The Black Pumas At Sea Hear Now


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Lead singer Eric Burton of Black Pumas (and co-founder)

There is just so much music out there….

Even with all these streaming platforms, it’s hard to keep track. Blinded by all the possibilities, many of us fall into our old regulars.

As much as I try to stay up on the new stuff, thing invariably slip through the cracks – at least on a national level. Then again, I can’t even get around to listening to all the great NJ bands out there.

But I was happy to “get to know” the Black Pumas when they played the Sea Hear Now Festival last September.

I tried to listen to a bit of all the bands playing the festival in the days leading up to it. And the Black Pumas, based in Austin, Texas, really caught my ear.

And I was really happy to hear they just gained a 2020 Grammy nomination for Best New Artist

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Co-founder Adrian Quesada

Funky, soulful, rock ‘n rollful…they have the type of sound I really like. Since shooting them at SHN, I’ve put them on my gym playlist and listen to them a lot on Spotify.

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“Quality Drugs”

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Drummer Stephen Bidwell

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Angela Miller

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Lauren Cervantes

Their’s was a great set to shoot. Everyone moving, lots of energy. I really like that first shot of this blog – good eye contact from Erik, some layering, which is hard to get in a concert shot.

Always getting that eye contact is a goal for me. Gives a little bit more to the photo. The stage at SHN was pretty high, though, so it was hard. I moved back and forth quite a bit to get better/different angles in the three songs we had allotted.

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Eric bounded off the stage at one point, and the photog right in front got that I shot. At least I hope he did. I was stage right and was slow on the draw. Once he jumped into the crowd, I tried to keep an eye on his red beret but it was tough. Wish I could have gotten a better shot here.

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That’s the fun of shooting live performances, though – you never know what may happen. You can anticipate all you want, but you never know. Gotta stay on your toes.

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If you’re looking for a new band to check out, give Black Pumas a listen. They may be just what you’re looking for.

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Just don’t be as surprised, as Jeff Crespi (an AP music photography legend) appears to be, if they end up in your heavy rotation as well. Check out their website and go from there.

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© Mark V. Krajnak | JerseyStyle Photography | All Rights Reserved 2019

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