Photographer

Tillsonburg ON Turtle Fest

Turtle Fest…. figured there would be turtles but sadly… didn’t see one, however there were turtle themed things, lots of vendors, a vintage car show, rock climbing, busking, and much more but what was I there for? …. the bands of course!

Kelsi Mayne, Nice Horse and The Abrams took to the stage for this years Turtle Fest and everyone of these bands just killed it! As many of you know I’ve had the amazing opportunity to work one on one with the lovely Kelsi Mayne and have photographed her and her band many times in the last year live. Not only is Kelsi a sweet heart but her band are genuine people, funny, and appreciative of where they are and what they have accomplished so far. This show was another success, playing all the hits, getting the crowd going, they sounded great, looked good and even played a new tune that no one has heard before “ S.O.S “ .. now that this blog is a few days old.. others have heard it.. if you were at the Sound Of Music Festival in Burlington On. this past weekend and saw Kelsi perform, you now know that song too.

Nice Horse, damn! this all female, energetic, amazing stage presence band is incredible… this was only the 2nd time I’ve seen them & shot them, first time being at JunoFest during the Juno’s week in London at Bull & Barrel and both times i’m just blown away by their performance. Nice Horse have these amazing vocal harmonies that vibrate through your entire body making you really feel their songs. Running around on stage interacting with one another, leaning on one another, guitars and basses up in the air, their drummer, Krista comes up to the front and sings, she has a stomp pedal to make sure the heart beat of the band is always pumping.. even a single snare drum on a stand off to the right of the stage so she can stand there and beat the hell out of it….. their whole performance is an incredible one to watch.

The Abrams, a name I’ve heard many times but never experienced live until now and let me tell you.. I was floored. They carry so much energy with them, also amazing vocal harmonies.. songs that are happy, are sad.. slow and fast it’s a great mix. From the Abrams I saw a fiddler jumping all over, a singer and guitarist kneeling down, almost praising a fiddle solo, a guitarist busting out crazy solos while throwing a guitar around.. it was an awesome experience seeing these guys play with such a tight sound and so much energy.

Over all, Turtle Fest was a positive experience, I think the bands had a great time, I know I had a fantastic time and from the smiles on the faces of the crowd, the people down in front dancing and all the kids running around, dancing and laughing.. I think they all had a fun time too!

THE ABRAMS

NICE HORSE

KELSI MAYNE

JUNO AWARDS 2019

Never in a million years would I have ever thought that photography would take me to the Juno’s… but first I want to say, it didn’t really take me to the Juno awards themselves.. but very close and I am very thankful for the opportunity I was given. Leading up to the Juno Award night there is JUNO FEST, which is 100 different bands playing in 15 different venue’s across the city (London Ontario). Just outside of Budweiser Gardens in the South Parking Lot there was a giant heated tent that housed THE SIDE STAGE, which is where some bigger acts played and the Official Juno’s After Party was held. With the wrist band I was awarded, I had access to the Side Stage and all 15 venues in London, could cut the lines and get in early in order to photograph the bands playing in each venue. This wristband also allowed me to have access to the JUNO CUP, a hockey game between the Artists, and Professional Hockey players.

With out going through all the details and dragging this blog post out into a massive thing no one will ever read…. Side Stage was incredible. It was the first show I shot during the Juno’s and it started out with the incredible WASHBOARD UNION who I had not seen yet and really wanted to so it was amazing that I was able to see them (seen them twice during the Juno’s but we’ll get to that), but also photograph them! These guys are incredible, such a friendly bunch, their vocal harmonies are dead on and sound so good, their songs are lively and keep your feet tappin’. Up next was Jess Moskaluke who I had also never seen and also wanted to.. I was on a roll! she was fantastic sounded just like she does on the radio and knocked out all her hits. Last but definitely not least THE REKLAWS!!! I’ve photographed The Reklaws … 4 or 5 times now and they never ever get old.. seriously.. love them to death, their songs are contagious, Jenna is hilarious on stage and so fun, Stu with his smiles and for some reason always seems to look my way and give me a point his finger or his guitar and I love it!

