Yankovic
"Weird Al" Yankovic is one of music's most beloved figures. A skilled accordion player and songwriter, the California native is known for his meticulous parodies of popular songs, hilarious originals, and, of course, upbeat polkas. For much of Al's career, one man has been by his side, photographing and documenting the fun and weirdness: longtime drummer Jon "Bermuda" Schwartz.
On November 17, 2020, 1984 Publishing published Black & White & Weird All Over, a 208-page hardcover book presenting hundreds of images of Al, culled from Schwartz's personal collection of black-and-white photography. Since meeting Al in 1980, Schwartz has taken more than 20,000 images of the musician in his element: on tour, in the studio, and on video sets.
"The last several decades have been an amazing ride," Yankovic says. "More than once - an annoying number of times, actually - Jon has warned me, ‘Someday I'm going to write a book about all this!' It became a bit of a running joke. But now he's actually made good on the threat."
The photos in Black & White & Weird All Over only existed on contact sheets - out of mind and out of sight - until now. From behind-the-scenes shots taken on the sets of
Al's iconic videos for "Ricky," "I Love Rocky Road," "Eat It," and "Living With A Hernia," to studio sessions for Al's Dare to Be Stupid and Polka Party! LPs, Black & White & Weird All Over is the ultimate photographic essay of Weird Al's undisputed comedic genius.
"It's a fine snapshot - actually, several hundred snapshots - of what life was like for us in the '80s," Yankovic says.
Schwartz's love for documenting his life and the world around him dates back decades. "When I was a teen in the early '70s, I bought my first nice 35mm camera-a used Minolta SRT-101-from one of the guys in my first band, and quickly caught the photography bug," he says. "I bought black-and-white film in large spools and loaded my own rolls, and even set up a darkroom at home. Soon after meeting Al in 1980, the photo opportunities became more frequent and more interesting, and it seemed like I always had the camera with me."
The genesis of Black & White & Weird All Over dates back to July 2017, when Al gave his blessing to Schwartz to look into publishing the photos. Fans were also enthusiastic about the idea, which galvanized Schwartz even more. Aside from a handful of "Ricky" and "I Love Rocky Road" video shots that previously appeared in The Authorized Al, the Permanent Record booklet, Weird Al: The Book and the Squeeze Box book, the rest have remained unseen by anyone.
|In addition to the regular edition (available worldwide), Black & White & Weird All Over was released as a limited edition boxed set (250 copies) signed by Schwartz, with an alternate cover, twelve 9"x12" frameable prints, numbered COA, and a deluxe box. They sold-out in less than two hours!
Matthew Chojnacki and 1984 Publishing, Michael Duquette, Shane & Desiree Lewis, Annie Zaleski, Mark Jonathan Davis, Don Pavlish,
"Musical Mike" Kieffer, Bill Burk, Tonya Duus, Jay Levey, Vincent Paterson, Steve Jay, Jim "Kimo" West, Eddie Baytos, Lisa Jahant Neidert, Joel Miller, Dave Stephenson, Jeff Rona, Leslie Schwartz, "Weird Al" Yankovic.