Scott Argiro belting out lead vocals
In November we were invited to see Scott Argiro and his backing band play in a great local venue, the Carnegie Music Hall. I asked if they minded if I came with a camera and they not only welcomed it but gave me free reign. I really enjoy listening to live music and am always in awe of those who are talented singers and musicians. Perhaps I secretly wish I had learned to play an instrument or that I had a singing voice worth hearing. At any rate, to photograph live music is something I love to do. The stage lighting can be dramatic and sometimes problematic but it's a lively style of shooting nonetheless, full of challenges and surprises. And while I'm snapping shots, these guys are really impressing me with their incredible talent and versatility. I didn't expect to hear an old favorite of mine, U2's "I will follow" and they played it masterfully. I have to try and hold the camera steady and time my shots carefully as they move around, choosing my moments, all the while pushing my camera's light sensitivity to it's extremes. To me, it adds another dimension to experiencing the music, intensifying it for me.
I grabbed this shot of Mike Miller passionately soloing on guitar.
Not only is Scott Argiro a talented singer/songwriter but he plays keyboard, bass and beats out a mean drum solo as well. If that isn't enough, he had a role in the movie "Pretty Little Things". He also has a new CD out entitled SEVEN, and we heard tracks from the album played live. His backing band of George Kalantzis, Mike Miller and Dan Sommer are all very talented musicians and they sometimes broke out into solos as well as melding harmoniously into rocking collaboration. Solos are a great opportunity to not only hear an artist showcase their abilities, but it's a terrific photographic opportunity as well, like the shot of George Kalantzis (above) and Mike Miller (left). Colored stage lighting makes it even more interesting. In commercial photography, we make the lighting happen, or we blend natural light with our strobes. With stage lighting, it's just happening, ever changing, so it's lighting roulette with just an occasional pop of my flash to fill and freeze action. It's fun and I couldn't wait to get home and start editing and processing my raw files. I plan to do more live music photography as well as porttraits on singers and other musicians. My photography has been branching out into new subject matter and I welcome the changes with open arms, an open mind, and an open aperture.