In 1970s New York City, photography student Chris Stein found his muse in singer Deborah Harry. The two became romantically involved, and Stein joined her band as a guitarist. In 1974, they would form the band Blondie, coming out of the burgeoning downtown scene with other punk rock and new wave acts like Television, Talking Heads, Patti Smith, and the Ramones, all orbiting around the clubs CBGB and Max’s Kansas City. As a photographer, Stein would capture Harry in intimate moments throughout the band’s history. Blondie deftly fused this power of image with punk’s do-it-yourself mentality to present themselves with savvy and style. They also constantly experimented with new sounds and never shied away from popular music, scoring hits with a couple of disco singles, 1978’s “Heart of Glass” and 1980’s Giorgio Moroder–produced “Call Me.” After meeting “Fab 5” Freddy, who took them uptown to witness hip-hop, Blondie would record “Rapture”—the first pop song to incorporate a rap—and help bring the then nascent artform to a larger global audience.
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