Buddy Miller and Jim Lauderdale with Max Gomez at The Birchmere

22 02 2013

Thanks to my friend Nancy Dunham, a freelance writer, I got to photograph this concert at The Birchmere in Alexandria, VA on Tuesday night. I also got to meet Buddy Miller, Jim Lauderdale and Max Gomez after the show.

I must confess that I hadn’t heard of any of them before, so I wasn’t familiar with their music. The Birchmere was the first stop on the “Buddy and Jim Tour 2013,” which showcases Americana/country duets by these two singer/songwriter/music directors. Their band member include Fats Kaplin on pedal steel guitar and fiddle, Jay Weaver on bass (Weaver is also part of the contemporary Christian band, Big Daddy Weave), and Marco Giovino on drums. It was a really great show!

Buddy Miller is a producer for singers including Emmylou Harris, Shawn Colvin and Robert Plant. He is currently working with T Bone Burnett to produce the music in NBC’s Nashville. Jim Lauderdale is a Grammy-award-winning songwriter who has written hits for George Strait, the Dixie Chicks, Patty Loveless and Shelby Lynne. He is the longtime host of the Americana Music Awards. Buddy and Jim are hosts of the Buddy & Jim Radio Show on Sirius XM Outlaw Channel 60.

The opening act was singer/songwriter Max Gomez, whose music was part folk/part rock and highly enjoyable. (I couldn’t get over how much he resembles Jimmy Fallon!) I told Nancy that I thought his voice was reminiscent of Gordon Lightfoot, James Taylor and Harry Chapin all rolled into one, with bluesy raspy tones woven in to make it his entirely his own.

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

MaxBuddyJimNancylorez


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Lyle Lovett at Wolf Trap

16 08 2012

Last night I went to Wolf Trap to see Lyle Lovett and his Acoustic Group perform. Nancy Dunham, my neighbor/friend/freelance writer, interviewed him last week for a music publication and he invited her to the concert and she in turn invited me. We picked up our guest passes and my photo pass, which allowed me to photograph from a designated spot on the sidelines for the first three songs.

Obviously, flash was out due to the distance from the stage. This didn’t stop some people in the audience using their iPhones with flash from 100 feet or more away! I definitely knew I had to bring my longest zoom—my Nikon 80-400 VR lens f/4.5-5.6. Next time I’m able to do something like this, I’ll be bringing a monopod, too (another photographer was there and used a monopod, but he didn’t have a powerful zoom, so I imagine his shots weren’t nearly as close as mine were). I braced myself against a wall and held my breath for all of these shots. I was also shooting at my highest ISO—3200—and wide open at 4.5. Some images were shot with exposure compensation, too. All in all, not too bad for handheld—in low light and variable light and with distance restrictions.

After the concert we went backstage to meet him, and Nancy introduced me as “a fellow Texan,” so that definitely helped to break the ice. Mr. Lovett (may I call you Lyle?) is as gracious, humble and down-to-earth as he is talented! The last shot in series of photos below is Lyle with Nancy. I highly recommend that if you have a chance to see him in concert, do so. While his upbeat songs had me bobbing my head and tapping my feet, I loved the ballads—heartfelt and passionately delivered.

I’ve told Nancy that I’m available “anytime, anywhere” to accompany her as a guest to a music venue; she’ll have her own personal photographer! Nancy, thank you, thank you, thank you for this opportunity. I’m a new Lyle Lovett fan and had a blast photographing and meeting him.

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.