Saturday, March 21, 2009

Austin Music Awards circa 2009

Austin Music Awards 2009-1766.jpgWhew! What a busy week. You may remember that I mentioned the 2009 Austin Music Awards a few weeks back. Well, the show has finally come and gone and it was definitely a blast! This year's lineup included Bob Schneider and the Fireants, The Dicks, Augie Meyers, and many, many others.

The two differences from last year is that I was allowed access backstage during the show thanks to the work of my friend Scarlett and the graciousness of Margaret Moser. Since I wasn't officially part of the staff crew, when I arrived, I had Scarlett walk me around backstage to introduce me to the key folks I'd be encountering. These were the people I wanted to make sure I paid attention to! If they told me to get the !@#$% out of the way, I wanted to get out of the way. Austin Music Awards 2009-1316.jpgSecond, my friend Quentin loaned me his Nikon 80-200 f2.8 lens (practically insisted when I waffled on it). I must say, while that lens is heavy ... it's about 3lbs I think, not including the camera body ... it was worth it; damn, is the bokeh on it creamy like butter. I was getting great separation of elements in my photos this time.

Thankfully, nothing happened. I went back several times throughout the show but didn't camp out. The space was rather tight and people were moving too quickly to get good candid photos (I did get a few!) so I focused on staying frontstage.

About halfway through the show, I started walking around to find a different vantage point for the photos. That's when I noticed that there were two balconies above the stage on either side. An adventure awaits! The first balcony I went to (stage right) I got politely rebuffed. They were partially using it as a dressing area for the women helping musicians and entertainers across the stage. My second attempt, which had me over on stage left balcony was fruitful. I walked up to the security guy, asked if I could get back there, flashed my staff badge, and voila! The Pearly Gates parted, harmonious music was playing, golden light ... wait, that was from the set being played on stage. But, you know what I mean. Austin Music Awards 2009-1569.jpgI had an excellent view of the band looking into the crowd. The bad news: it was from the side (but that's ok!). The good news: I had maneuvering room! By the time I got up here, The Dicks were playing and that's when I noticed the mad rush of the crowd and fans towards frontstage despite security's ability to do anything about it. I wouldn't have been able to move at all.

But, again. That's ok. I had a vantage point that no other photographer was going to get (thanks to Scarlett and Margaret)! I ended up there a few more times throughout the evening.

In all, I ended up with just shy of a thousand photos from the entire evening. I've whittled it down to 166 really good ones and uploaded them to flickr. Austin Music Awards 2009-1810-2.jpg Nothing as dramatic as the photo I got of The Judy's lead singer throwing water into the crowd, but I got some extremely good ones of The Dicks lead interacting with the crowd and some good ones of Augie Meyers.

Feel free to check out the 2009 Austin Music Awards photo set on my flickr stream.
I hope you like 'em as much as I do. I'm looking forward to shooting the Awards Show again. If you want, you can jump straight to the slideshow!

Oh, and before you ask, I don't know who some of the musicians are. I have to work with Scarlett to make sure I get everything noted properly on the photo descriptions.


Judie said...

Hi Travis, great pictures of the AMA, I felt as though I was right there. I do have a question/favor... my daughter Darcie Fromholz was given an award for her volunteerism at the event and I was wondering if perhaps you caught the moment? If yes, I'd love to purchase a photo. I live a long way from Austin, in Ester AK which is where DJ grew up. Thanks for your help. Judie

Travis said...

hi Judie!

I'm not sure. I can go back and look, but I'd need to know what she looks like. I wasn't paying much attention to names as they went up to the podium.