Jake Egbert Photography Blog

Sugar - In Concert - Esker Point 2012

I finally got around to processing a few more photos from this past summer. On July 19th I saw Sugar in concert at Esker Point Beach for the third year in a row. Once again the band did not disappoint!

My photo gallery from last year's concert is probably my personal favorite of all my work. And, while I don't know that this year's gallery is up to the same standards as last year I do like it a lot. Here are a few of my favorite shots from the 2012 Sugar concert. Enjoy!

You can also see the pics on Facebook here if you wish.
And while you're there you can "like" that page, too, but only if you do like it...

A great venue for a concert!



This drum stick has seen its last concert



Most (but not all) of the fans were thrilled by the loud, upbeat music.




Israel recognized me because of my photos from last year.

Don and Shelley drew a crowd of their own when they showed off their cha-cha skills during a brief intermission.




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Ticket to Ride - In Concert - Old Lyme - 2012

I just happened across the Ticket to Ride concert in Old Lyme last year, to my surprise and delight. This year, however, we arrived on time and on purpose!

The annual Beatles concert was presented by Koffee Works of Old Lyme and took place outside their shop under a beautiful sunset. Ticket to Ride has had a good year so far. They appeared on the local Fox affiliate and they are rumored to have spent quite a bit of time in the studio of late (fingers crossed that their laying down tracks for an album). It seems like that work in the studio is paying dividends. These boys from Liverpool have really tightened up their harmonies and polished up their chords! They sounded fantastic and they once again had this crowd twisting and shouting over and between the painted lines of the bank parking lot late into the evening.

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Watching the Rain

So, I started a new job in Portland, Oregon about two weeks ago. It's been a very busy and exciting time preparing to move my family across the country.  While I have taken a few photos in the past couple of weeks, I have spent very little time processing any of them. Well tonight I was just scratching the surface of my photo queue and saw these two shots of my son contemplating whether or not he really wanted to accompany me on an errand across town (he did choose to go with his old man, to his credit!)  I realized tonight that even though I now live in Portland, a city renowned for its gray skies and rain, the last time I saw a real downpour was the day before I left Connecticut!

Summer in Portland is actually beautiful! Blue skies, sunshine, low humidity... Hopefully I'll get around to posting some Portland pics soon!

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Sailfest Fireworks - 2012

This was my third time watching the Sailfest fireworks in four years. The previous times I've watched from the waterfront district of New London and I was so close to the action that I struggled to keep the larger bursts in the frame. This year we found an ideal position from which to watch down at Fort Trumbull. There was much more space, fewer people, and two tall ships in the foreground, including the USCGC Eagle, which all added up to a great experience for me and the family. I'm pretty happy with how these shots turned out. Do you have a favorite picture from this gallery?
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Old Lyme - Memorial Day Parade - 2012

May 28, 2012 -- An Old Lyme tradition resumed again today under sunny skies, a welcome contrast to the drenching rains that caused the cancellation of the 2011 event. Parade participants marched in front of cheering crowds from the firehouse on Lyme Street to the parade terminus at Duck Creek Cemetery. The closing ceremonies incuded, among other things, performances by the Lyme Old Lyme High School Marching Band, essay readings, a flag ceremony, and a 21 gun salute followed by Taps.

I posted photos of this event right after Memorial Day and LymeLine.com ran some of them when they were fresh and new!

This annual event is one of my family's favorite aspects of living in small-town Connecticut. There is a real sense of community as we see people we know from school, gymnastics, and little league scattered up and down Lyme Street.

The whole town seems to be involved in the parade. Everyone first meets at the parade staging area as many families have kids marching with a band, baseball team, scout troop, etc. Then the parade rolls by, kids throwing candy, other kids scrambling to pick up candy, parents and spectators waving and snapping pictures. Then, the whole town gets up and follows the parade down to the cemetery for the Memorial Day ceremony. Afterwards, the parade sort of reverses course and we all follow the marching bands back to the firehouse where the whole event started! After enjoying free hot dogs and soda on the apparatus floor of the firehouse, residents are welcome to wander down to the Lyme Academy for the antique car show and an impressive array of sparkling automobiles.

