David Beebe performing at The Big Top on Friday night
The derelict building that sits next to The Continental club has been vacant for years and was recently acquired by the same folks that own the property @ 3700 Main and innovation is well under way. I was asked by Pete Gordon (manager of The Continental Club) if I could swing by and snap some “before” photos or what promises to be a very cool space in the not too distant future.
As they are working to demo the building they are finding that a very interesting art deco style facade was simply covered with stucco by the previous owners.
Pete tells me that the intention is to try and preserve as much of the original exterior as is possible which is very commendable.
If you squint just right and imagine it with some paint to bring out the original design you can just make out what a wonderful space this is going to be. There’s already plans for a coffee shop and a pizza/burger joint and if Pete has his way, a new club called “Wallpaper”…
In these interesting economic times it’s heartening to see the hustle and bustle of new development. As I was taking pictures numerous people stopped to see what was going on and one woman waiting on the train was misty-eyed as she spoke of her own personal joy at seeing something being done not only to restore this old building, but also of her optimism in seeing something that demonstrates growth in this city while the news outlets continue to issue their dire warning doom and despair.
A few shots from Thursday night. I took with me my new flash, my Sony 50mm and my Sony 16mm fisheye.
The 50mm has not been seeing a lot of use lately. I favor the Sigma 30mm for a bit wider angle. I forget how glorious this lens can be. Handheld, no flash portrait of Craig Kinsey of the Sideshow Tramps.
View On Black
Only now beginning to play with the fisheye. Of course, on a cropped sensor camera like mine, the fishseye does not give you the full 180Â° field of view. It actually comes out to 120Â°. You need a full frame camera like the Alpha 900 (which I am successfully resisting at this time) to get the full effect. Still, interesting. Wireless flash on the floor to my left. Check out the shadows!
View On Black
This was shot at point blank range of a very three dimensional art piece by Nicole Nasso hanging at The Upstairs Gallery.
Check out the detail when you View On Black
What really strikes me about the fisheye is the color reproduction and the spectacular sharpness and depth of field.
I’ve a lot to learn about he fisheye and the flash.
Saw a band called The Dedringers at Shoeshine Charley’s Big Top Lounge on Friday night. These guys are quite remarkable. Reminded me of a young Rolling Stones. Definitely worth checking out if you have the chance.
This is also a personal favorite in terms of my concert photography. The lighting in The Bigtop is challenging to say the least so a little more effort, even desire is needed to squeeze something usable out of the venue.
This shot embodies everything I love about this kind of photo op. Great (if relatively unknown) band in a small venue playing to a small but appreciative audience.
My band, The Flying Fish Sailors, is going to start playing the second Monday of the month at Shoeshine Charley’s Big Top Lounge which is two doors down from the Houston Continental Club @ 3700 Main Street.
Shows start at 9:00 and run till around 11:00 or so. Admission is free and it’s super casual.
The first show is March 10th.
Please spread the word!
Sir New England James Alan of The Light Rock Express
Went out to 3700 Main to take some shots of The El Orbits for possible use on the upcoming new album as well as other promotional material.
Let me tell you, shooting for fun is one thing, shooting on spec is a different animal entirely. I shoot in my own particular style and “as my mood dictates.” I capitalize on opportune lighting and subject matter and I do it for my own pleasure.
Setting up a shot and trying for a specific effect combined with dealing with various personalities makes me edgy. Of course they’re all friends and that helps. But still, I get stage fright from behind the camera if that makes any sense.
I have a ton of photos to process this week. These two jumped out right off the bat:
We’ll see how they stand up after I’ve had a chance to more fully review what I’ve got.