Labrat Photos: Blog en-us (C) Labrat Photos (Labrat Photos) Wed, 08 Aug 2018 22:07:00 GMT Wed, 08 Aug 2018 22:07:00 GMT Labrat Photos: Blog 80 120 No Rum or Criminal Activity I have enjoyed the music of Rum Thief since the first listen. I challenge anyone to listen to Dirty Shoes and not join in singing along. As well as his hard hitting songs there is also a more tender side to some of his tracks.

At every gig he plays a devoted group of family and friends are there supporting him and having a party. His band played a great set and also looked to be having a great time.

I was really pleased to see that Guy Fiddler the Harmonica Guy was at the gig to join Jot on stage and add that special harmonica sound to the song. The two of them sounded great together with the crowd joining in. 

All too soon the set was over the big lights came on and time to hit the road.

Thanks to Deaf Institute great staff and sound.

Thanks Jot and team for the invite.

Unfortunately the lighting was red lights and a lot of fog which made photography difficult. (Red lights should be saved for a brothel!).

]]> (Labrat Photos) band bass beat beer crowd dance drum gig guitar live manchester music rock rock and roll sing Wed, 08 Aug 2018 22:06:05 GMT
Wearing a beret and glasses  

Band on the Wall is one of my favourite venues in Manchester nice bar to relax in prior to the gig and then a great gig space with quality sound and lighting. I was here for Mica Millar performing as part of her Defender tour.

The support had to be changed at the last minute due to illness. While I hope that they make a speedy recovery it did give me the opportunity to watch the brilliant Jermaine Peterson. What a rich, deep and soulful voice. It was also very impressive that his full set was original songs and not a bad one amongst them. Jermaine was accompanied by a lovely female singer and talented guitarist both did their jobs perfectly.

I spoke with the video guys to ensure we could work together as it was going to be tight for space at the front. I was fortunate that they were nice relaxed guys and we had no issues and Im looking forward to seeing the results of their night.

Mica Millar took to a full stage to great applause from the full house at the venue. The full stage was due to 2 guitarists, keys, backing singers, drummer and a strings section. It says a lot about Mica that she has the skills to blend all these performers as well as her amazing vocals.

I was lucky enough to have watched Mica perform at The Deaf Institute and really loved her voice and performance. I was still slightly concerned when I looked at the stage that her amazing voice may loose some of its impact amongst the wealth of music on the stage. I was really pleased that her voice was still the highlight of the night with the musicians supporting her brilliantly.

The crowd loved every song and joined in with several, I was fortunate enough to be standing next to two ladies that have song with Mica and so had the best surround sound. On the subject of sound credit should go to the technician as the sound was perfect all night. Mica performed a brilliant set blending new and established songs with her usual relaxed style. 

After the final song the crowd continued to sing along to themselves. Mica joined them to sign CDs and thank all those that had attended and in the bar the DJ calmed the crowd with relaxed tunes.

Thank you to Mica and team for inviting me to photograph the event, to all the staff at Band on the Wall for looking after me.



]]> (Labrat Photos) band bass beat beer crowd dance drum gig guitar live manchester music sing Fri, 06 Apr 2018 23:59:57 GMT
Survived Another One  

As we say goodbye to 2017 a quick look back

My friends from One Voice Community Choir performed at the Harris Preston. It was a great night.

The Sherlocks had another great year and just keep going from strength to strength. I also witnessed the fastest guitar string change by a vary talented tech.

Jordan Allen played an amazing set at 53 degrees Preston and is a name that will be all over 2018.

Rum Thief performed a charity night at Factory Manchester. Well done mate great night.

Orchid Hunters giving it plenty at Factory

Blackthorn Music Festival was once again one of the best weekends of the year. Brilliant music and staff thanks again to the Hancock family for the invite.

Sage Francis and BDolan performed in Preston. I feel lucky to have been able to watch BDolan on several occasions and it is always a great night.

Martha and the Vandellas yes the legend, played a full set and then stayed back to meet members of the audience at Live Preston

Jess Kemp put on a charity night at the Station Irlam with great acts to raise money for the Christie.

Huge thanks to all the great performers for asking me to shoot their nights. Thanks to the promoters and staff at the venues for accommodating me at the gigs.

