One of the worst feelings for a concert photographer is standing there with a camera hanging on your shoulder, watching a great show with great lighting, and not being able to take any photos.
That's what happened a couple weeks ago at The Loft in Lansing.
It's a pretty intimate venue, even when at its maximum capacity of 400. It's a great place to see a show, but one of the down sides is its lighting (read about it here).
No camera policy exists at The Loft, so professional cameras are allowed. Out of the 15+ shows I've secured "credentials" for there, only one or two actually required photo passes.
Needtobreathe came through last month and I was coming out to support their opener The Wild Feathers.
Usually, when the opener has media come out, the headliner agrees to let the outlet stay to cover their set as well.
Not in this case.
When I arrived I was told that if anyone was caught taking photos of needtobreathe with a professional camera they'd be kicked out.
Needless to say I was a little irritated. But it gets worse.
The lighting for The Wild Feathers' set was The Loft's typical lighting (they have no barricade and the show was packed, so I was on the "upper level" in the back of the venue):
But as soon as needtobreathe started it was evident that they brought some of their own lights. It was brighter than I've ever seen it with light yellow and white lights. Here's an iPhone shot:
needtobreatheFrom my iPhone
It really killed me! I had a chance to get some better-than-usual shots that would make both The Loft and the band look great, but I couldn't take it. And I'm a fan of needtobreathe so I wish I could have enjoyed the show a bit more.
So ultimately the point of this post is why would a band have the "no photographers" policy? Can someone please answer that for me?
The only other band I've ever heard of doing this was Maroon 5, but even they allowed house photographers.