Rare Specimen No. 5
Blue Note LP Covers
I love listening to music, and I love album cover design. It's where I always go for inspiration. For me the best album cover design is the work of Reid Miles, done for Blue Note Records in the 50s and 60s. Combined with the cool, elegant, smoky photographs of Francis Wolff, and occasional illustration contributions from people like Andy Warhol and Miles himself, these album covers are stunning, powerful, stylish examples of graphic design. Legend has it that Miles got $100 for each album and never listened to the music. But with the freedom that he was given he created an entire aesthetic for the label, a visual style that defined the sound and the scene as much as the music in the LP grooves. And there is just so much to "borrow" from in his work! The complete visual catalog of Blue Note album covers, every single LP, has been lovingly collected and curated here.
Easy take-home inspiration: pick up copies of The Cover Art of Blue Note Records , Blue Note: The Album Cover Art, or Blue Note II here or visit the SPD Store for these and all our other Essentials.