iLL EVANS funk-hip-hop-jazz fusion at AbeErb

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Musicians are a lot like photographers: we practice our craft, we put the work out there, we engage the audience, and we try to figure out how to get paid. Just like venues book bands, you can book me for photoshoots. This 2-hour shoot would be $400 and deliver several dozen high-resolution, non-watermarked images for unrestricted use. For an additional fee I can do a write-up for you. If you want product or ambient shots, with space to drop in copy for promo material, I can make that happen. My blog is my portfolio, and since you’re reading this, you already know the quality of the work and my approach. Hit me on email / twitter / facebook / linkedin.

Complete serendipity intersected last Thursday’s Brother Night with AbeErb with the unique jam of iLL Evans. Brohemus and I were out to raise a glass to his dog Poppy who passed away the night before. Melancholy gave way to some great porter on the guest taps and great music at our front row table. Above, we’ve got Chris Hull (drums), Matt Sotnik (keys), Scott Alton (bass), Dakota Stewart (guitar), and Nate Payne (vocals/sax).

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It is a photographer’s challenge to shoot most bands. There is typically very little light, and when there is light, it is often a mix of full-on spotlight and deep shadows. I try to go for a balance while not using a strobe. Blasting a flash in a low-light environment like this can really disrupt the flow of what’s happening. I do the best I can with fast lenses and steady hands. It’s important to show some motion blur in photos of musicians, so here I’ve got the shutter speed cranked all the way down to 1/40th of a second so you see that drumstick action.

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Brass is great to shoot. Lots of highlights and detail.

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I’m experimenting a bit to push in more on subjects, filling the frame as they say.

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Meta! Ashileena Nabbi, who works at AbeErb, was shooting, too. Always good to meet other photogs. I think we’re better off banded together. Ashileena and I were comparing lenses and high-fiving for great music.

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Matt motion on keys.

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Product shot. Glad to have beer recommendations from our server Bryan Izzard. For the record, this is my new favourite seat in the joint.

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Great interpretations of the cover tunes.

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Dave and I were sitting there for a bit and then this gang showed up and said “Hey, weren’t you at kwartzlab on Tuesday?” Indeed I was. This is Tracey and Jesse who came out to the lab’s Tuesday Open Night. It was then game on for loudly encouraging the band, with Jesse shouting for solos from everyone. And the band obliged.

There are my instruments of creation in the foreground.

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See what I did there?

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I take it from this poster that Ill Evans is going to be a regular thing on Thursday, which coincides with the regular Brother Night thing for me and the desire for craft beer. The planets have aligned.

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It’s very interesting to see the communication among band members. Like a secret language that I’m told is pretty key (ahem) to their performance.

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Nate was, I believe, running down his rap from the phone.

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Did you see it that time?

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Between sets, I usually hop around the stage to get some gear shots.

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Gonna be great in the spring when this door goes up on King Street.

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Band beer.

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These guys are super-talented individually…

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and fuse together to really deliver something awesome. Save me this seat at the window.

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Smoke break between sets. See you next time, guys.

On King Street in front of AbeErb, this is Waterloo.


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One Response to iLL EVANS funk-hip-hop-jazz fusion at AbeErb

  1. margaret says:

    fabulous photo story of a wonderful group…thanks!

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