Promised Land Rocks The Stone Pony
“It was a stormy, stormy night in Asbury Park….” ~ Bruce Springsteen, in 2009, talking about the night he met Clarence Clemons (2 minute mark)
Back in July, I shot Garry Talent/Remember Jones/Southside Johnny at The Stone Pony Summer Stage.
As I was walking through the inside of The Stone Pony to get to the outdoor Summer Stage, a band was on stage playing Springsteen songs.
The band was Promised Land and they were rocking it!
There are plenty of Springsteen/E Street cover bands out there, especially in New Jersey. But something about these guys really caught my ear.
I snapped a few photos and posted them to my Facebook page. A day or so later, I got an email from them saying they really liked the shots and wanted to work with me further.
Very cool indeed. From there, I had a few discussions (phone/text/email) with Ken Munson, the lead singer. We quickly found we have a shared love of not just Bruce, but the music of the Jersey Shore – Southside Johnny, Bon Jovi, John Cafferty, etc.
Kenny and his band have been around for awhile, but doing their own songs while also doing some of the covers. He was hoping I could help provide visual content for them to help further their band brand, to get the word out, and to give them assets they could use for a website and media perspective.
We agreed to connect again and get started.
Unfortunately, life got in the way. I wanted to meet up with them a couple of occasions this fall, but for one reason or another, I wasn’t able to.
Finally, late in the Fall, Kenny shot me a text, saying they’d be playing a holiday show at The Stone Pony, to help support the Spring-Nuts Toys Drive and could I shoot it?
Yes indeed! So the plan was set.
The original plan was to kick out some group shots in and around Asbury Park and the boardwalk, and then shoot the show.
Well, that didn’t fully happen. Friday (the 13th) dawned not-so-very cold but gray. By three p.m. a drizzle was falling and it was only to get harder. Even before I got down there, Kenny and I decided to scrap the outdoor shots but we were on for everything else.
So, I got down to Asbury Park, parked in my usual spot, and then hiked the few blocks over to the Pony.
So, got in, then went back to the green room where the band was just hanging out. After introductions, I started to snap some photos as they went over a few of the songs from their set.
Promised Land is a nine-person band, including a horns section – the Arthurkills Horns. Kenny still wanted to do a group shot or two, I figured out a couple of set up. One inside (Ken’s wife didn’t like the boots up on the table, but I did.)
And even grabbed one outside, under an overhang. The wind was picking up and it was raining harder, but I still like this one.
From there it was time to hit the stage. Promised Land kicked it off with a classic cover of a cover, Santa Claus Is Coming To Town…the Bruce and Clarence version.
And from there they were off – 21 more songs, two hours on the legendary Stone Pony stage.
About halfway through, Jarod Clemons, son of the E Street Band’s Clarence “Big Man” Clemons, jumped on stage for Glory Days and 10th Avenue Freezeout.
After the set ended, I walked up to the stage and Kenny said “What did you think?”
I said “If people can’t get to see Bruce, they need to come see you guys. That was awesome.”
And it was.
Despite the frightful weather outside – the wind was really blowing when I came out. and the back of my jeans were soaked by the time I got back to my truck – everyone was warm and dry inside, listening to some great rock ‘n’ roll while doing good for the community.
And it was a great night to shoot Promised Land. But we’re not done! We’re already making plans for the next shoot together.
Note: I wrote another type of recap that ran over at Backstreets.com today. Give it a read for more information about the Spring-Nuts, a group that does a lot for the community.
© Mark V. Krajnak | JerseyStyle Photography | All Rights Reserved 2019