As far as years go overall, 2016 has been brutal and unforgiving. Already it has come to be referred to as “the year the music died,” with so many high-profile deaths (not to mention one brand-new, bright-orange reason to fear speaking one’s mind). On the more personal front, however, at least as far as concerts go, 2016 has been an all-timer and a year that’s going to be pretty damn hard to top.

Sting, Goo Goo Dolls, Bad Religion, Deftones, A Wilhelm Scream, Coheed and Cambria, Refused, Brand New, Glassjaw, Leon Bridges, Aerosmith, Lenny Kraavitz, Third Eye Blind…looking back at the list of names I’ve had the privilege to document this year is like looking at an all-time best list of music in general.

10. Coheed and Cambria / The Hollywood Palladium
Coheed’s been on my bucket list forever. Getting to see them with Glassjaw was a real pleasure, and to have them put on as impeccable of a show as they did was all the better.

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9. Beach Slang / The Troubadour
Beach Slang is always a good time. With this shot, though, I felt like I had managed to capture some of the energy and passion of the band in a more abstract way.

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8.CeeLo Green / The Roxy
CeeLo was probably the first truly big name I got to shoot this year, rather than my bevy of underground legends. I also really loved the tint I somehow managed to give a lot of the “black and white” shots, which I still haven’t been able to replicate.

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7. Rituals of Mine / The Hollywood Palladium
The energy in this shot is really what made it so popular – -I posted it on my Insta and it skyrocketed up to the top of my photos in terms of likes and attention.

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6. Strife / The Roxy
I was always curious about Strife, but when they exploded onto the stage, big, beardly, bleeding from the head, they were a damn force of nature.

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5. Sugar Ray / The Belasco Theater
Sugar Ray has always been one of my favorite bands — they were one of the first acts that got me into music to begin with. Shooting them was a dream come true, and getting a shot that captured their appreciation for their fans seemed like it was a great distillation of the night.

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4. Underoath / The Novo
It really doesn’t get much better than Underoath. I don’t have to get into it. Mostly I love this shot for how I managed to get just the right moment of the mic-swing to make it look like magic.

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3. Gates / The Shrine Auditorium
As far as show action shots go, I’m not certain I can do much better than this.

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2. Mother Feather / The Bootleg Theater
C’mon. Upside down and eye makeup with a mic shoved in her mouth — this looks like voodoo amazingness and that’s about what Mother Feather is anyway.

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1. HO99O9 / The Roxy
I’ve said a lot about this band. This picture, for me anyway, is nearly everything I love about taking concert photos — it’s strange, ambiguous (are they fighting? embracing?), otherworldly, and slightly dangerous.

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