TRPS – The Rock Poster Society

The Rock Poster Society (TRPS) seeks to perpetuate and promote the long-standing relationship between music and graphic art – also known as “Rock Poster Art”.

Click on the logo to visit the TRPS website!

The Rock Poster Society is the planet’s largest organized group of rock poster collectors, artists, and dealers. TRPS (pronounced like “trips”) is an eclectic, non-profit, non-denominational, committed and focused volunteer group who have as their common bond an overriding joy in the art of the rock poster, be it Fillmore and Avalon, punk, boxing style, off-the-wall or just plain bonafide out-there.

Festival of Rock Posters 2019

Saturday October 19, 2019

Show poster by Carolyn Ferris for the 2019 TRPS
Festival of Rock Posters at the Hall of Flowers
San Francisco, California

Posters/Artists mentioned in the interview. . .

The Seed” known as the granddaddy of psychedelic posters

Chuck Sperry’s screenprint for Widespread Panic’s spring 2013 tour is one of his and the band’s most widely collected posters.

Wes Wilson‘s BG-56
Printed using a “split fountain” technique. The colors are pink, pink to orange, orange to blue, and blue, on a field of black
© Bill Graham Archives, LLC. All Rights Reserved

Considered by many to be one of the greatest rock posters of all time. AOR-2.24 showcases the relationship between artist and band. This classic Rick Griffin design was used as the title and cover for the Grateful Dead’s third album.
An understanding of the band’s aesthetic is crucial for artists.

FD-26 by Alton Kelley and Stanley Mouse is undoubtedly the most famous poster from the Family Dog series, as well as the most recognized image ever used by the Grateful Dead.
© Chet Helms DBA Family Dog Productions All Rights Reserved

San Francisco’s “Big Five” included Mouse, Kelley, Griffin, Wilson, and Victor Moscoso. Moscoso was the first of the psychedelic poster artists to create his own poster series.
He named it Neon Rose.
© Victor Moscoso

© Bill Graham Archives, LLC. All Rights Reserved

Another example of understanding a band’s aesthetic: Lee Conklin created BG-134 which was used for the cover of Santana’s debut album.

The so-called “mushroom man” poster, BG-216, is one of David Singer’s most collected and iconic Fillmore designs. Singer is responsible for more posters in the first and most-collected numbered Bill Graham poster series than any other artist.  Image via David Singer.

Randy Tuten describes the ‘joys’ of working with Bill Graham: “Bill called me up in the morning and said that it (BG-165) was printed and yelled that I had screwed up his poster and that he could not read the main lettering and then hung up”

BG-66 designed by former wife of Bill Graham, Bonnie MacLean, was the first poster printed by Tea Lautrec Litho which went on to print over 200 posters for concert promoter Bill Graham

This colorful handbill (AOR-2.138) was designed by Greg Irons and was used to promote a show at the California Hall. The small venue competed with shows at the Fillmore and the Avalon. Irons later joined a large crew of skilled animators responsible for bringing the animated Beatles to life in
Yellow Submarine

This interesting poster (AOR-2.339) was used to advertise a benefit concert for the Haight-Ashbury Medical Clinic. The poster is done in a very psychedelic fashion and could easily be considered the best of the works done by Mari Tepper.

Marq Spusta was the TRPS 2008 Festival of Posters Contest Winner

Chuck Sperry – another contemporary heavy-hitter for poster artwork

“The Thinking Man’s Poster Artist”

Emek is the rock star of the rock-poster world.
Organizers for the Festival of Rock Posters mention: “For pretty much the entire day, there was a steady stream of collectors who wait for Emek to sign and doodle their Emek posters from their collections. Emek does this all day long.”

Emek’s Fare Thee Well Poster

Emek’s poster for a recent Dead and Company Tour

Emek’s artwork for the Grateful Dead’s Winterland 1973 Box Set

Credit where credit is due. . .
– Many of the pictures and commentary come from the TRPS website
– Emek’s website
– Additional info comes from Classic Posters, who is a common vendor at the Festival of Rock Posters.
You can hear our interview with Classic Posters Owner & Auctioneer: Mike Storeim.