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World-famous popular music icon Kenny Rogers has recorded 59 albums and 22 Number One hit songs in his 5-decade musical career. He’s the recipient of four Grammys, 18 American Music Awards, 11 People’s Choice Awards. As an actor, he’s best known for his role of Brady Hawkes in the 5-part mini-series THE GAMBLER.

After a thirteen year from the top of the music charts, in 1999 Rogers returned with his back-to-back hit singles, “The Greatest,” and his number 22nd Number One hit, “Buy Me a Rose.” Both albums debuted from Rogers’ own record label, Dreamcatcher Records. “Buy Me a Rose” made Rogers the oldest artist to top the country charts. Inspired by “Buy Me a Rose,” the CBS television show TOUCHED BY AN ANGEL built an episode around the song and Kenny Rogers guest starred.

He’s a tireless fund-raiser for the poor. Consider this: he established the Kenny Rogers Cerebral Palsy Center, he created the World Hunger Media Awards, co-chaired “Hands Across America,” to aid the hungry in America, and he established the Athens Area Homeless Shelter in Athens, Georgia.

His most cherished award is also the most personal. In 1990, Rogers was honored with the Horatio Alger Award, given to those who have distinguished themselves despite humble beginnings. Rogers’ success is all the more remarkable for his having been raised in a Houston public housing project with seven brothers and sisters. As Rogers once told Rolling Stone, “Before I was born, my dad didn’t take care of my family well. My older brothers and sisters had to quit school to go to work, to help support the family. I think they had a lot of bitterness and anger. When I came along we were a little more affluent, for lack of a better term. We were upper-lower-class.” [laughs]

Rogers has been an amateur photographer for most of his adult life, but he started taking photographs in earnest about a dozen years ago, when he moved to California with his former wife Marianne, a fashion model. He began shooting portfolio shots for his wife and her model friends and developing them in a small darkroom in his home. “With time, though, I felt the need to broaden my horizons,” Rogers says, and he began studying with photographer John Sexton (once assistant to Ansel Adams.)

Over the years, Rogers has gone from a basic 35mm Brownie Hawkeye camera through an Argus C-3 and a Hasselblad 2 ¼ x 2 ¼ the challenges of working with large-format cameras—a 4x5 for America and an 8x10 for Your Friends and Mine. Large format cameras are now his primary tools.

Rogers’ photographs focus on two very different types of images: landscapes and portraits. In shooting the vistas of America he has crisscrossed many times in his years on the road, Rogers says he looks for form, design, texture and organization, such as the brick and mortar of the urban landscape and the endless variations of light and shadow in the country.

When it came to the portrait work, Rogers started out shooting friends, but as he puts it, “It soon became obvious that I’d have to start contacting people I didn’t know at all, because the simple fact is that I wasn’t close friends with over seventy people who have the stature that I wanted for the book.” Even with his own celebrity going for him, he had difficulty convincing some of his subjects to pose. Still, he says, “I think that it helped that each person could see me not just as a photographer, but as a peer…they knew I wasn’t some paparazzo lurking in the bushes outside a fancy restaurant…they knew I’d be protective of their image.” And, he adds, “If they weren’t friends before I photographed them, they are now…I imagine people who have never met them or even seen them in person regard them as friends, too.”

The quality of Rogers’ photography distinguishes him as a visual artist notwithstanding his fame as a performer. The proof is in the images—the talent and vision evident in Rogers’ photographs make them stand on their own as fine artworks.
Frank Sinatra


Lake Michigan

Lincoln Memorial



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Robert wilbanks

18-10-2007

i have always been a big fan! now that I know he is a photographer, in which i love photography too, makes me a bigger fan. hope to see a lot more of his work and maybe one day i'll meet him and learn more!

russ fickett

02-03-2008

Kenny has truley given a great deal to us all over the years. One of the top 3 recognized voices of all times, by far. It is only fitting that he can share his love of photography and his visual artistry with know. His tallent is incredible.

Meriam Williams

10-03-2009

I too am a big fan of his music and learning of his photography is wonderful. I love photography, being a fan of Edward Weston's work, also a student of Adams, check out his black & white studies of Green Peppers, yes, Green Peppers, totally awesome. I am very excited about Kenny as I recently picked up two of his black & white works, both of them signed by him, at a Flea Market in Tampa, FL, yahoo. The works are of a waterfalls and of bare trees in a line, both really cool stuff, good works. Glad to hang them proudly on my wall, I know Kenny would be too. Meriam

aManOnaJourney

26-06-2009

Kenny has some amazing pictures of people and landscapes from around the world.
His photography has revealed the humanity of the poorest of street people and Presidents and the wonder of man-made historic landmarks and natural settings.
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