So tour for me and the guys in Trophy Wives is over and it was such an amazing and eye opening experience. I think I speak for them as well as myself when I say this tour showed us that this life is a very real possibility. It's a wonderful feeling to travel and see new places, make new friends and strengthen the bonds with old ones (and see some stuff that is only expected in a crowded van of smelly dudes). I thank them for giving me the chance to be a part of this journey.
When we got to southern Florida, it was the first real time we experienced warm weather the whole trip and instantly you could tell spirits were lifted. Walking around in shorts and a t-shirt felt very reminiscent of our time in LA. With the good vibes flowing, we decided to explore around the area of the venue and I found some spots that instantly shouted "PORTRAITS!!!" to me, so I stopped the guys and after accidentally putting my foot through what I can only assume was a giant ant hill filled with angry floridian ants, I got to work.
That night the boys played a venue which was actually a guitar shop called Anonymous Guitars. It was one of the most unique venues I've seen thus far, with a high rise stage and a loading gate door behind the band which would open and close between sets to allow the bands to unload/set up. This method worked great as we didn't have to set up all the gear in the pitch black, and lifting the amps and road cases up to the stage was a great workout!
On this particular day, I felt my creative process drying up a bit for the live set. I was very happy with the performance shots from Charleston a few nights before, and wanted to switch things up a bit and try something a little more creative. I decided to put my flash on remote trigger and I hid it onstage closer to Tyler. The room was super dark and for all the creativity put into the venue, the lighting was some of the worst of the whole trip. As soon as I took the first test shot I knew what I was going to end up with, very contrasty, "artsy" shots I like to call them. These are images that will only work in B/W and are super contrasty. In retrospect I wish I had brought a second flash with me on tour and I could have done a two light setup and really played with backlight and light ratios, but for this show I made due with what I had, and I actually got some shots that I like.
The next day we were in Orlando, FL and had a very special treat lined up for us. DISNEY WORLD! Two very special people by the name of Ben and Sarah were nice enough to invite us into their homes for our duration of our stay in Orlando. It just so happens that Ben was the previous bass player in Trophy Wives and has since moved down to sunny Florida with his girlfriend Sarah, where they both work at Disney World. Thanks to them we were able to enjoy a big portion of the day in Disney's Hollywood Studios, and it just so happened that it was both Sam and Mike's first time at Disney!!
Later that night, the venue Backbooth in central Orlando was the place of our show. It just so happened that there was a rather large country show also happening that night in Orlando, so needless to say the parking was a hassle and the amount of flannel I saw was off the charts. This show was one of my favorites of the whole tour as there was a great crowd, very engaging, willing to dance and jump around, and even some stage diving. Oh and there was moonshine. A+.
Our final day in Florida was spent in lovely Odessa at a place called the Goathouse. I didn't understand why the venue would be called that until I walked in and saw the giant american flag painted on the wall with goat heads in place of the traditional stars. Now it all makes sense! We arrived at the venue with a decent amount of time to spare, and I took the time to take some candids and portraits of the guys once again.
So whats there to do after an impromptu portrait session you ask? The answer is obviously to turn your Black Market Custom cabs on their side and host some races!
Ready for that goat american flag I mentioned?
Last but certainly not least, Georgia was the last stop on our tour, and just like that we were back to the cold weather. I spent most of this show collecting footage for the super secret music video I may be putting together for these guys, but I was also able to snag a few half decent photos!
Now seeing as how this tour was plagued by snow and cold from the very beginning, it seemed only fitting that tour ended just the way it started; in a giant snowstorm that seemed to follow us all the way out of Georgia. After driving on what may have been the most desolate highway I've ever seen, we saw the big rigs start to pull over and take shelter from the snow. It was at this time we decided it was probably in our best interest to follow suit and take a break from driving until the snow had subsided and the roads finally got plowed. Mario Kart 64 and THPS2 sessions ensued till sunup and we finally finished our 18 hour trek home to the lovely (and still icy) North East!!