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Austin City Limits Heritage Collection with Modern Rocks Gallery

As Austin City Limits (ACL) prepares to celebrate a remarkable 50th Anniversary this year, the live music program salutes the iconic work of legendary longtime staff photographer Scott Newton. Austin City Limits Heritage unveils a stunning collection of signed limited edition black & white photographic prints, capturing many of music’s most enduring figures from the early days of the longest-running music program in television history. To commemorate Austin City Limits‘ 50 years of music, Modern Rocks Gallery founder and owner (and former Modern English guitarist) Steven Walker has curated a heritage collection of fifty classic prints from Newton’s extensive ACL archive, available to fans to purchase for the first time, exclusively from Modern Rocks Gallery in conjunction with Austin PBS. These limited edition fine arts prints will be displayed to view in person at an opening night reception with Scott Newton at Austin’s Modern Rocks Gallery on Friday, April 26 from 7pm-10pm. Fans will also be able to view and purchase the prints online.

A self-taught photographer, Newton has captured memorable images on the ACL stage since Season 5 of the series in 1979 and has remained the program’s official photographer for four and a half decades. As integral to an ACL taping as the television cameras, Newton can frequently be spotted in the footlights and dodging the swinging camera crane to document the artists onstage. During his remarkable tenure, Newton has chronicled early ACL legends including Willie Nelson, Dolly Parton, Stevie Ray Vaughan, B.B. King, Johnny Cash, Emmylou Harris, Ray Charles, John Prine and many more. 

From left: Steven Walker, Scott Newton and Terry Lickona. Image courtesy of Emily Bolf.

“After shooting all those great shows, I finally get to share the results with my fellow music lovers!” says Newton. “This is exciting; decades of my work made accessible as wall art. It’s a dream come true.” Modern Rocks Gallery’s Steven Walker states, “I can’t help but feel a profound sense of pride having been given the honor of curating Austin City Limits Heritage Collection. It seems quite fitting that Modern Rocks Gallery hits its 10th anniversary the same year ACL celebrates 50 years of music. Not only visually striking, this collection holds significant importance. Austin City Limits is ingrained in the very fabric of Austin—it’s singular and cherished, much like Scott Newton’s photography.”

Longtime ACL executive producer Terry Lickona adds: “Scott has always captured the essence and spirit of Austin City Limits through his lens. This nostalgic collection brings to life some of the most historic moments of ACL’s formative years.”

Newton began photographing musicians at Austin’s infamous Armadillo World Headquarters in the early 1970s. His work has been championed for capturing the spirit of the live music capital of the world, and has appeared in coffee table books and hotels, and is regularly featured in publications and on