LOLMS Marching Band - Anchors Away, played 100 times!
(Mrs. Wind, the band director, will not listen to this song again for a few years, except in her nightmares!)

A patriotic parade watcher

This one was twirling the foot with the sandal in time to the marching band music

The New London Firefighters Pipes and Drums

Three-volley salute

See you next Memorial Day!
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A Little More Sugar

A while back I posted a brief concert review along with a gallery of photos from the Sugar concert that I attended at Esker Point Beach. They are some of my favorite concert pictures and I even submitted a few of them in fair photography competitions this past fall with some success. Well, this week the band came across my blog post and photos online. I guess they liked what they saw because I am now featured on the brand new Sugar Band event website in their official photo gallery, and in the reviews section. There's even a link to my blog under vendors! I have to admit, it's a slick looking site and I am flattered to be included on it!

Who knows? I may even get a chance to photograph the band again sometime soon, this time by invitation!

Part of my concert review on the Sugar site... Looks pretty official, eh?

One of the many shots I posted before

The color version of the shot Israel picked for the background of my quote
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Salmon River Trail

I'm taking a break from city photography posts for today. In late October Grandpa, several grand kids, and I piled into the van and headed for the hills of Eastern Central Connecticut. One of my coworkers had described hiking on the Salmon River Trail in Colchester, CT and I was curious to see it. My kids love to hike our local nature trails and they really enjoyed this longer hike with it's steeper hills and scenic views.

The trail starts at the Comstock Covered Bridge, one of only a handful of historic covered bridges remaining in Connecticut, which is currently closed for renovation. For a short distance the trail follows closely along side the broad and shallow Salmon river which appears to be perfectly suited for fly fishing. Then the trail gains altitude until it eventually crests the edge of the river gorge, offering panoramic views of the colorful forested hills and rapids in the bend of the river, now far below. We could hear ATVs in the hills across the river, and smoke from a camp fire rose in stark white contrast against the darker woods.

We hiked a couple of miles and only turned around when it became apparent that we were going to be hiking back in the dark. We watched the sun dip over the horizon from the overlook. The ATVs had by then gone silent but the boisterous and festive voices of the riders carried clearly in the crisp evening air. The flash of fireworks created distant silhouettes on the smoke that still hung over and through the trees next to the river. We resumed hiking through the descending darkness, arriving back at the van just as the last remnants of light faded from the sky.

We'll have to come back next season to hike clear through to Day Pond State Park.

Salmon River, Colchester, CT

Mushroom City


Kids in a row

Light on the trail ahead

Sepia Sunset

This hiker loved being on the trail

Grandpa and his troop of hikers

This was about the last light I could capture with the camera

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Kids and Kites

One way to salvage a cold windy picnic for the kids is to produce a kite that flies like a dizzy swallow all hopped up on Red Bull and turn them loose! My friend Jared produced just such a kite and several kids miraculously and immediately forgot all about the cold for the better part of an hour!

This kid nearly joined the kite in the wind coming of Long Island Sound.

The kite just flew tight dive-bombing corkscrews at random

It'll be right back for...

...another strafing run

Lean into it, or fly with it!

This pass leaves little smiling bodies strewn about the Harkness Park lawn

Smile at the wind
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Harkness Park Seascapes

Here are a few shots from Harkness State Park taken at a windy picnic I attended in the middle of October. A few of my friends have already seen these none of them made it to my photo blog... until now, that is. You like?

B/W Conversion

Wedding Pavilion - Too Windy for Vows

Texture and Light

My favorite of the day.
This is probably the highest surf I've yet seen on Long Island Sound. Usually our waves are small.

