Liz Cooper & The Stampede live is transfixing like an iridescent soap bubble. Mesmerized by the silky multicolor skin, shifting in hue and shape you are tempted to poke at it like a child. But don’t burst the bubble just yet, hold back and enjoy. Your head rocks from shoulder to shoulder and your ass shifts from hip to hip with temptation your mind is saying pop that bitch there has to be more inside. But don’t lift your finger and stab because she will rip the mother open for you as she does and the inside is a wonderland.
I was at SXSW pin-balling from inside stage to outside stage, from inside stage to outside stage, at the Palm Door on Sixth shooting 15 minutes of each artist set. (The inside and outside stages consisted of Tyler Childers, David Ramirez, Son Little, Caamp, Erika Wennerstrom (of Heartless Bastards), Courtney Marie Andrews, Red Shahan, Marlon Williams, Lucette, Lauren Ruth Ward, Okey Dokey, Liz Cooper & The Stampede, Dead Horses, Parsonsfield). Honestly, I hadn’t listened to most of these artists prior (my ignorance, especially since I hadn’t heard of Tyler Childresat that point).
I squeezed between a few fridge-sized, ear-blistering speakers and popped a couple of stage shots of a blond in a bright orange lily jumpsuit and heeled boots shredding a guitar. I mean shredding, tearing, ripping into this instrument and it was screaming for her. I stopped shooting and watched the whole set. I neglected the other stage on that list but I just couldn’t walk away. I was now a Liz Cooper & The Stampede fan.
The following day at Luck I was shooting artist portraits for short interviews with Garden & Gun Magazine. After checking at Luck the following morning, I had my shot list in hand and hot damn if Liz Cooper wasn’t on it. After another set in the middle of the Luck grounds under and oval circusy looking tent, that she no doubt smashed again, I caught up with her and did a quick portrait behind Willies Saloon on a green velvet couch.
Her kaleidoscope style and power drive it home.
This is a link to my blog when I was starting out, discovering how things worked in this industry, some of my early adventures, great people, and hard work. All building blocks, it’s a fun read. There was is a gap of a few years, think that’s due to Instagram and the dark days of the blog.