Snowglobe 2015 Photos | Day 3

There may have been frigid temps in Tahoe South this year, but you couldn’t put a freeze on Snowglobe attendees spirits.  Regardless of the weather, the crowds braved the bone-chilling cold to dance the night away and ring in the New Year under fireworks and our beautiful mountain sky.  My third day at Snowglobe was elevated by Ghostland Observatory, hometown favorites of mine who recently came off a long hiatus.   Northern CA favorite G-Eazy certainly warmed up the crowd with a high energy enthusiastic set.  Thanks to his energy, he was one of my favorites to photograph all week!

Here’s a few photos from our last day at Snowglobe 2015.  We hope you enjoyed your stay in Tahoe and Happy New Year!  See you next year!!

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Tahoe Concert Photographer | Gary Clark JR

I’ve been a huge fan of Gary Clark JR every since we stumbled upon him at Voodoo Music Festival a few years ago in New Orleans.   Clark’s blend of bluesy fuzzy guitar mixed with smooth vocals is simply amazing.  I’m surprised I hadn’t ever come across him while living in Austin, as he was born and raised there, honing his musical chops in iconic locations like Antone’s.  His recent album Black and Blu is an absolute delight and I highly recommend it.

Clark came through Tahoe South a few months (okay 6) ago while on tour opening for Dave Matthews Band.   It was nice to have a bit of my hometown in my [new] hometown.


SXSW 2014 Preview

I’m back in Texas to photograph for SXSW for the 2nd year in a row.  I know what’s coming for me: loads of amazing new music, beer, and very little sleep.  It’s an awesome time and it all starts this Saturday.

I’ve been attempting to prepare myself by drinking a lot and pre-listening to the SXSW “Four on the Floor” Preview Lists.  Here are a couple of acts I discovered on there that I’m super excited to see:

  • I became super obsessed with Juliette Ashby’s voice the moment I heard the first song.  Her blend of R&B, Reggae and Neo-Soul isn’t something I would have ever pegged myself for being attracted to, but I’m hooked.

  • The Mighty Oaks may be confused since they are playing Americana-Folk but hail from Berlin, Germany but I’m not confused about how awesome their music is.

  • Ski Lodge: pop fun for a bluebird powder day.  Right up my alley.

  • Pompeya is a pop blend of the 70’s, 80’s and 90’s.

  • Shakey Graves has been making headlines outside of his hometown of Austin, TX: headlines loud enough that his reputation precedes him and he’s now on my must-see list for the week.

  • Elle King mades waves last year at SXSW but I unfortunately missed catching one of her shows.  I will not make the same mistake again this year!


Tahoe Concert Photographer | Dave Matthews Band

When I was in high school, my good friend James bequeathed to me a copy of Dave Matthews Band‘s first studio album.   Under the Table and Dreaming completely changed the way I listened to music.  I was a typical music listener for a teen: radio obsessed and repetitive.  With my introduction to this album, I was ushered into a world of complexities and layers like I hadn’t heard before.  It was my start of musical appreciation.   Under the Table and Dreaming remains, to this day, one of my favorite albums of all time, book-ended by Wilco’s Yankee Hotel Foxtrot, Ryan Adam’s Gold, and LCD Soundsystem’s self-titled debut.

After that, I spent a good portion of my high school summers touring DMB shows, from city to city, where every night they would play completely different sets and completely different songs, all the while managing to sound like an orchestra was on stage.  I can say with 100% confidence that I have seen more DMB concerts than any other band in the short history of my life.

I loved their shows and while I hadn’t seen one in over ten years, the moment Dave started playing and tapping his toes, I was transported back in time.  I had briefly doubted if the DMB I heralded in my head after all this time would live up to the musical memories of my nostalgic mind and instantaneously this idea was proved totally baseless.

Dave Matthews Band was an impeccable gorgeous spirited show when I was young and he is the same today.  While no album of his may live up to the aggressive complicated ambitiousness of Under the Table and Dreaming, his catalog of music remains impressive, varied and filled with everything crowd pleasing jingles to southern rock ballads.

After this experience, I’m not sure if any band I photograph for the rest of my life will live up to Dave Matthews Band.  The unparalleled excitement I felt in that photo pit was fueled by awe and devotion.

Dave Matthews was and clearly still remains the King of my Satellite Castle.  I may not purchase all his music anymore, but he proved his place on a pedestal in my musical library.