Thanks to all the other gig photographers for their advice and letting me share a pit with them. All the best for 2018 






]]> (Labrat Photos) band bass beat beer crowd dance drum gig guitar live manchester music rap rock rock and roll sing Mon, 01 Jan 2018 01:03:50 GMT
Irlam all change Jess Kemp is a performer that I have seen many times and always enjoy her music. She called me to ask if I could shoot a charity night that she was putting on at the Station Irlam. I checked the date and was pleased to let her know I could make it. Then the fun began.

My car was leaking fluid and so that was not an option but not a problem the venue was a railway station. I could catch a train and even spoil myself with a pint or 2. I checked the times and the last one left at 22:00 no good. I got little V out of the garage and attached a case with my camera equipment to to the pillion seat and fired her up. It was an interesting ride on a dark foggy winter night but I made it.

The venue is the old station on the platform of Irlam station. It had been completely renovated and now housed rail memorabilia as well as a small bar and comfortable seating. The gig was to be in the coal yard room which is a great room with painted adverts on the brick walls. The lighting is edison style bulbs hanging from the roof beams. A christmas tree and fire in the corner gave the room real atmosphere. A banner across the back wall reminded me of the purpose of the evening as well as to entertain was to raise funds for The Christie.

Olivia Jade stepped up to the microphone and showed what great voice she has. At the request of Jess she even performed a christmas number I am a real christmas grump but even I enjoyed it!

Ashley Sherlock is a performer that I have been aware of and have wanted to see for a while and he did not disappoint. Great voice and guitar playing made for a wonderful set.

Carl North normally plays with his band the lonely hearts but tonight he was one man with his guitar. I knew from the first few chords I was going to like his music. Hard hitting blues riffs and a strong voice filled the room. A brilliant performance and I can't wait to see him with his band next year.

The raffle. It had to happen you can't have a fundraiser without a raffle! It also gave Sam who had sorted out the sound for the night to switch to performance mode. Jess and Sam compliment each other so well and with a medley of their great songs the room was alive. Jess has song lyrics with real meaning to her and also friends in the room I also enjoy the way she stamps out the base line with a stomp box. Sam switched guitars and styles as he accompanied her. I was really impressed he also included slide guitar to one of the songs. The final song showed how skilled they both are on the guitar as the tempo increased to a crazy level. 

Many thanks to Jess for inviting me down.

Thanks to all the performers for a great night and the Station at Irlam for the perfect venue.


]]> (Labrat Photos) band bass beat beer charity christie crowd drum gig guitar live music rock sing Wed, 20 Dec 2017 23:46:19 GMT
Ferret Goes Crazy  

Thursday night in Preston is not always the wildest of places to party tonight was different.

I picked up a friend and we headed to the Ferret unfortunately we were too late to enjoy their great food. I was impressed at the number of people already in the venue.

The first band on stage were Live at the Arcade and what a great start to the night. This scouse  4 piece were selected by BBC introducing and it was easy to see why.  The songs Tied up and Obsessed are on their web site and are worth checking out.

Sheafs have a great following and played a brilliant set. The new song This is not a protest had the room singing along as well as going crazy on the dance floor. This is another band that have been all over the BBC as wells playing some big stages. This is one band I would love to see in 2018 especially to see the front man going for it on a big stage.

I had a disagreement with my friend Chris about Jordan Allen. He loved his purple paisley shirt I was less convinced. This is the only disagreement that we had as both agreed he is a great performer and with the band put on a great show. Jordan keeps going from strength to strength  producing more great music. If you have not seen or listened to this band do it. Also full credit to the Allen army who sang along to every song.

This is one gig were the room felt at capacity from the first song by the first band to the last song. Thanks to Jordan for inviting me down. All the bands for amazing performances. The Ferret team for their hospitality.

]]> (Labrat Photos) band bass beat beer crowd dance drum gig guitar live music rock rock and roll sing Tue, 05 Dec 2017 20:18:18 GMT
Epic Night with Bearded Men I was quite excited when I heard that BDolan was going to perform again in Preston. I was very excited when Dan agreed to let me photograph the night. 


It was a cold wet windy day as the tail end of the hurricane hit Preston. I was pleased to be in the venue out of the weather.  BDolan was already laying out merch which included great looking vinyl. It was probably a good job that I don't take a lot of cash with me!

The first act of the night was Person A who took to the stag with a good number of people in the venue. He performed a great set which went down well and had everyone warmed up. He performed a song accompanied by Tom on guitar dedicated to friends who are off traveling which went down well.

