Friday held… lots of heat. Lots and lots of heat. It was just plain hot outside.
I had the thrilling job of “video playback” for the first several bands… which simply meant that I got to watch the show from inside our truck, then hit “play” for all of the Compassion, Int’l & Remedy FM commercials and such to play. You know how they always show those promos and stuff at music festivals? Yup. That was my job. Who played? Um… Manic Drive and The Museum… two bands I knew nothing about, again. Then someone spoke.
After I finished my job at video playback, I RAN out to camera three, which is a large camera, on a tripod, on a platform, at the end of the stage thrust, in the middle of a sea of people. Getting to the camera, alone, is a problem. I leaped onto the platform and threw my headset on just as the director was saying “and, ready three… take three!” and we were live. It did not take more than fifteen seconds for me to realize that I had problems- whoever used that camera before me was very tall, and I am not. The zoom and focus controls should have been near my waist, but they were closer to my shoulders… ow. A couple of songs into Remedy Drive, I said something along the lines of, “This is camera three… don’t cut to me for a minute, I have GOT to adjust my tripod!”
After Remedy Drive was Lecrae. Both concerts were a lot of fun to be on camera for… but it was HOT. The platform is black, and heat was rising off of it, and I swear the bottoms of my shoes melted a little bit. I was a little concerned they’d get totally gluey and adhere to the platform, which would have been not good. It didn’t happen, though.
After Lecrae was Fireflight! A band I knew about, but couldn’t care less about. My friend JP directed it though, and THAT was entertaining to watch. He loves Fireflight, and he got more excited over directing this show than I do over coffee. JP speaks little, just for your information… he does not expend very many words in a day. I think this is why he’s okay with hanging out with several high-strung girls who never shut up… we just decide what he’s thinking and do things for him. He doesn’t HAVE to talk. Yesterday, though, he talked… super fast. After he was done directing, he said, “I think I just said more words in half an hour than I normally do in two months!” and I think he was right! The show looked great, though… JP is a very talented director.
I did leave the truck for a few minutes to take some pictures of Fireflight in action:
After Fireflight was Bluetree, the worship band, and then Jon Weece spoke. He’s the pastor of a big mega-church here in Lexington, and one of the best speakers I have ever heard in my life. He’s just fantastic! Every Sunday he gets on stage and delivers a flawless message, with NO notes, and every time he says something that I need to hear. It’s crazy.
After Jon Weece, things got intense. Red was up. I was a handheld camera op’s assistant, which meant that I made sure they had enough cable to run around, didn’t have TOO much so they wouldn’t get tangled up… and I made sure they didn’t fall off a platform or anything while they were getting the perfect shot. I’d never done this before, and I was paired with my friend Matt… who is about 6’4″, can leap from low platform to high platform effortlessly, and who I could NEVER catch, should he stumble. Therefore, I decided I would just have to keep him from stumbling, which really was my job anyway. Red was a good concert… and up close like that, it was even more intense. My challenge became to not only keep Matt safe, but to avoid getting the lead guitarist’s sweat all over me as he head-banged. Ugh.
I gave my camera to my friend Richard, who was able to get some pictures of Red for me:
After Red, JP became the camera op I was following around. He leaps from platform to platform only slightly less effortlessly, but he does it much more often. I got a nice leg workout following him around. 🙂 That was a really fun concert. We were up close and personal with the band… and little too close and personal sometimes (more sweat, ugh!), and the fire… well… let’s just say it was hot, and sometimes it was scary. On one occasion, JP and I were on the high camera platform (it’s about 6 or 7 feet off the ground), when Ben, the guitarist, leaped through the air and landed on the same platform… with his guitar neck swinging about 5 inches from the camera. JP backpedaled very quickly, which meant I backpedaled even more quickly in an attempt to not get run over.
Overall… intense. But great fun.
Unfortunately, no pictures of Skillet. I really wanted Richard to take some, but security wouldn’t let him into our normal picture-taking corner by the stage. Too much fire, I suppose. They were a lot tighter about it last night than normal… which is understandable.
After yesterday, I got down on my knees and enthusiastically thanked God for sunscreen and earplugs. Amen, amen, and amen.