Thank you Tahoe South for the opportunity to photograph my musical legend.


Snowglobe Music Festival – Day 3 Picks

Snowglobe Music Festival is returning to Tahoe for it’s third year and it’s not too late to join in on the fun.  Three day passes and single day tickets are still on sale.

LAUREN’S PICKS – DAY 3 – Tuesday, December 31st, 2013

Welcome to Snowglobe Music Festival! New Year’s Eve at Snowglobe brings the day with the line up I am personally the most excited about, mostly because Cut Copy is definitely in my list of the top five bands of all time.

  • Vokab Company: Main Stage, 5:30-6:15.  Vokab Company is  no stranger to Tahoe and these MCs from San Diego have built up quite a following here with their special blend of electronic, hip-hop, soul and funk.  Their super dynamic sound has garnered them the title of “best hip-hop group” at the San Diego Music Awards for three years in a row now.   For fans of: Gift of Gab, Timbuktu, Hoodie Allen.

  • Beats Antique: Main Stage, 8:00-9:00.  The energy, excitement and mesmerizing beauty of a Beats Antique show is a completely unique, provocative and dazzling experience. Check out our interview with Beats Antique from last year for more. For fans of: STS9, Les Claypool, Pentaphobe.
  • Steffi Graf: Igloo Tent, 9:00-10:15.  This house and disco loving DJ duo was one of my surprise finds and favorites at last year’s event.   For fans of: James Murphy DJ sets, Prince, and Danny Tenaglia.
  • Cut Copy: Main Stage, 11:15-12:30.  Cut Copy’s freshman album Bright Like Neon Love remains to this day in frequent listening rotation.  This band’s dreamy love-laden and 80s flavored pop songs will have the field dancing into the night.  They are currently on tour to support their new album, Free Your Mind and I caught their show recently in Reno, NV where they played a sing-a-long inducing mix of old and new songs.  For fans of: Two Door Cinema Club, Empire of the Sun, and Phoenix.

COMING UP in our coverage of Snowglobe:
  • Reviews and photos! See you there!

Snowglobe Music Festival: Lauren’s Picks Day 1

Snowglobe Music Festival is returning to Tahoe for it’s third year and it’s not too late to join in on the fun.  Three day passes and single day tickets are still on sale.

Poolside’s brand of Daytime Disco warmed up the Sierra Tent at Snowglobe 2012.

LAUREN’S PICKS – DAY 1 – Sunday, December 29th, 2013

Welcome to Snowglobe! Festivals are my favorite way to discover new music, so be sure to catch a few of these lesser known acts on Day 1 of the festival.

  • EXMAG: Sierra Tent, 3:45-4:45.  EXMAG is a downtempo and groovy four piece electronic/live instrument hybrid that should get you properly warmed up for the day.  They use Gramatik’s guitar player and are signed to his record label, Lowtemp.    For fans of: Gramaktik, Pretty Lights, Big Gigantic.
  • Holy Ghost!: Main Stage, 5:00-6:15.  Signed to DFA, Holy Ghost is best described as deep dark disco meets pop.   They make self-described songs “that you want to dance to at home.”  For fans of: James Murphy, MGMT, Cut Copy.
  • Syd Gris: Igloo Tent, 6:15-7:30.  Gris is well known in the San Francisco edm scene for his blend of breaks and tech funk.  He is a founding member of the  Opulent Temple collective, best known for their premiere sound stage at Burning Man and a founding organizer of San Franciscso’s LoveFest & Love Parade.   For fans of: Lee Coombs, Plump DJs.
  • Star Slinger: Sierra Tent, 7:45-9:00.   Darren Williams studied music technology at Leeds Metropolitan University before starting this one man project that caught critics eyes for his remix of Deerhunter.  For fans of: J Dilla, Gramatik.
  • Justin Martin: Igloo Tent, 9:00-10:45.  Dirtybird Group member Justin Martin’s in-your-face bold spirited bass-lines grew out of the San Francisco underground sound and are sure to get the Igloo Tent raucous late into the night.    Justin is now known equally as well as half of the hip-hop influenced hit producing duo “The Martin Brothers,” which he shares with his brother Christian.  For fans of: Claude VonStroke, Steve Lawler, Loco Dice.

Nobody Beats the Drum in the Igloo Tent at Snowglobe 2012.

COMING UP in our coverage of Snowglobe:

  • Lauren’s Picks for Day 2 and 3 of the fest
  • Reviews and photos! See you there!