BDolan cuts a menacing figure as he stands in his black jacket hood shades onup back to the crowd. The background music level rises and BDolan starts his narration. The songs flow with the crowd instantly joining in singing along to the backing samples and responding to BDolan call and responses.

I am fortunate enough to have seen BDolan perform twice before and his songs seem more relevant now than ever. Look up the song "Who's side are you on".

The set went down really well with a good crowd making the room bounce to many of the songs.

I have listened to Sage Francis and was excited to see him live. He did not disappoint. He has a really clever set of lyrics and a lot of energy. He ran around the stage as he performed his songs and the crowd loved them all.

BDolan came back on stage to join Sage and they performed together. Individually they are great together they are even better. 

At the end of the gig both performers left the stage and spent a long time chatting to fans and signing autographs.


Thanks to staff at 53 degrees

Thanks to all 3 performers for a great night

Big thanks to Dan for inviting me down and getting these brilliant performers to Preston.

]]> (Labrat Photos) band bass crowd dance gig live music rap sing Wed, 25 Oct 2017 23:24:32 GMT
Going Underground I had a walk from the car to the venue and fired a few shots off while walking there is always plenty to shoot in Blackpool.

Bootleg is a subterranean bar with a nice vibe. It has various areas including bar area with tables, pool table, comfortable chairs and the stage area. The stage is low and relatively small. There is no pit or barriers for photographers.

The sound at the venue was good unfortunately the lighting was terrible. As ever I worked with what I had.

The Surrenders were the first band on and payed a great set. I had not heard this band before but I really enjoyed their set. 

No Hot Ashes were next to take to the stage and they didn't disappoint. The size of the stage restricted the dancing and on stage antics. I was pleased that they sounded as good as I remembered and the crowd seemed to enjoy the set as much as I did.


Unfortunately  it was 23:45 when they finished which resulted in me doing a cinderella style sprint for the door. 

Thanks to the bands for entertaining me

Thanks to MR Peeps for the invite 

Cheers to Bootleg Blackpool for the invite.



]]> (Labrat Photos) band bass beer crowd dance drum guitar manchester music rock rock and roll sing Wed, 18 Oct 2017 22:50:00 GMT
Vegas in Manchester I met Nigel Cartner at Blackthorn Festival. He wrote reviews of the festival and was great company. At the 2017 Blackthorn Festival he told me that he had written a book and would I like to come to the launch. A night in a casino with 3 top music acts sounded good to me.

I was not in my natural habitat as I walked through the casino towards the private room with pull up display showing the book cover and tag line.

It was the first gig I had been at where my drinks change was passed to me on a small silver tray!

Thankfully Nigel and also lots of other friends from the music industry were already in the room and the first act was soon on the stage.

I have been fortunate enough to watch Jess Kemp play on numerous occasions. Her family had also turned out to support her. I have never seen Jess play a bad set and she didn't disappoint with her own songs a cover that related to music mentioned in the book.

Matt Fryers took to the stage and I instantly liked his voice and music. He really puts a lot of emotion into his songs and this resulted in a great set. He did an amazing cover of Hurt.

Mohawk Radio are a band that I have heard talked about a lot and it has all been very positive. Mia has a great voice and when surrounded by talented musicians it could only lead to a good things. 

Nigel did some readings from the book which just makes me want to start the book so Im off


Lost in Manchester Found in Vegas is available through Amazon.


Thanks to Nigel for inviting to his night

Thanks to all 3 acts for brilliant performances

and thanks to friends old and new for letting me shoot them.

]]> (Labrat Photos) band bok crowd drum gig live music sing Tue, 03 Oct 2017 23:31:36 GMT
Circus Starr I took my boys to watch Circus Starr in Blackpool. This was the third year that we had visited which says how good it is. I was sat with my boys and had a line of bulbs across my view I thought it would be tricky to get any shots.

The circus is a brilliant display of what humans can do. The strength, grace and bravery of the performers was evident in every act. 

A very funny clown kept everyone amused while the equipment was changed between acts.

Thanks to all at Circus Starr

]]> (Labrat Photos) acrobat circus perform Wed, 20 Sep 2017 19:30:39 GMT
Needles, Fire, Lawnmower and Chainsaw I spent a brilliant day at Blackpool Tatcon. This was the second year that I had been invited to take shots and I had a great day.

