Welcome to our blog. This is where we open up and let our viewers in. Here we'll basically be discussing any subject we feel like discussing. Some of the topics will and are undoubtedly going to be about photography (that is our passion you know) and others will just be our random musings.
Think of this blog as the "Seinfeld" of blogs. "Seinfeld" was a show about nothing and therefore this is a blog about nothing (in particular.)
Some of the things that we are very passionate besides photography are Operating Systems (Mac and Open Source especially), technology, networking (IT and otherwise), gaming, Hip-Hop, travel, self improvement, Seattle and a myriad of other things I can't think of at the moment.
-Thank you for visiting and please tell us what you think
RA Scion is without a doubt one of Seattle's best emcees. From his smooth flow, relevant content and skillful delivery. He really stands out amongst his peers.
My first time hearing RA was earlier this year when he did a cameo while opening up for hip hop legend Rakim and then the very next night when he did a full set while opening up for Wu Tang Clan chieftain Method man. (Check out those posts here and here) Upon hearing RA Scion the first time I remember saying to multiple people "Yo, where is this guy from?" I got some "I don't know's" and some "oh he's from here." I didn't believe it at first but the prospect of such a talent being a local product was inspiring.
Check out the video below to see what I mean. What a verse!!!
I told you the man has skills!!!
SureShotfoto.com RA Scion Concert 1"RA Scion" moments before getting ready to do his thing
Various moods of RA Scion -photos ©SureShotfoto.com
RA Scion's newest album is somewhat of a departure from what I've heard of his previously but I mean this in a good way. He seems to have broadened his horizons. It's very evident that this is a heartfelt and very deep project. His lyrics force you to think and reflect. Some of the songs even border on an almost allegorical nature. However hidden the meanings are he never forgets that he's also here to entertain, and entertain he does.
Unfortunately, RA and Rodney Hazard had some disagreements over business matters which forced his new album "The Sickle & the Sword" to no longer be available for sale. But, RA being the guy that he is decided rather than squabble over rights, credits or money, he'd rather give it away for free. Check out his latest video below:
Download the album here for free
This is not the first time A$AP mob has come to Seattle. This time front man A$AP Rocky may have been AWOL but the Trap Lord's throngs of fans didn't seem fazed. The show was completely sold out. I may not know everyone in or associated with the A$AP mob, but I can tell you they roll deep. When they arrived I counted roughly ten soldiers on stage.
SureShotFoto.com A$AP Ferg concert 1 A$AP Ferg gettin' it in
These artists definitely know how to entertain. Mix in theatrics, raw lyrics, hard beats and some stage diving for good measure. I guess you've got a winner.
Unfortunately, Ferg's people only allowed us to shoot for a limited number of songs (I'll never understand why some artists do that) but all and all what we got to see of the show was pretty good, and the fans had a great time which in the end is what it's really about.
-Post Script- I will say that the young woman that had her two or three year old son at the concert right at the stage, sitting in front of the speaker..... Epic parent fail!!!
Check out some of our previous posts
SureShotFoto.com Sir Mix-A-Lot Concert 1Mix-A-Lot proving that classics never die -photo © SureShotfoto.com
Yes you heard it right Sir-Mix-A-Lot!!! Sir Mix-A-Lot aka Anthony Ray, has been away from the spotlight for quite some time. No he's not back. Well, not yet and not as you might expect. Our homegrown hip hop Hall of Famer now is at home behind the production board. No, his next project isn't the next in a line of new up and comers looking to make their name in the rap game either. The project that consumes most of his time is a Seattle based rock group called "Ayron Jones and The Way."
--Insert two Paragraphs of Rambling Below
As my loyal readers now I'm a big fan of hip hop music, with that said in the week leading up to the concert I thought to myself that I'll just get there late to shoot "Mix-A-Lot" for my upcoming book that will be published in 2015 (insert gratuitous self promotion here) and then jet out. When I looked at the poster I was a bit puzzled that Ayron Jones name was above "Sir-Mix-A-Lot's." How could this be? It must be a mistake or something. Mix-A-Lot is a certified legend, he has the distinction of saying that his video was the first rap video ever played on MTV, why would he not be the headliner? Upon doing some further investigating I found out that the concert was in fact Ayron's release show for their first album entitled "Dream." Ok in that case I thought I could come early shoot "Mix", leave early and maybe get some of the early stages of editing done. Sweet sounds like a plan or not.....
