Episode 22: The Skints

As soon as I heard that the Skints were going to tour America, I knew I wanted to film an acoustic session with them. It almost didn’t happen but glad we got something!

We were originally going to film something before the doors opened at Brooklyn Bowl, but then was told they couldn’t do it. Then I was told it was going to happen so I arrived with my twin brother Matt around when the doors opened at Brooklyn Bowl. Then we were told it was going to happen after their set, which is fine. We’ll have it be before the concert for their next show then! But you can see the chaotic-ness that is sessions before concerts. Sometimes it happens, sometimes it doesn’t.

We met up with the band after they played a killer set, which you can see my photos from that set here. We filmed them play their brilliant cover of Black Flag’s “My War.” We didn’t really have much of a choice in terms of location but we were happy to just to be filming. The mirror in the back proved to be troublesome since you can see Matt filming in the entire shot. I ducked down to avoid that but whatever, this was an impromptu session so had to make due with what we got.

I really appreciate that the band made time to film with us, and thanks to Josh at Reybee for making this happen! Let’s hope the band comes back to the East Coast soon because they were just a blast to watch on stage!

If you haven’t already, be sure to pick up the “Album Of The Year” (declared by me of course), FM, at all stores or wherever you buy music.

You can watch this episode on the Before The Concert YouTube channel as well.

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Episode 11: Justin Sane of Anti-Flag

When I started this video series, one of the few bands or artists I wanted to film in the beginning was Justin Sane and/or Anti-Flag. I got the chance when Anti-Flag was in town for 2 nights at the Studio at Webster Hall in NYC. The band is currently on tour celebrating their 20 years as a band. They play two nights in each city and play different sets each night. Sadly, I couldn’t make it to either shows but heard they were excellent. Hopefully they come back soon because they are a lot of fun to photograph!

We almost didn’t get a chance to film something with Justin because like usual, things were running behind schedules because of traffic. New York City is great but sometimes it likes to throw those monkey wrenches into your plans. Besides the traffic, the weather wasn’t exactly nice out. Thankfully everything came together and I filmed a song with Justin. My wife Kristen came along again but this time she just took some pictures of the filming.

As Kristen and I were walking down Broadway from Madison Square Park, we were being yelled at to cross the street. Of course, I was yelling back saying “where the hell do you expect me to go with all the cars here!?” I found out later that they were filming Anchorman 2 haha. Then we met up with Justin and Chris Stowe of AF Records and walked to the Cube area at Astor Place. Things were running late so Justin just sang “One Trillion Dollar$.” The video is short but I was happy to have filmed at least 1 song.

If you like YouTube better, you can watch the episode over at the Before The Concert channel.

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Episode 9: Brad Mackeson

Singer/Songwriter Brad Mackeson is based in Nashville via Portland and recently played a show at Bowery Electric. I decided to meet up with Brad and his friends in a very packed Washington Square Park to film him play some songs off his new album 1945. If you haven’t had a chance to listen to it yet, it’s available to listen to on Spotify but I’d recommend buying this one!

The day was beautiful and finally glad I wasn’t filming in the frigid cold. The park was packed with other musicians, a guy playing a grand piano (how does he wheel that around?), skaters, and dogs. Brad started things off with “Rooftop” near the fountain in the park. It’s always fun filming in NYC because people just don’t care and walk around you while you’re filming something. I always wonder if people would notice Bruce Springsteen jamming in the park or not. After “Rooftop,” we moved to a quieter spot on a bench and he played “Late Nights and Gunfights.” Brad ended up playing a new song called “Love Dies Slow” after that! Finishing up the episode, Brad played a cover of the Bob Dylan/ George Harrison cover “If Not For You” near one of the statues in the park. I can’t believe I never heard this song before (maybe I have, who knows) but I had to listen to the original after that because I loved this song!

I originally wanted to film in Cooper Square but Washington Square Park is always an excellent place to film. You just have to contend with other musicians and barking dogs though. Brad was extremely nice and we talked about WWII, his new album 1945, and other things. I sadly missed Brad’s show at Bowery Electric but I’m hoping to catch his set next time he’s in town. If he stops by in your town, check out his set!

If you like YouTube better, you can watch the episode over at the Before The Concert channel.

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Episode 8: The Beards

The Beards, now here is a band that was a lot of fun to film! The Beardly bearded band from South Australia met up with me on one of their press days in Washington Square Park on Wednesday night. The band has been touring this Winter/Spring with dates in LA, Austin (SXSW), Toronto, and New York City. They will be hitting the festival circuit in Australia and Europe as well. The guys sang three hilarious songs about…well you guessed it…BEARDS!

When I arrived at the park after work, it wasn’t really hard to spot the band hanging out by the fountain. We decided to film off to the side since there was other people playing guitars. They performed three tunes (“Born with a Beard,” “Shaved Off His Beard,” and “If Your Dad Doesn’t Have A Beard, You’ve Got Two Mums”) off their Beards, Beards, Beards album. Their latest album Having a Beard is the New Not Having a Beard was released last year but is definitely worth picking up!

After the first song, a fan in the park recognized the band and came over to touch their beards. I didn’t realize until after that Nathaniel Beard was making the girl’s scarf into a beard. It was a great moment, which is all in the episode! It was tough trying to film these guys and not laugh while filming. I think I did well. Even when the camera wasn’t on, the guys were making Beard related puns and jokes. I had a big grin on my face after filming The Beards and they were definitely one of my favorites to film to date. Thanks to Mark Tyson for taking my picture with the band! I always seem to forget to take a picture with the bands and musicians that I film.

If you like YouTube better, you can watch the episode over at the Before The Concert channel.

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Episode 7: Tim Warren of The Alternate Routes

Before Tim Warren of The Alternate Routes had to load-in at [a music venue], Tim and I were in their van hanging out so I decided to just film him playing “Stereo” in the front seat.

I originally wanted to film the band outside but like I said in the episode, it was just too windy outside to film. I never heard “Stereo” before but it’s a great tune acoustically and with the full band as well!

Be sure to check out The Alternate Routes on tour because they are an outstanding band to see live.

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Episode 3: Nick Gill

As soon as I heard Nick Gill’s new album Waves Are Only Water, I knew he would be a great fit for Before The Concert. When I found out he was going to be in New York City for a show at [music venue], I got in touch with Nick to meet up for a quick session.

Nick Gill is a singer/songwriter from Alabama (who lives in Nashville) and has a unique voice. A day doesn’t go by where I don’t listen to at least one song from him. After meeting up on Allen St., I thought it would be cool just to film in the bike path/walking area on Allen St. I scouted out that section on Google Maps and it proved to be a nice spot where cars go by and gave a nice New York City feel to it.

I filmed Nick performing “By The Way,” which is also my favorite from him. It was cold outside so we only filmed one song. I’m just happy it wasn’t as cold as it was the next day, then I don’t know what we would have done if we couldn’t film outside. I would have liked to have filmed more songs but perhaps another time when it’s warmer outside.

At one point, Nick was trying to perform the song and couldn’t hold in the laughter when a bike rider shouted out to him. So look out for a quick outtake clip coming soon.

Thanks to Nick Gill for being a sport and performing in the cold!

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