Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Las Vegas Concert Photography: Zac Brown Band

The Zac Brown Band is huge and seems to be taking the country music scene by storm.  Blending country, bluegrass, reggae, and Caribbean sounds together, the Zac Brown Band has managed to spread it's appeal beyond country music fans and could easily cross over to mainstream pop.  These are not my opinions, but those of music critics who's reviews can be found all one the internet.

On January 20th, the Zac Brown Band played to a sold-out audience in Las Vegas at the Mandalay Bay Events Center.  I was the lucky photographer for Vegas Seven Magazine chosen to capture the event.  It was also my first time shooting a concert in the Mandalay Bay Event Center.  Not really knowing what to expect, I was happy to learn that there was a photo-pit where I'd be shooting from.  When shooting concerts, sometimes photographers are told we have to shoot from the soundboard, which can be positioned relatively far back from the stage.  This can make shooting in an already difficult environment of rapidly changing lighting even more challenging, requiring the use of a longer lens (and possibly a teleconverter), which means faster shutter speeds, larger apertures, and higher ISOs.

The photo-pit for this particular concert was very small.  Fortunately, there were only three photographers were covering the event, so we didn't have to fight for space.  Unfortunately, the stage was shaped like a giant "T" extending out in to the audience, and the photo-pit was at the top right side of the "T".  Where would Zac Brown go during the three song limit on concert photography?  Would he go all the way out to the audience providing me with nothing but nice shots of his back-side?  Would he run over to the left side of the "T" shaped stage disappearing into the darkness?  None of the above!  He saw the three photographers down at his stage left and played right to us!  Sure he walked out in to the audience, but he always faced to his left, allowing us to fire away and capture some amazing moments from the beginning of the show.

As we were escorted from the photo-pit after our three song limit had been reached, myself and the two other photographers were amazed.  We had all seen the same thing, but each something different.  One photographer who is very familiar with the Zac Brown band and couldn't believe how awesome the beginning of the concert was and how great they sounded.  Myself and the other photographer couldn't believe that we were able to shoot in near perfect conditions!  Despite the layout of the stage and the size of the photo-pit, the conditions were perfect.  Aside from a very minor lighting issue during the very first song, it seemed like Zac Brown did his best to ensure we were able to do our jobs as photographers, while at the same time, putting on a great show for the audience.

I certainly would have liked to have stayed to enjoy the rest of the concert, but I was already running on empty from my previous evening photographing the beautiful adult film starlet Dylan Ryder, as she partied at the Gallery Nightclub in the Planet Hollywood Casino, which didn't wind down until after 3:30 AM.  But that's a different blog post!  Stay tuned…

Pics from the Zac Brown Band Concert below.  Click on any image to be taken to the full gallery on my website.

Zac Brown Band

Zac Brown Band

Zac Brown Band

I love hearing from my readers.   You can follow me on Twitter or use the "Contact" button to get in touch, so feel free to send me your comments and let me know if you have any suggestions.  Please visit my the concert section of my website to see these and additional photos from all the shows.

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