The crowd in the Sierra Tent at Snowglobe 2012.


Best Music of 2013

I listened to a LOT of music this year.  I photographed a lot of amazing bands.  I had a lot of fun and I drank a lot of beer while I did it.  In short, my year was a whirlwind of awesome, but damn, it was exhausting.  From SXSW to running two businesses to training for a marathon, my calendar was full up.   Reflecting back on it, I’m both proud and shocked at how much I managed to pack in.   I’m even more shocked that I’m able to get this list out before the year 2014 rings in!

So, without further adieu, here’s my list of the Best Music of 2013.  I have too hard of a time actually listing things in number, so a few years ago I started using my friend Jason’s REALLY AWESOME rating system, which is as follows:

!!! at SXSW 2013

Super awesome and by far my favorite
!!! – Thriller
Classixx – Hanging Gardens
Cut Copy – Free Your Mind
Foxygen – We are the 21st Century Ambassadors of Peace and Magic
HAIM – Days Are Gone
Phoenix – Bankrupt!
Savages – Silence Yourself
Vampire Weekend – Modern Vampires of the City

Foxygen at SXSW 2013

Still pretty awesome
Arcade Fire – Reflektor
Blood Orange – Cupid Deluxe
Chvrches – The Bones of What you Believe
Clinic – Free Reign II
Daft Punk – Random Access Memories
Janelle Monáe – The Electric Lady
Kanye West – Yeezus
Mikal Cronin – MCII
The National – Trouble Will Find Me

Vampire Weekend at SXSW 2013

Kind of awesome
Deerhunter – Monomania
Justin Timberlake – The 20/20 Experience

Enjoyable for a listen, but otherwise just okay
Paul McCartney – New

Albums that music critics adore and I am totally not into, save a track or two here and there
Phosphorescent – Muchacho

Albums that I haven’t listened to yet but everyone loves
The Flaming Lips – The Terror

At the Macklemore and Ryan Lewis Show, SXSW 2013

Previous best of lists


Squaw Brews, Jazz and Funk Fest

The Squaw Brews, Jazz and Funk Fest is one of my most treasured summer weekends in Tahoe.  The event is held at the Squaw Village over two days every August and benefits the Humane Society of Truckee-Tahoe.  It always boasts a massive array of micro-breweries and an incredible line-up blues, funk and brass bands.  This year was no exception and I was particularly anxious for the weekend to come when they announced that Trombone Shorty was going to headline.

Troy Andrews, aka Trombone Shorty, is incredible and if he ever comes to your city, you absolutely must go see him.  A trumpet and trombone player since the age of six, Andrews grew up in the Tremè and was a member in his teens of one of New Orlean’s best brass bands: Stooges Brass Band.   Boyfriend and I had the good fortune of seeing the Stooges play last year in New Orleans at d.b.a. and although I’m extremely thrilled they are coming to Tahoe to do a show in September at the Crystal Bay Casino, I’m devastated that I’m going to miss it because I’ll be in Dallas running a half marathon with K’s for Keegan.

Since 2009, Andrews has been performing with the Orleans Avenue.  Their 2009 album Backatown was nominated for a 2011 Grammy Award in Best Contemporary Jazz Album.  Trombone Shorty also makes frequent appearances on one of my favorite tv shows.

I spent the weeks before the Brews, Jazz and Funk Fest gushing over how excited I was and how BOSS Trombone Shorty is to my friends.  I’m sure they were sick of listening to me.  He brought the business at Squaw and the show was incredible.

After the show, I picked up two of his albums for the 3 year old I babysit for that I’ve given a broad appreciation of brass bands and jazz to.  When we went to New Orleans, I returned with a Kermit Ruffins CD and much to his mother’s chagrin, Kermit very quickly replaced his previous favorite musician D.Y. [Dwight Yokum].

On Sunday, the Marching Fourth Marching Band headlined.  The band hails from Portland, OR and while they call themselves Jazz Fusion and it’s a bit like traditional New Orleans parade music, just souped up and twisted.  The massive band sports mismatched circus like marching band uniforms and members perform acrobatics on stilts during some of the songs.  Boyfriend and I are fairly certain we saw them perform in the lobby of the Primus show we went to see in Portland.

These are all my favorite photos from the two shows at the 2013 Brews, Jazz and Funk fest but you can view the entire album via this link.

Flashback!  Previous years at the Brews, Jazz and Funk Fest: