“I’ve recorded a few songs in my day… Many went on to become huge hits. With your permission, I’d like to sing a few of them for you.” The words of a living legend, Tony Bennett.
I finally got the opportunity to shoot the timeless Tony Bennett at the Verizon Wireless Ampitheater on May 31, 2013. What an awesome privilege and experience to just attend this show, much less photograph the legend himself. It was a a great show to shoot and I have thank The Backstage Beat for asking me to shoot the show for them.
It was a difficult but easy shoot. Difficult in the fact that we were far away from the stage and had to whip out the big guns to get good shots, but easy because Mr. Bennett isn’t thrashing across the stage with a huge light show, canons and fireworks going off every two seconds. We were staged behind the mixing board, which probably out us about somewhere between 200 and 300 feet away from the stage. I ended up shooting my 300mm with a 2x converter on my D700 for most of my shots. I took the teleconverter off to do the panoramic shots for both bands. Overall… I really like the way the photos came out.
Mr. Bennett was traveling with his 4 piece consisting of legendary drummer Harold Jones, Lee Musiker on piano, guitarist Gray Sargent and Marshall Wood on bass. What a pleasure it would have been to just shoot those guys. Sometimes you just know when you are in the presence of greatness. This was one of those nights…
It took a while for it to sink in how Mr. Bennett has influenced numerous generations of musicians, singers and fans around the world and that I was photographing the show. My grandparents loved listening to him, my dad loves his rendition of “San Francisco” and my wife loves his music. It’s was surrealistic when he started to sing “San Francisco.” I’ve heard the song a thousand times, but here it was… Live and in-person. Goosebumps!
His influence is apparent, even with his special guest Jackie Evancho, the 13 year old phenom with the voice of an angel. What an awesome treat for those in attendance as Ms. Evancho performed with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra.
I think my favorite shot of the night is the panoramic shot I stitched together in Photoshop. There wasn’t a “whole-lotta” action going on, so I had to find a way to capture the moment. I didn’t put a high-res image on Flickr, but believe me, it’s a nice pano.
[flickr width=”600″ float=”left”]http://www.flickr.com/photos/johndawg/8970461875/[/flickr]
[flickr-gallery mode=”photoset” photoset=”72157633972943602″]