Probably too similar to the last one to justify posting but I like the way it is framed so here it is anyway...
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Lynde Point Lighthouse Sunset

I was scanning through photos tonight and these shots of the Lynde Point Lighthouse in Old Saybrook caught my eye. On October 6 I was headed home from baseball practice with my son and we just had to stop and capture this sunset. I set up a tripod and let my 8-year-old trip some of the 6 to 10 second exposures, so I guess he technically took a few of these. I have to admit I am thrilled when I see my kids getting excited about this stuff.

We missed the really brilliant moments of the sunset by about 5 minutes so as good as these look they could have been incredible.

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An Evening at Pilgrim's Landing

One evening back in July I was headed home pretty late from work and I noticed distant lightning flashing against what appeared to be a very clear night sky. I was up late already so I grabbed my camera and tripod and headed for Pilgrim's Landing on the Connecticut River near my home. Here are a few of the pictures I captured from the river's edge while an impressive storm front approached but never really arrived (I guess it passed to the North of us). It was sort of eery standing in the dark watching the clouds and the distant lightning while I waited for camera exposures. I was using a small flashlight and every time the light touched the shallow water it became a roiling mass of tiny eels. I assume they were American Eels as I know they are native to the local rivers. Unfortunately, my attempts to photograph the eels didn't turn out very well in the low light.

Bridge to Old Saybrook

Very similar to the first shot, this exposure resulted in a completely different color temp. I struggled to choose between these two shots for a fair photography contest... I chose this one and won a third-place ribbon at the Guilford Fair.

For a dark cloudy night, there were sure a lot of stars showing through


The canoe landing
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The Day Irene Came to Town

After nearly a week of watching the news, tracking the storm path, and preparing for Hurricane Irene to arrive on the Connecticut coast, arrive she did! Sometime around 5:30 AM we lost power and noticed that the storm was in full swing. The trees were whipping about crazily in the merciless onslaught and the house was being peppered with leaves and twigs. Thankfully, none of those big trees decided to come into the house to escape the storm!

After the tropical storm had passed (without power we didn't know it had been downgraded from a hurricane for a couple of days) we ventured out to take a look around. We were amazed by the sheer number of fallen trees! We were convinced it would be weeks before electricity was restored. For some reason, we actually got power back very late Sunday night (which I blogged about here), but much of the surrounding area didn't have power for around a week.

Here are photos of a few of the more interesting calling cards that Irene left for us in the areas in and around Old Lyme.

Boston Post Road was blocked in several places.

These cables were down for several days...

Our northward adventure ended here on Sunday afternoon. I couldn't believe the cables were still intact...

Residents began to take inventory of the damage and wondered how long they'd be without power.

Another casualty of the wind.

This damaged tree landed about 900 miles from Chicago...

Go Away Irene - 8-28-11

None of us remember seeing this tree on our beach before the storm.

There was still quite a bit of wind on Sunday afternoon.

This amateur news crew was on the scene

Sand, rope, and floats indicate the path the storm surge took around the corner of this beach home.

Buoys by the Barby

This area is roped off because, apparently, it is not safe for swimming...

Our now sand-bound picnic pavilion

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The Dark Night - In Irene's Wake

I have always been impressed by the sheer number of stars I can see on a clear night here in Old Lyme, CT. However, the night sky that followed Hurricane Irene was particularly impressive. With power out all day Sunday for miles around there was almost no discernible glare on the atmosphere from ground lighting. With flights in all the surrounding major cities grounded, there was not a single jet visible in the sky and no con trails anywhere.

I shot some long exposures and was mesmerized by the results I was getting.

In the earlier pictures you can see windows in my home lighted by a battery powered lantern on the ground floor and by a green glow stick in the upstairs bedroom (I couldn't even detect the light upstairs with my naked eye). The intermitent rows of clouds were really moving across the sky and the trees were still being whipped around by the wind. I left the shutter open while I went into the garage to rummage around in the minivan for my earphones (might as well listen to a book while standing for minutes at a time in the silent pitch-black night) and I captured the red LED arm band I was using to see the camera settings along with a surprising 90 degree shift in the direction the clouds were moving.

