Category Archives: mount moriah

Year End Concert Stats

As I start my year end wrap up posts, today some stats to keep it in perspective. This was an amazing year in live music in Durham and in Raleigh and in Chapel Hill. I didn’t even see most of it (though I came closest in Durham) but, bow howdy, I saw a lot of it.

[All stats include shows I know I’ll see and shoot before the year is over. Stats do not include shows I went to without my camera (it happens)]

I saw and shot 209 shows at 33 venues in 2011 (this counts each day of a festival as a single show): 150 shows in Durham, 23 in Chapel Hill, 22 in Raleigh, 13 in Carrboro, 1 in Winston-Salem.

Counting each set by band I saw and shot 565 sets in 2011: 381 bands in Durham, 85 bands in Raleigh, 66 bands in Chapel Hill, 31 bands in Carrboro, 2 bands in Winston.

Looking at the venues I shot the most out of the 33 total venues: I shot 58 shows at Motorco, 47 shows at Pinhook, 13 shows at Casbah, 13 shows at Local 506, 11 shows at Motorco Garage, 10 shows at Cat’s Cradle.

Going by number of band sets, not shows: I shot 155 bands at Motorco, 108 bands at Pinhook, 38 bands at Casbah, 37 bands at Local 506, 34 bands at Motorco Garage, 23 bands at Cat’s Cradle, 21 bands at Kings, and 20 at Nightlight.

All together I saw and shot 358 bands this year, almost a band for each day of the year. 276 of those bands I saw only once. 65 of the bands I saw between 2 and 4 times. And 17 of the bands I saw 5 or more times:
Band – # of shows
JKutchma (w/ the 5/5 or solo) – 19
Midtown Dickens- 10
Almost People – 10
Phil Cook & His Feat – 8
Magnolia Collective – 7
Pink Flag – 7
Onward, Soldiers – 6
Mount Moriah – 6
Free Electric State – 6
Gray Young – 6
Hammer No More The Fingers – 6
Birds & Arrows – 6
American Aquarium – 5
Effingham – 5
Humble Tripe – 5
Red Collar – 5
The Moaners – 5

A special nod to JKutchma, Midtown Dickens, Phil Cook & His Feat, Gray Young, Mount Moriah, Birds & Arrows, and The Moaners, all of whom I saw play in at least 5 different venues.

And, yes, if anyone is curious, I’m happy to share the excel spreadsheet where I store all this info if you are curious about the nitty gritty details or want to look at lots of pivot tables.

In summary, I saw and shot a ton of shows and bands. I shot in venues all around the area and also really focused on shooting in Durham. I got to see many of my favorite bands play a bunch, some of my favorite bands not nearly enough, and just about everything in between. I found new music, new friends, new angles, new light, and so much more at shows

And between now and the end of the year, I have posts coming to try and pull from that magnitude of music: my favorite shows, my favorite concert moments, my favorite photos, my favorite albums.

Links to all year end coverage:
Top Ten Albums of 2011
Twenty Favorite Photos of 2011
Ten Favorite Shows of 2011
Great Moments of 2011

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Early/Late

Early shows are fantastic. I really wish more weeknight shows would start before 8:30. as last night’s Casbah show did.
Because the show starts at a decent hour, it ends at one. Which means the audience can go to bed at a decent hour.

Or, for me, it means I can go to an early show then a late show and *still* make it home by self imposed weeknight curfew of midnight.

Wonderful.

Almost People & Elway, Motorco, Durham NC, 11/02/11

Mount Moriah, Reynolds Theater

So nice to see Mount Moriah play to a packed Reynolds Theater (capacity around 600). The sound and light were both gorgeous. The music was stunning as always. I really enjoyed shooting my three songs then sitting and quietly singing along.

