The Year In Concert Photos 2010

Shantel Mitchell has been shooting concerts and other events for NPR Music since the spring of 2009.  We asked her to share some of her favorite moments in live concert pictures from 2010, from South by Southwest to the vast stages of Bonnaroo, a D.C. synagogue and multiple other clubs.

  • Sharon Jones And The Dap Kings at SXSW:  SXSW 2010 kicked off my year of festival coverage for NPR It was my first time seeing Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings, and I was blown away by her charisma and energy! This was one of my favorite shots from SXSW.
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    Sharon Jones And The Dap Kings at SXSW: SXSW 2010 kicked off my year of festival coverage for NPR It was my first time seeing Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings, and I was blown away by her charisma and energy! This was one of my favorite shots from SXSW.
    Shantel Mitchell
  • Brooklyn Rider at SXSW:  Anytime a band incorporates classical instruments into its sound, I am intrigued.  Brooklyn Rider opened our Thursday showcase at SXSW and instantly became my favorite out of all the bands featured that day.  Beautiful lighting created some amazing photos from the group's set.
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    Brooklyn Rider at SXSW: Anytime a band incorporates classical instruments into its sound, I am intrigued. Brooklyn Rider opened our Thursday showcase at SXSW and instantly became my favorite out of all the bands featured that day. Beautiful lighting created some amazing photos from the group's set.
    Shantel Mitchell
  • Smith Westerns at SXSW: The combination of pink and yellow lights, Cullen Omori's hair hanging over his face and the well-placed NPR logo in the background made this another favorite shot from SXSW.
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    Smith Westerns at SXSW: The combination of pink and yellow lights, Cullen Omori's hair hanging over his face and the well-placed NPR logo in the background made this another favorite shot from SXSW.
    Shantel Mitchell
  • Wye Oak at SXSW:  After two consecutive days of photographing for live coverage, I made plans to see Wye Oak play Thursday night at SXSW.  The group is from my hometown of Baltimore. I was exhausted.  But standing there, watching Jen and Andy perform mostly new songs, I forgot that I had been working nonstop for two days.  I just enjoyed the moment and only took a few pictures.  It was the perf...
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    Wye Oak at SXSW: After two consecutive days of photographing for live coverage, I made plans to see Wye Oak play Thursday night at SXSW. The group is from my hometown of Baltimore. I was exhausted. But standing there, watching Jen and Andy perform mostly new songs, I forgot that I had been working nonstop for two days. I just enjoyed the moment and only took a few pictures. It was the perfect way to unwind.
    Shantel Mitchell
  • Freelance Whales At SXSW:  During SXSW we had the pleasure of recording a few private sessions in the Driscoll Hotel. With all their odd instruments and the incredible natural light filtering into the historic hotel, it was a thrill to shoot the members of Freelance Whales.
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    Freelance Whales At SXSW: During SXSW we had the pleasure of recording a few private sessions in the Driscoll Hotel. With all their odd instruments and the incredible natural light filtering into the historic hotel, it was a thrill to shoot the members of Freelance Whales.
    Shantel Mitchell
  • While wandering the streets, taking in all of the sights of Austin, I saw these guys lugging their equipment and thought, "this IS SXSW."
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    While wandering the streets, taking in all of the sights of Austin, I saw these guys lugging their equipment and thought, "this IS SXSW."
    Shantel Mitchell
  • Joanna Newsom performed at the historic 6th and I Synagogue in Washington, DC. It's a beautiful space to see a show and perfectly suited for her unique musical style.
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    Joanna Newsom performed at the historic 6th and I Synagogue in Washington, DC. It's a beautiful space to see a show and perfectly suited for her unique musical style.
    Shantel Mitchell
  • Kings Go Forth at U St. Music Hall in DC:  This was an unusual show to shoot.  Because of strict privacy rules, the venue wouldn't allow me to take any pictures during the actual performance.  So I photographed the band's sound check, and later stopped them outside to take a quick portrait.  The guys were so nice.  We chatted a while about D.C., Photography, and NPR before they headed out to gr...