I captured the Big Dipper, Polaris, and the Little Dipper in several shots and then decided to see what I could get by shooting a few of the infrequent cars that ventured by on the highway.

I set up on the edge of the highway and started my first shot there, wondering how long it would be before another car wandered past. I was just settling in when the big street light right over my head burst suddenly (and loudly) to life, blinding me and nearly causing an involuntary bowel release! The house across the street was the next to explode in a blinding flash, followed in quick succession by each of the other homes on my street. I quickly aborted the shot I was making, certain that all the extra light had ruined it. Turns out I consider that particular shot a keeper. It serves as a reminder of how it felt to be standing out alone in the pitch black night after a day full of uncertainty and destruction when, against all odds, the power was restored. The adrenaline from the initial shock of the light and noise (ever noticed how loud street lights really are?) was soon replaced by an almost euphoric joy! We lost power early in the morning and based on the hundreds of downed trees we'd seen in the area I was convinced we wouldn't have power for days or weeks. (In fact, four days later there are homes within a mile of us that still don't have power.) Cell service was out and since we're on well water we didn't even have cold showers to look forward to in the coming days.

With the power unexpectedly restored my late-night photo shoot was abruptly ended. I headed back inside to reconnect the fridge and freezer to the house current. I plugged in cell phones and set alarm clocks. Then I spent over 20 minutes getting our well pump restarted.

What a day!

Latern in the Window

90 Degree Wind Shift
This shot was long enough to show the apparent rotation of the stars around the North Star off to the left of the frame.

Clouds fleeing over the neighbor's house

None of our trees fell in the storm, luckily

Big Dipper, Polaris, and the Little Dipper

Another shot of Ursa Major and about a million stars.
Can you tell which one is the North Star?

I like the effect of the lighter branches whipping around in the wind.


Long exposure rudely interrupted by the sudden restoration of power!

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SayWHAT? - In Concert - Sailfest 2011

After the Irish bands and bagpipes finished up their Friday night concerts at Salifest, a younger band with a much edgier look and sound took the stage on the Custom House Pier. SayWHAT? is a rock band from Chester, CT.

I saw these guys setting up after the Clan O'Cleary concert and was thinking of calling it a night due to the intermittent rain that was giving no sign of clearing up. I wandered up to the train station wondering what was happening on the other stage. What was happening? Nothing. I mean, there was a bevy of young Ford reps showing off the new line of Focus, but there were no bands on stage. It seemed most people were in hiding. So, I took a few Ford trinkets (free backpack for the kids!) and headed back down Bank Street past all the dark vendor tents, deciding to call it a night before it really started pouring.

By the time I got back to the train tracks near the waterfront, however, I could hear SayWHAT? really rocking the end of the pier. So, instead of heading back to my car to get out of the rain I found myself drawn back out to hear the last 20 minutes of the show. In the end I really didn't regret the extra walk or the extra rain because it turned out to be one heck of a good show!

There was intermittent rain falling through most of their set but that didn't keep the die-hard fans from enjoying the show with or without umbrellas. There were even a few that were throwing their hands up and dancing like they were at a club. By the end of the concert there was a break in the rain. Then the wind picked up and started dumping water off of the stage awning with every gust. This kept everyone on their toes, especially a certain guy with a camera that was skulking around under the edges of the awning hiding from the wet...

So, what to say about the band... The first thing you notice about SayWHAT? has to be the huge Afro that their guitar player, Ryan Newman, lugs around atop his sizable frame. Lead vocalist, Grace Carver, more than holds her own on some power rock anthems. The rest of the band is right there, as well, pumping out a serious wall of sound. Then Ryan channels the power of the 'fro' or Jimi or something because he lays down a blistering guitar solo that makes your ears start to bleed just a little and you start to wonder if these guys can possibly be as young as they look!

Catch one of their shows if you get a chance! And, check out the pics of the band, below.

SayWHAT? did not go unnoticed by anyone in the vicinity of the waterfront. Even the deaf *felt* their music!