Mount Moriah, Reynolds Theater, Duke University, Durham NC, 10/22/11

Full photo set here

Hopscotch Reflections

I saw 49 full or partial sets this year at Hopscotch (if you count the drive-by performance by the Helping Hands Marching Band, literally a drive-by, they played in a truck bed driving around town, I caught then outside of Raleigh Times) and only one repeat band (Des Ark once an acoustic and unamplified show at Lump Gallery, once at Kings for a rock show). Half of the bands I saw were locals (25) and almost exactly half of the bands were bands I’d seen before (22). Those two lists don’t overlap as much as you’d think, actually, I saw 9 local bands I’d not seen before.

Some of the most memorable parts of Hopscotch, for me, were parts that happened not separate from but perhaps adjacent to the music. Long conversations with friends, really getting to know some folks I knew only as acquaintances before, running into people at exactly the right time for a hug or a tear or a high five. If you know me, you know I care about the community and the music of the community in almost equal measure. Last year, mostly because I’d just been here 5 months when Hopscotch rolled around, I felt less ownership. This year, though, I’ve got as many non-musical memories of Hopscotch as musical ones, and that is what it is all about for me.

But on to the photography & music. My favorite photos I shot are in this set
Thursday highlights:
Steve Gunn, Fletcher Opera Hall, Hopscotch, Raleigh NC,09/08/11
Steve Gunn was outstanding; I watched his hands intently during his set and I still don’t understand how one guitar makes all that music. The light setup Xray Eyeballs had at Slim’s was the most beautiful light setup I saw all festival (and so simple). Lower Dens really impressed. And JEFF the Brotherhood completely lived up to my high expectations.

Friday highlights:
The gorgeous bright noon light streaming into The Hive during Tow3rs set.
Last Year's Men, Churchkey/The Layabout Day Party, Slim's, Hopscotch, Raleigh NC, 09/09/11
Last Year’s Men’s set at Slim’s was the best set I’ve seen them play. The delightful confusion created in my brain by going from the Liturgy show to the Mount Moriah show. Frontier Ruckus covering the first verse of “September Gurls.”

Saturday highlights:
JKutchma debuting his full backing band at his day party show. Both times I got to see Des Ark. Superchunk playing “Driveway to Driveway” followed by “Learned to Surf.” Leaning against the wall at Tir Na Nog and disappearing into the music of All Tiny Creatures. Finally getting to see The Prayers & Tears. Bombadil, everything about seeing Bombadil play a full set again and in such a great space. The rickshaw that appeared as if by magic as I left Flechter for my last venue change of the festival (only rickshaw I took all weekend), that ride through Raleigh in the cool night made the whole thing seem enchanted. Then, closing out my festival with a roar with Titus Andronicus.
Titus Andronicus,Tir Na Nog, Hopscotch, Raleigh NC, 09/10/11

But like I said above, Hopscotch in specific, and this music community in general is more than just the music. This year I thought the quality of music was stellar (and better than last year), and I know I felt more a part of it than last year. My favorite thing is that this whole scene is so accessible and so accepting of what everyone brings to the table. I lived in Baltimore and went to shows there and in DC and attaching into the scene in both places was always very difficult for me because it seemed a event based scene. Here, though, it is a relationship based scene. I knew, no lie, 8 people in the area when I moved down. I’ve been in Durham for a year and a half now and it’s pretty safe to say that I could walk into almost any venue on almost any night and run into someone I know at this point. This scene is so excellent because it really is about communities of people, that great art is the byproduct is just a happy amazement.

One of the things that did bug me during Hopscotch was how many people didn’t look familiar, at all. During his set Jason Kutchma put out a call, a reminder, that great music is happening here all the time, not just during the big festival. That’s what I’d like to be able to convince everyone of. There is great music almost every night. And it is so easy to become a part of it all: go out. Talk to people. Pick a venue where you saw good shows at Hopscotch or a venue in Durham or one in Chapel Hill and just go. Go two nights, maybe three nights in a week .Talk to the door person, the bartender, the other regulars, the bands. At any place in the area, if you did that three nights in a week, you’d be welcomed as a local. I mentioned that this is a relationship based scene. That means it’s easy. You show up, and chat. That’s all. And, hey if you need to know someone at a show, hit up one of the shows I’ve got listed on my calendar and come up and say hi to me. I’ll be the one drinking either Diet Coke or Club Soda, wearing my camera on my wrist instead of around my neck, and taking pictures primarily using the viewscreen instead of the eyepiece. I don’t bite.

