Lollapallooza day 1, who am I photographing today?

It’s day one of #Lollapalooza. It’s the first concert fest that I’ve ever shot.

I can’t say I’m not nervous.

I am.

The evidence is in the restless sleep I got the last three nights. It’s evidenced as well by the uncontrollable urge to approach complete strangers and say, “I’m shooting Lolla.”

I hope I can blog about my experiences everyday. At least today, I’ll give you an idea of who I’m shooting.

I’m working for Time Out Chicago, and I’m one of six or seven photographers covering every band and act throughout the weekend. I didn’t get to choose the bands I’m shooting, but we all got a mix of big and small acts whom we may or may not love.

How it works is, I’m one of a zillion press photographers at the Fest. Before each act goes on, I go wait in a line of photographers. Just before the act goes on stage, personel and security lets us all in a pit area which is a gated section between the audience and the bands. For the first three songs, I can shoot as much as I want from as many angles as they’ll let me get to.

It’s not all that glamourous, but the feeling of shooting a band live from the front is a BLAST. It’s a great, big adrenaline rush.

And you should try it.

For more information on Lolla and watch some live footage, go here.

Since the rest of this post includes several links to YouTube videos, I’m going to break it below the fold. 

First off, The Growlers, 12:45 (Red Bull Stage)

I’ve got The Growlers at 12:45. I found a few videos from them, and I’ll post one below that I liked of them playing live. You know they’re up-and-coming, because they’re playing early on Friday and their videos aren’t as high on hit counts. But the lead singer uses two mics, so you know they’re going to be great … someday.

Second: Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs, 2 p.m., (Perry’s Stage)

For all of you who don’t know, Perry Ferrell names the DJ stage after himself, since — well — he DJs a bit. I’ve never shot a DJ before, so I’m excited to try it. From what I understand, I’ll have more opportunity to turn my lens toward the crowd. I mean, how many shots can you get of a guy spinning a record.

The music is, for the most part, tame. Chill. Relaxed.

Here’s one song to whet your …

Third, Tame Impala 3:15, (Sony Stage)

Tame Impala is a band that exudes a retro feel. It’s not something I’m completely drawn to. But I have a feeling regular-reading Aaron might like to at least give this one a try. The feel is very Beetles to me. The bass player seems to use a Rickenbacker. And the drums have that symbol heaviness that brings you back to a 70s den of inequity. :0

The best song I found from them is the second clip.

4) The Head & The Heart,  5:15 (Sony Stage)

With the Head & The Heart, we drift toward bands that more people have heard of. I’m not saying no one’s heard of the previous acts. Just work with me here.

One motif for Friday is just how tame and relaxed the bands are that I’m shooting. Meanwhile, Bill’s going to shoot fucking Black Sabbath.

If you haven’t heard this track from The Head & The Heart, you need a new radio station in your town.

5) Porter Robinson, 5:45 (Perry’s Stage) 

Back at the DJ stage, and it sounds that Porter Robinson is a little less tame at points. But if you can’t find me at 6 p.m., look under the trees around the periphery. I will be napping there.

5) M83, 7:30 (Sony Stage) 

My headliner for day one is M83. Tina likes this band. Again, enough with all the lullabies already. I bet any amount of money that David Lynch will use M83 on his next movie soundtrack. They’re kind of Peter Gabriel meets a choir of crybabies. The stuff is borderline wrist cutting. But, hey, I don’t have to like everything I hear and photograph, right?

The second track, Midnight City, is their most popular.

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