Passion Pit played a powerful show at the SB Bowl the other night. The talented Joy Formidable opened the show, with their act placed very close to the edge of the stage. Photography was from the photo pit, so I was right there, next to them. This led for some a-typical photo angles, especially since the light was so dramatically contrasty.

Check out the photos on sbbowl.com

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Crazy, weird, alternative, jazzy, rocky. Did I say crazy?

This was one of the most unpredictable shows I've seen since watching an off-Broadway performance art show in New York.

The night started with Dia de los Muertos face painting. The SB Bowl was decorated in-theme, donning shrines, native Mexican dancers, and music. Locals, Rey Fresco, opened the show, also playing on a smaller stage in the plaza during the big intermission.

Next, Tame Impala came out and rocked the crowd for a long set. Lastly, the Flaming Lips put on one of the strangest works of musical performance art I've ever seen. Confetti and giant red balloons blanketed the mesmerized crowd.

Since this was the last show of the season, the party continued with Bowl employees in full costume.

See the gallery on sbbowl.com

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I love these guys. Multi-talented, multi-cultural, eclectic jazz musicians, Pink Martini, came back to the Arlington this year to play another holiday show for us. UCSB Arts & Lectures procured Pink Martini for us for the second time in three years.

No matter what your music taste, if you like a quality show, you'll find something marvelous in seeing Pink Martini live.

Check out the photos and review at thearlingtontheatre.com

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Wow! This guy freakin' rocks!

As I'm formerly a guitar player, I know just enough to really appreciate a guitar virtuoso like Joe Bonamassa. The show was loud and powerful, and the music never stopped. Joe opened for himself, first playing an acoustic set, followed by an electric set, wielding dozens of different types of guitars throughout the night. One of my favorite moments is when he brought out a twin neck Gibson and wailed away.

Read the article by Jim Youngson on thearlingtontheatre.com

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Local and internationally know music sensation, Jack Johnson, played a special tribute show at the Arlington Theatre this month. It's a-typical for Jack to play such a small venue (2,000), so it was a treat to photograph him here.

I did see Mr. Johnson play at the Arlington years ago when he wasn't such an international sensation. I must admit that I was originally planning on take a few shots, watching a few more songs, then leaving early. I've seen Jack play six or seven times previously; he's great, but historically not terribly exciting. This concert changed that notion for me. I ended up staying until the last song was over, fully entertained the entire time.

I must say, Jack, you have definitely grown and upped your game. I'm looking forward to seeing you this year at the SB Bowl.

See the photos, and read the excellent review by Jim Youngson on thearlingtontheatre.com

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So Cal Surfer/Reggae boys, Slightly Stoopid came back to the Bowl this year, this time bringing with them some interesting crews. Atmosphere is a very interesting type of rap music, bringing that style back, closer to its roots, a mellow reggae style; although that description doesn't quite give a complete description. The lyrics are not your typical gangsta rap, either. They are much more inspiring.

Opening the show was Tribal Seeds, a rock/reggae fusion, harder than your typical rootsy reggae. And of course, the white-boy reggae of Slightly Stoopid was gentle and warm. Adding to the mix, seasoned reggae vetran, Don Carlos, came out to sing a few songs with Stoopid.

I pretty much had full reign to shoot the entire show from anywhere in the venue (front of stage) as I was also trying to capture some updated shots of the venue, itself, in addition to the performers. This netted me more than 100 great photos, most of which are in the gallery on gallery.sbbowl.com.

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Damian, Stephen & Julian Marley played an epic show at the Santa Barbara Bowl. The brought the entire Ghetto Youth Crew with them, and The Green opened the show. All in all, there must have been more than two dozen different musicians on stage during the course of the night. If you like reggae, it was a great show.

In order to capture the opening act and each of the Marleys, I was able to shoot more than a dozen different songs. Needless to say, the resulting image editing was quite a task, but there is also a huge gallery of fun images. Check out Damian Marley's floor-length dreadlocks!

See the 69 image gallery on gallery.sbbowl.com

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Grace Potter and the Nocturnals opened up for Robert Plant and the Sensational Space Shifters at the Santa Barbara Bowl. This was my first time seeing Grace, and I was blown away! She is not only unbelievably beautiful, but she's an amazing, passionate performer.

I was permitted to shoot Grace from the photo pit, and I'm very happy with some of the shots. I had to back up to the ADA (handicapped) section for the headliner, Plant. Since I had already captured some great photos last time he came with a 600/f4 lens (from the soundboard), I didn't bother to rent a big lens for this show. My 300/f4 with a 1.4x teleconverter did most of the heavy lifting, gathering some very decent shots; although, they aren't exceptionally sharp. Had I known that he was going to wearing a much "cooler" outfit than at his previous performance, I would have brought something bigger and faster. The lighting during his performance was very challenging, so I really had to push my gear.

Check out the full gallery, featuring 68 photos, on gallery.sbbowl.com

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On the heels of a long day of shooting the Santa Barbara Summer Solstice Celebration, I headed up to the Santa Barbara Bowl to photograph this tour, which consisted of Barenaked Ladies, Ben Folds Five and Guster. I enjoyed all three bands, but I was running on fumes by the end of the show. I was permitted to shoot the first three songs of each from the photo pit.

See the entire gallery on gallery.sbbowl.com

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A few nights ago, Dispatch opened up for Steve Miller Band at the Santa Barbara Bowl. I was permitted to shoot Dispatch from the photo pit (against the stage). This group from Boston really rocked the house, especially when they brought in their banjo player to kick things up a notch.

For Steve Miller, I was required to shoot from the sound board. I didn't have any terribly long lenses with me, save for my 300/f4 and teleconverters. The resulting photographs are good but not exceptional, yet the show, itself, was a crowd pleaser.

See the gallery on gallery.sbbowl.com

Published in Photo Blog
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