Danson Festival: Leogun, Craig Charles.

Craig Charles, backstage at The Danson Festival 2013

Summer returned to the UK last week and last Sunday (7th July) I photographed the Danson Festival for Bexley. Very hot, unlike last year when it rained so much that my camera stopped working (Canon 5D mk11), fortunately last year I also had my 1Dmk111 which carried on regardless. Anyway back to this year. I followed and photographed the Mayor of Bexley, Cllr Sharon Massey,  around the site for a few hours while we both (and the tour group) slowly wilted in the heat. The Mayor meeting and greeting etc. We finished and I said goodbye to the Mayor and then spent the afternoon doing some general pics around the festival.

The day always ends with bands on the main stage and so there I found myself shooting the local London band Leogun, not the headline band but well worth a look in my opinion.

The heat of the day faded as I stood in the shade at front of the stage. This is where I switched into ‘gig’ mode: a history of shooting hundreds of gigs in the 70’s and 80’s (and a bit of the 90’s) came into play, it’s second nature, it’s like I am 25 again. After a hard day toting gear around in the heat this, for me, is a refreshing way to finish. The day ends with Craig Charles and The Fantasy Funk Band. After Leogun finish I catch a quick pic of Craig backstage before going out front to shoot the rest of the show.

Tommy Smith of Leogun at the Danson Festival 2013

The 80’s, Talk Talk, Wimbledon ?

Talk Talk, the New Forest , UK, 1983.

Recently I was photographing an 80’s themed event for a corporate client. The weather, unusually, remained acceptably warm so the event was held on the office rooftop overlooking London. After a while I started to take notice of the background music, and thought to myself:  photographed that band, and that one, and them, seen them, met him, etc.

A couple of days later I thought that maybe I should do the occasional retrospective in my blog. So here it is, 30 years ago this week I drove through Wimbledon in the early morning, passing the fans on their way to watch the tennis. I was on my way to shoot the band Talk Talk, one of the iconic bands of the eighties. I met them at their manager’s house and then we drove down to somewhere in the New Forest for the photos. One of the photographs from this shoot  was used last year in the unofficial biography ‘The Spirit of Talk Talk’.

Driving there and back through the Wimbledon tennis traffic has forever linked that shoot with  Wimbledon fortnight for me.