On Tuesday, August 15, 2017, Sunnyvale in East Williamsburg, Brooklyn hosted a hip hop show featuring live performances by Amani Fela, AllNat, and Black Sheep and Boston Chery DJing in between sets. I've never seen Amani Fela or AllNat before and really enjoyed them. Dres of Black Sheep showed up late and apologized more than once for his tardiness and performed new and old songs that he could before the concert's midnight curfew. He joked that he was delayed because he was busy saving children and I guess we'll find out today via local news sources if that altruistic excuse was true or not. I believe the last time I saw him perform was at Wetlands about 17 years ago (or was it at Fordham in the Bronx before I graduated from the Lincoln Center campus in 2002?). Either way, experiencing Dres perform songs like "Strobelite Honey," "Flavor of the Month," and "The Choice Is Yours (Revisited)" live in an intimate space was long overdue.
On Friday, August 11, 2017, Lincoln Center Out of Doors presented a free performance by New York musician Vagabon and Mexican pop-rock singer Natalia Lafourcade at Damrosch Park Bandshell at Lincoln Center. It was a thrill to see Vagabon perform at Lincoln Center after seeing Lætitia Tamko perform her songs at smaller venues in Brooklyn like Secret Project Robot and Alphaville in the past. Tamko was backed by Carlos Hernandez (Ava Luna) on bass, Casey Weissbuch (Mitski, Colleen Green, ex-Diarrhea Planet) on drums, Eric Littman (Phantom Posse) on synths, and Jake Falby (Mutual Benefit) on violin.
The event seemed to be at full capacity for Lafourcade's performance and the weather unfortunately turned quite rainy during her set. Fans in the park seemed deal with it by using umbrellas, ponchos, and in some cases, Out of Doors programs, to protect themselves from the precipitation coming down on them while Lafourcade sang.
Comedian Dave Chappelle is in the midst of a 16 show residency at Radio City Music Hall in New York, NY. This residency is commemorating his thirtieth anniversary in comedy. For one night only (Thursday, August 10, 2017), he held a party at House of Vans in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, which was free to attend if you RSVP'd in advance. The evening featured sets by DJs (DJ Trauma, DJ D-Nice, and DJ Stretch Armstrong), live graffiti, and free drinks. There was also surprise set from Brooklyn's own Talib Kweli.
I've managed to spend most of my summer at House of Vans this year and when this show was announced earlier this week, I knew I had to be there. I haven't had the opportunity to photograph Dave over the years but I've been a fan of his comedy for a long time and was in the audience during his last big party in Brooklyn. The images that I captured at HOV last night appear in the gallery above.
Chappelle was billed as a host which meant no stand up comedy but considering those who were there last night got to see him dance and sing along to the music the DJs played, it felt as if we were watching someone who seemed to be letting loose and having the time of his life because he didn't have to work at all that night.
At the final SummerScreen event of summer 2017*, Tidal curated a free performance by Sad13 before the audience film pick, Beetlejuice. I attended Sad13's record release show at Alphaville back in November and I was extremely excited Sadie Dupuis' solo project was selected to play a free set on Wednesday, August 9th. Sad13 recently did a free "Summer Thunder" show at Union Pool back on Saturday, July 22nd but I couldn't go because I was watching Battle Royale and Je T'aime Je T'aime at MoMA as a part of their current sci-fi series called "Future Imperfect: The Uncanny in Science Fiction" that afternoon so I was extremely happy this additional show was booked.
Sadie made Beetlejuice-related jokes as a way of introducing her songs from Slugger but gave up attempting to make a connection between Tim Burton's film from 1988 and her material by the fourth or fifth song. I showed up before the announced time of 7PM, with Sad13 and the rest of the band going on around 7:30 and I captured their set for the above gallery. Most people sat in chairs or on the floor on blankets on the asphalt further back from the stage area so I felt a little awkward standing so close up front but after a while, I didn't care that I was the only person standing so close to the band, with two cameramen and two other photographers joining me closer to the set time.
*Technically, it's not the final one of the summer. There's one last screening and performance on Wednesday, August 16th featuring a live set by Sammus, who toured with Sad13 but it's a rescheduled date from last week's rained out screening of I Know What You Did Last Summer.
On Thursday, August 3, 2017, House of Vans in Greenpoint ended their run of free concerts this summer with an event featuring Audacity, Mephiskapheles, and Descendents.
On Monday, June 5, 2017, Franz Ferdinand played a sold out show at Warsaw with Omni and WANNA. This concert was a part of the Governors Ball After Dark series.