The day before the show I stopped at a friends pizza shop, and we briefly chatted about what's going on with each of us and I mentioned the show. She says to me, "oh yeah that guy's awesome!" I'm thinking to myself of course he's awesome, has any other local hip hop artist even come close to what he's done? She continues to tell me that she borrowed a CD from a friend and it lived in her single disc CD player the entire time she had it (her friend had to ask for it back by the way). It quickly became evident that she wasn't talking about Sir Mix-A-Lot. The perplexed look on my face must have betrayed my ignorance because her endorsements of Mr. Jones quite vocal and frequent. So, me never wanting to be uninformed decided to do some digging, and I'm really glad I did.
So yes, I am now a card carrying fan of "Ayron Jones and the Way."
Anyway, I didn't come here to tell you any of that.
-On to the Show
I arrived just before Sir-Mix-A-Lot was to go on. Unfortunately, I missed another one of the acts that he manages, Miss Tomeka Williams. I've heard very good things about her. I'll definitely have to make it a point to catch one of her performances in the future.
After all of these years this was to be my first time seeing him perform live. I've seen him around town and even been to one of the video shoots from the "Swass" album, but this would be my first experience to see the artist who actually put Seattle on the hip hop map perform.
SureShotFoto.com Sir Mix-A-Lot Concert 2Hip hop legend Sir Mix-A-Lot going hard -photo © SureShotFoto.com SureShotFoto.com Sir Mix-A-Lot Concert 3Sir Mix-A-Lot interacting with the crowd and doing his thing. Thanks for the photobomb lady. -photo © SureShotFoto.com
Sir Mix-A-Lot performed his well known classics and whipped the sold out crowd into a frenzy for his relative new comer. Upon exiting the stage, Mix-A-lot one again confirmed that the night did not belong to him. "This is Ayron's night" he exclaimed. In his final sign off for the evening he declared that "Ayron Jones is the King of Seattle." "Wow" I thought, "That's a lot of pressure. Let's see how he handles it."
SureShotFoto.com Sir Mix-A-Lot Concert 4Mix was kind enough to give us a second for a photo after his set. -photo © SureShotFoto.com
Now it was time to see if Ayron could indeed live up to the praise given him by his producer. In short order Mr. Jones made it clear that he was in no way looking to make Mix-A-Lot a liar.
SureShotFoto.com Ayron Jones and the Way Concert 1Ayron Jones and the Way -photo © SureShotFoto.com
Ayron's brand of rock is somewhat tough to nail down to a specific "style." It is easy to see he's influenced by a lot of artists from a lot of genres. There are undoubtedly going to be comparisons to Jimi Hendrix for several reasons, but I see additional possible influences from the likes of Stevie Ray Vaughn to Muddy Waters to Son House to Huddie Leadbetter. Now being mentioned in the same breath as any of these legends is already a great honor, not to mention on the release of your first album. That's downright impressive! Don't get me wrong he's not being enshrined in the Hall of Fame just yet. He posses a lot of raw energy, what bluesmen like to call "lightnin." This can only get you so far though. As he matures and gets more "mileage" he'll only get better. This young man definitely has his best days in front of him. I can't wait to see how he progresses.
