Back in April I was the official photographer for The Sunflower Jam for the second year running. This show was specifically a celebration of the life of Jon Lord. Featuring Deep Purple, Bruce Dickinson, Glenn Hughes, Paul Weller, Rick Wakeman and an endless list of incredible artists, it was a magical night of music.
The DVD and CD have so far gone to number one in four European countries. I’ve had photos on album covers before, but this means an awful lot to me. It’s a great cause and it was a privilege to be involved.
There are gigs and there are gigs. This is one of those gigs I am going to remember for a very long time. I was excited about shooting Ella Eyre anyway, although from what I’d seen of the tour so far, I was nervous about the light quality. I needn’t have been. When I arrived, the unusually cheerful lady in the box office told me that after the 1st 3 songs in the pit, I could shoot the whole of the rest of the show from the crowd. That’s unheard of and I didn’t pay too much attention in case she was wrong.
The pit was crowded but not overly (there were 19 accredited, thank goodness a good 6 or so didn’t show up) and although Ella was moving around all over the place, the light was great which made for decent shots.
As it turned out, the box office lady was right, so I headed back in to the crowd with a 70-200mm and did a few shots of the whole stage from the balcony before finding a spot I was really happy with, up a couple of steps at the front, off to one side. It meant I was in range for the lens and could easily shoot over peoples’ heads.
I have to say I am massively impressed with Ms Eyre. What a show she put on. The energy was fantastic and even though it isn’t really my music scene, I may just have to buy her CD when it comes out (how old fashioned!) I got my best shots from the crowd, including this one, when she retreated to the back of the stage and whirled round in a blur of hair about 6 times. I love how you can see her face through what has to be the best hair in British music right now.
So all in all I came away buzzing and even the £65 parking fine for accidentally parking in the wrong space didn’t dampen my mood. Why can’t all gigs be like that?
Having done a bit of research online, I knew this was going to be a fun gig, with a great stage show and lots of poses. Pharrell Williams is most definitely the man of the moment, and shooting his set was indeed fun. Only a handful of us turned up for Foxes who was supporting Pharrell, and in the end there were only seven of us accredited for the main show. I was expecting the pit to be packed!
The shoot itself was pretty straight forward. A great stage set up, lots going on and plenty of light to play with. So I left Happy…sorry, I had to do that.