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  • I'll never forget going to a club gig with Cheap Trick the night before they released their new CD this summer and hearing Robin Zander say "This is the first song off our new album" just as he did in Budakon so many years ago.  The crowd went nuts!
  • I'll never forget standing in the pit at Lilith Fair this summer and not knowing what to expect of the next act - the Dixie Chicks.  Not really being into country music, I had heard they were more like a cross-over band but I was pretty indifferent.  The next thing I know, these three little fire balls appear on the stage in an explosion of color and sound, brimming over with stage presence, harmonies and musicianship.  I stood there with my mouth hanging open for a second, totally unaware of the camera around my neck, and I turned to the audience to see the majority of them with the same empty headed looks on their faces.  After the initial shock to the mostly rock and pop crowd, the set totally rocked!  Definitely the surprise of the tour.
  • I'll never forget being totally jazzed about photographing one of my favorite bands of all time - Motley Crue.  There I was, standing just below Nikki Sixx, making eye contact and feeling pretty good about the fact that I was getting some decent shots.  I thought, okay, this is good, we're bonding . . . I think he smiled at me . . . what's he doing?  He was smiling all right, as he picked up a big cup of water and flung it at me!  I managed to lift $3,000 worth of camera equipment out of the way in time to save it from ruin, but I spent the rest of the night freezing my tail off as an unwilling participant in one of Nikki's wet t-shirt contests.  I think he likes me . . .
  • I'll never forget being totally stoked about photographing Megadeth because I have such respect for their guitar work.  I was intently shooting Dave Mustaine as he chopped wood and I turned to Marty Friedman just as he was really winding up and I heard my camera start to rewind!  Sometimes musicians are really cool and they will play to you so you can get an extra nice shot.  Its just their way of saying "Here, I won't make you work for this one" and you are always thankful when this happens.  I'm at the end of my three songs in the pit and Marty steps over to me and kinda motions to me like "Watch this!" and he proceeds to arch backwards and peel off a solo that makes metal heads like me want to weep.  The lighting was perfect, his hair was splaying wildly about his shoulders, he caressed the guitar, his face awash in ecstasy and I stood at his feet with no more film . . . I'm sure that shot would have looked like the almighty himself coming down from heaven with a guitar in his hands . . . What could I do but show him respect and gratitude by pretending I still had film in my camera?  Marty, I'll catch you next time buddy.  It will never happen again - promise!
  • I'll never forget standing in the wings of a Cher/Cyndi Lauper concert as Cher's finale was happening.  I was there to cover Cyndi Lauper and had interviewed her tour manager for a behind the scenes type article.  I was standing next to Cyndi, who is an absolutely wonderful person and a serious and talented musician.  She had just put her little son to bed and came out to catch the act for a few minutes.  All of the sudden, these men came flying down from the rafters at the corners of the stage on bungee cords!  Cyndi and I turned to look at each other at the same time and we both had the funniest looks on our faces . . . no words were exchanged, but I don't think either one of us could have come up with any.
  • I'll never forget interviewing Leigh Nash of Sixpence None The Richer in the back of their tour bus.  I was very impressed with how down to earth they all were, acting just like a big family of brothers and a sister, but Leigh is just as sweet and gentle as her voice.  When I processed my photos from that night, I really expected to see a halo over her head.
  • I'll never forget covering the Sugar Ray concert on July 17th and hearing Mark McGrath dedicate a song to JFK Jr., who (at that time) was missing and presumed dead.  He offered his support and hopes that the passengers in John Kennedy's plane would be found alive.
    I'll never forget seeing Robby Takac of the Goo Goo Dolls riding down the halls on a bicycle back stage, nor the fact that I was never able to stop grinning when I was in his vicinity.  I remember talking to him about their trip to Bosnia before Christmas and hearing how excited he was that they were collecting toys to take to children in orphanages there.  He was genuinely concerned about how those kids must be feeling.  I also remember that on December 19th, the day I knew they were going to be in Bosnia doing this nice thing, I felt good all day just knowing that they were doing what they had set out to do.  But the thing I remember most about this whole thread was waking up the next morning and seeing the headlines on the iMusic web site "Goo Goo Dolls Survive Plane Mishap."  All I could think of was how glad I was to see the word "survive" and that sometimes bad things happen to good people.  I know that Robby is on the net all the time, and Robby - if you are out there, you're the bomb dude.  Keep doing good things and passing on that silly grin of yours . . .
     

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