Making Me Feel Alive
By Rick Perez
As a music photographer, I am rarely at a show without my camera. Even if I am not there for the sole purpose of shooting, I find myself needing to photograph; it’s my way of interpreting the music. I need to capture the movement, the energy, and the candid emotions I see from musicians.
However, more often than not when I am shooting a show I am ‘working’. I have to constantly be ready for the next shot, anticipating each move to nab that epic image. I was finding myself getting lost in the performance factor and losing the music factor. I haven’t been to a show without working in a long time, and I desperately wanted to find that feeling of being lost in music again.
So, when I found out that the band Heaters were stopping in Brooklyn in the midst of their North American tour, I knew that this was the perfect opportunity. Heaters is a psychedelic band from Michigan that I have been following for while, and I knew that their music would take me to all kinds of places. And to enhance this experience, my two buddies and I decided to drop some acid.
Heaters were playing at Baby’s All Right, the perfect venue to trip at. There are all kinds of interesting things to look at: constellations on the walls, different colored lights, and hot people everywhere. They always play good tunes, creating a relaxed and upbeat vibe.
Las Rosas opened for Heaters, a rock and roll band from Brooklyn. During their set, I could feel my high intensifying. My mouth was slowly opening into a goofy smile, with rock and roll rhythms flowing through my limbs. The lights were of blue, red, purple, and green with white stars floating through the room. Las Rosas were initiating me into their universe, giving me a taste of what was to come next.
At what I felt was the peak of my high, Heaters started playing, guiding me through this acid trip. With no camera in hand, I let them take me. I was lifted by pure psychedelia, giving the vibrations full reign of my body as I dove deeper and deeper into this beautiful cosmic journey. Heaters led me into a kaleidoscope of colors, rebellion, and raw emotion. The stars were gone, but they were replaced by mind-bending hymns that echoed throughout this existence that Heaters created. We were all there, the band, my friends, and the dancing hippie chicks, surrounded by love and joy and euphoria. There was no place in the entire world I would have rather been.
I couldn’t tell you the set list, or any of the members names, but none of that matters. What matters is that Heaters made me feel alive again. I let myself go, I let myself truly connect to music on a spiritual level, a connection that I haven’t made in so long. As a music photographer, I can’t forget the power of music; how ancient, universal, and sacred this form of art is. From this experience at Baby’s, I want to change how I approach music photography. How that is going to look, I will not know. For now, thanks Heaters for taking me on that musical journey; hopefully one day I’ll take you on photographic journey.