It's early March as I sit here in a Brooklyn Coffee shop I have been calling an office for the past few months now. I am planning out my summer concerts and festivals. This year is a bit different though as the hard work and endless nights of shooting bands in dive bars and editing photos all while marketing my no name brand is starting to pay off. I am getting noticed and with this notoriety, I am starting to get asked what and where I want to shoot. Is this the year I get to start shooting the big shit? The shows I once only dreamed of shooting? I was asked by an editor and owner of a blog to give them a list of events I want to cover. Holy crap, I’m getting asked. Now the pressure is on…. You have to pick carefully. This could be a tipping point for your career as a music photographer. Not being one to ever take the easy route my response was simple……. Governors Ball. I want to shoot Gov Ball. I’m a fucking New Yorker and I want to cover the festival that has the balls to take over an island in the middle of the east river. It’s not the easiest venue to get to, it’s not always the best weather, buts it got the best backdrop and it draws in the best acts and it’s in the best city in the world (Yea I know that’s arguable by some but it's New York)
My editor’s simple response was OK, Why? After raving about the venue and the city and the vibe that this venue and festival brings to the city and how it electrifies the music scene I settle in and ask myself Why? There has to be more of a draw to covering Gov Ball than its well-orchestrated madness in the middle of a river. This is when I sit down and really look at the acts playing this year. They have some huge headliners this year that cover a wide gamete of genres. This is truly an event that caters to everyone. Chance the Rapper, Phoenix, Tool headline each of the 3 nights. Where else can I get the chance to photograph those 3 amazing acts 3 nights in a row? But look further down the ticket and the list really comes alive. Cage the elephant, these guys are easily one of the best live acts I have ever seen in my life. Photographing Cage will challenge me in ways I have never been challenged and admit I think I am up for that challenge this year. Wu-Tang Clan……Do I really have to say anything about them to get you excited? I didn’t think so. Bleachers on Friday, what a great way to get the vibe of an event rolling. You cannot help but to get into it and smile when listening to Bleachers as the sun set over the city.
The list goes on, Phantogram, Tove Lo, Local Natives, Franz Ferdinand, Car Seat Headrest and countless others fill the bill for what is bound to be a great weekend. If I went into how excited I am for all the bands on the lineup this year this would quickly turn into a book. If you are at all interested in music, you need to be booking your Airbnb now and buying your tickets for Gov Ball 2017. I cannot see how you will be disappointed and I know there are multiple bands on the bill that call to you. I hope I get the opportunity to share my images, tweets, and write-ups for this event on behalf of Audiolove official and Jukley. Stay tuned to see what happens. Hopefully, I will be seeing you on Randall’s Island in June!!