Sept. 5 2012 03:58 PM

Musician and rock photographer is battling brain cancer


At North Park bar and grill Tiger!Tiger! on Monday, veteran scenesters gathered for a fundraiser auction for their friend Jeff Winterberg, a celebrated musician and rock photographer who used to live in San Diego.

As people looked at Winterberg's photos that were up for bid—including a portrait of Iggy Pop from 2000 and live shots of Fugazi from the mid- '90s—Pinback co-founder Rob Crow reminisced with two fellow musicians about Winterberg's contribution to the scene.

Back in the '90s, they said, he'd often silk-screen T-shirts for touring bands he liked, paying out of his own pocket for supplies.

"He would make the shirts just because he thought they were rad, and he'd give them out for free to his friends," Crow said.

"Obscure stuff, like No Trend," added musician Adam Eisenberg. "Who would have a No Trend shirt?" 

Late last year, Winterberg was diagnosed with medulloblastoma, a rare form of brain cancer. Though he's been able to cover much of his treatment through health insurance, friends and family are raising money to cover costs like outpatient therapy and prescriptions.

A donation fund has been set up, bringing in more than $21,000 by Monday (donate here).

In addition, indie-rockers Three Mile Pilot will play a benefit show with Tit Wrench and Devfits at The Casbah on Wednesday, Sept. 5.

Though he hasn't lived in San Diego for years, Winterberg was a regular in the '90s indie-rock scene, photographing shows and playing guitar in the influential hardcore punk band Antioch Arrow. He gave the arty band some muscle with his gnarled, Black Flag-style power-chords, and over the years, he's pushed the envelope as a photographer with interesting angles and long exposures.

"His photography has always amazed me," says former Antioch Arrow singer Aaron Montaigne.

According to his donation page at, Winterberg has been going through intensive treatments in New York (he currently lives on the East Coast). His doctors are reportedly optimistic about his recovery, but he'll need treatment and tests in the years ahead.

At Tiger!Tiger! on Monday, organizers had posted vintage show flyers and local art along with Winterberg's photos. Asked if he had his eye on anything in particular, Crow said he wasn't sure.

"I like everything," he said, "so it's difficult."

Email or follow him on Twitter at @peterholslin.


See all events on Wednesday, Dec 7