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    Kings Go Forth at U St. Music Hall in DC: This was an unusual show to shoot. Because of strict privacy rules, the venue wouldn't allow me to take any pictures during the actual performance. So I photographed the band's sound check, and later stopped them outside to take a quick portrait. The guys were so nice. We chatted a while about D.C., Photography, and NPR before they headed out to grab dinner before the show.
    Shantel Mitchell
  • The XX opened for Hot Chip in April at a D.C. show covered by All Songs Considered.  I enjoy seeing The XX, but the band can be difficult to photograph.  The XX often play with very low lights which does create the right mood for the music.  I was fortunate to have some nice blue light making this photo one of my favorites.
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    The XX opened for Hot Chip in April at a D.C. show covered by All Songs Considered. I enjoy seeing The XX, but the band can be difficult to photograph. The XX often play with very low lights which does create the right mood for the music. I was fortunate to have some nice blue light making this photo one of my favorites.
    Shantel Mitchell
  • Hot Chip at the 9:30 Club in DC:  I remember this was a sold-out show with no photo pit.  When this happens, I arrive early so that I have a place up front to take photos.  Still, there was no room to move and a lot of equipment on stage.  I chose this shot because of the perfect white light illuminating the stage.
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    Hot Chip at the 9:30 Club in DC: I remember this was a sold-out show with no photo pit. When this happens, I arrive early so that I have a place up front to take photos. Still, there was no room to move and a lot of equipment on stage. I chose this shot because of the perfect white light illuminating the stage.
    Shantel Mitchell
  • Shout Out Louds at the 9:30 Club in DC:  Photographing a show for NPR can be challenging. Photographers are typically allowed to take pictures only during the first three songs of a band's set, and because the show is being broadcasted live, I like to get the pictures online right away.  At this show, I remember hearing "The Comeback" while I was uploading and editing pictures in the balcony an...
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    Shout Out Louds at the 9:30 Club in DC: Photographing a show for NPR can be challenging. Photographers are typically allowed to take pictures only during the first three songs of a band's set, and because the show is being broadcasted live, I like to get the pictures online right away. At this show, I remember hearing "The Comeback" while I was uploading and editing pictures in the balcony and wishing that I was on the floor dancing. It was a great show!
    Shantel Mitchell
  • I love The Rock & Roll Hotel because it's small and I love the intimacy of small venues.  Caribou, however, brought in such an enormous crowd the night of this show that it was near impossible to move.  I remember thinking I'd never make it out of the sea of people to the back of the venue where I could upload my photos. After hearing Caribou, I completely understood why the club was so packed!
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    I love The Rock & Roll Hotel because it's small and I love the intimacy of small venues. Caribou, however, brought in such an enormous crowd the night of this show that it was near impossible to move. I remember thinking I'd never make it out of the sea of people to the back of the venue where I could upload my photos. After hearing Caribou, I completely understood why the club was so packed!
    Shantel Mitchell
  • Public Image Ltd. at the 9:30 Club in DC:  Okay, who doesn't want to see and photograph Johnny Rotten (aka John Lydon)?  I have to admit I was expecting him to do something crazy to the photographers in the photo pit.  Though nothing happened, it's always exciting seeing a rock icon.
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    Public Image Ltd. at the 9:30 Club in DC: Okay, who doesn't want to see and photograph Johnny Rotten (aka John Lydon)? I have to admit I was expecting him to do something crazy to the photographers in the photo pit. Though nothing happened, it's always exciting seeing a rock icon.
    Shantel Mitchell
  • Bonnaroo was an amazing weekend consisting of four, 18-hour days and four main stages.  My favorite crowd shot of the year came from what organizers call "This Tent" shortly before The Dodos took the stage.  They were testing the lights and I just happened to look back to see the crowd cheering for the band to come on!  The lights and expressions were perfect.