Back to The Washboard Union. After they won their Juno for Breakthrough group of the year.. and I mean right after, they were performing again at The Bull and Barrel and let me tell you, that show was insane. The high Washboard was on from winning that Juno, the buzz from the crowd excited to see them and so very happy for them winning a Juno.. the place was so packed, I was lucky I got there over an hour early so I could be right up front because If I had shown up even 20 mins later than I did.. I was at the back of the building. Washboard Union was so happy to win and even happier to share their win with their fans in Bull and Barrel that night it was one hell of a party.. they have a rule where they do not drink if they are performing, but just once, that rule was broken to celebrate their Juno. Shots were brought out and Chris from the band says “ boys the medicine is here” … many thank you’s were said, so much appreciation from the band to the fans, to each other.. it was a moment i’ll never forget.

This post is getting very long so I’m just going to list the other bands I had the pleasure of photographing and I want them all to know I’m so thankful for their music, their image shares and the opportunities I’ve had to photograph:

AARON ALLEN
JULIA HAGGARTY
NICE HORSE
LOUD LUXURY
RYAN SHEPERD

There would be more on this list, such as The Trews, Genevieve Fisher and a few more but when I arrived to the venue’s at their set times they were so packed I literally couldn’t even get in the doorway.


THE WASHBOARD UNION - SIDE STAGE

JESS MOSKALUKE - SIDE STAGE

Jess Moskaluke performing at the 2019 JUNO’s - Side Stage in London, On.
© Kevin Vyse | Stage Pass Media

THE REKLAWS - SIDE STAGE

The Reklaws performing on the Side Stage at the 2019 Juno’s - London Ontario.
© Kevin Vyse | Stage Pass Media

NICE HORSE - BULL & BARREL

NICE HORSE performing during the 2019 JUNO FEST at Bull & Barrel - London Ontario
© Kevin Vyse | Stage Pass Media

JULIA HAGGARTY - BULL & BARREL

JULIA HAGGARTY performing during the 2019 JUNO FEST - Bull & Barrel in London Ontario.
© Kevin Vyse | Stage Pass Media

AARON ALLEN - BULL & BARREL

AARON ALLEN performing at the 2019 JUNO FEST in London Ontario.
© Kevin Vyse | Stage Pass Media

LOUD LUXURY - SIDE STAGE

LOUD LUXURY performing on the Side Stage during the 2019 JUNO’s - London Ontario.
© Kevin Vyse | Stage Pass Media

RYAN SHEPHERD - SIDE STAGE

RYAN SHEPHERD performing during the 2019 JUNO’s on the Side stage - London Ontario.
© Kevin Vyse | Stage Pass Media

THE WASHBOARD UNION - BULL & BARREL

THE WASHBOARD UNION performing during the 2019 Juno fan fest in London ontario just after they won their Juno Award for Breakthrough Group Of The Year! Huge Congrats going out to these fellas.
© Kevin Vyse | Stage Pass Media

A HUGE thank you goes out to Rock It Promotions for hooking me up with the wristband and all their helpers at each venue guiding me through, also thank you to the Juno’s for making this such an amazing event. Thank you to the City of London for being so awesome and opening up all these venues for such an incredible and memorable experience. Thank you to Live Nation, Start.ca, Budweiser Gardens, Budweiser, Apple Music, TD Bank, Music Canada, SOCAN, VIA Rail, 3M, CBC Music, SiriusXM, Jackson Triggs, Long & McQuade … with out all of these sponsors things like this can’t happen.. and when things like this don’t happen, opportunities can’t happen.. this was an opportunity I never thought i’d have or get to be apart of… the Thankfulness is HUGE!

Cheers.
Kevin Vyse.

KELSI MAYNE

You have all seen her at the mercy of my camera before, usually on stage with her fire red phoenix hair blowing in the wind as she gracefully sings out her country jams in the summer sun. Who am I talking about? .. well who else.. the incredible KELSI MAYNE.
Kelsi hit me up with a message on a Thursday saying she needed new images shot for some summer festival announcements and some other releases through out 2019. This shoot was last minute, we only had a few days to find a location to shoot in and get the images edited and out within.. I think it was 4 days. Game On!
We reached out to some people and ended up having a mutual friend (Scott), who was willing to let us use his beautiful home on the following Saturday and so the one-on-one photo session was born.

Kelsi is a very hard working woman. She is a Nurse, a Country music artists, an Actress and was a Nationally Ranked Hurdler! We first met in my home town Woodstock Ontario, where she was performing at the Woodstock Truck Show put on annually by our friend Scott Verbruggen, all proceeds from this event goes to the local Special Olympics. Kelsi saw me handing out business cards to the other bands that were performing after each set and she came up to ask if she could have one to see the pics afterwards, we got to talking and a new friendship was born! Since then I have photographed Kelsi at the Emerging Artists Showcase at the CMAO’s in London Ontario, as well as in Dresden Ontario at their Kinstock Festival, where she opened the show along with Kansas Stone, Andrew Hywatt and The Reklaws.

