Thursday, September 16, 2010

Paramore (w/ Tegan and Sara) @ Dodge Theatre

Tonight was Paramore with Tegan and Sara opening for the "Honda-Civic-Go-Buy-A-Fucking-Honda-Already-Damn-It!-They-Are-Green-And-Paramore-Drives-Them-What-Are-You-Waiting-For?-You-Can-Buy-One-In-The-Lobby... Tour". Yes, nothing I love more these days than going to a concert and watching car commercials for little, ugly, shit cars that run solely on clean burning Mormon sweat and say a prayer for the car behind it as it's exhaust. No 12 year old girl at this show can afford a Honda... or cares about being green. I'm even slightly older than 12 and I don't even care. I didn't take pictures of all the ads and Honda projections on the walls, cause I thought I'd be replicating their ad campaign. Somewhere... there is a guy wearing prescription-free Oliver Peoples glasses who just said "You might hate the ads, but you just talked about Honda! BOOM! The system works!"

Moving on to the music. Let me just say from the start, sometimes I amaze even myself with how limited my musical scope is. I'd like to think I was pretty diversified, but in reality I just have 16 gigs of Radiohead and Neil Finn on my iPhone. Granted, I do KNOW who both of these bands are. And I know a song or two from each. Both facts I can blame on my friend Thomas. That's all beside the point... the music... the music... yeah. I could tell that these bands know how to play their songs. They were using professional equipment. There was no one whispering in their ears which chord came next. No fake books. It was all in their heads. These bands have really practiced hard. I say well done. And any critic who attacks them, well... they probably don't know what they're talking about.

One strange fact I feel I should point out is how some people photograph so different than they actually look. I photographed Stevie Nicks a while back, and in person I couldn't even recognize her, but in the photos "Oh, that's Stevie Nicks there." It's kind of the opposite for Paramore singer Hayley Williams... when I photographed her before, and tonight as well, I get these shots that 'resemble' her, but they never seem a perfectly accurate representation. Maybe that's just me.

In a weird way, I think I'm less familiar with Paramore, the headliner, than Tegan and Sara. I don't really know what's actually 'weird' about that, but I feel like I've had more chance encounters with T&S over the years. In fact, a few years back, in a fantasy world, I almost had a cartoon show called The Zoo make it on the TV box... Tegan was going to voice one of the main characters on the show. But no, I never actually met her. Still, at that point, I did some research on them. That's just being responsible tho.

Actually, the one song I really knew from the whole night started as I was being escorted out after shooting T&S's set... "Walking with a ghost". Oddly, that was the only thing that sounded a bit off. Maybe it was me... but it sounded just a bit discordant. Like someone was off in the land of their own time signature. But, it still rocked, and the crowd loved it.

Being a photographer is always an interesting experience. Sitting in the hallway before Paramore went on, there was a huge line of fans waiting to meet one of the opening bands who was signing autographs. And amidst the young girl normalcy of the line comes this gangly drunk guy asking for random people to sign his autograph book. "This book has a lot of power" he'd tell the young girls. He even asked a fellow photographer to sign it. And I think he also asked him to write in a powerful message. Talk about pressure. You don't want to let a drunk weirdo at a concert down. I turned away and got my phone out when he was near me. Not because I didn't want to sign, God knows I've just been waiting to sign something with my new signature, but because the only advice I could think of was "Whatever you do, don't let someone throw up in your mouth. Buy Japanese."

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