BEST OF 2017

I don’t have to tell you that 2017 was crazy. It was my first year fully freelancing (and I survived! woo!). One of my major goals was to photograph more music, and I can definitely say I did.

2016 | 3 Festivals, 20 concerts & 46 Bands

vs.

2017 | 5 Festivals, 72 concerts & 161 Bands

That’s an average of 1.5 shows a week! Some were music festivals, including multiple days but I had a blast. Freelancing has given me the ability to shoot what I’m most passionate about. It was one of the scariest steps I’ve ever taken but it was worth the risk.

I’m aiming high for 2018, my goals include more promotional work, video production and touring with a band (hit me up!)

You’ll find my top 35 concert moments of 2017 below!

2017 TOP 35-1Anti-Flag at The Phoenix shot for Stitched Sound.

2017 TOP 35-2Repartee in London shot for FridaeTV.

2017 TOP 35-3USS in London shot for FridaeTV.

2017 TOP 35-4Bad Suns @ The Velvet Underground shot for Aesthetic Magazine.

2017 TOP 35-5
The Flaming Lips at Rebel shot for FridaeTV.

2017 TOP 35-6A Place To Bury Strangers at The Danforth Music Hall shot for The Photo Ladies.

2017 TOP 35-7Starset The Opera House shot for Aesthetic Magazine.

2017 TOP 35-8I Prevail at The Opera House shot for Aesthetic Magazine

2017 TOP 35-9
Fast Romantics at The Mod Club shot for FridaeTV.

2017 TOP 35-10
Muna at NXNE shot for FridaeTV,

2017 TOP 35-11
Thursday at The Danforth Music Hall shot for Aesthetic Magazine.

2017 TOP 35-12Passion Pit at NXNE shot for FridaeTV.

2017 TOP 35-13Jared and The Mill at Adelaide Hall shot for FridaeTV.

2017 TOP 35-14Third Eye Blind at Echo Beach shot for Aesthetic Magazine.

2017 TOP 35-15Dear Rouge at Niagara-On-The-Lake Canada Day 2017 shot for FridaeTV.

2017 TOP 35-16Corey Taylor performing with Stone Sour shot for Aesthetic Magazine.2017 TOP 35-17Korn at Budweiser Stage shot for Aesthetic Magazine.

2017 TOP 35-18Chris Stapleton at Budweiser Stage shot for Aesthetic Magazine.

2017 TOP 35-19USS at Elora Riverfest shot for FridaeTV.

2017 TOP 35-20Gogo Bordello at Elora Riverfest shot for FridaeTV.

2017 TOP 35-21Palaye Royale at The Opera House shot for Aesthetic Magazine.

2017 TOP 35-22The White Noise at The Opera House shot for Aesthetic Magazine.

2017 TOP 35-23Enter Shikari at Hard Luck shot for FridaeTV.

2017 TOP 35-24A Day To Remember at Rebel shot for Aesthetic Magazine.

2017 TOP 35-25The Black Dahlia Murder at The Opera House shot for FridaeTV.

2017 TOP 35-26Fall Out Boy at the ACC shot for Aesthetic Magazine.

2017 TOP 35-28Dear Rouge at The Casbys shot for FridaeTV.

2017 TOP 35-29Ellevator at The Mod Club shot for FridaeTV.

2017 TOP 35-30Yelawolf at The Phoenix shot for Aesthetic Magazine.

2017 TOP 35-31Circa Survive at Rebel shot for Aesthetic Magazine.

2017 TOP 35-32Thrice at Rebel shot for Aesthetic Magazine.

2017 TOP 35-33The Regrettes at The Opera House shot for Aesthetic Magazine.

2017 TOP 35-34The Interrupters at The Opera House shot for Aesthetic Magazine.

2017 TOP 35-35SWMRS at The Opera House shot for Aesthetic Magazine.

 

xo jo

Concert Recap: 05.22-28.2017

I managed to shoot two shows this past week! Still not my three show goal, but getting better! Plus Concerts are picking up for the summer and I’m shooting for more publications so hopefully that means more approvals. So keep your fingers crossed for me! So lets dive right in!

Brothers Of North, May 24th, 2017 @ The Phoenix Concert Theatre

I forgot how much I like this venue, it’s where I attended my first punk/rock concert, MXPX, I believe in 2002 and then the first show I ever photographed, Mindless Self Indulgence in 2007. The Phoenix is a decent sized venue and wasn’t too crowded which was nice considering there was no photo pit. I brought my long lens with me and mostly shot from the crowd. I love having the ability to roam around cause that way you can find the best angles for depth/composition instead of being confined to the 4 feet in front of the stage and super bonus you’re not shooting up people’s noses.

The show started with Dylan Hennessy, a solo singer-songwriter/artist who beatboxes & uses a loop pedal during his performance. He puts on a pretty amazing show and I encourage you to check out more of his music here.

Next up was another Toronto band, Blackie Jackett Jr, who may look a little familiar to you as they are the guitarists from Finger Eleven, James Black and Rick Jackett joined by Sandra Dee and Jimmy Reid. This is the second time I’ve seen them and they put on the best shows. They’ll get you dancing even if you don’t like country music. Their crude lyrics had everyone laughing and they’re really fun to watch so I’d recommend seeing them if you get a chance!

