As part of the dreaded year-end-slash-New-Years ritual, I sat down to be thoughtful and reflective about the incredible music moments I experienced in 2018... (sorry if you had to suffer through that one). Aside from the kitsch and the memories, I also had a chance to take some absolutely incredible photos and this was a huge highlight for me. Here are my Top 9 pictures of 2018:
Every year I sit down and write a list of all the shows and incredible artists I've seen that year. It's such a great way to reminisce and relive those moments. Now that I run a music blog and spend almost every spare moment sitting in the pit, schmoozing at a local show, photographing, writing or editing photos of live music, that's become somewhat an insurmountable task. In 2018 I've been blessed to see so many incredible shows and meet talented musicians from all over the world.
Last month, Youtube superstars Walk off the Earth made their third visit to Austin for an action-packed show at Stubb's Waller Creek amphitheater. Despite frigid temperatures and an unfavorable Tuesday scheduling, the venue was packed to the hilt with fans of all ages. I was lucky to attend and to have a few minutes to sit down with Sarah and Joel. We chatted about their tour and their unprecedented online success as a Youtube sensation; one of only a few who have managed to sign a record deal based on their unprecedented success on the online channel.
The blog needed a change. I needed a change. It was time for something a little more authentic; some personality. Reality. The scary moments and those I relish in remembering. The bad dates, the time I got lost in the NYC subway system, or the moment I hiked 6 miles in 109-degree heat to reach a summit with a view that stopped me in my tracks. And then realized I forgot my camera. Where I stopped to think about the things I cry about, laugh about, savor, learn from and swear never to repeat.
It's no secret that Austin is home to many incredible musicians and wonderfully unique talent, often flamboyantly quirky. But I'd like to introduce a band that isn't trying to reinvent the wheel; one that does not need to rely on the bells and whistles or a quirky hook. Because their talent, stage presence and rock-solid original music is the hook. Black Heart Saints are a mainstay in the Austin rock scene and I've zero doubt they'll soon be one of the nation's top emerging acts. They have taken it upon themselves to show the music world what can be accomplished with talent, dedication and hard work. Comprising of bassist Ian C.G., Drummer Nathan Flores, Guitarist Mark Sean, and Vocalist Josh Ross they aptly introduce themselves to me as "a solid group of guys that are ready to live that Rock n Roll Fantasy."
I love to support women in the arts. More than that, I love to see strong frontwomen kick ass and take names in the music world. It's a tough gig being a rockstar, made exponentially tougher when you're not a dude. I'd seen Dorothy on two other occasions, so when a Scoot Inn tour stop was announced in Austin, I grabbed a bunch of local friends (and some less than local), assuring them of a 'show they wouldn't soon forget.'
Here you'll find archived band, festival and concert stories... plus blog entries from Team dRiFFt as they travel, photograph, interview and adventure!