As my jazz photographers know all too well, good night often depends on where you position yourself. I faced that conondrum tonight at Duc de Lombards, a jazz club located in what was once was Paris' Les Halles. We didn't have a reservation, which means the straight-on seats were gone by the time we bought our 28 Euro tickets. We initially positioned ourselves next to the drummer's right, but no ear plugs made that a bit risky. So then we headed to the pianist's left, which was an interesting view, but I quickly ascertained that the piano would block my view of the bassist and drummer. I then looked up, and realized there was a balcony. Hmm. I like being in the balcony at Rockefeller Chapel for the Hyde Park Jazz Festival's Saturday night closing concert, but I get to start on the ground floor. Well, what the heck. It's only one night.
I am still undecided on whether this angle works, but it is an interesting one. I shot this at ISO 8,000, which is well above my 3,200 limit, but conditions required it (2.8f at 160). The band, Flash Pig, was very interesting. I couldn't quite figure out where they were coming from. At times, they sounded like they were Norwegian musicians playing on an ECM date. At other times, they were louder and more hard driving. Whatever? They were enjoyable.
Evelyn was a bit upset about the inequity. She couldn't justify why these guys should get 28 Euros per ticket, while the piano trio last night at Riv 38 received 2 Euro per ticket.
For those who are in Paris, it is worth checking out who is playing at Duc de Lombards. The posters on the wall leading to the bathroom advertised performances by Jeremy Pelt, Chris Potter, Monty Alexander, and a number of other regulars at the Jazz Showcase. The website referenced Marquis Hill.
Nobody seemed to care that I was photographing. I shot from the balcony and the stairway, as will be evident when I post more photographs upon my return to Chicago. I purposely went to the men's room, which allowed me to walk to the back of the club, but I decided I better not shoot straight-on when I returned to my seat. Evelyn, who was sketching, never has to worry about photographer etiquette.