I covered their performances for The Photo Ladies and more images are available here.
On Sunday, July 30th, the Rock Steady Crew celebrated their 40th Anniversary with their final annual free concert at Rumsey Playfield in Central Park. The City Park's SummerStage show featured a headlining set by Mobb Deep (with a tribute to Prodigy who passed away in June at the age of 42) with performances by MC Lyte, MC Eiht, DJ Premier and many others.
I shot the event for Impose Magazine and some of my favorites from the day appear in the gallery above. The full set is now available on Impose here.
On Friday, July 28, 2017, the tour featuring Cherry Glazerr and Mannequin Pussy came to Rough Trade NYC in Williamsburg, Brooklyn for a sold out, late night show for Panorama Presents. The second annual festival began the same day. Cherry Glazerr were scheduled to perform at the festival during the afternoon but their set was unfortunately canceled. I last saw Mannequin Pussy in March in Philadelphia and it was really fun to see people experience them for the first time and hear them play four new songs.
More images from the late night show are now available on Impose Magazine here.
The second annual Nosotros Festival moved locations (last year's inaugural event took place at Bowery Ballroom) and was a part of Lincoln Center's free Out of Doors summer festival. The second edition occurred last night (Thursday, July 27th) and I covered it for Impose Magazine.
The above gallery features the acts selected to perform by Hurray for the Riff Raff's Alynda Segarra who founded the festival last year. More images are now available on Impose here.
On Sunday, July 23, 2017, GZA (a.k.a. The Genius) of Wu-Tang Clan performed at South Beach in Staten Island, NY with DJ Enuff. The show was presented by SummerStage which presents free events in all five boroughs of New York City.
GZA was backed by a live band, mentioned it was his first solo show in Staten Island, and remarked he was having fun multiple times. Check out the full gallery now available on Impose Magazine here.
On Friday, July 21, The Kills performed a sold out show at Brooklyn Steel in East Williamsburg, Brooklyn. They were supported by Atlanta's Algiers, who were terrific, and headlined their own show the following night at Baby's All Right.
I shot the show for Impose Magazine and more images from the night are available here. The last time I photographed The Kills was way back in 2006 at Southpaw (RIP). The gallery from Friday night is much, much better than my last attempt at documenting the duo which is available on Flickr. They were fantastic and I'm kind of kicking myself for waiting 11 years to take pictures of them again.
Continuing her tour in support of her release last year called The Hope Six Demolition Project, PJ Harvey performed on Wednesday, July 19, 2017 in New York, NY. The concert was a benefit for SummerStage at Rumsey Playfield in Central Park. SummerStage is an annual concert series that's currently in its 32nd year which provides free events in all five boroughs.
I took images of her and her band's performance for The Photo Ladies which is now available here, I posted a preview of some of the images that published on that site here as I couldn't wait to share them as she's one of my favorite musicians.
The last time I captured images of PJ Harvey was in 2011 and before that was in 2000. Posts covering those performances can be found here, here, here, here, and here. As a longtime fan, I loved that she included older songs in her set last night such as "Shame," "50 Ft. Queenie," To Bring You My Love," "Down By The Water," "Highway '61 Revisited," and "The River." For two songs from Demolition Project, a Washington, DC choir (Anacostia's Union Temple Baptist Church Choir) joined her and the band on stage.
I was lucky enough to cover SummerStage's opening concert last month which featured Mavis Staples and photos from that event are available here.
On Saturday, July 15th, Japanese Breakfast celebrated the release of Soft Sounds From Another Planet with a free record release show at Union Pool. Before the show, I met Michelle and we took some portraits at a nearby street fair which was happening as a part of the Our Lady of Mount Carmel Feast, a tradition that's been happening in Williamsburg since 1903. Unfortunately the rides weren't open that early in the afternoon but we got to play around with some of the games before the show began.
The portraits and live images of Japanese Breakfast plus Yohuna are now available on Impose Magazine here.
On Friday, April 13, 2001, the tour featuring San Diego's Rocket from the Crypt and Sweden's The (International) Noise Conspiracy came to New York City for two shows at Bowery Ballroom. I attended the first night (on Friday) and recently scanned the film images I took that night for this gallery.
I went through another batch of 35mm film from 2001. This time it's California punk band Rancid who played Warped Tour on August 4, 2001 at Randall's Island. I might have another roll of film from their set and if so, I'll add them to the above gallery when I find it and scan the images.
For more images from that year's edition of the tour, check out this post of Rollins Band photos.
