This year is the inaugural “SO.CO Music Photographer of the Year Award 2023” competition, designed to celebrate the best music photographers from around the world.
I’m aware that whilst I’ve been busy working, new generations have come up where making friends on social media has always been an intrinsic part of their journey. For them, they immediately have hundreds of followers they can rely on for votes in situations such as this.
Despite having been in this industry for 17 years I haven’t grown up collecting “friends” as I’ve been too busy grafting! It would be great to get on the leaderboard in this competition, but even if I don’t have enough social media followers, I still wanted to take this opportunity to celebrate my achievements and express my gratitude to everyone who has paid to work with me and supported me in my career.
I have a wide variety of clients and a broad spectrum of work, but first and foremost my passions are music and photography. Here are some of my paid commission highlights which I hope you enjoy, and if you do, I’d love it if you could take the time out to vote for me… I’ll be your friend if you do!
Please login and VOTE… Thank you!
This is the picture I’ve selected for the “Image of Music Award”. Why? Because it’s a really poignant reminder of the essential symbiotic relationship between musicians and their fans. I got this shot when the Courteeners held a gig at the Old Trafford Cricket Ground just 5 days after the bombing at Ariana Grande’s show at the Manchester Arena in 2017.
I’ve had 4 or 5 shoots with the Courteeners for Q Magazine and they’ve always been really good fun. This image for me however, speaks to more than the good times. Here we have a moment of solidarity between musicians and fans. A moment when going to a gig isn’t just about having a good time, it’s a collaborative act of united bravery and defiance.
This shot was taken with my first digital camera, the Nikon D100. Representing one of their first home county gigs after the release of their first album, when they exploded onto the scene.
At the time, myself, Reverend and The Makers and the Arctic Monkeys all worked together at The Boardwalk in Sheffield. As home grown talent we all supported one another, helped to make connections, and came up together in our own unique ways.
Through working with Groove Armada when they ran their Lovebox festival, I got to catch Blondie here in 2007 in front of their tour bus.
I’ve had the honour of doing shoots at Maida Vale a few times, here’s one of the distinctive Elly Jackson of La Roux.
I just love this amazing crowd shot where you can see that both Danny O’Donoghue and the fans are revelling in the moment!
Here I managed to get a great shot just days ahead of a MOJO shoot with the band, whilst at a gig in Kendal back in 2019.
I was introduced to singer-songwriter Tom Grennan through people at his label. He was really lovely but I didn’t expect him to remember me a whole year later when I got this shot, but he did. He also selected this image to go out in promotions for him, cheers Tom!
My first time using a mirrorless camera at a gig was here shooting Snow Patrol with the Nikon Z6.
I’ve done a few commissions for LD Communications, this was back when they needed images to promote the Leeds-Reading festival. Here The Vaccines made the wonderful Brudenell Social Club in Leeds their home for the night.
The casual side of Rock n Roll! Johnny Marr making me a lovely cup of tea when I got to shoot him at his studio for Q magazine. Also pictured is Tom Doyle, writer for Q and MOJO as well as author of highly acclaimed books on the likes of Kate Bush and Paul McCartney.
On commission for Festival Republic who promote Leeds-Reading, I really like this “in amongst it” shot of the crowd at a BBC event for whom I’ve since done regular radio jobs with.
Through a connection at Q I got to photograph The Who in Birmingham for the first ever edition of Planet Rock magazine in 2017.
And finally, I just had to include this highlight from my favourite of all the festivals; Download. Taken in 2022, Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes making that connection with the fans that live music is all about, and bringing this overview full circle.