The ‘Mayne’ image we shot was being used to release Kelsi’s artist announcement for this summers Big Valley Jamboree in Camrose, Alberta where Kelsi will be sharing the ‘Mayne’ stage with acts such as: Toby Keith, Old Dominion, Kane Brown, Lindsay Elle, Meghan Patrick, Billy Ray Cyrus, Brooks & Dunn and many more. Kelsi will also be performing in Havelock Ontario at the Havelock Country Jamboree in August.

Also Keep an eye out for the release of Stephen King’s short story (movie) WILLA because, yep.. you guessed it, Kelsi is in the movie.. not only is she in it but has a Title Role… does Kelsi look familiar to you? .. well that’s probably because you’ve seen her as the lead female in another country music artists video.. if you have seen her in this you will know her as ‘CHERRY BOMB’. River Town Saints brought Kelsi in as the lead role in their video for Cherry Bomb where she did an amazing job.

Can’t wait to see where Kelsi goes in 2019, all I know is that it will be up.. she is on a roll and shows no signs of slowing down. It was an honour and pleasure to work with Kelsi and get to know her band over the last year, they are all amazing people and I’m pumped every time I get to run into them at shows.

For now I can only release two images that we shot from our shoot as we want to keep them under wraps until Kelsi gets to release them through out the year.

Photography: Kevin Vyse Photography
Graphic Design: BVJ

APRIL WINE - COWAPOLOOZA 2018

With South Side Park in Woodstock Ontario packed with hundreds of people under the stars on a warm summer night, April Wine hit the stage for the second time in the Cowapolooza history. 
It's incredible to see a legendary piece of Canadian music history put on such an incredible show after all these years. April Wine sounded amazing playing all their hits, the crowd going nuts, dancing and singing the night away. Best part about this show was the mix of people.. old and young and everyone seemed to know the lyrics to most of the songs. April Wine ended their set with the amazing, and my personal fav song, ROLLER, shortly after they exited the stage, the crowd, without hesitation started chanting "encore" to which April Wine replied with coming back out and Blasting out their hit "Oowatanite" ... and Oowatanite it was! 
 

CMAOntario's New Faces Showcase

They came, The Played, They conquered! 

Incredible weekend last weekend at the CMAOntario's in London Ontario. During the New Faces Showcase performers who are building in the country music scene had the chance to show everyone what they have during a free show on an outdoor stage. I won't lie.. every single act who performed was incredible in their own way. 

Of course.. with every concert you need to have head liners.. Headlining the CMAOntario's New Faces Showcase were two Canadian heavy hitters.. 

THE REKLAWS
and
MEGHAN PATRICK 

I will put their images at the end of this post so people will scroll through the New Faces Showcase performers .. we want to get them out there and get people interested. 

Performers: 

This woman and her band.... Phenomenal! With Kelsi's phoenix fire hair, beautiful smile thats always glowing up on stage and her powerful vocals, your attention quickly focuses on the stage. Great sound great stage presence with catchy songs and they are also great people to talk to. If you get the chance, make sure you check them out.. they are based out of Toronto On. 
 

Based out of Hamilton Ontario, The Redhill Valleys are definitely a band to keep your eyes on. With their amazing harmonies your foot can't stop tapping along with their original sound, great stage presence too.  

Josh David Band.. first off.. this guys voice! amazing voice with some nice grit, and some rocking country sound. These guys put on a great show, Josh is always moving and interacting with band members on stage which is always fun to watch. 

phenomenal sound coming from these guys, very catchy songs with awesome harmony vocals and some killer guitar solo's/leads, their song 'Minnedosa' is one of my favs. 

Brad Battle - web-13.jpg

Brads song 'Crazy Beautiful' definitely gets stuck in your head, very full sound, catchy, nice guitar solo's, stage presence is well done.. he does a really awesome cover of A Great Big World's - Say Something.. definitely a band to check out. 


HEADLINERS 

THE REKLAWS

If your into country music and you don't know this Brother and Sister duo... then you need to immediately stop reading this blog and head on over to their website, spotify, facebook, instagram... I don't care where.. but go check them out. The Recklaws are blowing up.. their song Long Live The Night is now the Thursday night Football theme song! stage presence is huge with these two always moving around the stage, Jenna is always dancing up a storm and getting the crowd pumped up and rowdy. If you see these two on any concert bill, just know you are in for an incredible show! 