Last but not least was Brothers of North. Love, love, loved their LED panel in the background. It added depth to the images and made for really nice compositions. To be honest I hadn’t head of these guys before but I’m glad i did, they’ve got a really great sound, really catchy tunes and were a ton of fun to watch. They’ve got new music coming out this year so keep an eye out for em!
USS, May 25th, 2017 @ Mill St. Brew Hall for #GreaterTorontoDay

On May 25th, Toronto celebrated #GreaterTorontoDay, an initiative to make the GTA better by doing simple acts of kindness. USS Performed free mini acoustic concerts across the city including Mill St. Brew Hall in The Distillery District. To be honest this was a bit boring to shoot since there was no additional lighting on them during their performance, so I focused more on their reactions. But  They’re such nice guys, before and after their set they hung out and talked to people and even bought a round for everyone in the bar! T

Once again, I’d love to hear what you think or if you have any questions feel free to leave a comment. Thanks for stopping by!

xo
jo

Concert Recap: 04.25.2017

I was asked to shoot seasoned boy band O-TOWN & new comer Sonny Mackenzi on Tuesday April 25th for FridaeTv. How could I say no? Who wouldn’t want to relive the days of boy bands, spiky hair, choreographed dancing and one of the most inappropriate songs of our generation?

I wanted to know what I was in for. I re-watched the video to their breakthrough hit single “Liquid Dreams” an unhealthy amount of times prior to catching their show in Toronto at The Mod Club so I would be thoroughly prepared to see them live for the first time since their debut 16 years ago.

The show began with Sonny Mackenzi, who’s latest track New Crush has been flooding the radio since last summer. Along with her background dancers, Teresa Jade & Kalyn Hardman, they put on a killer performance and had the crowd riled up for O-TOWN.

Following her performance I had the chance to interview Sonny, Teresa and Kalyn and you can check out the interview along with a few more of the photos on FridaeTv.com.

And of course, the moment we had been so eagerly anticipating, O-TOWN.

It also happened to be Jacob’s birthday and his girlfriend surprised him on stage while the crowd sang him happy birthday, it was quite sweet. The guys are still rockin, they’ve been writing a lot and have new music which they played mostly and only indulged us with a handful of their hits including “Liquid Dreams” and “All or Nothing”. Overall it was a good performance and I’m glad I got to see these guys play at least once. By the way, if you’re wondering, yes, one of the original guys is missing from these photos. Angel left the band a few years ago to pursue personal things, too bad cause he was my favourite.

Thanks for checking them out!

Stay tuned for more show recaps!

xo
jo

9 Bands in 12 Hours – Concert Recap: 04.21.2017

From April 18th to the 23rd, bands, industry reps and concert goers flooded the Toronto core for Canadian Music Week. Although we didn’t receive accreditation for CMW this year I still managed to find myself at three shows on Thursday, April 20th. One, a Strut Entertainment Social Event introducing the wonderfully talented Command Sisters from Alberta. They recently moved to Toronto and as intro to the media performed an acoustic set in a hotel suite in the Sheraton in Toronto.

I then rushed to catch a Women’s Showcase at the new Ildsjel Collective, a studio space on Carlaw in Toronto. It’s a neat open space with tall ceilings and even a garage door that lets in lots of daylight. There’s a bar at the front which is convenient for events and overall a really cool space!  There were a total of 6 performances including Jacelyn Holmes, Caren, Gillian Nicola, Gray, Altered by Mom and The Commoners! (It was a treat running into these guys two weeks in a row, they put on a killer performance, their tunes are catchy and I have a feeling they’re going to go far.) While shooting this show I received approval for the evenings events which was an extra bonus for the day!

It was a pleasure to catch all of these performances, everyone was also really awesome about let me shoot during their whole set but I always try to ensure I’m not disturbing everyone else’s experience. I hate when I’m trying to enjoy a show and there’s a guy or gal with a camera front and centre stage the whole time. (But I digress) Timing couldn’t have been better, The Commoners set finished and I had just enough time to head to The Velvet Underground to catch The New Electric and Courage My Love.

Oddly enough I had seen the guys from The New Electric earlier in the day during The Command Sisters’ performance, they’re part of the Strut Entertainment Family so I wasn’t surprised but it’s always nice to see a familiar face. The show was amazing, I always love seeing bands in smaller venues, their performances are more intimate and I usually get more expressive shots.

Lighting however proved to be VERY challenging on both the dummerss but especially for Phoenix Arn-Horne, the drummer of Courage My Love. I ALWAYS try and take shots of the drummer, why? Because they’re often forgotten. I can’t even count the number of times I have been thanked by a drummer for taking photographs of them! And to be honest it’s not their fault, I find lighting guys either forget the drummers completely or light them like their gods, I’ve never really seen a middle ground (you’ll see what I mean in a later post). If anyone is interested I can get into the difficulty of concert lighting and how to prepare yourself for various types of lighting.

That’s all for now!

Thanks for checking this blog out and please follow for more.

xo
jo

 

36 Exposures from 2016

Although 2016 had a rocky start for me, I decided to focus on what I loved to do.
Last year alone I photographed nearly 30 concerts, 2 outdoor festivals, 3 week long festivals and close to 70 different artists. Music and concert photography are one of the reasons I picked up my camera so I knew if I wanted my drive back I needed to do what I was most passionate about.

When I was trying to narrow down my favourite photos I thought of a roll of film and what I would chose if I only had 36 exposures for the year. Hope you enjoy!

Thanks for looking, I’d love to hear from you guys, feel free to leave a comment or e-mail me at shootme@vengenza.ca

& Stay tuned for more!

xo jo