New York-based, self-taught photographer Mike Schreiber’s unique vision of hip-hop celebrities, from Nas and Biz Markie to Ol’ Dirty Bastard and Jay-Z, is collected for the first time in True Hip-Hop.
Schreiber captures his subjects with a real-life grit that becomes seemingly tangible. Most jaw-dropping is the strikingly candid proof sheet presenting a vulnerable young artist then known as Maya Arulpragasam, who would use Schreiber’s photos as she rose to fame as M.I.A.
“If I ever have a mug shot taken, I want Mike to do it,” she’s been quoted as saying. “As my career started, I was armed with an arsenal of Schreiber photos and off I went — didn’t know where, but I was running.”
“I think being labeled a ‘hip-hop photographer’ is attached to my name a lot, and I don’t mind it,” says Schreiber. “I really consider myself a documentary photographer, and I’ve just been lucky to shoot a lot of really amazing artists.”
Click through for a gallery of images from True Hip-Hop.