The room has rows of booths with artists doing tattoo and at the end a large stage. There is also a separate room with trade tables.

The quality of the tattoos being produced had to be seen to be believed. On stage Johnny Strange help my attention with an act that included: cutting an apple with a chainsaw while blindfolded, balancing a running lawn mower on his chin and sword swallowing.

Am over 6 feet tall and so its unusual for me to sense being looked down on but today these ladies looked down on me. They also did a great stage act which included use of fire. The stage manager was looking slightly twitchy at the size of the flames.

Massive thanks to Anna and Sham for inviting and looking after me.

If you are tempted check out their work at inked tattoo Blackpool 

]]> (Labrat Photos) Sat, 26 Aug 2017 22:23:14 GMT
The Day the Music Didn't Die

I spent the day feeling upset and angry that people could go out to enjoy a night of music and it ended in tragedy. I am not a manc but I photograph most of my gigs in Manchester. I have met so many amazing people through the music scene. The one thing that I have learnt about Mancs is that they will not be shut up or put down. They will dust themselves off and come back stronger and louder.

Love and thoughts to all those effected by the attack.

See you at a Manc gig soon


]]> (Labrat Photos) Tue, 23 May 2017 22:10:37 GMT
Stealing Rum from the Factory The Factory Manchester is a venue housed in the original Factory Records building. As you enter a large picture of Tony Wilson looks down on you. 


The gig kicked off with Red Light Effect. I have not seen this band before but enjoyed their set. I also liked the sense of humour of the lead singer. The back of his t-shirt read "sing in tune drummer boy".


Mad Winter were next on the stage with a full crowd in the venue. This Manchester band really seemed to enjoy performing and played a good set.

Orchid Hunters describe their sound as "high energy grooving rock" and I agree. They have some videos on their Facebook so have a look. I really enjoyed their set and look forward to seeing them again.

Rum Thief are one of my favourite Manchester bands. I saw Jon perform a solo set and was transfixed by his style. He plays the guitar hard and yet has sensitive clever lyrics. He now performs with a full band and this has increased my enjoyment of the set. He was launching his new EP "Time To Make A Move". 


Jon also used the night to raise money for The Sanctuary which is a centre that provides a place of safety and support for adults at crisis point. Contact details are at bottom of blog.

The night also also provided people the opportunity to think about Priya and have a drink and dance for her.

The only downside to the night was the lack of time to enjoy the full set of songs planned by Rum Thief as time beat us. This just left me wanting to know when the next gig will be.


Thanks to the bands for entertaining me.

Thanks to Jon, family and friends for making me feel so welcome 

The Sanctuary can be contacted at

0300 003 7029

]]> (Labrat Photos) band bass beat beer crowd dance drum gig guitar live manchester music rock sing Wed, 29 Mar 2017 22:16:34 GMT
Elementary Jordan Im sorry but I missed shooting Saytra Play due to a minor issue getting into the venue I could hear them and they sounded great. Definitely catch you next time.

53 degrees is part of the UCLAN buildings the room is a large rectangle with the stage at the end and a small pit in front of it. On arrival the room was at capacity and I battled my way to the front. On stage the opening act where on their knees with screaming guitars and the crowd loved it. 

Jordan Allen is a performer who I have been trying to catch for a while. I watched and shot him several years ago and have seen him go from strength to strength since. He has a full band and new songs the crowd loved him. 


The Sherlocks are another band that I shot a few years ago and they have really developed into a class act. It is a  sign of their quality the amount of airplay they are getting on the big radio stations. I would see them soon before they move onto playing the huge venues where you watch them on a screen!


It is quite a low stage stage and narrow pit which resulted in tight angles for shooting the pit was also a bit cramped due to a film crew sharing the space for the first acts.

I also want to praise the security staff at the event. Due to the shape of the room and the capacity crowd it was getting very warm and tight at the barrier. The staff quickly provided water and helped a fan who was getting too hot. They didn't make a drama just acted quickly and effectively.

Also a shout to the guitar tech working for the Sherlocks who was able to replace, restring,tune a guitar and passed it before the song finished.

Thanks again to the bands for allowing me to shoot them.

Thanks to the promoter for putting on a great show

Cheers to all at 53 for looking after me.