There are all kinds of great shows coming up just this month alone. Basically the whole week of 9/18-9/24 will be outstanding. In that week I’ll get to see: The Low Anthem & William Elliott Whitmore at Local 506, Jim Ward at 506, Fleet Foxes & The Walkmen at the Amphitheater, maybe squeeze in the end of Midtown Dickens’ set at Pinhook, Megafaun’s CD release w/ The Prayers and Tears opening at the Cradle, then the 24th will cap it all w/ insanity – Pride, a Duke Football game, Motorco’s birthday show of Cracker, with Red Collar & Almost People opening, and Pinhook for The Butchies w/ Pink Flag opening. That day of the 24th will be, like, everything I love in one packed day. (and then I’m sleeping)

Full list of all the Hopscotch coverage from this blog here

Hopscotch Day 2 Photos

A few photos from Hopscotch Day 2. Full photo set here

Last Year's Men, Churchkey/The Layabout Day Party, Slim's, Hopscotch, Raleigh NC, 09/09/11
Last Year’s Men

Helping Hands Marching Band, Hopscotch, Raleigh NC, 09/09/11
Helping Hands Marching Band

The Dodos, City Plaza, Hopscotch, Raleigh NC, 09/09/11
The Dodos

Drive-By Truckers, City Plaza, Hopscotch, Raleigh NC, 09/09/11
Drive-By Truckers

Drive-By Truckers, City Plaza, Hopscotch, Raleigh NC, 09/09/11
Drive-By Truckers

Guided By Voices, City Plaza, Hopscotch, Raleigh NC, 09/09/11
Guided By Voices

Justin Robinson & The Mary Annettes, The Hive, Hopscotch, Raleigh NC, 09/09/11
Justin Robinson & The Mary Annettes

Carlitta Durand, Lincoln, Hopscotch, Raleigh NC, 09/09/11
Carlitta Durand

Mount Moriah, Berkeley, Hopscotch, Raleigh NC, 09/09/11
Mount Moriah

Frontier Ruckus, Deep South, Hopscotch, Raleigh NC, 09/09/11
Frontier Ruckus

Now for Day 3.

Full list of all the Hopscotch coverage from this blog here

Festival for the Eno Day 2

Another lovely day at the Festival for the Eno yesterday.

Birds & Arrows:
Birds & Arrows, Festival for the Eno, Durham NC, 07/03/11

Girlyman:
Girlyman, Festival for the Eno, Durham NC, 07/03/11

Mount Moriah:
Mount Moriah, Festival for the Eno, Durham NC, 07/03/11

Hammer No More The Fingers:
Hammer No More the Fingers, Festival for the Eno, Durham NC, 07/03/11

Lynn Blakey:
Lynn Blakey, Festival for the Eno, Durham NC, 07/03/11

If you have today off work, the Festival starts up again in a few hours and will be fun again today. Have a slice or two of watermelon and a locopop, stand or swim in the river at least once, listen to music. Good times.

I’m off to work in a few, enjoy the day.

Full photo set from yesterday here

Bowerbirds w/ Mount Moriah, Motorco

Bowerbirds sounded great on Sunday night and it was great to see them again (it’d been about a year). The new songs sound great, “Northern Lights” (my favorite tune of their’s) made a stunning closer.
Bowerbirds, Motorco, Durham NC, 06/05/11

Mount Moriah opened. The more I listen to their album and listen to them live, the more I’m sure that their album will remain my favorite album of the year . Just stunningly fantastic.
Mount Moriah, Motorco, Durham NC, 06/05/11

full photo set here