With New York City’s explosive music scene, it’s not surprising that it has been a place of inspiration and focal point for many musicians, songs, and albums. The ’60s, ’70s, and ’80s especially provided New York City with a period of music that tested the envelope and spawned various genres, from folk music, to rock and pop. New York City provided a creative location for artists both from the city and outside of it, and the impact can be seen by walking down almost any street where the ghosts musicians who live and once lived roam.

Here are 15 iconic album covers based in New York City from the 1960s-1980s with bands who shot their cover albums in New York City.

15. Led Zeppelin, “Physical Graffiti”

The cover of Zeppelin’s album “Physical Graffiti” features buildings at 96 and 98 St. Mark’s Place between First Avenue and Avenue A. The looming buildings manage to blend together neatly as well as pop out in a contradictory aesthetic which makes them the perfect choice for the album.

The fifth floor had to be cropped out to fit the album cover that was designed by Peter Corriston. Corriston is also noted for designing covers for The Rolling Stones, whose music video “Waiting for a Friend” was recorded on the steps of the building on the right. The album cover’s legacy even lives on in a tea shop in the basement of the building, aptly called “physical graffitea.”

View all on one page

2 Responses
  1. very cool! i was hoping Blondie’s “Plastic Letters” or “Autoamerican” would have made the list!

    • Thank you!! The process of narrowing down the albums was incredibly difficult and as a huge classic rock fan myself, I wish I could have done them all!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *