Tuesday, August 07, 2012

What A July!!!

So, the month of July has been good to me and my adventures in photography!! It all started with a freak lightning show that happened one weekend.  You know what I did?  I sat at home watching it from my kitchen!!

I was kicking myself all week about it and said to my daughters co-coach “I hope we have another one”.  Later that night she called me saying that there are huge light bolts by her house which is southeast from ours.  I grabbed my camera, after check NOAA on the direction of the storm, and headed out the door.

Lake fair was going on this week so I headed up to the capitol and captured these shots.


The following week was the final week we could enter pictures in the Thurston County Fair.  Not really putting any thought to it, I picked 5 photography’s, had them printed, placed them on foam core and entered them into the Fair.  I picked these photography’s:

Tri Boltz

Midnight on Boston Harbor


Christine Falls


To my delight I received a second place ribbon with “Midnight on Boston Harbor”!! How awesome is that?!  Then I received a message from the Olympian (our hometown newpaper) and was told that my entry into their photo contest has won first place and I get $100 gift card!!

Monday, April 18, 2011

How Great Can It Be? It’s Fife…

OK, so normally I blog about local bands and what I think about them.  But today I have decided to do something different and talk about the Venue…That’s correct, The Rikk Beatty Band played at the lakebridge Forza in Lakwood and then we all thought we should grab a Pizza at Louie G’s Pizzeria in Fife so we can have a peak at the Venue the band would be playing at in a few weeks.  Louie’s was hosting James Honeycut this night and James was playing a solo acoustic set. 

What we first noticed was how the stage is set up for a large band to play with killer lighting and a fog machine to set a tone to the show.  The Sound man (Chris) knows what he is doing and had the perfect volume for James’ voice and guitar which made the event an intimate evening.  The group decide to order a ‘Large’ pizza and relax for a while when Louie asked if they wanted to play an impromptu set since we had some gear, plus this way we (Louie and Chris) can test out the new sound equipment.

We set the stage up for a quick set of about 5 songs or so and as we started the sound check we became completely blown away on how perfect Louie G’s sound really was!  Rikk said ‘the sound is what I imagine it to be like playing at the Paramount Theater or some other BIG venue place’ he went on and add ‘if the stage sound was only half as good as what the audience was hearing hearing then you know it sounded killer out there!’.  He was correct!  The sound for the audience was, in my opinion, as good if not better than some of the shows I have at the White River Amphitheater.

Now you throw in the lighting system and the fog machine and you just turned your Pizzeria into one of the hottest place in the South Sound to have your band play at.  Now let’s throw another thing into the mix…Louie G’s is an all ages venue too…How killer is that!! There have been many of times my boy wanted to go with me to see the Rikk Beatty Band and I would have to say ‘No’ cause he is only 7 years old; however, with them playing at Louie G’s I can bring the whole family for some of the best pizza I have ever eaten and watch an awesome musical event at the same time.

I have to also shout out about Louie, his wonderful bride Andrea and the Staff (I couldn’t remember everyone’s name) because when you walk into Louie G’s you are welcomed as if you are family.  This is not the dreaded family that you only want to see during the holidays either but the ones you call 4 or 5 days a week just to say hi. 

Let me give you a little bit about the title now…My buddy Caleb (Toe B- you need to ask him how is nick name) and I were telling people about Louie G’s, the Pizza, the sound and everything we enjoyed about the night and we had more then one person say to us ‘How great can it be…it’s Fife!’.  Let’s just say it was so great there that I only wished it was a little closer to Olympia so I could go there 3 and 4 days a week!

Finally, Louie has a saying ‘Welcome to my dream, you’re all in it!’  Louie, Thank you for the dream, I am glad to be a part of it!

Tuesday, April 05, 2011

Tatarus- The Next Best Rock Band to Come Out of Olympia?

Tatarus played down at the Midnight Sun Friday night April 1st.   I received a call from their manager (Mark Carras) to come out and see the show, take some pictures and post a blog about the event as he believes this band is the next best rock band to come out of Olympia Washington.

