Photo Exploration: Brick from Katrina, August 2015.

Ten years. In my com­ing-on-ear­ly-mid-life­time, I’ve expe­ri­enced a few ten year anniver­saries. Ten years after the space­ship Chal­lenger. Ten years after high school grad­u­a­tion. Ten years after 9/11. And now, ten years after Hur­ri­cane Kat­ri­na dec­i­mat­ed the gulf coast across three states.

There are many, many, many remem­brances and notes and sto­ries and tes­ti­monies that will be shared today. I don’t have much of a tragedy to share — all my fam­i­ly sur­vived, near­ly all our homes were intact, and although I was with­out pow­er for three weeks, it was a small price in the larg­er pat­tern of destruc­tion. I don’t car­ry much in the way of per­son­al sor­row or loss.

What I do car­ry with me is a brick. One brick I’ve kept from the mil­lions and mil­lions that once formed thou­sands and thou­sands of homes that were dam­aged or lost in the storm.

The facts have been known for so long and the analy­sis of the fail­ures so detailed that it’s almost rote at this point to dis­cuss the day. I do have my own mem­o­ries and emo­tions from the day and what hap­pened after­wards for sure. But I think that a bet­ter sto­ry is one of a sin­gle piece of mason­ry that was in a home for year and years, then ripped away from its place and left in the mud by nature being.…well, nature. We can’t be mad at nature and we can’t fault storms for grow­ing into mon­sters, but what we can do is exam­ine at a piece of what remained to see if we have bet­ter pre­pared our­selves for the next time cli­mate comes knock­ing at our door.

Sideshow Fringe Festival 2015, July and August 2015

How do you choose the “best” of the pho­tog­ra­phy from five days and dozens of pro­duc­tion? I don’t real­ly have a good answer. There are ways of rank­ing, and rerank­ing, and rererank­ing, work until the “top” bub­bles up. Anoth­er way is to try and include one work from each per­for­mance, but that’s not always pos­si­ble either. Maybe a quo­ta of the best from each day? Nah, that’s not real­ly fair either. And would any of them give a good sense of the whole experience?

What I have done, some­what for pos­ter­i­ty and some­what to try and just make one post (instead of the dozens I could make), is to go through my saved pho­tos from the entire expe­ri­ence and put togeth­er a set of all those that rep­re­sent the expe­ri­ence.. Then I culled and culled until I had the 32 images below that give the best view into what it was like to see the entire 2015 Sideshow Fringe Fes­ti­val. Or, at least, that’s my selec­tion for today!

Many kudos to Jes­si­ka Mal­one and Mitch Mas­saro for their incred­i­bly vivid direc­tion, and the same to all of the tech­ni­cal staff that ran a seam­less expe­ri­ence for every­one. And, of course, plau­dits and praise for all of the per­form­ers. An incred­i­ble expe­ri­ence for all!

High Watt Recap 4 of 4: Frances and the Foundation & Friends, July 2015

Last of the long-over­due High Watt posts. Head­lined by Frances and the Foun­da­tion, this July show rolled in five bands with five styles in one rocked out night.

Open­ing acts Lines in the Sky, Tow­er Defense and The Car­toons were fol­lowed by Frances, and then the night closed with Hotel War.

The main event of Frances and the Foun­da­tion was well worth the wait — say­ing that Saman­tha Frances and her band has “pres­ence” is akin to say­ing that rock­et engines are “loud”. There isn’t any way to describe the show beyond “go see this band” over and over again. So, go see this band!

Thanks as always to East of 8th and I look for­ward to many more collaborations!

High Watt Recap 3 of 4: The Contenders June 2015

Some­times all that an evening needs is a gui­tar, a drum kit, and two singers. Jay Nash and Josh Day, also known as The Con­tenders, gave a won­der­ful per­for­mance — mel­low, tight­ly played, and fun. Check out their site and go see them if you have the chance!

Thanks to East of 8th for the oppor­tu­ni­ty to collaborate!

High Watt Recap 2 of 4: The Rentals, Radioactive City, Rey Pila May 2015

Remem­ber the blue album? Yeah, you prob­a­bly do. You may even remem­ber that the bassist from that album — Matt Sharp — start­ed a new band, The Rentals, and released their first album in 1995. I remem­ber play­ing a few tracks from their sec­ond effort dur­ing my radio dj years. Twen­ty years after their for­ma­tion, I final­ly had the chance to see them live at The High Watt cour­tesy of East of 8th.

As a bonus, I not only got to be up close and per­son­al with Mr. Sharp, but the first two bands were stun­ning as well. Espe­cial­ly Radi­a­tion City! Their show was, to be hon­est, the high­light of the night for me. Dou­ble female vocal­ists and anoth­er male singer, mish­mash of instru­ments and yet all of it came through clear as can be. Here’s hop­ing they come back through Nashville again soon!