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Getty Images Purchases Michael Ochs Archives

SEATTLE (CelebrityAccess MediaWire) — Getty Images, Inc. has acquired The Michael Ochs Archives, a renowned collection of music and entertainment imagery spanning the 1940s-1990s. Customers will now have easy access to high-quality photographs of musicians captured at live performances, private shoots and special events as well as images of entertainment personalities featured in films, television programs and social documentaries.

Founded in the mid-1970s by Michael Ochs, brother of folk singer Phil Ochs, the collection was compiled from a range of sources, such as celebrity photographers, artist estates, music labels, publishers and even the garages of retired recording executives. This body of compelling imagery has been captured by a solid roster of famed talent, including:

— James Kriegsmann, house photographer for the Cotton Club in the 1940s,
who shot some of the first photos of Frank Sinatra and Simon &

— Don Paulsen, whose backstage access at the Apollo Theatre in the late
1960s enabled him to shoot an impressive lineup of the great Motown
stars; and

— Earl Leaf, who shot Marilyn Monroe throughout her career and later
covered a wide array of musicians, ranging from Elvis Presley to Bruce

In addition to an extensive selection of iconic visuals, the archive contains many rare and unpublished works, delivering a unique perspective on 20th century pop culture. "Music enthusiasts, in particular, will be thrilled by the addition of this unique collection, which is arguably the best of its kind in the world," said Matthew Butson, vice president of Getty Images' Hulton Archive, the world's largest collection of photography and illustrative materials with over 40 million images dating from 1860. "We are delighted to bring on board Michael Ochs and his team, whose knowledge, expertise and passion for all things musical is unparalleled."

Over the past three decades, imagery from The Michael Ochs Archives has provided cultural context to a variety of entertainment and communication outlets, such as:

— Music — most CD re-issues, including virtually all of those from Rhino
and Bear Family;

— Television — "ABC News," "American Idol," "The Sopranos;"

— Films — "Dream Girls," "Walk the Line," "Ray;"

— Publications — "He's a Rebel" Phil Spector biography, "Johnny Cash:
The Biography," "Louis Armstrong's New Orleans;" and

— Advertisements — Hennessy, GAP, Kenneth Cole.

Approximately 15,000 digitized works from The Michael Ochs Archives will be available beginning April at, with approximately 60,000 more to be added on a rolling basis throughout 2007. Further streamlining the licensing process, Getty Images will manage all associated rights and clearances.

"My goal with the collection has been to share this important piece of pop culture on a large scale while protecting its integrity," said Michael Ochs. "Getty Images is uniquely equipped to preserve this imagery and make it easily accessible to the world." –Bob Grossweiner and Jane Cohen