This past Saturday evening, I found myself heading south to Naples, NY to take in a little bluegrass music with a few good friends. I’d planned to bring the camera along to collect some new images for a musician-related body of work, and had been communicating with Elaine Verstraete, one of the band members, to make the necessary arrangements. It turned out to be a really nice way to spend a perfect summer evening outdoors and have some fun while getting a little photography done at the same time!
Eva and the Dog Boys were playing the back patio of the clubhouse at Reservoir Creek Golf Course in Naples starting at 5:00, and were well underway by the time I rolled in. My friends Willie, Michele, Leah and Chris were already there enjoying some cold drinks, and after catching up with them a little and enjoying a perfectly chilled glass of lemonade, I decided to get the camera out and see what I could do.
Truthfully, I had felt a bit drained from the heat of the day, and didn’t have my mind quite in the right place to feel very motivated to do photography. The lemonade helped perk me up, though, and once I got clicking, I started getting re-energized and having a really good time! I’ve always loved hearing music performed acoustically, and was truly enjoying what I was hearing as I worked with the camera. The dinner crowd that had gathered to fill the tables on the clubhouse deck was having a great time with the music, too! I moved around the group, trying to find some interesting perspectives and make some images that helped to convey the energy and soul of this group of artists and their music.
I took a just few short breaks to visit with my good friends at their table before they headed home, I ate a little dinner on the deck, and hung out with the band after they finished up their set around 9:00. What a fantastic group of folks to sit (over steaks and beers,) and visit with! We talked music, photography, life in general and had some great laughs together! We had also touched upon a few ideas for some upcoming collaborations, so I’m really looking forward to our next time together.
Eva and the Dog Boys is made up of four ultra-talented musicians who gel together just wonderfully: Elaine Verstraete – Upright bass, Mike Cloonan – Banjo, John Denniston – Mandolin, and T-Bone Farley – Guitar. The group is constantly changing configuration during their set, each taking turns at lead vocals, depending upon the piece being performed. It’s readily apparent that they have a great time playing together, and that energy comes through beautifully in their sound. Information for upcoming appearances can be found at the band’s web site and also on their Facebook page. Check ’em out!
Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark 2.
Breathtaking! That is the word I think of when I look at these photographs.
Having you orbit our modest stage gave an added element to the experience of making the music. I share your intrigue at capturing live musicians (in art, not in a net!) having been spotted once or twice at close proximity to bands with pen and paper. Having been on both sides now, I could especially appreciate the experience. The beautiful pictures you made of birds-on-a-wire created all sorts of anticipation.
Sharing company with you afterwards was an extra treat- thanks so much for hanging out with us. We can’t wait for the next time!