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    Bonnaroo was an amazing weekend consisting of four, 18-hour days and four main stages. My favorite crowd shot of the year came from what organizers call "This Tent" shortly before The Dodos took the stage. They were testing the lights and I just happened to look back to see the crowd cheering for the band to come on! The lights and expressions were perfect.
    Shantel Mitchell
  • The National at Bonnaroo:  The National is one of my favorite bands, but the reason I chose this picture of Matt Berninger is because I remember exactly what he said as I pushed the shutter on the camera.  It was an incredibly hot afternoon on the second day of Bonnaroo.  He looked up at the sky and said, "I'm searching for a cloud up there somewhere."
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    The National at Bonnaroo: The National is one of my favorite bands, but the reason I chose this picture of Matt Berninger is because I remember exactly what he said as I pushed the shutter on the camera. It was an incredibly hot afternoon on the second day of Bonnaroo. He looked up at the sky and said, "I'm searching for a cloud up there somewhere."
    Shantel Mitchell
  • I'd never shot The Flaming Lips prior to Bonnaroo.  But I knew what to expect from the group's performances, so I was planning on coming away with some excellent photographs.  I was very disappointed to find the 100-plus photographers at Bonnaroo, and fans with VIP passes, packed into the tiny photo pit.  However, I did manage to get this Flaming Lips photo, which ended up being used f...
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    I'd never shot The Flaming Lips prior to Bonnaroo. But I knew what to expect from the group's performances, so I was planning on coming away with some excellent photographs. I was very disappointed to find the 100-plus photographers at Bonnaroo, and fans with VIP passes, packed into the tiny photo pit. However, I did manage to get this Flaming Lips photo, which ended up being used for the NPR iPhone app promotion.
    Shantel Mitchell
  • LCD Soundsystem at Bonnaroo:  I saw the disco ball before the set and tried to predict how it would be used.  I wedged myself into a spot that would give me somewhat of a center stage view and sure enough, when James Murphy sang into the mic for the second song, the disco ball lit up creating this awesome halo effect behind him.
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    LCD Soundsystem at Bonnaroo: I saw the disco ball before the set and tried to predict how it would be used. I wedged myself into a spot that would give me somewhat of a center stage view and sure enough, when James Murphy sang into the mic for the second song, the disco ball lit up creating this awesome halo effect behind him.
    Shantel Mitchell
  • The New Pornographers at the 9:30 Club in DC:  Neko Case is amazing. I've seen her solo performances but had never caught her with The New Pornographers. I have to admit I was a bit disappointed with the band's stage lighting.  The group had that awesome sign in the background, but the show was mostly lit with over-saturated, red front lights. Despite that, I really like how this shot of Neko a...
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    The New Pornographers at the 9:30 Club in DC: Neko Case is amazing. I've seen her solo performances but had never caught her with The New Pornographers. I have to admit I was a bit disappointed with the band's stage lighting. The group had that awesome sign in the background, but the show was mostly lit with over-saturated, red front lights. Despite that, I really like how this shot of Neko and Carl Newman turned out.
    Shantel Mitchell
  • I love this shot of Andrew Bird at the Newport Folk Festival.  The look on his face, the color of the blues, and the awesome sky and crowd reflected in his glasses.  What a great performer.
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    I love this shot of Andrew Bird at the Newport Folk Festival. The look on his face, the color of the blues, and the awesome sky and crowd reflected in his glasses. What a great performer.
    Shantel Mitchell
  • While uploading pictures from Andrew Bird's set, I looked out to see fans dancing in the afternoon sun.  It truly captured the collective good feelings and mood at Newport that weekend.
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    While uploading pictures from Andrew Bird's set, I looked out to see fans dancing in the afternoon sun. It truly captured the collective good feelings and mood at Newport that weekend.