MEGHAN PATRICK

You know Meghan Patrick.. you have to... if you don't, then your Canadian Country game is weak. This power house female country artist is outstanding! Powerful vocals, amazing songs.. phenomenal to watch on stage with her high knees and leg kicks.. swinging those golden locks all over it all comes together for an impressive show. Meghan cleaned up this year at the CMAOntario's Winning 3 awards: 

  • FEMALE ARTIST OF THE YEAR
  • MUSIC VIDEO OF THE YEAR - ' Country Music Made Me do It ' 
  • FAN'S CHOICE

In my opinion.. every one of these is much deserved, I love watching this woman perform! Congrats on the wins Meghan!

OUR LADY PEACE & MATTHEW GOOD

  Off to the stage with 4 other photographers, hearing the buzz of everyone in the building chatting, music playing in the background, house lights half on.. that anticipation building, going over camera settings in my mind, wondering what the lighting will be like. In that moment, the lights go out, complete darkness except for a few small, dim stage lights, the crowd roars, whistling, cheering, clapping and screaming while the band walks out on to the stage .. nothing but Silhouettes. 

  Our Lady Peace was a staple in my upbringing, yet, it's taken me 36 years to finally see them live. When photographing bands you only get a taste of the performance as most cases you can only photograph the first 3 songs of each band. Regardless, even the first 3 songs are usually a great time, there's always one good song that everyone knows.. for OLP, for me anyways that song was 'Superman's Dead' and it was done to perfection. OLP fired it up right out of the gate with high energy, some pretty unique lighting, which was a bit challenging as there were some strobe effects going on that made timing a bit tough, but it was incredible and I am complete thankful for the opportunity which was provided to me by Live Nation. 

  Matthew Good was another one of those 90's staples for me who I've always enjoyed listening to. I've only seen Matt one other time and it was maybe 2 years ago at Rock The Park in London ON and it was good... but last night's performance topped it 100%. Same deal, we only get to shoot the first 3 songs, but the first 3 were incredible and standing that close shooting made it even that much better. 
  After being escorted back into the photographer room, it sounded like the crowd was really enjoying the show as you could hear the screaming and clapping echo through the back halls of Budweiser Gardens. Overall, what a fantastic night. I'd like to thank Live Nation again for the opportunity to photograph this show and Budweiser Gardens for being so accommodating for the night. 

until the next time
-Shutter Click!  

OLP (Our Lady Peace)
London ON, Canada
Budweiser Gardens

MATTHEW GOOD

Matthew Good
London ON, Canada
Budweiser Gardens

WE WERE THAT SONG TOUR

Brett Kissel has blown up like crazy! If you don't know Brett Kissel and you like country music then you should definitely check him out, you won't be disappointed. Another great country music artist... Dan Davidson, again, if you do not know Dan Davidson check out his music. 
London Ontario, Canada these two played on February 10th, a sold out show at the London Music Hall, my favourite venue in London, and then because this show sold out so quick, they decided to add a second date to the tour.. February 18th. Great things were said about the 10th show so needless to say I was pumped to be photographing the show on the 18th. 

Sitting in my car in the parking lot waiting for 6:30pm to roll around and doors to open, everyone in the line up started yelling, right away I knew Brett had made an appearance outside to see the fans so I quickly grabbed my camera, jumped out of the car and started snapping shots of him from the parking lot.. he was only out there for maybe 2 mins. Fast forward; Standing in the media pit looking out to this massive crowd, the stage lit with some dark blue light, fans awaiting the start of the show, checking my cameras to make sure I have them set up properly... the worst part is not knowing what kind of light you're going to get once the show starts... all white, not so great, not enough light horrible.. all red or all blue.. horrible ... it's just a waiting game then rolling with the punches. A stage hand comes out from stage right and shines his flashlight to the soundboard, HERE WE GO! Out walk to radio hosts to announce the opening act, photographers out into the pit for the first 3 songs.. ok.. went well.. lighting was a bit dull but thats ok, expected.. give's me a good starting point. Out come two more radio hosts and BAM almost instantly Dan Davidson's band comes out on stage, they start playing and out run's Dan, first song kicks off, lighting is pretty good and I'm feeling great, happy to be there. Let me tell you Dan Davidson killed that performance, best I've ever seen him, so much energy and the fans were singing so loud.. such an amazing thing to experience and capture. 
Now, a quick little tidbit of info for you.... when photographing these shows the typical thing that happens is, photographers get to shoot the first 3 songs from each artists, after that we have to leave the pit until the next artists hits the stage. Now, some places, usually bigger venues like stadiums will have a separate room we have to go sit in so we miss a lot of the show, but typically smaller venues will just allow you to step out and off to the side and watch the show, you just can't shoot, then when the next band hits the stage you're back in the pit for their 3 songs. 

