| Sunday April 18, 2004
Ron Isley, aka Mr. Biggs raises a "Shout" in Columbia.
Got a late start today. Had to go to Shawn and Lori's to back up files then to Grandma's for lunch. Amanda and Grandma got into (what I'll kindly call) "a discussion" that was hard to break out of. We didn't get to the festival 'til around 5. We caught Tony Rice Unit, Peralta, Orquesta Nueva, Sarah Lee Guthrie & Michael Irions, Mighty Bofucious, The Fantastic Shakers, Maurice Williams & The Zodiacs, Keller Williams, Los Calientes, Galactic and The Isley Brothers.
After Keller's set, Amanda tracked him down and got him to sign a pic I took of him a couple of years ago. "The Bathroom Hall Of Fame" has now officially begun accepting submissions for 2004!
Just before I photo'd Maurice Williams I ran into my Mom and Vern in the crowd. I was quite happy to see her there. Unfortunately for her, she missed almost everything except for The Isleys. Fortunately for her, that was by far the best thing on Sunday. The Isleys took a little time to warm into it all but after about 15 mintues they were smokin'. I was thrilled to hear "Shout" and "Fight The Power" as they've not done them at the other shows I've seen. I sat with Mom, Amanda and Vern and listened to "Busted." That song still cracks me up. I still can't believe that one act has been having hits since 1959 and most people don't even know it. Hearing them play "It's Your Thing," "Twist & Shout," "Who's That Lady" were as sublime as ever but my favorite tonight was an absolutely gorgeous medley of "Atlantis" and "Summer Breeze" that they did just as the sun was setting behind them. Incredible. It was even nicer because my Mom was there to hear it. I just wish I had more time to spend enjoying it with her.
We had to get on the road and back to Athens. We managed to get home by 1 or so which wasn't too bad but the exhaustion and soreness from hiking hot, hilly city streets constantly for 3 days was starting to hit hard as the adrenaline wore off.
| Saturday April 17, 2004
Got into Columbia last night to find that there was mix up with my credentials. Luckily, the head of the festival, Virginia Bedford was there and got things on the right track fast.
When we got on site, we immediately ran into Otis Taylor from The State paper. He called us over and he gave us a tour of the festival grounds via his golf cart. Then we were on our own. I shot Swimming Pool Q's, BluFunk, ConFunkShun, Crossfade, Mean Wiener, Teresa James, Corey Harris, C.J. Butler, Kevn Kinney, Delbert McClinton, Cracker, Better Than Ezra and The Time. I've got to say. The highlight for me was definitely Morris Day & The Time (see Morris pic below). Sideman Jerome was hilarious and Morris didn't look any different than "back in the day." Jerome even grabbed Amanda and a few other girls to go up on stage and dance for "Ice Cream Castles." Now she's danced with (let's see who I can remember) Little Richard, Everclear, Chuck Berry...oh I can't remember them all.
Around the festival, I also ran into old friends from high school. Saw Trey Shumate and Todd Osteen and talked to them awhile. Caught up with Jay Matheson (of The Jam Room Recording Studios) while he was filming and I was photo'ing Crossfade and spent a few minutes with Kevin Oliver roaming the grounds. I also saw an old friend named Beth. She's been listening to my music since the Thinkyard days, if you can believe it. Over the 3 days of the festival, I saw her more than I have - well, maybe ever! This is a good thing. Took off around midnight.
Saturday was a completely different beast. Amanda was stricken with a sudden, ugly cold so she decided to stay home. I took my old friend Shawn Young along and Frank joined us. Shawn and I had a good time watching Frank macking on the ladies (his mantra was "Can I borrow your pen again"). We took in Token Jackson Band, Voices Of Dissent, Collard Greens, Robert Gardiner Jazz Quartet, JB's Zydeco Zoo, Bibleway Of Atlas Road Music Ministry, Caravan, Jason Wilson, Vicious Cycle, SC Jazz All Stars, Simple As That, The Movement, Cee-Lo, DB Bryant, Loverboy, Little Anthony & The Imperials, Twista, Grand Funk Railroad and REO Speedwagon.
I compared notes with Doug Shockley from Carolina Concerts during the day and we (along with the other photogs) bonded over the ridiculousness of the way the WOLO stage was being handled. It's one thing to have rules. No problem. I follow them. It's another to be rude about it. Oh well, tempers get stretched at these things. Apparently, REO even threatened to walk out. That's enough to irritate everyone concerned. They still put on their standard, run of the mill greatest hits show - it wasn't nearly as good as last time, though. Grand Funk Railroad was much better than I thought they'd be. I only saw the first half of the set but I was impressed with their energy and musicianship. Former KISS lead guitarist Bruce Kulick has been with them for a few years now and seems to fit in nicely. I even got to talk to him briefly and get him to sign a pic I took when I was still using a borrowed point and shoot and a ticket buying audience member. As always, he was very accomodating. He had noticed that I was shooting and gave me his email address and current solo CD. Told me to get in touch regarding the pics. Okay fine, I'll do that.
After wandering back to the rap side of the grounds, I saw Cee-Lo (kind of disappointing) and Twista (pretty good). In the front row was another girl I knew from childhood named Tina Sellers. It's so strange to cover music in the area that I'm from! She looked like she was doing okay and having a good time. Good for her.