    Shantel Mitchell
  • This was a great moment at Newport, when Jim James joined John Prine on stage towards the end of John Prine's set. Jim James used to listen to Prine's music as a kid with his parents on long drives. I love this photo because I want to know what they're talking about!
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    This was a great moment at Newport, when Jim James joined John Prine on stage towards the end of John Prine's set. Jim James used to listen to Prine's music as a kid with his parents on long drives. I love this photo because I want to know what they're talking about!
    Shantel Mitchell
  • My favorite photo from Newport was this shot of Alex Ebert from Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros.  The band took the stage very late because of the crush of fans.  It was crazy.  Photographers were only given a minute in the photo pit before we were kicked out, and I happened to be at there at the right time and in the right location.  My favorite thing about this photo is the expressions o...
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    My favorite photo from Newport was this shot of Alex Ebert from Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros. The band took the stage very late because of the crush of fans. It was crazy. Photographers were only given a minute in the photo pit before we were kicked out, and I happened to be at there at the right time and in the right location. My favorite thing about this photo is the expressions on the faces in the crowd.
    Shantel Mitchell
  • Of Montreal at the 9:30 Club in DC:  As a photographer, I loved this show.  Photographers were given permission to shoot the entire show from the photo pit instead of only the first three songs.  I spent the entire night shooting, then uploading, then shooting some more, then uploading.  If it hadn't been for this, I wouldn't have had the chance to take this picture late in the set.
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    Of Montreal at the 9:30 Club in DC: As a photographer, I loved this show. Photographers were given permission to shoot the entire show from the photo pit instead of only the first three songs. I spent the entire night shooting, then uploading, then shooting some more, then uploading. If it hadn't been for this, I wouldn't have had the chance to take this picture late in the set.
    Shantel Mitchell
  • Superchunk's first tour in 10 years got them to the 9:30 Club on my birthday For the past four years, I have photographed a show on my birthday, and this was one of the more memorable ones.
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    Superchunk's first tour in 10 years got them to the 9:30 Club on my birthday For the past four years, I have photographed a show on my birthday, and this was one of the more memorable ones.
    Shantel Mitchell
  • The Tallest Man On Earth at the 9:30 Club in DC:  I remember that it poured the night of this show and there was a long line of fans standing in the rain in hopes of getting in for the Tallest Man on Earth.  I was impressed that so many people would stand in such awful weather to hear one man and a guitar.  I didn't leave disappointed.
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    The Tallest Man On Earth at the 9:30 Club in DC: I remember that it poured the night of this show and there was a long line of fans standing in the rain in hopes of getting in for the Tallest Man on Earth. I was impressed that so many people would stand in such awful weather to hear one man and a guitar. I didn't leave disappointed.
    Shantel Mitchell
  • The last time I saw Deerhunter was at the Ottobar, a tiny club in Baltimore, MD.  The show was very loud and full of energy.  This set at the 930 Club was very different.  It was more subdued and mellow.  But I still enjoyed the show.  The warm lights in this photo helped to capture the mood.
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    The last time I saw Deerhunter was at the Ottobar, a tiny club in Baltimore, MD. The show was very loud and full of energy. This set at the 930 Club was very different. It was more subdued and mellow. But I still enjoyed the show. The warm lights in this photo helped to capture the mood.
    Shantel Mitchell
  • Jonsi at the 9:30 Club in DC:  Photographers had shooting restrictions at this one.  We weren't allowed to shoot from the center of the stage unless we were in the balcony. I chose to take most of my pictures from this perspective so that I could take in the background art that filled the screen behind the band.  It was just as beautiful as the music.
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    Jonsi at the 9:30 Club in DC: Photographers had shooting restrictions at this one. We weren't allowed to shoot from the center of the stage unless we were in the balcony. I chose to take most of my pictures from this perspective so that I could take in the background art that filled the screen behind the band. It was just as beautiful as the music.
    Shantel Mitchell

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