New York and the world as a whole has lost a legend and I never use that title loosely but in this case, it fits right along with iconic, OG and legend when it comes to describing Ricky Powell, someone who was like an unofficial mayor of the Big Apple. News broke today that the legendary photographer known for snapping pictures of a who’s who of known and unknown during their early years of the 80’s and 90’s and preserved them for the world to see. The author of four books, the unofficial 4th Beastie Boy who toured and documented the band, shot legendary artists including Basquiat, Warhol, Herring and Dondi White to a young Lawrence Fishburne on the streets and a chance bathroom encounter with model Cindy Crawford in 1989 at Club MK in NYC.
Ricky aka The Lazy Hustler was a true New York sports lover rooting for his home team the Knicks, Walt “Clyde” Fraziers #1 fan and of course knew that the NY Jets’ “Broadway” Joe Namath was the coolest to ever wear a fur coat on the football field while wearing white cleats. As time moves and the clock ticks, we’re losing so many valuable people, people who’s stories need to be told as well as those stories that they’ve come to hear during their years on the scene.
Ricky Powell is one of the last of his kind, a golden age hero who would stroll the streets of NY listening to his transistor radio, stop past the park to feed the squirrels and be the character that he was. Legends aren’t a dime a dozen and guys like him aren’t being replaced. Ricky was truly are rarity a gem and will surely be missed.