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Rolling Stone magazine (2004–2006)

Contributed by Christopher Slye on Mar 3rd, 2021. Artwork published in
circa 2004
.
    Rolling Stone magazine (2004–2006) 1
    Rolling Stone. License: All Rights Reserved.

    From 2004 to 2006, Rolling Stone magazine used Elmhurst as its primary display typeface. It started with the April 15, 2004, issue, “The Immortals” — not on the cover, but used extensively inside, for the cover story and elsewhere.

    Rolling Stone magazine (2004–2006) 2
    Photo: Christopher Slye. Rolling Stone. License: All Rights Reserved.

    The original Elmhurst’s italic was only available in one regular weight. In early 2004, Font Bureau requested (on behalf of Rolling Stone) a bold italic. I quickly designed a black weight, and a bold italic font was interpolated between black and regular.

    Rolling Stone magazine (2004–2006) 3
    Photo: Christopher Slye. Rolling Stone. License: All Rights Reserved.

    Ironically, Elmhurst was designed primarly for text, but for two years (and a few one-offs later) it appeared on two dozen covers, and was used even more frequently inside, for both feature articles and recurring content.

    Rolling Stone magazine (2004–2006) 4
    Photo: Christopher Slye. Rolling Stone. License: All Rights Reserved.
    Rolling Stone magazine (2004–2006) 5
    Photo: Christopher Slye. Rolling Stone. License: All Rights Reserved.

    Elmhurst also had small caps, but only in its regular Roman font. (In the mid-’90s, this choice wasn’t too exotic for a text face.) Rolling Stone used them occasionally when it fit the content.

    Because it was used for display, it was also creatively modified by designers — usually in fun and interesting ways.

    Rolling Stone magazine (2004–2006) 6
    Photo: Christopher Slye. Rolling Stone. License: All Rights Reserved.
    Rolling Stone magazine (2004–2006) 7
    Photo: Christopher Slye. Rolling Stone. License: All Rights Reserved.

    Oddly, Elmhurst popped up on covers again in 2007, 2010, and 2011. The last time it was used on a cover was many years after Rolling Stone moved on to other typefaces — for the November 2013 issue, marking the death of Lou Reed.

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