Now that the first announcement of bands for Fest 21 is live, I can gush about how I excited I am every year to shoot Signals Midwest. This will be their eleventh year in a row at Fest and hopefully my sixth on the photo team.
Part of the reason I apply for the photo team every year is the pursuit of perfect jump shots. In a typical show I might have two or three opportunities to catch one, but at Fest I get two or three every twenty minutes. If you know the music well enough, you can usually guess and time your shots. Signals Midwest is well-known for having a lot of energy in their performance. I know from experience I can always count on them for some truly epic crowd engagement and, of course, jump shots.
“I’ve really been trying to practice presence,” Signals Midwest front person Max Stern said at Fest 19, “and appreciating shit in the moment. And Fest can be a real blur, but I hope you’ve all been able to be present here, and feel good amongst each other, and appreciative, and learn from everything we’ve been through, and learn from this period of isolation. When you think about good times ahead—that’s all well and good—but this is the good shit right now. It’s happening right now, in front of all of us. This is the shit you’re gonna remember.”
What makes this shot particularly memorable for me is that at least three of my photo team friends did the exact same thing. So between Miranda Jayne, Tommy Calderon, Katie Claire, and me, we have four shots of the same jump from different angles and in our own different styles. I joked afterward that we could probably make a calendar of just our Signals Midwest jump shots. I can’t wait to add to that collection this year and I hope everyone is getting as pumped as I am for next Fest.