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.