January 1, 2009 alan

08 becomes 09…

At the end of each year I like to put together a round-up of the past 12 months as a way for friends and family to see what we’ve been up to. Quite a few read my blog regularly so will know already but for those that don’t it’s a quick catch-up. It’s also good to look back occasionally and see how things have changed, hopefully for the better.

2008 has probably been our busiest year ever! The photography business has gone from strength to strength with us shooting over 30 weddings this year, including our first overseas wedding in New York. Along the way we’ve made some fantastic new friends and had the privalege of sharing some amazing days with our clients. We love shooting weddings and every one is different. Thanks to all our couples for trusting us to capture such an important event for them.

On the music side of things it’s been an incredible year. I’ve photographed so many gigs and added some genuine legends to my portfolio… Elton John, the Sex Pistols, Liza Minelli, Bon Jovi, Kiss, Oasis, Jay Z and even Cliff Richard! I’m hoping to add AC/DC to that list in 2009. On top of that I shot my first magazine cover, featuring Napalm Death, which hits stores this month and I realised one of my ambitions by having a photo in the legendary Rolling Stone magazine.

At home, 2008 has been fun-packed and magical as Elliott continues to grow and keep us entertained. The most watched TV show in our house is now In The Night Garden and we’ve almost given up trying to keep the house tidy! CDs and records have been thrown out to make room for more and more toys and, with a new baby due to arrive next month, it’s only going to get worse! And I wouldn’t have it any other way 🙂 Evelyne and I took Elliott to Barcelona in April and in July we celebrated his first birthday. We must have taken thousands of photos!!

Every year I put together a list of my fave albums from the year and below are the ones which have been on heavy rotation this year. It’s a varied mix for sure. So here they are, my top 20 albums of 2008:

1. Kathleen Edwards – Asking For Flowers
Without a doubt the album I’ve listened to more than any other and, in my opinion, one of the most underrated artists in the world. I love all Kathleen’s albums but this one is so packed full of emotion and incredible songwriting it has to be my favourite. Oh, and Kathleens’ profile picture on her MySpace page was taken by me! 🙂 Check the clip below..

2. Gojira – The Way Of All Flesh
Brutally heavy yet intricate, intelligent and quite unique.

3. Elbow – The Seldom Seen Kid
Winner of this year’s Mercury Prize and stunning from beginning to end. A thing of beauty.

4. The Gaslight Anthem – The ’59 Sound
Imagine The Clash jamming with Bruce Springsteen and you’ll be halfway there. Soulful americana meets punk rock. A fine album and a great live band.

5. Meshuggah – ObZen
Relentless, technically mindblowing and immensely heavy. Love it!

6. Rise Against – Appeal To Reason
They just keep getting better.

7. The Bronx – The Bronx III
One of the best live bands on the planet.

8. Gemma Hayes – The Hollow Of Morning
The lovely Gemma returned to form with this gorgeous record.

9. Norma Jean – The Anti Mother
Who says christians and rock & roll don’t mix? Actually, I think it was Billy Connolly. He’s wrong!

10. Unearth – The March

11. Nine Inch Nails – The Slip
Even an average NIN album is better than most other bands.

12. Sara Bareilles – Little Voice
Perfect pop music.

13. The Kills – Midnight Boom
Cool as hell.

14. Death Cab For Cutie – Narrow Stairs
Took me a while to get into this but it eventually got under my skin.

15. Cancer Bats – Hail Destroyer
Pure down n’ dirty rock n roll with riffs and grooves galore.

16. The Gutter Twins – Saturnalia
Deep, dark, brooding. Two of my favourite vocalists ever.

17. Kings Of Leon – Only By The Night
Now bonafide megastars, the Kings delivered an accomplished album this year.

18. Bleeding Through – Declaration

19. Mark Geary – Opium
Took me ages to even find this album but it was worth the effort.

20. Weezer – The Red Album
Elliott’s favourite. He loves dancing around to Pork & Beans.

Other albums worthy of attention – Coldplay, Metallica, Pete Murray, Killing The Dream, This Or The Apocalypse, The Stills, Whitechapel, Beneath The Massacre, Cold War Kids, The Haunted, Snow Patrol, Sigur Ros, City & Colour, Johnny Truant, Beck, Slipknot, Ryan Adams & the Cardinals, Joan As Police Woman, Shawn Smith.

So there you have it, another year over and 12 months of the unknown ahead. I look forward to plenty more adventures and good times in 2009. If you have the inclination, you can keep up with our exploits on the blog or Twitter. For those on Facebook have a look at the Steve Gerrard Photography page on Facebook.

Thanks to all our friends, family and lovely clients who made 2008 such a great year for us. Best wishes for 2009.


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