Last night capped off the most musically satisfying year of my life.
Let me explain. If you’ve been following the blog at all you know that my two great passions in life are music and photography (family, faith, etc… notwithstanding). As a musician, I’ve had a number of cool opportunities throughout my life, but this year takes the cake. From festivals, to arenas to stadiums, I got to play the kind of shows that I only dreamed of.
Things got interesting back in August. My good friends from the band Sanctus Real asked me to fill in on guitar for a couple of dates. The first was an outdoor festival in NH called Soulfest. I was covering for Pete on this date. We got to play a full set as the pre-headliner for Toby Mac. The event was at this cool ski resort and the main stage was setup at the bottom of a ski slope. A unique venue and tons of fun to play.
Before I had a chance to come down from that high and only 10 hours after getting off the bus, we turned around and hopped a plane to Anaheim, CA. At this event I was covering for both Pete and Chris so I had to handle all the guitar duties. The event was the Harvest Crusade which was being held at Angels Stadium. 50,000 people in attendance and another 100,000 watching live online. It was a short 3 song set, but oh my, what a thrill. I will never forget that experience as long as I live. You can still watch the event online. Follow this link and then click on Saturday night. We go on about 20 minutes or so into the broadcast.
A couple of weeks later, the church where I play regularly, CedarCreek, was celebrating their 15 year anniversary. All 3 campuses came together and we put on a huge production at the Huntington Center arena in Toledo, OH. Almost 7,000 in attendance. It was an amazing night of celebrating the past and looking forward to the future. I was fortunate enough to be involved in all the music that was performed that night.
In November, I was back out on the road with Sanctus Real on the Hungry For Love Tour. This time I wasn’t playing guitar. Instead I was out with only my camera documenting 3 nights of their tour with Leeland and The Afters. I had a blast spending time with these guys. To know them is to know some amazing individuals. I’m proud to call them friends. You can see a few pictures from the tour and read more about that experience by clicking here.
All of that brings us to New Years Eve. The guys were playing their second annual New Years Eve show at CedarCreek church. They were kind enough to ask me to sit in and play a song with them. Not only did they bring me out to play, they showed some video of the Angels Stadium show and Matt gave me a wonderful introduction. To others it might have been a small gesture, but to me it meant the world. A perfect cap to an amazing year for me.
The images below are a little different than my normal music photography. These are all behind the scenes shots from the show yesterday. I hope you like this different perspective rather than the live shots I normally post. I processed them a little differently as well. A little more of an edgy and grainy look.
Here’s to making 2011 an even better year. Happy New Year everyone!