Monday, December 17, 2012

Graham Parker and the Rumour

Back in the late 70's, I was a huge fan of a trio of singer-songwriters from England, Elvis Costello, Joe Jackson, and Graham Parker. All three men also had tremendous bands whom I found just as worthy as their leaders. Saturday night, December 15th, I got the chance to see Graham Parker reunite with his band, The Rumour, for the first time since 1980. Graham and the band are also featured in the new Judd Apatow movie, "This Is 40." The venue was the Catalyst in Santa Cruz, a hippie haven if there ever was one. The crowd was mostly men of a certain age who took a while to leave their seats, wend their way to the front of the stage and dance around on arthritic or replaced hips and knees. While not quite as dynamic as the last time I saw them in 1979, GP and the Rumour were a fantastic facsimile of their former selves. My friend Matt and I were more than amazed. I brought the Sony RX 100 along for its first test drive in a concert situation. It handled itself fairly well, with the only problem being user unfamiliarity. I fumbled for the on/off switch in the dark, not to mention the shutter button, something I usually don't struggle with. I set the Sony to auto iso, 1/125, f/1.8-4.9 depending on the focal length. I got from 1800 to 3200 as the stage lighting changed. The Sony processor seems, in jpegs at least, to do some rather heavy-handed noise reduction at these isos. Very little noise is visible, but fine details get lost in the shuffle. I'd prefer to get more detail and do the noise reduction myself. Maybe when ACR supports RAW capture things will improve. The bottom shot was a bit blurry so I fooled with it in NIK Color Efex, using the Polaroid Transfer filter.

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