]]> (Labrat Photos) band bass beat crowd dance drum gig guitar live music rock sing Fri, 10 Mar 2017 23:23:56 GMT
Familiar Voices at the Harris One Voice Community Choir are based in Preston and were invited to perform at the Harris museum. I have been visiting the museum all my life and I still enjoy looking around at the exhibits and the building itself. The choir I have known for a very long as my wife sang with them when I met her and I used to run the sound desk for them at gigs.

The choir leader is the ridiculously talented Tyndale Thomas who is a very skilled singer, composer, pianist as well as choir leader. 

The man on the keys was just a young boy when I first met him but as I expected he has developed into a very special musician Aidan Thomas.

The Harris is a really interesting building but not used for live performances and so I was really interested to see how this night would work out. The choir performed a lot of songs that I was familiar with and also a couple of new ones I did not know.

The choir sounded great and the soloists sounding amazing I could have put my camera down and simply enjoyed the music. 


It was a tricky venue to shoot in as the pillars blocked the view from some angles and the room was quite dark. The Harris staff were really accommodating and allowed me to shoot from the first floor of the museum.

Many thanks to the choir for inviting me to shoot them and great to catch up with you.

Thank you to all the staff at the Harris for your hospitality.



]]> (Labrat Photos) choir gig keys live music pianist sing solo soloist Fri, 03 Mar 2017 19:48:42 GMT
2016 Survived 2016 Review


Is a group of artistic misfits from Blackpool and the Fylde. The some of us don't seem to think we would benefit from traditional groups but do appreciate the benefit of supporting each other. Through the group I met a wide range of talented artists all willing to help each other out and a committee that puts on great events. Look out for us in 2017. It was through a member of this group that I got to shoot Tatcon and Blackpool light switch on as well as exhibit my work and win best new comer at the Linda Eaton awards.

Playing Out

I often have time to kill while waiting for my children who attend lots of activities. These shots are from Fairhaven lake and start of the illuminations on a cold winter night.




I was introduced to Sham the owner of Ink Den formerly Dragon Tattoo in Blackpool at an ICan social. He invited me to his Tattoo convention. I didn't really know what to expect and I loved the event. It was a mix of great entertainment and Tattoo artists all demonstrating their skills. Burlesque dancers at 11:00 in the morning is one way to snap you awake at a weekend! Looking forward to attending the event in 2017 Thanks again Sham and team.

Check out their amazing work on Facebook and their website at inkden Blackpool.


Took the camera to Carfest North which was at the new venue of Bolesworth. Had great fun shooting activities during the day including an amazing jet ski rider. At night traded with the Mrs to determine who looked after the kids and who watched the bands. My highlights included Seal and all the people of a certain age embarrassing their kids by going crazy to insomnia by Faithless.

Have never managed to contact Carfest organisers to discuss photos if anyone can help let me know.



Crafty Vintage

I met the organisers of the Crafty Vintage events at a gig and they invited me to shoot one of their weekends. I have been fortunate enough to be invited to numerous events over the year. They consist of taking a great venue such as Houghton Tower or B? And filling it with a mix of craft and vintage stalls. There is then an area with a great bar and food sellers. A mix of top quality entertainment is the final ingredient. I think the thing that makes the events so popular is that the organisers are able to hand pick the stalls and entertainment this ensures are all top quality. Thanks again to Laura, Dave and Dan all the best for 2017

Crafty Vintage will be holding more events in 2017 including a new venue have a look, at their Facebook and website for details.



This a great festival with loads of amazing music all weekend and with free entry. I was only available on the Friday night. I headed to The Eagle Inn Salford. Had great meeting new bands and shooting at this unique venue. If you have never been go for a pint and check out the gig room.

Free gig good beer again they have a Facebook page that will detail the event.




The Ferret is one of only a couple of music venues in Preston, for a city of its size with a large student populations it seems to have a really pot music scene. The Ferret puts on top acts and is also a great pub with quality food. Please get out and support live music or be condemned to the tastes of Simon Cowell.

Facebook again is the best place to check out their acts.





Preston Swingaroo keep me on the bench for the nights their regular photographer Ruth is unavailable. They bring in the best acts to play and sing for the very talented dancers. It is always a great friendly fun atmosphere and they have cake! Hope to visit you again in 2017.

Last Friday of the month at the Masonic Hall Preston.