One of the great things about sticking around New York City during a holiday weekend is that everyone else seems to leave the city. The bars and restaurants that I usually avoid because they seem to be always crowded become empty. Another great thing is that there are still great live events to attend while most people skip town. An example of this was the very strong bill of Adult Mom, Free Cake for Every Creature, and Long Neck performing on Sunday, July 1, 2017 at Knitting Factory.
The show was booked by AdHoc and was the penultimate concert of Adult Mom & Free Cake's tour together. The opener, Long Neck, is the new band of Lily Mastrodimos of the now broken up Jawbreaker Reunion*. Before the show began, I messaged Lily asking her if she wanted to shoot some portraits before the show. Thankfully she was available and said yes. I knew there was a playground near the venue that I pass by a lot that would be fun to explore. I wanted to put her on the swings but all of them were taken so we just posed near a slide instead.
The concert began at 8:30 with a set from Long Neck. Although the project began as a solo effort, LN expanded to a full band which sounded really great. Free Cake for Every Creature had a quieter set and I'll be honest, I was annoyed that so many people were talking during their performance because it was extremely distracting. Katie and the rest of the band plowed through their set; seemingly to only pause to drink water and remark that Katie saw a Lorde performance and she didn't drink any water once during her much longer set.
Adult Mom's set was also great. Steph's family (their mom, dad, and grandparents) were in the audience at Knitting too. Songs from their newest album released in May, Soft Spots, sounded great live with many in the crowd singing along. At one point Steph asked Katie of Free Cake to join them on stage to cover Lorde's "Supercut." Overall, this was a wonderful show from beginning to end and I'm happy that I didn't leave New York so I could capture it for the gallery that appears above.
*I'm still amused that Jawbreaker Reunion broke up and the real Jawbreaker are reuniting in September at Riot Fest. No more confused Jawbreaker fans showing up to JBR shows, I guess.
After 8 years, Shea Stadium vacated their space at 20 Meadow Street in East Williamsburg, Brooklyn. Before leaving, Shea planned to open their doors to the public for events called "The Shea Shiva." The Shea Shiva gatherings were scheduled to take place Tuesday June 20th through Saturday, June 24th. The public events were announced on Tuesday, June 19th to their Kickstarter backers but the remaining ones were canceled only two days later.
I secretly ended up back at Shea on both Saturday, June 24th and Sunday, June 25th. On my penultimate visit, I captured the space before they were scheduled to pack up and move out. I also got to see the gallery room where they had images by various photographers (myself included) on display with memorabilia (Shea t-shirt, skateboard, show posters, and other items). The next evening, Shea bands Bueno and The So So Glos performed for invited guests. The images I captured during their last days on Meadow Street appear in the gallery above.
Although Shea Stadium is no longer at 20 Meadow Street, I'm confident the community that loves and supported their space and mission over the years will eagerly follow them wherever they reopen.
On Thursday, June 22, 2017, Francis and the Lights performed a free show for CB2 After Hours at the SoHo location of CB2 (451 Broadway) in New York, NY. It was my first time experiencing Francis Farewell Starlite's live performance and it was in a fairly intimate yet weird space. Over the years, I've attended shows at DIY spaces, rooftops, and other unusual locations but I don't think I've ever worried about breaking something I didn't own at a concert before (it looks like most valuable items were moved or lined up against the wall so if you were near the stage or sitting on a couch or chair, you were in the clear).
Attendees sat on floor model furniture before the show began and we were served wine, beer, and cider while DJ Alexandra Sabillón performed. Francis went on about 10:10PM and played a nearly hour set with a one song encore. Fans sang along, danced, and screamed during the show and Francis went into the crowd on multiple occasions during his set.
This was a tricky set to shoot due to Francis' constant movement without using any flash and the spotlights causing a reflection/flare effect but I had a great time shooting the gallery that appears above.
Yesterday (Tuesday, June 20, 2017), Seattle's Chastity Belt headlined their largest NYC area show to date at Music Hall of Williamsburg. The band was supported by Cotillon and Sneaks, who I haven't seen perform live in a really long time (which seems kind of criminal to be honest). Since Prodigy of Mobb Deep passed away earlier that day, she ended her set by playing "Survival of the Fittest" over the PA before leaving the stage.
Before the concert, I met up with Chastity Belt to take some portraits of them in nearby East River State Park to run with the live images.
The full photo gallery is now available on Impose Magazine that you can check out here. Infinite thanks to Julia, Lydia, Gretchen and Annie for their time before the show.