Got home to a waiting Amanda at about 1:30 am.
Oh - thanks, Benji for letting me use your computer to back up files!
| Friday April 16, 2004
What Time is it?
Woah! No time to write today. It's 1 pm and I've got to get on the road, like now! I'll be at the 3 Rivers Music Festival in Columbia, SC all weekend so I won't be able to update this 'til Monday. Have a good weekend. Maybe I'll see you in SC. If not, I'll see you when I do.
| Thursday April 15, 2004
And another busy 'un. I got Concert Shots updated. Check it out. Whew! What a relief. For one of the first times ever, the site is completely up to date. That means that I haven't seen anything since the most recent show at the site. That'll change tomorrow, but for 24 hours, I've made a bit of personal history as I've never caught up before. Cool!
Well, Tom and I did get together last night for vocal rehearsal. "Colors In Black & White" proved even harder harmony wise than I had thought. We pretty much had it by the end of the night and if'n I know Tom, he'll have it down at the next rehearsal. "Worms On The Pavement" was much easier. We also worked on "Haven't Got A Clue," "Scared Of Myself" (apparently Tom's current favorite) and a few others that I just can't remember right now.
Hey - have you heard Aerosmith's new "blues" album? For a straight up rock 'n' roll record it's pretty incredible. It's the best they've done in at least 15 years...maybe more. I actually went out and bought it. That's something else I don't usually do. It was worth it. It's probably one of the top ten of the year. Two great rock records in one year. That and The Darkness (I know technically The Darkness was last year, but I'm counting it as an '04). It's been a long time since there were 2 phenomenal hard rockers in a year.
That's a good thing.
| Wednesday April 14, 2004
Geez, what a busy day. All day long behind the flashing lights of a computer. Good thing I'm still OD'ing on Ibuprofen or I'd have a killer headache! Speaking of which, pain is subsiding. I'm hoping to be ready to take it all on for Columbia's 3 Rivers Music Festival this weekend. It'll be nice to be back up to strength for the first time in 2 months.
Today, I got some Concert Shots work done, it'll be updated (probably Friday) very soon with several new reviews. It'll be the biggest one time update of 2004 (so far). I also made final arrangements with TVT Records for my photos of Sevendust to be included in the packaging of their upcoming CD / DVD combo. Look for it in about a month. What else did I do? Oh, the usual - putting in for show credentials and the like.
Tom and I are convening tonight for vocal rehearsal. It's always humiliating and thoroughly enlightening. We've got our work cut out. Lots of stuff hasn't been nailed down. He's bringing nails and I've got the hammer. We'll get it all together soon.
Also, I got a message from another old band mate a few days ago. His name is Brennen Reece and he was a member of my pre-Q-Sign band Nowhere Society. He's thinking of moving to beautiful Athens in a few months and was just touching bases. Here's the thing. He's got a slew of super cool Leonard Cohen-esque songs of his own. I highly recommend you check his stuff out by clicking HERE! If he does wind up in the ATH, you can bet I'll be trying to get him to collaborate again!
I love hearing my old band mates' work and how they've grown. Just saw Andy Ainsworth's new band, now Brennen. The guitarists are speaking and vocalist Jason Jones is now with Drowning Pool (which reminds me, I need to get a copy to hear the whole thing). So where's that Michael Rietveld solo album? That's the one I most wanna hear! C'mon, Mike - you've got the studio. I'll help any way I can if you want me to!
Of course, if Tom O'Gorman ever puts one out, I'll probably want to cover something off it. I still love his songwriting and voice. I'm glad that I got the chance to write some songs with him while the planets aligned.
| Tuesday April 13, 2004
Wow! I'm much better today. Just a little pain and weirdness from all the Ibuprofen. Amanda's even back at work so things are definitely turning for the better. Fingers crossed, please.
I'm using today as my tidying day this week. I'm trying to return emails, get work related stuff straightened out and get everything set up so that I can update Concert Shots within the next few days.
Went out to rock trivia last night and guess what? We won again! That's 2 in a row. Too bad I'm going to have to start missing it again (starting next week). This time we won soundly with about a 6 point lead. That's a couple of questions. Last week, we won by only 2 points which is less than the value of most questions. Either way's cool with me.
Now, Tom and I will be able to cash in our prize for band food at TransMet after the next rehearsal. That makes the old Hungry Sasquatch even tastier.
Enough...must get back to work now.
|Monday April 12, 2004||
Alright. Went to the doctor today. My bronchitis is gone. It has morphed into pleurisy. It's not as bad as it sounds but it does hurt. It's basically inflammation between the ribs and the lung. He just ordered that I basically O.D. on Ibuprofen all this week until it goes away. I'm still functional and The Cough is still fading gradually. The pain is occasionally ungodly but I'll deal.
As a matter of fact, I'm going to rock trivia tonight ANYWAY. I'm tired of being held back by stupid little things. If it gets worse or something I'll leave, but I'm certainly making the effort.
To those of you who have emailed over the last few days, I'll try to get back with you tomorrow. Amanda's much better but she's still a bit sick. She had to stay home today and I've been busy with other stuff, too. Okay - not really busy - just don't feel like doing much right now. I'll be back on it tomorrow.
And hopefully, we'll at least place in rock trivia tonight!