Now I am a skeptic when it comes to bands being formed in high school as I do not believe they have the maturity as other seasoned musicians have.  I mean really, you take a 17 or 18 year old kid, throw some tail at them, ask them to continue to practice and play with more tail chasing them all the while their lady friend sits in the background…you have the making for another Yoko Ono situation!  Speaking of that, I did a little research to find out just how many bands were formed in high school to make a name for them in a greater light and you can count them on one hand!  With that said, they aren’t peanut bands either (and please if you know of other bands, great! But this is what I found). 
Genesis: good band lasted through the 80’s after being formed in 1967. 
Doctor Dolphin was formed at Davidson High in northern Sydney. They moved to Perth for one year to learn the ropes and changed their name to INXS, which unless you were born after the early 1990’s you have heard of them. 
Most everyone knows the band Sweet Children after their name change thanks to one of their teachers making the statement ‘it would be a Green Day in hell before you made anything out of yourselves’.  Thanks Teach!!
In 1976 Larry Mullen posted an ad on his Dublin school’s bulletin board ‘Looking for Musicians’. Mullen who would play drums must have had a magic pin or was very lucky cause the first day of auditions brought in Adam Clayton on bass, Dave (The Edge) Evans and some guy named Paul Hewson which is better known as Bono…the Band...U2
And finally Liverpool’s Quarry Bank High brought us The Quarryman!  That’s right a small band at first and when the changed their name, they became to best, most widely know and all time selling…blah, blah, blah…you guessed it…The Beatles…Ok so where does put Tatarus!
With influences like Pantera, Black Label Society, Lamb of God, Iron Maiden, Black Sabbath, Ozzy Osbourne.  Tatarus is placed in a perfect position to make something of themselves.  It seems that this type of music has been dying off over the past few years but we are beginning to see a comeback and Tatarus is a band that could make it on the scene. 

With the band only playing together for about a year and even less time on stage together, they do have some obstacles to overcome. The band is managed by Mark Carras who owns Rock my Monkey (www.rockmymonkey.com) which should be a huge help to the band as he has connections just about everywhere.  If the band listens to Marks knowledge and that of other willing to help them, they will be a great band.
I truly enjoyed the bands show Friday night as they were able to engage the crowd of about 50 people and show them how to rock!  Lead Singer Michael Parent is an in your face type of singer and this pumped the crowd up to the point to busting out an old school MOSH pit, oh how that brings back memories!  With only a few songs written by them, it was good to also know that they didn’t butcher to cover songs they did… As I stated in the beginning, I was skeptical about covering a band one year in the business, playing on stage together for a few months and also being a ‘High School’ band.  However, after April 1st 2011, I am a fan of Tatarus!  I would suggest you to jump over to their face book page (here) and like them. 

So what is Tatarus?
I am also not one on classic mythology; however, in 400BC Plato wrote that the souls were judged after death and those who received punishment were sent to Tatarus!  This is a place in the underworld even lower the Hades…yeah 

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Ethan Tucker

Had the opportunity to see Ethan Tucker at Jazzbones on 03-19-11 when he played with the Northwest Sons.  Ethan’s hometown is Olympia Washington but is currently residing in Twin Falls Idaho and made the long trip out to put on a few shows for us.

Currently playing as a one man band; his acoustic strumming, shoeless dancing and vocal style that reminds me of John Mayer makes you wonder if he needs any more instruments with him.  Ethan’s influences are Bob Marley, Ben Harper, Jah Roots and Robert Johnson; however, he can incorporate multiple genres such as jazz, blues, folk and reggae effortlessly.  Tucker’s energy on stage and heart filled songs got the people of Jazzbones out of their seats to dance and within one song increased his fan base by a few hundred more.

Ethan took some time to meet and greet his fans after his set and stayed the rest of the night to listen to “Rise and Shine’ and the ‘Northwest Sons’.  He is a very approachable individual and is willing to take timeout to talk with his fans.  I strongly suggest you taking time to listen to Ethan Tucker by going to his page here or you can find some songs on youtube here. My Favorite ‘I Need You’

The only disappointment I really had was learning that he sold out of his CD’s the night before! 

