After months of anticipation the wait was finally over, well almost. The throngs of people dressed to the hilt and almost all over the top emulating their newest idol Lady Gaga poured into downtown Buffalo tonight and into the HSBC Arena - even those who didn't have a tickets showed up just to be near her space and stand next to the LG tour bus parked out in front of the Arena. The time had come, well like I said almost......... Standing in the wings, with my fellow photographers, waiting to be escorted out to our shooting space you could see the crowd doing the wave and dancing to the sounds of Michael Jackson's "Thriller" and other iconic dance tunes. We saw one girl with a head dress of Ostrich feathers that was great... and the tons of make up everywhere. Old folks and many younger kids with their parents all ponied up the big bucks for the tickets. There was more dancing and more waving as the time grew longer and longer, it felt like people were going to explode while waiting.
Finally taking the stage with an eruption from the crowd, almost 1 1/2 hours later than scheduled, provided everyone the release they were waiting for, but we didn't get any pictures of that, because we had to wait until the 6th & 7th songs to raise our cameras. That's a little odd, but OK whatever. While we waited to be taken out to our shooting spots, I couldn't help but notice the amount of un-family friendly language that was pouring off the stage. One fellow photog who had his 13 year old daughter there for her birthday had a puzzled look on his face as we took in what we were hearing.
Finally we were brought out to shoot, not in the pit (like most shows), but at the back of the floor by the mix tables - not on platforms either, but on the floor at the back with 5,000 people standing in front of us. Very odd, after shooting shows for almost 33 years, it was the oddest set of circumstances I can remember. I'm not really complaining, more like bitching. I'm vertically challenged for one... nasty language for the kids, s*#@ty shooting space like never before, not on stage until just before 10pm and to top it off they collected all of our photographer credentials. Now I have boxes upon boxes of laminates and credentials from everywhere, but not from this show. All of us veteran shooters left there shaking our heads, kinda feeling insulted and asking what just went down - crazy! I mean, I just saw a couple of pretty good images of the show on the news from up front, but the press who helped this artist get to where she is had to stand in the back and be treated like second class citizens? We know it's not our friends' fault at the arena... this comes from the tour promoters and LG herself. Whatever.
Scissor Sisters opened and sounded very much like the 80's band The Thompson Twins.