Sunday, May 20, 2012

Ben's First Baseball Game

Ever since August 2005 when Weena and I found out we were having a baby boy I have been waiting for this moment. Today I took Benjamin to his first baseball game between the Washington Nationals and Baltimore Orioles at Nationals Park. At age six and a half this was the perfect time to introduce him to the grand old game live and in person. It involved the Orioles, who I grew up watching since the Washington Senators moved to Texas in 1971, and the Nationals, who started play in DC in 2005, the year Ben was born.

Friday night I hit Stub Hub, secured a pair of tickets in the upper deck and we were set. Originally my idea was to bring my camera and get as many shots of both teams as I could but once I got there, I decided to concentrate on Ben's actions and emotions.

Since I am a fan of both teams, we rooted for the Nats today and when we go to Oriole Park at Camden Yards, we will root for the Orioles there. Today the Nats had their ace Stephen Strasburg on the mound and the ball park was packed. The Orioles got off to a 3-0 lead after two innings and I thought we wouldn't see very much of Strasburg. But the Nats, looking at a three game sweep by the Orioles, woke up and scored the next nine runs and cruised to a 9-3 victory. They hit three homers, including one by Strasburg, his first major league homer.

It was an incredible experience for me personally. Ben had a great time, calling this one of the greatest days ever. Made me proud. We will be back to Nats Park again soon and we have plans to see the Orioles this Summer in Baltimore.

Box Score

Ben enjoying a hot dog before the game

Nats pitcher Stephen Strasburg

Ben soaking up the action

The view from Section 312, Row D, Seats 7 & 8

Nationals Park

Ben excited after the Nats tied the score at 3-3

Ben focused (note you can see the Capitol in the background)

Ben wearing Dad's Nats hat

Nats pitcher Tom Gorzelanny

Orioles pitcher Darren O'Day

Nats pitcher Tyler Clippard

Nats turn a double play to end the game.

Nats win 9-3!

A happy Ben after the game

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Drumfish at The State Theater

I had an opportunity to photograph three bands last night at a benefit supporting
A Children's Brain Tumor Cure Foundation at the State Theater in Falls Church, VA.

I was already familiar with one of the band's, drumfish as I photographed their show last May at Jammin' Java in Vienna, VA

The Falls Church News-Press recently did an article on drumfish in their Press Pass column. One of my pictures was used (see below) for the article in the print edition.

Before the photo sequence I've included a description of each band taken from the press materials. Click on any photo for a larger version and a photo sequence. Enjoy!

Outside the State Theater

Energetic newcomers to the Northern Virginia music scene, Simone and the Spectrum are quickly catching the eyes and ears of all those who see and hear them. Simone Sattler’s infectious blend of indie-pop piano and striking vocals combines with her Spectrum to form a quizzical and uplifting sound. Guitarist D.J. Kyriakides, bassist Troy Tyrer and drummer John Werthmann fill out the quartet, each bringing technical skill and years of experience as music majors at area universities. The band is currently performing at numerous venues around the Mid-Atlantic and is in the studio recording their first full length record.

Cartoon Johnny is an energetic vocal band that pushes the limits of traditional a cappella. Drawing on influences from classic soul to modern alternative, they've crafted an exciting sound that is often mistaken for an instrumental band - but it's all vocal. Based in the Washington DC area, Cartoon Johnny performs a variety of sure-fire audience favorites and their own original music, bringing audiences to their feet show after show. They are two-time National Harmony Sweepstakes finalsists, winning the title for the Mid-Atlantic Region in 2005, and in New York in 2009. Cartoon Johnny has shared the stage with some of the best in a cappella and beyond. Highlights include headlining ACappellaFest Detroit in 2010, and performing with Marvin Hamlisch in his Christmas special at the Kennedy Center in 2008. Hamlisch invited the group to join him for his July 4th concerts in San Diego in 2009.



Getting the stage set for drumfish

                               Discussion about A Children's Brain Tumor Cure Foundation

From its inception in 1992, drumfish has melded a wide variety of styles, cultures and genres. This approach has led the band to develop a signature sound forged in the fires of cross genre innovation, harnessed by an acoustic modern rock feel. In early 2010, drumfish recorded its 4th CD, “Memoirs” at Assembly Line Studios near Washington, DC with double-platinum engineer, Kevin “131” Gutierrez. Songs from that record have won first place in the Indie International Song Writing Contest, been featured on AOL Music resulting in 3.2 million downloads and also been licensed by MTV, the Discovery Network and America’s Most Wanted. On May 12th the group will record their live, fifth record, “Five Live” at The State Theater and film a live HD concert DVD.


drumfish set list

About the Charity
A Children's Brain Tumor Cure Foundation(a public charity under the Pediatric Low Grade Astrocytoma (PLGA) Foundation) is the largest, and only, non-profit organization dedicated to providing hope to children, parents, and families fighting the most common forms of children's brain tumors, PLGAs. Founded in August 2007, as a registered 501(c)(3) organization, the foundation is made up of families and friends dedicated to bringing hope, in the form of more effective, less toxic treatments and a cure, to children who are battling brain tumors.

The Foundation's mission is to unite families around the world who are impacted by this disease in order to raise awareness, education, and funds for PLGA research. To date, families associated with the A Children's Brain Tumor Cure Foundation have raised over $9 million for PLGA research, funding over two dozen new research projects, at 13 different institutions through the country and Europe.

The Foundation actively promotes partnerships with other non-profit organizations, private individuals and government entities and has collaborated on fund raising, education and grant allocations in order to leverage resources and funds.

Band websites:
Simone and the Spectrum

Cartoon Johnny