Blackthorn Music Festival

This was my second year at this brilliant festival held at a farm just outside Manchester. The headline acts this year were Craig Charles, Bootleg Beatles, stereo mcs and Maximo Park. A lot of the other acts including some of the unsigned acts could have taken to the main stage and given the headlines a run for their money. As well as the great music and food it is a great place to catch up with friends from the music scene. I'm already excited about the potential bands for 2017 just hope the Hancock can put up with me again.

Their Facebook and website will detail how to obtain tickets for this brilliant festival




Facebook website and twitter friends, I think all gig photographers go through times of doubt with regards to their photos. It is the comments and encouragement that help us get through these times. So a huge thanks to everyone who has commented on my photos. There are a few people who take the time to respond to my shots on a regular basis and your support is really apreciated.


I'm not sure if Manchester bands realise how many top quality photographers operate in the city. If you need shots drop us a line or speak to us at a gig. Nothing spoils a bands web site like crap photos. Thanks to all the photographs who have inspired, encouraged and tolerated me throughout this year. I wish you all the best for 2017.


Promoters and event staff. Thank you to all the promoters who have asked me to shoot their gigs this year it has been a pleasure and I wish you and your bands all the best. Thanks to security for preventing stage diving singers landing on me and idiots pouring pints on me it is appreciated.


On the music front we have said goodbye to some major artists. On a smaller scale 2016 has been a year when we have had to say our goodbyes to several local performers. In their own way they have affected many people and through their music and memory will live on. If you believe that there is a place after death it now contains some brilliant musicians and lovely people and should hold amazing gigs.

If you would like copies of any of my shots please get in touch. I also have a limited number of night out passes so please let me know as soon as possible if you would like me to shoot your gig or event.

All the best for 2017 and don't let the bastards grind you down.


]]> (Labrat Photos) Manchester band bass beat beer blackpool cake carfest charles craft craig crowd dance diversity drum falling gig guitar live manchester mr peeps, blackthorn, music rock rock and roll seal sing stereo mc sunset swing swingaroo tower vamps vintage Fri, 06 Jan 2017 23:30:25 GMT
Red lights are for prostitutes Preston has a new live music venue in what used to be the foyer of the guild hall and I was invited to shoot a one night festival called Fiesta Bombarda there.

As you approach the entrance to the guild hall there is a very nice looking villa Italia on one side and Review Cocktail Bar on the other. I stepped into the Review bar to have a nosy and a coke. It looks like it has been designed by Drew Pritchard with industrial table and chairs exposed brickwork and vintage lights.

It has a central round bar and the cool tunes were intererupted by the general chatter of guests and ferocious shaking of cocktails.

Into the venue and was met by large neon masks and large stage and DJ already spinning some tunes.

The crowd really are a mixed bunch from over 50s in vintage Hawaiian shirts, Glastonbury hippies, black tshirt wearing metal fans. It was a truly strange group, in only thing in common was the feeling that the night was going to be a bit special. I checked the photography rules with Dan the promoter and the guild hall security thankfully they were all relaxed and let me do my thing.

The stage was well lit and spots also shone out into the crowd there was a pit across the front of the stage and I had access to the wings to shoot across the stage. It looked like I had no excuses not to get some good shots.

A group called the Beatnik collective consist of individuals skilled with poi, juggling clubs, staff and nunchucks. Most of these contained LEDs to show them off in the club. It was almost hypnotic watching the movement of the lights and the bodies of the performers.

There were 5 bands lined up with the DJ filling the minimal gaps between them. I am pleased to say that the sound was top class and the lighting almost perfect.

The opening band kicked off the night as the venue was filling nicely.


All the bands played great sets I had heard Jeremiah Ferrari before and he always gets the crowd going with his great reggae sounds. The way his songs were sung back surgested he had a numerous fans in the crowd.

I love the sound of Dirty Bare Feet from the first song to the last the crowd were captivated and I hope to catch them again soon.

Riot Jazz consist of trumpets, trombones, sousaphone and singer. The main man came to the front of the stage and passed out Christmas goodies including chocolate and fruit. The crowd would need their energy as the place was bouncing. i said that the lighting was near perfect that was because the lead from Riot jazz asked for the lights to be turned down and a red cast put across the stage. Red lights should be reserved for prostitutes not gigs!

The party was still going when I made my excuses to leave I had loved it but was exhausted.

Thanks to the bands and performers for letting me shoot them. Thanks to Dan for the invite hope to work with you again in 2017

Big thanks to staff of the guild hall complex for your hospitality.

