After photographing El Monstero late last year, I knew that I'd have to catch Celebration Day. Comprised of many of the same band members and crew as the bigger Pink Floyd tribute, Celebration Day channeled Led Zepplin in an epic, three-hour rock fest of two sold-out shows. Here are the photos from the first night.
Music Photographer's Notes:
After I found out that Celebration Day shares many of the same musicians as El Monstero, I knew that I had to photograph it. Somehow, these two shows had been off my radar in the past few years, but I'm very glad that I could catch them both on assignment.
While the production was scaled down compared to the week-long residency that El Monstero enjoys, Celebration Day was pleasantly surprising in its production. I'd heard that in past years only the house lights were used, so when I showed up to see a huge rig of cans at the back of the stage, I knew it was going to be a good night.
Overall, light levels were in the ISO 2000-3200 range – totally workable for the Nikon D3 and D700, my mainstays.
The band was set back about a meter from the edge of the stage, so this really was an event where the 70-200mm f/2.8 excelled. Here's a snap from the photo pit that shows this distance (and the height of the stage):
Thanks to the band's photograph, Paul, I was set up with stage access for this gig, which never hurts. Add to that, the atmospheric light show, and a full-set shooting time, and this set was a blast.
These are images from the first night of Celebration Day's two performances – stay tuned for the second night.