Ryan Bingham & the Dead Horses

Photos: Ryan Bingham & the Dead Horses

Country singer Ryan Bingham and the Dead Horses performing at Farm Aid 2009.

I just saw the film Crazy Heart, a drama staring Jeff Bridges in a pretty fantastic role as Bad Blake, a hard living country singer in what seems like the twilight of his career. While Bad Blake plays with a string of pick up bands while touring the Southwest, one in particular caught my eye at the beginning of the film.

The group consisted of country star Ryan Bingham and his band The Dead Horses, who I'd caught at Farm Aid 2009.

Bingham co-wrote the title track of Crazy Heart, “The Weary Kind,” with T-Bone Burnett, which recently won a Golden Globe for Best Original Song and is up for the same distinction in the Academy Awards.

Photos: Ryan Bingham & the Dead Horses

Photos: Ryan Bingham & the Dead Horses

Photos: Ryan Bingham & the Dead Horses

Photos: Ryan Bingham & the Dead Horses

Photos: Ryan Bingham & the Dead Horses

Photos: Ryan Bingham & the Dead Horses

Photographer's Notes:

Ryan Bingham & the Dead Horses were the first band that I caught at Farm Aid 2009 and a great way to start the festival. Since it was relatively early in the day when Bingham and company took the stage, the photo pit was relatively quiet at this time – a nice luxury in a day where the photo pit was soon jam-packed with no room to move.

Primary considerations for this show were a stack of monitors lining the front of the stage and a couple of road cases in the photo pit, both of which served to constrain shooting angles a bit. Luckily, the band was set up a bit from the edge of the stage and made for great shooting.

Since the sun was still high in the sky, Ryan Bingham benefited from a really nice mix of open shade and subtle stage accents – nearly perfect shooting conditions.

Here's Bingham performing “The Weary Kind.”

My Camera DSLR and Lenses for Concert Photography

Nikon Z 7:
I use two Nikon Z 7 for my live music photography. A true do-it-all mirrorless camera with amazing AF, great speed and fantastic resolution.


Nikon 24-70mm f/2.8S:
The 24-70mm is my go-to lens. The range is ideal for stage front photography and the image quality is superb.


Nikon 70-200mm f/2.8 VR:
A perfect pair to the Nikon 24-70mm f/2.8, I can basically shoot any job with the midrange and this lens. Superb image quality.


Nikon 14-24mm f/2.8:
Ultra-wide perspective, ridiculously sharp even wide open at f/2.8. I love using this lens up-close and personal, where it excels.

See My Full Kit for Concert Photography

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