SureShotFoto.com Ayron Jones and the Way Concert 2One of Ayron's gifts is being able communicate the range of human emotions with his guitar. -photo © SureShotFoto.com
SureShotFoto.com Ayron Jones and the Way Concert 3Ayron switching gears on us with his very soulful ballad "My Love Remains." -photo © SureShotFoto.com SureShotFoto.com Ayron Jones and the Way Concert 4The whole band profiled here. Deandre Enrico is the evil genius on Bass, Kai Van DePitte an absolute monster on drums and of course on guitar and vocals, the newly anointed "King of Seattle" - Ayron Jones -photo © SureShotFoto.com
SureShotFoto.com Ayron Jones and the Way Concert 5Stage Dive!!! -photo © SureShotFoto.com
I'm going to review, rate and give my comments and opinions on some kind of media, instrument or device. What people must understand, is that critics that universalize their reviews as gospel are always wrong 100 percent of the time. What the populace likes or dislikes is extremely subjective. There is no right or wrong answer to if some sort art is good or not. There just isn't. With that said critics are always wrong. What they should in fact say is something like, "If you're like me then...." or "If you have similar tastes to me then....." So I'll use either of the previous quotations and begin my review.
SureShotFoto.com Ayron Jones and the Way Concert 6This looks to be a solemn moment in the show. -photo © SureShotFoto.com
This particular night was again, "Ayron Jones and the Way's" album release party for the new album "Dream." It was a coming out party of sorts and come out he truly did. I downloaded the album as soon as I was able to. I remember thinking to myself, "Where did this kid get these blues chops? Wow!" This young bluesman sings and plays with such substance and the soul of much older more experienced artist.
At only 8 tracks, at first glance the album could seem infinitesimal, especially by today's mass consumption standards. Let me tell you, nothing could be farther from the truth. This is an album that you can listen to from front to back easily. This can't be said for a great many of the albums released these days. Of course some of the tracks resonate more than other but overall this is an extremely solid opening salvo for this young artist.
Here is my list of stand out tracks on this album:
Support Independent Artists by clicking on the image and ordering the album below:
Check out some of our previous posts
SureShotFoto.com Ayron Jones and the Way Concert 11You ain't know??? Our guy Ayron's more that just a musician. it was evident that Ayron enjoyed every minute of being on stage. -photo © SureShotFoto.com
Welcome everyone!!! That's exactly how I felt inside when I went to this concert. It was an eye opening experience. I really hadn't thought about it until I started writing this post but after many years of being a reggae fan this would actually be my first actual live reggae concert. Seattle isn't exactly what you'd call a hotbed for reggae unfortunately. Maybe times are changing. Let's hope so.
Upon walking in I saw one of the openers who I was unfamiliar with but this crooner's smooth yet passionate vocals were as good as any these ears had ever heard. He was introduced by one of the absolute legends of Jamaican music Robbie (Robert Shakespeare) of Sly & Robbie fame. The honey voiced singer was Fenton Wardle of the Oakland, CA based "Reggae Angels".
After Fenton was done with his rather exhilarating set Sly & Robbie came out and did a music only set with both Sly & Robbie soloing on drums and bass respectively.
The man himself, the on again off again member of reggae super group "Black Uhuru" Michael Rose (sometime spelled Mykal Rose or Mykal Roze). Michael was a great entertainer, the crowd loved him, and he even had fun with the camera man ie me. This was a wonderful, wonderful show. Neumos has done it again. It's no wonder why they're one of the best concert venues in Seattle.
What's up everyone? That's right "The Uncluded." You thought we only shot hip hop. No, we've got a lot more range than that. Even though Aesop is considered hip hop this collaboration is definitely "Rock."
Aesop Rock as part of "The Uncluded" photo by SureShotfoto.com
We covered the Aesop concert a couple months back, and I said it before and I'll say it again that Aesop's brand of hip hop is not my brand, but he does have a loyal tribe so I really can't hate on his hustle.
Kimya Dawson is one part of "The Uncluded" photo by SureShotfoto.com
Kimya Dawson however is a different story. I am most definitely a fan. I can't front and say that I'm old school, and I've been into her forever but I can say that ever since I saw the movie "Juno" I've been intoxicated by her art. She also has a very, very loyal tribe. I'm sure that some people can and do hate on her. She may not be the best singer or have the best voice, but I don't believe that's what her tribe needs from her. Her tribe is more interested in the gifts that she provides us with. To Kimya's credit I believe the root of her art is her humanity and her intent when giving these gifts.
"The Uncluded" in Seattle, WA @ Neumos
Needless to say, the concert was fabulous. I can't wait to see Kimya on the next go round.....