BRETT KISSEL!!!!!!! crowd goes insane, ear piercing screams everyone is going wild, the energy doubles, Brett comes out with high energy like always, jumps up on these wooden crates he has out on the stage and throws his arms out to everyone to say "HEY EVERYONE, I"M HERE AND I'M READY TO PARTY WITH YOU! ". From that moment on the party really grew with every song. Everyone singing back and with Brett was so loud it matched the volume of the band, it was crazy. Ok ok... no matter how I write this you just won't understand the vibe so I'm going to stop here and let the images do some talking.. hope you enjoy! 

HUGE thank you goes out to INVICTUS ENTERTAINMENT GROUP for providing me with access to photograph this show, much appreciated you guys and gals are doing great things!  

BRETT KISSEL WITH DAN DAVIDSON: Sold Out show #2 at the amazing London Music Hall.

BRETT KISSEL makes an appearance to his fans in line outside of London Music Hall before the show to say hi and welcome everyone. 

DAN DAVIDSON 

BRETT KISSEL

Photography. Travel. Time

It's amazing from year to year how much things change when you put your time into something you love and strive to always get better. 
A few years ago I was asked, last minute, to get in a Ford F-150 with a buddy of mine who was going back out west to British Columbia after being home, here in Ontario visiting with friends and family. I had just taken vacation from work but had zero plans, so I figured why not? There is another blog on here called " The Great Canadian West " which covers that whole adventure.. you can think of this one as kind of a second part to that entry. 

Long story short.... today I went back through some of the images I took from that trip, images which I thought were garbage but I had kept the RAW files as I normally do. Since that trip, I have spent a lot of time shooting, a lot of time studying, doing editing tutorials, paying for tutorials and teaching video's.. really learning whatever I could. Turns out, a lot of the images from that trip are still very usable.. it just took time for me to develop more skills, editing techniques.. even a new eye (way of looking at things).  
Moral of the story here.. the message I'm trying to convey is, even though you don't see it now, you may in the future. Do not give up, constantly learn, if you love it keep trying, keep building.. strive to be better every day and you will see improvements! 

Here are some of the images from that trip that I had discarded thinking they "were no good", "unusable", " There's no picture here " ........  

© Kevin Vyse Photography
All Rights Reserved 2017

Maddy & Diesel: A Girl and her Pup!

Maddy and Diesel were something a little different for me as I haven't really photographed portraits for someone and their dog, but it was a lot of fun! We were originally going to do this shoot back in the fall with all the leaves on the trees, but due to unforeseen circumstances, we had to change the date which led us into winter .... pre-snow winter. 

This time of year the "lake" where I live gets drained out, not completely but quite a bit gets sucked out through the damn which leaves a nice, sandy beach look. Later in the day as the sun set we headed on down to utilize the park area and of course out on to the sand. Diesel was having a ton of fun running around and finding sticks to bring a long for the walk, which ended up in a few of the shots because getting that stick away was near impossible lol. Over all, with the sun set, the beach vibe, the lake and a great person and dog, it was a fantastic shoot! 

- Shutter Click.   

A Night With Colin James

Colin Freakin' James! 

Colin was brought to Woodstock last year for the Cowapalooza Festival in Woodstock Ontario, Canada, but sadly.. he never made it on stage because mother nature decided to flood the park with a torrential down pour. Summer 2017, Colin James was asked to come back and come back he did! With clear skies, a beauty summers night, stars out and all, Colin hit the stage with powerful guitar solos, deep bass lines, technical drumming, some outstanding keyboard work and of course some powerful, strong vocals that blew me away. 

With no media pass (which wasn't required anyways because it was a FREE, yes.. FREE concert in a public park ) I had to shoot from the crowd which was fine at first.. but pretty much after the first song everyone moved up and it got tight quick. Bobbing around peoples melons Colin made it pretty easy to get the shots using up all areas of the stage to put on an amazing performance. If you haven't seen Colin James, haven't heard of him even.. get out to a show, you won't be disappointed at all. - Shutter Click. 

Colin James
Cowapalooza Festival 2017
Woodstock On, Canada.