Sometimes a mosh pit of one is all you need...

Note the water blowing off the awning...

L to R: Alex Socci - Rhythm Guitar, Grace Carver - Lead Vocalist, Justus Doane - Bass Guitar

Alex Stocci

The Afro and his Ryan Newman

Ryan and Justus

Grace Carver

Carlin Morris - Drummer, Animal, Comic Relief, Not a fan of cameras...

Sugar - In Concert - Esker Point 2011

Sugar put on one of the capstone performances of the Summer SoundWaves Concert Series, and they really packed the beach with fans again this year. (You can visit the band Facebook page here.)

I saw Sugar perform last year and was really looking forward to seeing them again. Apparently I was not alone. The line to board the shuttle bus stretched down the sidewalk and around the corner of Fitch High School. I debated walking the two miles but wisely decided to wait it out. Once on board the standing-room-only short-bus the higher volume of traffic resulted in a much longer bus ride down to the beach than usual. It was well worth the wait, however, as Sugar put on another great show!

The crowd was treated to energetic dance hits, beautiful beach weather, a bit of Zumba, and an engaging and crowd-pleasing performance all around. The kids packing the stage with the band for the closing number 'Don't Stop Believing' seemed to be having the time of their lives. (Unfortunately, not everyone who wanted to dance with the band was able to make it up on stage...)

I can't wait until next year's show!

Breathtaking Evening on the Beach

My favorite crowd shot.
(This one won a ribbon at the Guilford Fair photography competition!)

Ian Kelly - Drums, Andy Chaney - Bass, and Klyph Johnson - Sax

Natalia Mortrude - Vocals

Scott Boland - Guitar, Marcy Kelly - Vocals, Israel Malek - Keyboards

Ian and Klyph - Cool in Shades

Klyph on Sax


If the sand pit was crowded for the first half of the concert, it was PACKED for the second half which started with a couple of intense Zumba numbers.

Slide! I took my life in my hands to get this shot from amidst a Zumba-crazed frenzy...

Zumba for the People!

Crowds of Adoring Fans

Israel - A Concert Done Well

Sign Me!

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Celticity - In Concert - Sailfest 2011

Celticity is another great Irish band that performed on Friday, July 8 2011 at Sailfest. I arrived a bit later than I wanted so I only caught the last couple of songs they played but they sounded great. Celticity warmed up the stage for the New London Firefighters Pipes and Drums and they were, in turn, followed by Clan O'Cleary.

Phred Mileski - Voice, Psaltery, Accordion, Bodhran Drum, Percussion

Phred Mileski, Sylvie Harris (guitar), and Megan Sweeney (flute)

A very young fan of Celticity

New London Firefighters Pipes and Drums warming up with a few pints

Phred stuck around for the Clan O'Cleary concert and practiced some ballroom dancing with a pro dance instructor that just happened to be in the crowd, as well.

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Clan O'Cleary - In Concert - Sailfest 2011

Each year Sailfest boasts some fantastic entertainment in various locations around New London. Custom House Pier has been the home to several different Irish bands on Friday night over the past few years. This year Clan O'Cleary took the stage in front of a bit smaller crowd than usual, probably due to the impending rain storm. Those that braved the weather (it did end up raining quite a bit) were treated to a fine performance! Since the only escape from the rain was right up next to the stage I got lots of close-ups of this great band.

This was also the first big batch of photos that I every processed in Adobe LightRoom (along with the Tall Ship Gazela photos from the same evening). As you can see from the gallery I made liberal use of one of the black and white treatments and a split tone treatment that yields a high-contrast sepia tone image. So far I'm very happy with the results I've been able to get with this new tool.

Clan O'Cleary plays a variety of instruments

Hands of Richard Hawkes - Drums

Steve Cleary - Guitar, Mandola, banjo, voice

Mike Corman - Celtic harp, recorders, guitar, voice

The steady drizzle didn't slow down the band or the stalwart crowd of fans. It did send me to the cover of the stage awning with my camera, though.

