A couple of months ago, I was hired by a relatively new and upcoming band called LaFlamme to photograph several of their gigs. Now I’ve often taken my camera with me on nights out to local pubs with my friends but this was a little different. This was no cover band, it was all their own original work and being their hired photographer, I had full access to the stage area and was able to work at ease and without distraction, which was great.
Being primarily a wedding photographer, I’m pretty well adapted to working fast and thinking on my feet, it’s similar in that sense but far less stressful, plus you get to hear some great music and enjoy a fun atmosphere.
I was pretty nervous on the first gig (as usual). But as always, I didn’t let my nerves get in the way and I soon became pretty absorbed in what I was doing and half an hour later I was assuming all sorts of strange positions, leaning on precarious chairs, lying on the floor and generally doing what I needed to do to get the shots I wanted. I probably looked a bit ridiculous at times but if it gets the required result, I don’t care.
The first gig was pretty quiet and small, which was nice as I didn’t feel overwhelmed, the second was quite a different experience. LaFlamme were supporting an all-girl punk/rock/ska covers band called ‘The Sex-Pissed Dolls’ at the Basingstoke academy and I didn’t realize just how popular they were! (I’d never heard of them up to this point). I’d made sure before the gig began that the Dolls were happy for me to take photos of them also. LaFlamme as usual, were great but once the Dolls came on it was chaos, from the audience NOT the band!
They had their own bouncers (much needed) and it was sometimes a struggle to fight my way through to get some good shots (which I of course did, even though I’m a wee five foot one!). I’m not phased by that sort of thing in fact, it’s actually a fun challenge and I did enjoy it despite it being hard work.
The last gig I did for LaFlamme was at Leicester square Hippodrome casino. It was quite a high profile event, particularly for the band as it gave them exposure to people in the music industry.
As I was there primarily for LaFlamme, I missed two of the acts, but did get a lot of another band ‘Tokyo Taboo’ who were also superb and at the end of the night, one of the organizers took my card and a few days later, I received an email from the main man asking if he could have the photos and of course would give me full credit, I was chuffed and more than happy to oblige of course!
Well this Monday just gone, I was back in Leicester square on behalf of GoLoud Promotions shooting ALL the bands and while it’s unpaid, it MAY lead to something bigger, I can but hope!
I would actually be more than happy to do gig work alongside weddings but I do still have a LONG way to go, I just need to make sure I always put in 110%, which I like to think I do. I sometimes have problems with my knees and crawling around on the floor, kneeling down and climbing on chairs (though I’m not supposed to, I managed to get away with it this last time hehehe) can really take it’s toll by the end of night but when I upload my pics, it’s worth it!
I really have LaFlamme to thank for giving me the opportunity to get my foot on the ladder, they’re a great bunch of guys on a personal level as well as being an awesome, original band.
So many thanks to Kieron, Ross, Dan and Richie, good luck and hope you guys get the recognition you deserve!