Byrne, who began taking pictures of bands as a teen, recalls seeing rock legend Jimi Hendrix and Mick Jagger at the taping of the weekly music show Top of the Pops on May 4, 1967 - a day before his 18th birthday - He snapped a photo of the two stars which he believes had met for the first time this night The young photographer's extraordinary photos - seen here for the first time - make up part of his new book on the British music scene of the late 1960s and early 70s called London: The Unseen Archive.Above is Byrne's shot of Keith Moon, Peter Townshend, and Mick Jagger in 1968 Byrne was going to the BBC's studios at Lime Grove every Thursday for the taping of the weekly music show Top of the Pops, and that night Jimi Hendrix was playing.It was the summer of 1968 and Rolling Stones frontman Mick Jagger was filming his first movie.
It was 1966 and the London music scene was about to explode.'I was in the right place at the right time,' Byrne recalls.'There was a music revolution happening and I was in the thick of it.'One of Byrne's most memorable photos came on May 4, 1967 - the day after his 18th birthday.Byrne remembers setting up a photo shoot with David Bowie in a park.'It was agreed we would go to a park in Beckenham (South London) which is where he was living at the time,' said Byrne.'But when I got there I was surprised, it was just him standing at the gate, none of his people.'His star was rising but he didn't arrive with an entourage of publicists, make-up artists, and hangers-on the way an artist would today.'I always had an interest in Bowie and his 'Space Oddity' was special, but while I was expecting a withdrawn, artsy, introverted guy, he was the opposite - he was warm and easy going.'We were both South London boys and I think we clicked right away, we spent a few hours together working out how to get the best pictures.Byrne managed to capture some incredible portraits of Bowie in his prime and shortly after the shoot the star's office called asking if they could use one of his photos as his publicity shot in the program for the Humble Pie tour.'Fast forward to 2015, and I got word that the same photo , pulled from an old copy of the program, was to be the lead image for the book accompanying Bowie's new box set, Five Years (1969-1973).'I was humbled, here's a guy who has been photographed thousands of times over the past 50 years but he remembered that one picture, I was honored.'For Byrne, the stories come thick and fast.Smoking marijuana with Bob Marley during a photo shoot was particularly memorable and hanging out at Elton John's house was great, he says.
Jones died aged 27 shortly after being pulled, unconscious, out of the floodlight swimming pool at his home in Hartfield, East Sussex on July 3, 1969.
And amazingly the thousands of photos had somehow survived through a fire, flood, and earthquake over the years - events which had destroyed thousands more images in Byrne's collection.
Byrne recalls those early days captured on film fondly.
After the ceremony when nearly everyone had drifted away Byrne walked over to the open grave and captured a memorable photo But Byrne seems to gravitate back to the Stones, a band he had the privilege of photographing dozens of times.
He remembers vividly the time he was at the Marquee Club in So Ho when Keith Richards collapsed on stage, his eyes rolling back in his head and his body crashing into an amp.'It was a small venue, low stage and literally I could feel the sweat coming off Jagger because I was right in the front,' he recalls.'The guys were having so much fun because this was their last gig before they were going to leave England and go to France.'So there was lots of booze and substances being passed around and at one point you can see in the picture that Mick is looking at Keith because no one knows what he is playing and he's weaving around.'Next thing he falls back, crashes on the amplifiers, slumps down on to the stage and everyone starts thinking "has he died?
He started life as a dispatch rider for Keystone Press, a photo agency in Fleet Street, collecting film from photographers to be processed.'I was riding around on a scooter and I was a Mod with the parka and the whole "Quadrophenia" set up.'But I got to know the photography end of it by hanging out in the dark room.'I picked up various things a long the way and my brother had a real cheap 35mm camera and I started shooting that - going to the park, snapping family, and friends.'I was earning five guineas (£5.25) a week and remember buying my first camera for £42.