45 Original is a pioneering new marketplace for live music culture’s lost visual treasures to be rediscovered through bespoke limited-edition designs and offers a long-awaited platform for the designers whose talents so often go under the radar.
During such uncertain times for live entertainment, 45 Original is a reminder that live venues play as important a role for live music lovers as the artists who play there. Gigs live with us forever, be that losing yourself in a crowd of thousands or being close enough to see the whites of the performer’s eye in the intimacy of a small club. This is precisely the heritage that 45 Original honours: the great venues you remember attending or you wish you had attended; where unforgettable memories were made and legends created.
The platform works on two levels. For music-industry-based graphic designers, artists and illustrators, 45 Original offers a device for their work to be revived, exhibited and sold. For memorabilia-thirsty music fans it is a fresh new portal to research and own parts of their own musical history.
45 Original’s first release, Retrospective Editions, is due in Spring 2021, a themed collection of designs celebrating the heritage of some of London’s best loved venues, some gone but not forgotten, others still very much alive, despite current challenges.
The Rainbow Theatre, The Marquee, The Roxy Club, Hammersmith Palais, London Astoria, The Flamingo Club, The Borderline, The 12 Bar Club – The names alone conjure up memories of classic shows and classic artists.
Future plans include a bespoke release for Teenage Cancer Trust Concerts in association with The Who’s Roger Daltrey, plus rolling out the platform nationwide to include some of the UK’s most treasured live landmarks.
45 Original is the vision of Bruce Fisher and Simon Collett, design directors and founders of Tour Design Limited, leading creative agency in the live entertainment sector. They are joined by Christian Eddy, fellow North London entrepreneur, music lover and avid collector of original 45s.
Growing up in 1970s and 80s, an era when the ever-changing social and political landscape was played out against a backdrop of vinyl releases noted as much for the music they captured as for their iconic artwork, it was inevitable that this culture percolated into their chosen career paths.
One of the few positives to come out of the current situation is that it has given Bruce and Simon time away from their usually manic work schedule to realise their long-term ambition of launching 45 Original, a unique concept enabling fellow designers to collaborate in creating modern, collectable designs in a retro sympathetic style.
In view of COVID’s decimation of the live entertainment sector, a portion of 45 Original’s profits will be donated to both the Music Venue Trust ‘Save Our Venues’ Campaign and the venues involved themselves.