]]> (Labrat Photos) band bass beat beer crowd dance drum gig guitar live music rock sing vintage Sun, 01 Jan 2017 15:02:59 GMT
Wise Men Headed East The Wise Men head East.

East Lancashire to Clitheroe for the Good Foxy Christmas Party. The night was held at the Grand Venue in Clitheroe which is a great space with bar and seating at the back on a raised level with large standing area below with plenty of room for dancing or a mosh pit. 

The first band were a new band to me Northern Sport Club seemed to have a confidence beyond their years and performed a good set. The crowd was a real mix with a lot of the bands family and friends in attendance. I enjoyed their set and credit to lead singer Millie for taking on a Nirvana classic and doing it well.

The boys from No Hot Ashes took to the stage and soon filled the standing area in front of the stage. The venue has a large stage and as usual Isaac took full advantage, stomping strutting and falling to it during the set. The standard of performance was as usual extremely high but we expect that from this band. They soon converted the crowd with their popular sing along songs including Easy Peeler which really went down well.

The Good foxy are local lads and the venue contained a lot of their family and friends who enjoyed dancing and singing to every song. They demonstrated great musical skills with a bit of banter with the crowd. Its was always going to be a good gig with them being on home turf and they didn't dissapoint.

Thanks to MR Peeps for arranging for me to shoot the gig.

Big shout to the bands for the great entertainment

Thanks  to the staff at the Grand Venue for their hospitality hope to be back soon


]]> (Labrat Photos) band bass crowd dance drum gig guitar live music rock sing Thu, 22 Dec 2016 00:49:05 GMT
Kick off In The City I couldn't see any evidence of the book launch as I entered Cosmonaut in Manchester. It was a nice bar and so I decided that I would use the toilet grab a drink and check the details online.

As I head down the stairs the beat from the tracks played by the DJ let me know I had found the right place. The small room was packed with a mix of people including a few I recognised. Photographers, musicians, promoters and artists all turned out to wish Photographer David Gleave well with his book launch.

The book is a collection of photographs he has taken on the streets of London, New York, Brooklyn, Brighton, Ibiza and Manchester. It was good to recognise some of his subjects in the book. If you like the sound of his photographs check him out.

I then moved on to a bar to shoot one of my favourite live bands. The Madding Crowd have several EPs out and an amazing stage presence. The band were on great form sounding amazing and they covered every inch of the stage. 


I started to shoot them but the performance was cut short by the venue owner. I will not go into details as I don't intend to give the manager a right to response. The band were obviously upset and deserved better. Thankfully the band and fans decided to take take the sensible option and left the bar before things got out of hand. 


]]> (Labrat Photos) band bass beat beer crowd drum gig guitar live manchester music rock rock and roll sing Mon, 12 Dec 2016 23:55:17 GMT
Pizza, Taco, Pizza, Taco

Pizza from the real fire oven or Taco with vegetarian chilli. I was tempted to have both but decided to shoot first. This was the first time I had been to a Crafty Vintage christmas event and it was even stranger being there in the evening. A lot of the things that I like about the previous Crafty Vintage events were still here but the evening and christmas decorations added little something. 


There was the usual mix of craft and vintage stalls and also some great christmas crafts and gifts. The DJ was playing some quality music in the large marque and the heaters did a great job of keeping it warm despite the cold December night.

I did a bit of celeb shooting as DannyDelboy had visited the event with his family. He genuinely came across as a nice bloke. He visited all the stalls and was happy to share his knowledge and experience with the vendors. He also took time to talk to visitors and really seemed to enjoy the evening. It was fortunate that he didn't mind me shooting him so thanks Danny.

It was nice to see the Bread and Butter cocktail bar was displaying its "Best Pop Up Bar" certificate. Once again they were creating amazing drinks in the widest selection of containers.

The food is always great at Crafty events and the real wood fire at the pizza stand was giving off a lovely heat. Unfortunately a day at work followed by a shoot was taking its toll and so I headed home to get some sleep.

Thanks again to Crafty Vintage for asking me to shoot their event. Thanks you to the vendors and visitors for letting me shoot them. A big thanks to Danny for being such a great sport.


]]> (Labrat Photos) craft drink live music pizza vintage Wed, 07 Dec 2016 23:45:42 GMT
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