Oh, how I miss the Cypress Lounge, which closed a month or two after this. They had some of the best shows, but didn’t get enough support from the community to keep their doors open. This is what happens when people don’t come out to support their scene — you lose all your best venues.
Heed that lesson.
Classic punk here: CBGB guitar strap, tattoos, cigarette and loads of attitude. I miss Cypress Lounge, but I definitely don’t miss that table ledge along the side I kept getting slammed against all night. Ouch.
I’m doing my first cut edit of the Stitch Hopeless and the Sea Legs
shoot last weekend, and of course I’m looking for the technical stuff
and trying to find the best shot. But I also find myself waxing a bit
poetic about the medium of photography in general, and having one of
those moments when I realize how much I love it. I mean really, really love it.
love the feeling of capturing a moment, or a place or a person in a way
that really shows something about them — in that little fraction of a
second in time — and freezing that moment for eternity. And once I
capture a little piece of that person, I sorta can’t help but fall in
love in a way. Annie Leibovitz noted this same phenomenon when she
said, "A thing that you see in my pictures is that I was not afraid to fall in love with these people."
Yeah…I totally get that. I know exactly what she means.
you know, the thing with these guys, is they’re not just a band, but a
traveling party of close knit people. Every time they play, they bring
a whole crowd with them. And the thing I have discovered in the last
week or two, is that that crowd is not "fans" but friends.
the record, let it be known when you mix copious amounts of alcohol and
rowdy Irish boys, beer will be spilled and glassware broken. Thanks to
the Pub and Grub for allowing me to shoot from behind the bar and
Hollywood Alley for putting up with our jackassery, and being the
coolest fucking bar on the planet.
So anyway, enough soppy, sentimental bullshit. Here are a few outtakes
Koffin Kats at the Surly Wench, Tucson, Arizona, 8/10/07.
This is one of my favorite photos, although I think a lot of people don’t appreciate the irony as much as I do, because it’s difficult to read Vic’s "Living in Darkness" tattoo. I was struck that he was in the spotlight in a darkened room, which I thought was particularly fitting, as I’ve always thought that Vic has a lot of contradictory qualities…a bit of a living dichotomy. Which I hope I captured here.
Or, come to think of it, maybe they don’t get the irony in the tattoo because they’re too busy staring at Vic’s crack. Which anyone who has been to a KK show has already seen. Many times.
Copyright 2007 Diana Price. All rights reserved.
EDIT: You know, I was not going to elaborate any further on my comments on Vic, but I think I should. I think if you’re going to blog, it’s not enough to scan the surface, but be honest and personal.
I was struck that night by the fact that as the band right before the Koffin Kats was playing, there was Vic, the singer for the headlining band, sitting alone drinking at the bar in a room full of people. (That, by the way, was the shot I SHOULD have gotten.) For a guy in a room full of people who had come out to see him, he looked pretty damn lonely. There’s a lot I can say about Vic –and eventually will because a lot of my favorite photos are of him — but that night was the first time I had really seen that side of him. And that side of "rock and roll" and life on the road.
And I can also honestly say that was what I call my "Sid and Nancy" moment. That moment when fucked up recognizes fucked up. I think it’s fair to say he became one of my favorite muses that night. He can irritate the shit out of me sometimes, but I can never stay mad to him. It’s hard not to love the little fucker.
With the onslaught of talentless, trashy pop tarts all over the
charts and tabloids, the image of women in rock is in need of serious
rehab. Of the voluntary kind, not court ordered. I’m tired of
pre-packaged Barbie dolls lip-synching songs they never wrote, busting
out moves from their choreographer, and wearing the latest fashions
selected by their stylist.
Enough is enough.
The record industry as we know it is going down in flames, and I
personally am ready to dance around the bonfire. For years, they’ve
been force feeding us generic crap in all genres, but the absolute
worst has been the so-called “revolution” of female artists – Britney
Spears, Ashlee Simpson…and the so-called “punk” Avril Lavigne. (Oh, please.)
Revolution? Hardly. Sex over substance has been around as long as
the oldest profession. You record execs are just never gonna get it,
are you? We want the real thing.
The Riot Grrl movement gave us some hope for a real change. Bands
like Babes in Toyland, Bikini Kill, L7, 7 Year Bitch and Hole showed us
that not only could the girls rock as hard as the boys, but they were
just as talented, driven…and pissed off. Their guitars were more than
props. Their anger wasn’t a calculated marketing ploy for a certain
It was real.
I had thought the riot grrls were long gone, with the breakup of all
those bands, and the plastic-surgeried, mainstreaming of Courtney Love.
But just as Love is coming back with a new album, closer to her roots,
I am browsing through myspace for new bands, and I see the seeds of the
new generation coming to fruition. Love’s video for “Mono” has a
certain prophetic quality — she lifts her skirt to reveal little girls
in frilly dresses and princess crowns, who in turn life their skirts to
reveal…power tools. And use said tools to go on a rampage.
The riot grrls gave birth to this new generation that is finally
coming of age. And ready to kick some ass — starting with the pop
tarts, whose 15 minutes of fame isn’t only over, but never should have
I don’t know if this revolution will be televised, but it will sure as hell be blogged.
I recently celebrated my one year anniversary of getting my digital camera and starting to shoot bands, and I just want to say that in the last year, I have not only rediscovered my love of photography, but my love of music. Real rock and roll, not the corporate packaged crap on top 40 radio or MTV.The music industry is crying about the drop in sales and blaming illegal downloading. Yes, that has hurt sales, but what they blindly disregard is the two most important factors in why the music industry is struggling.
1) The music the labels are putting out sucks.
2) The artists are divas more worried about looking cool and getting the right haircuts and wearing the right artificially distressed black t-shirt than making good music. It’s all about bodyguards and backstage passes and partying with idiot millionaire heiresses and doing a stint in rehab for the sympathy factor…I mean, what is that?
Forget the divas and go out to local dive bars if you want to experience real music again. See for yourself how hard these people work. They haul all their own equipment, setting it up and tearing it down themselves between sets, often for nothing more than a handful of people (sometimes just a few friends and family) and a few dollars. Not even enough for their gas in some cases, and after spending a day working some crappy corporate 9-5 job to scrape by on the rent and buy their equipment. The ones from out of state don’t travel in luxury tour buses or stay in five star hotels. They get out there in a car with a trailer for their gear, or some cramped van, sleeping on peoples’ floors and or even on the ground somewhere to come out to these shows. Sometimes for months at a time.
These bands put themselves through this for the love of the music. And sacrifice a lot to get up on stage for all the rest of us. So love them, support them, buy their cds and merchandise.
Whoever spread the idea that rock and roll is a glamorous lifestyle was a brilliant PR person. And completely, utterly, full of shit. I am going to slap the next millionaire "rock star" who cries about how hard life is on the road with their room service and high tech tour buses and the fans that just won’t leave them alone.
That’s the sad excuse that passes for music these days. Real rock and roll is in some hole in the wall, with sweat pouring down everyone, and people slamming into each other and screaming and jumping up on the stage with the bands and everyone — bands and fans alike — hanging out as equals. Like a sort of big, happy, family.
(Okay, a big, crazy, drunken family, but we’ll take what we can get.)
Turn off MTV and get out there and see it up close. Get sweat on, spit on and knocked around the pit. Because rock and roll is NOT dead. It’s in some dingy dive bar down the street. Where’s it’s always been.