Monday, March 21, 2011

The Northwest Sons

Saturday night we hit up Jazzbones in Tacoma Saturday March 19, 2011 to grab some local Reggae music.  On the bill for the night was Northwest Sons, now I have seen them play once before and was blown away by them that I had to see them again and capture it on film.

The Sons busted out with a lineup that makes you want to dance and groove, and as you know I am not one that tends to wonder too far from the rock scene so grooving is really not my thing.  However, when the Sons are playing you just can’t sit there!  Their music is infectious, it’s alive and it moves you.  From ‘Boundary Line’, ‘Paradise’, to my favorite ‘Mystifire’ you will find yourself in the slow roll motion of the music waves.

The Sons have only been on the music scene for about 2 years now but have a great following of people and I believe Chris said it best while we were talking that ‘sometimes we have to change things up’ speaking of their new Bass player, ‘it’s not always about the money; which is nice, but it’s about sharing the love of the music and that’s why we like to play’.   Well, there was a lot of love at Jazzbones and the Sons know how the lift the spirits of everyone in the room.

The Sons were also a featured guest of ‘The Northwest Convergence Zone’ (NWCZradio.com) Sunday March 20, 2011 episode 96 and they are about 51 minutes into the show.  Chris and Ian talk about their influences, the local reggae scene and about the release of their upcoming ‘digital’ CD release party on…yep 4-20-11…

If you have yet to check out The Northwest Sons, I would suggest heading over to their site here to listen to some of their songs, but believe me when I say there is nothing like listening to them live.  Check them out and let me know how you feel about them.

If you have a local band that is going to be playing in the Olympia, Tacoma or Seattle area and you like to have a quick review, please get in touch with me and I will check out the calendar to see if we can make it happen.


Monday, March 14, 2011

The Humptulips

I had a great opportunity this past Saturday (03-12-11) to attend the Humptulips in Montesano Washington to listen to their country music style and photograph the event.  I just to let you know that I am not much of a country listener as I lean more towards the ROCK side of things.  However, this was a show worth going to!!

The event was held at Gepetto's which is like a Mom and Pop pizza place in the middle of the town, or one would think.  Not too far from the freeway, but a drive from Olympia (about an hour).  Now I was coming from the MMA fights where Rikk Beatty played the National Anthem which would be another story all together and rushed to Gepetto's to see the show start at 9:20pm.

The first thing I noticed and the band was they liked to shout-out the names of people they know at the show.  So if you know the band, be ready to have the spot light placed on you for a little while.  To me that brought in to thinking that this may be a good band.  Getting people involved or interacting with the crowd is one of the hardest things to do for a band and this group had it down. Something else I learned it was the Bass Guitar player's (Doug George) first time playing live with the band.  And as I have been told by many Bass players, "the Bass is the backbone of the group".

The band Opened the night with ‘Honky Tonk Stomp’ (whatever that means), ‘It’s All About Tonight’, ‘Johnny Cash’ and they began making fun of people and their shirts…The group ended up passing out about 60 'Humptulips' shirts they had made to both the guys and gals at Gepetto's and reeled them in on their next song ‘You Look Good in my Shirt’.

As the night progressed I found myself placing down my water and looking for a ‘Coors Light’ and started to feel a little out of place as I wasn’t wearing skinny jeans and cowboy boots!  But then the Humptulips threw another curveball…They started playing some Rock n’ Roll and even took requests from the crowd!  Now that’s a little, how can we say it politely, CrAzY... But they pulled it off.

By the end of the third set and approximately 30 songs in three and a half hours I am proud to say that I am a fan of the Humptulips!  If you are ever in Washington State around the Olympia area see if you can find a show.  If you want more information about the band, I have placed there Facebook page here  

Please leave comments as this is how I know people are looking at this site and let me know your questions, comments and concerns.  Without them I can't get better!!

Thank you,