Albert Yost - flute, irish whistle, fife's, concertina (squeeze box)

Denise Yost - Violin

Clan O'Cleary with the Gazela in the Background

Denise loses the hat for better lighting

I presume that's the "squeeze box" Albert's playing

Cleaning up to make room for the next band

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Never Enuff - In Concert

Never Enuff played in concert at Esker Point Beach on July 28, 2011 as part of the annual Summer SoundWaves Concert Series. It was a beautiful night and the concert drew a pretty lively crowd.

These guys really know how to rock! They played a mix of classic dance rock cover songs. Lead singer Mick Marra demonstrated a powerful voice that was equally at ease belting out AC/DC or any of the several more contemporary hits on the set list. The crowd got involved and the show had fans of all ages screaming and dancing with their hands in the air. By the end they had a stage full of kids (I think one of the guitar amps actually got shut off when a kid stepped on a switchboard) and there were people wearing Never Enuff bumper stickers in all sorts of creative places (not sure that was the intent, but folks were sure having fun...) One of their last songs was entirely dedicated to teaching the rising generation the careful art and discipline of head banging!

Once again, I took too many photos, deleted most of them, and still ended up with a huge gallery of pics. I processed them all in one evening in LightRoom and was pretty happy with the results. Here's a link to the full gallery along with my favorite shots from the evening. Do you have a favorite?

Sunset Concert

Dave Siswick plays like he means it!

Jen Hebert - Rumor has it the band found her working in a restaurant wearing a guitar pick for a necklace...

Joe Goddard on drums

Tipsy hoopers daring me to take their picture...
Yeah, I dared.
"It's easier to hoop when I'm not drinking," he told me right after I snapped this.

Jami's Gorgeous Green Guitar

Head Bangin'

Jami Blackwood on guitar. Probably my favorite guitar picture to date.

Jami and Jen Over Cymbals

Mick Marra

Never Enuff

Jen on the Bass Guitar

Last One For this Post...
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Ticket to Ride - In Concert

Quite a crowd gathered in front of Koffee Works in Old Lyme this past Saturday evening to watch Ticket to Ride, Connecticut's premiere Beatles tribute band. These mop tops put on a great show! Also, my neighbor Dave plays George, which is pretty cool. As usual, I took too many pictures and then processed them in Adobe LightRoom. Let me know which one's you like. Also, check out the band website at tickettoridect.com.

Beatles through the Koffee Works window

Over the hedge

A four-legged fan and her(?) person

In case the band loses track of which guitar cases belong in their van...

Ringo loves peace

A great way to spend a summer evening

The show included a costume change at intermission

There was some twisting and shouting going on in the audience

I wasn't the only photographer there


True fans


Another four-legged fan

More fans

George (my neighbor) and John. George can really wail on that guitar!

They have a few instruments to choose from.
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Tall Ship Gazela - Sailfest 2011

The wooden barkentine Gazela, currently sailing out of Philadelphia, graced the Custom House Pier in New London for Sailfest 2011. Visitors were invited to climb aboard, look around, and talk with the crew.

I enjoyed visiting with several crew members while listening to the New London Firefighters Pipes and Drums performing at the bottom of the gangway. Each of the volunteers aboard the Gazela has an appreciation for their ship and for sailing that was evident in the way they spoke of their different responsibilities and experiences aboard and abroad. They spoke of the different harbors they've visited and described the complexities of running a sailing vessel with a volunteer crew. The art of sailing one of these tall ships is nearly lost, but there are a dedicated few that still find satisfaction in keeping the traditions alive.

I've been playing around more with Lightroom to do my post-processing. What do you think of the results?

Securing the Ship

Fog rolled in over the New London skyline ahead of the rain

The Wheel and Compass

Wooden Dories

New London Firefighters Pipes and Drums

Lines in Order

Ship's Bell


Forward Mast with Square Sails
(the rear two masts don't have square sails)

Lines on Deck

From the Custom House Pier

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