Nick Cave at Orpheum Theater in Los Angeles, California on October 28, 2023
This was such a wonderful and interesting night. I always try to get to venues early, especially when they are in Downtown LA, because traffic is gross and stupid. This night I decided to purposefully get there as early as possible so I could walk over to the Grand Central Market. I had never been before and I really wanted to. I am so glad that I did.
I ignored the posters declaring Israel an occupying force and just focused on the lovely Dia de los Muertos festivities happening outside the Market. People looked so happy. I went in and just wandered around for a little while, seeing what was there. SO many options. I was dying for all the pupusas but I ended up having wonton soup because I didn't want to feel weighed down while shooting. It was the best Chinese wonton soup that I have had in as long as I could remember. I will crave that soup for the rest of my life. Or until I shoot at The Orpheum again. Maybe I'll just find a ransom show to shoot there just so I can get that soup and pupusas.
So, I finished my soup and headed back. I picked up my passes and went to the back of the line. I chose to ignore the motorcade that went around honking to get people's attention on the car painted that Israel is committing genocide because they do not deserve my anger or fear. I will not be afraid of these people. I. Refuse.
Once I got inside, I figured out where I could shoot from and where my seat was so that I disturbed people as little as possible when I was done shooting. Then, I headed to the back alley smoking section because it was just too crowded in there. While I was outside, a big black suv pulled up in the alley a little ways down from the smoking section where a bunch of us were. Nick Cave got out of the suv and started talking to people. Sadly, everyone else literally had all their faces in their phones and no one else saw him. Sucks to be them. So now I have my own little secret Nick Cave moment that is all my own.
We were only given ONE song to get our photos and we could only shoot from either the far right or far left of the theater so I had to make sure I had the best vantage point. I opted for stage left at the very back. Why? Because the back was elevated so hight that I could see all of Nick Cave as opposed to the bottom at the front of the stage were, mostly because of my short habbitness, I would have only been able to take photos of Nick Cave's head like it was floating on the piano. Those photos would have sucked! With about one minute left of the song, I ran out the door and over to the other side of the venue to shoot his profile. That's were Alex was. Alex Kluft is an amazing photographer and I am so happy whenever I see him. Just a great human being.
It was a really good night.
You can read my official show review here.
Sam Nelson Harris of X Ambassadors at Moroccan Lounge on October 26, 2023
This was my first time shooting at The Moroccan Lounge. Imagine my surprise when I found out that it is only a 10ish minute walk to Little Tokyo! Yes! Dumplings! I really, really wanted ramen, but it's so filling and makes me feel so heavy and sleepy so my second choice was yakitori, but they weren't open yet. So, I went with the time honored classic that always makes me happy every single time I eat them...dumplings! I Yelped dumplings in the area and found a cute little dumpling house that serves only two things...dumplings and pork broth soup. You can get dumpling IN the pork broth soup or you can get dumplings AND pork broth soup. The problem was....I couldn't find it. I totally got lost and it took me like 30 minutes to find it once I got in the area. I was on the wrong side of the street and they didn't have a sign. I laugh at myself over this so hard.
Once I did find it, I still had no idea just how much it would be worth the stress and aggravation of being lost. I opted for pan fried pork dumplings AND pork broth soup. Yes, they were the best dumplings and broth soup ever! I would walk 500 miles and I would walk 500 more for those dumplings and that soup. It's always the simplest things in life that bring me the most happiness.
So, once I finished this heavenly meal I walked back over to the venue. I love the X Ambassadors and I was so excited to cover Sam Nelson Harris' solo show. I had no idea it was going to be one of the most beautiful and moving shows I will ever experience in my life. Seriously, I can't even find the words to describe how moving his voice is with just a guitar.
I was able to find some people at the front of the stage who so kind about letting me squeeze in for a few songs. I love it when people are happy to share music experiences instead of trying to keep it for themselves. I was only allowed three songs and I told them that and it wasn't an issue. I was in a room filled with people who just simply love Sam Nelson Harris and were happy to be there with other people who love Sam Nelson Harris. It was a beautiful night.
You can read my official revue here.
Elisapie at Bardot Hollywood on October 23, 2023
I had never heard of Elisapie when her publicist emailed me about covering her show. After reading his email and the press kit, I was intrigued and immediately looked her up on YouTube. It only took a few seconds into her cover of Metallica's Nothing Else Matters to get me a little bit obsessed. So beautiful. I had to tell all the important people in my life about her and bring her up every chance I could in the weeks leading up to her show.
The show was in Hollywood, which means.....yummy food everywhere. I decided on soup dumplings because we don't have anywhere near where I live where I can get fresh made in house soup dumplings. There's a place that serves them from frozen, but I can get frozen soup dumplings from Trader Joe's so what's the point? NONE! It's stupid! So, after I realized that I went in the wrong direction, I corrected my journey and found the spot. Soup dumplings a lamb skewers in my face! What I loved the most about this place is that in the time I was there, three different women came in to dine alone, just like me. That made me feel really good that this place attracts women and they feel safe in there. The food was excellent and I those skewers were beyond delicious.
I get to the venue and it is much smaller than I was expecting. The stage was just an inch or two off the ground and there were couches, and room for people to sit on the floor between the couches and the stage. Thankfully, the sound board was elevated up some stairs directly in front of the stage, only a few feet away, and they had no problem letting shoot next to them giving me an excellent vantage point.
There was another photographer there who shoots at this venue all the time. He was so nice and told me about all his favorite places to shoot from. He really couldn't have been any kinder and an absolute pleasure to shoot with,
The show was better than I could have hoped for. Even though Elisapie was fighting a cold, her voice was powerful and beautiful. You could see and feel her emotions in her voice. Her covers are so moving. Go buy her music now!
You can read my official show review here.
P!nk at So Fi Stadium in Inglewood, California on October 5, 2023
Everyone knows that P!nk puts on an amazing show, but you don't actually know unless you have seen it. I have now seen it.
I had never been to So Fi Stadium, let alone shoot there so this was a new experience. It took me 45 minutes to get from the entrance to my parking spot and that was just stupid. I found the media escort with some time to spare. She was so nice and pleasant. Normally, photo passes are stickers that you can just plop right onto your shirt. Not for P!nk. These passes were plastic and did not have anything to attach it to our clothes with. I had never had this happen before so I didn't have any clips. Thankfully, I still had some of those paper wrist bands attached to my bag that some venues put on to indicate the bag has already been searched so I ripped one off and use that to tie the pass to my shirt. I'm so MacGyver. The passes also had to be returned at the end of the three songs and that made me so sad. I made sad face at our escort but there was nothing she could do.
Oh my goodness, that venue was HUGE! We walked 187 miles through the upper levels of the venue through 50 billion people to get to the elevator to go down to 1,396 miles below the surface of the Earth to get to the field where the stage was. I think I lost 522 pounds on that journey. Totally worth it.
The main opener for P!nk was Pat Benatar. PAT. BENATAR! I got to see Pat Benatar live! No, I didn't cry. That's a lie. I love Pat Benatar. I cried. If that was the end of the night I still would have been happy, but it wasn't. During the set change, the escort walked us photographers out to our spots to set up. I need a taller folding step stool because people are just too damn tall. Why are you all so damn tall??? Stop! I had a hard time shooting because there was a woman next to me who was dancing like no one was watching and having the best time she possibly could. It was so lovely and I couldn't stop watching her because it just made me so happy to see her so happy.
The show was amazing and I loved every second of it. It was a highlight for me that I will never forget.
Come with me on some awesome photo adventures and a few wild shenanigans.