The Whisky. I have been there a thousand times. I remember when I was younger, I would hear "The Whisky A Go Go" and think that this is a place I would never belong. I don't fit in there. It has had this association with metal that made me feel as if, even though I love metal, my additional love of pop, alternative, and the color pink would somehow expose me as an imposter. A tourist. An outsider who just should not be there. When I first went there in my 20's for my ex-husband's show, I realized that I couldn't have been more wrong. I had grossly overestimated people's ability to read my mind and the amount that they actually judge people in places like The Whisky.
When choosing bands to cover for Outburn, I try to choose ones that I have not heard before. I have a tendency to only stay within my bubble of comfort and just stick to the same things repeatedly. It's bad habit that I am trying to break. I do it with everything. Nail polish colors, foods that I cook, clothes that I wear (style and colors), hairstyles (throw my hair up in a messy bun), the music in the playlists on my phone-now that iPods are no longer a thing. So, I pick bands I have never heard of and force myself to be exposed to new things. I feel like this allows me to write reviews that are more honest. They are my fist initial reaction to the music, not the words that I might form in my head before the show even starts-as we all sometimes tend to do.
Gemini Syndrome was wonderful, and I loved every second of their set, however, the biggest surprise for me was the opening band, Oh! The Horror. They are a melting pot of genres, a weird and wonderful mix of ICP and Linkin Park that made me literally stand there in shock when they first started playing. I had to remind myself that I was there for a job and needed to start shooting. I chatted with them a little bit after their set. They are a trio of the nicest guys you will ever meet.
You can read my full review of the full show here.
Band of Family
Oh! The Horror
I love music from the 90's and early 00's. I will never apologize for that. It's the music that narrated my life while I figured out who I am and who I want to be. Marcy Playground was on heavy rotation in my playlist (ok, I didn't have "playlists" back then, I had like a hundred burned CDs that only fit like 12 songs) during these very important years. So, when I found out that they were playing at The Canyon, only a couple of minutes from my house, I jumped at the chance to photograph them just because I love them.
I remembered to eat this time! I know this area like the back of my hand. I live here. I work here. I run my errands around here. I know exactly what is around this venue as I have been in that center a hundred times. I knew that there was a little sushi restaurant across the street from the venue and that would fill my belly just enough to allow me to shoot without suffering...again.
I walked into the venue and took my place next to the stage while waiting for the band to go on. I watched as John Wozniak walked out onto the floor to have a friendly chat with someone he knew at one of the tables placed in front of the stage. It was somehow comforting and made me feel relaxed to know that the lead singer was just casually walking around the venue as if he were at an intimate party where he didn't have to feel guarded. The other people in the audience respected him enough to allow him the space and freedom to do so, which added to the comfortable, laid back experience we all shared.
The challenged I faced on this night was very similar to my challenge shooting Paula Cole. The floor was occupied by tables for the super fancy folk who wanted to enjoy dinner while Marcy Playground serenaded them. Everyone was seated, and even though I was not specifically told to not block their view, manners absolutely matter. Always. I knew that one of the tables was occupied by record executive type people, people who could potentially have a huge problem with me being in their way, so I avoided being in anyone's way by staying low-which, as we all know, is where I live anyway.
The show was amazing. Simple, beautiful music for a calm and enjoyable night. They played all their hits, including their most famous single, Sex and Candy. I hope I get the chance to photograph them again.