The clip opens with the late photographer, who died last year at 83, tracing Rolling Stone‘s history back to San Francisco in 1967.
“Anything was possible,” he tells the camera. “We had no limitation. We had no marching orders. We could do anything… nobody was covering the musicians, the fans, the music, and we were right in the midst of massive social change that was really visible in the Bay Area, San Francisco. You can see it in the way people dressed, what they were talking about, their belief in changing the system. We knew we were doing something good.”
Cooper adds that part of the magazine’s excitement was its cover subjects. “There had to be some sort of a table of people sitting around going, ‘Who do we think is going to be the next big thing?'” he says, referring to famous covers of himself and David Bowie. “They didn’t waste a cover. They made sure that whoever that person was going to be was going to be somebody.”
The episode “On the Cover” airs at 9 p.m. ET on Friday. The six-part docuseries, which explores music photography and its historical impact, premiered last month.