On any given day, I get dozens of emails in my inbox, typically from clients or potential clients, sometimes from friends, and, of course, a handful of messages that are subscriptions and spam. Most of the time, managing email is the activity on my daily to-do list I dread the most. But on occasion, I’ll get a message in my inbox that completely makes my day. This past March, I got one of these exciting emails from the handsome and talented men of the alternative rock band Amsterdam Station, announcing the upcoming release of their first full-length album. In preparation for this monumental event, the band enlisted me for a collaborative partnership.
We started with styling the band for a photoshoot for the album, “The River. The Sound. The Wake.” The band and I jumped on a live video call on a Sunday night during one of their weekly rehearsals to discuss the inspiration behind the album and some of their style influences. As the title of the album indicates, the central theme focuses on the forces of nature, specifically the river as a source of cleansing, forward motion, and the cycle of life and death. In addition to embodying the energy of the outdoors and capturing the tones of the earth, the band wanted to stay true to their minimalist style approach that mirrors other alternative rock bands, like The Killers, Mute Math, and Dead Weather. Over the course of the next month, we worked to compose individual looks for each of the band members that reflected the concept for the album and stayed true to each of their individual styles. Then, on an unseasonably cold and windy Saturday morning in April, the band convened at the Chattahoochee River in Roswell, Georgia for the shoot.
For the next several weeks, the band worked tirelessly to complete the album. At the end of their long and arduous journey, I was fortunate enough to get an exclusive preview of the tracks and learn more about the creative process that went into composing the album.
AOC BLOG GIRL: How did you come up with the name for the album?
AMSTERDAM STATION: The album title first originated from the song “The Sound”. This song has been in our writing room for about two years and was the first song written for the new album. This song demonstrates a key change for our band and the maturity of our writing, with haunting harmonies and a tip-of-the-hat to great southern literature and iconic murder ballads. The River has been an archetype throughout history as a place for the soul and the body to be cleansed, a place to offer up the horrors that haunt our minds, and a place to break free from the demons that bind.
The sequence of the wording is important too. The River. The Sound. The Wake. It equates to the place, the event, and the aftermath. A wake is the tracking of waves after movement cuts through the water. When you approach a river, you bear witness to its constant state of change, and, in the wake of the aftermath, a future that is flux, pushing and pulling against an ever changing present. It’s never the same river. With every action or event, there may be admission and regret, but there is never an undoing. If you come to the river heavy with burden, so much so that it consumes you to the core, then you shall sink and bear witness to the bed you’ve made. But, if you allow yourself to purge, grow and persevere, your life becomes buoyant again, and so you float on.
AOC BLOG GIRL: Describe the creative process that went into conceptualizing one of the songs on the album.
AMSTERDAM STATION: In the song Florence, the idea is that the woman (Florence) is having a conversation with God during her last waking hours. Greg (Vocalist/Bassist/Guitarist) wrote this song while his Grandmother was in terminal hospice care last year. She was at a point in her life where her COPD had rendered her unable to catch her breath, even doing the simplest tasks. Once in hospice, she was surrounded by family, reminiscing and telling stories, all while tethered to a wall by an oxygen container and confined to a bed and a body that was merely a shell of herself. Her soul was still vibrant, but her body had run its course, and she died peacefully in her sleep. She had given their family some scares in years past, but during her final moments, she seemed content, accepting and at ease. This song is a tribute to her and a hope that she’s living in peace with her maker.
AOC BLOG GIRL: What’s one signature quality that defines the album as a whole, lyrically, musically, or otherwise?
AMSTERDAM STATION: The signature quality of the album is probably the flow of the songs throughout the album. Like a River, it’s dynamic and constantly changing. Every time you listen cover to cover, it might bring you to a new or changing place in your life. It is a roller coaster of emotions, with constant peaks and troughs, instead of remaining static in one music style or feeling. It mimics real life, instead of the cookie-cutter lives we see ourselves adapting to from time to time.
AOC BLOG GIRL: What’s one thing you’ve learned in producing your first full-length album that you’d like to share with aspiring artists?
AMSTERDAM STATION: However long you believe the album is going to take, double it. In the world of DIY recording these days, you need the extra time to learn and better yourself and to allow for the magic of the studio to rub off on the tracks. Sometimes the last minute changes you make in the studio can really be what MAKE a song have that extra sparkle or resonance. Having more time decreases the stress for the artists and the pressure on the creative process.
Amsterdam Station is releasing their first full length album, “The River. The Sound. The Wake.” this Friday, July 1. Visit their website for details on how to purchase the album, upcoming tour dates, and more! If you’re in the Atlanta area, join the band at Smith’s Olde Bar for their album release party tomorrow night!
To mothers, for giving us life, love, and tradition. Happy Mother’s Day.
Saturday mornings are not for sleeping in. The early bird catches the worm or at least gets the best pick of produce and pastries.
The drive south down 85 is rarely serene, except at sunrise on Saturday mornings. The fog of humid, summer days is clearing, and the city of Atlanta waits quietly.
We arrive as they ring the bell. The Morningside Farmer’s Market is open for business.
Mom and I make our way ’round clockwise: chocolate babka from La Calavera Bakery, fresh flowers from Crystal Organic Farm, colorful crop from Elm Street Gardens.
Once our bags overflow with the makings of the week’s dinners, we return to the car to place perishables in coolers. But it’s not time to head home yet.
We enjoy a well-deserved breakfast at Alon’s Bakery. Our reward for waking in the wee-hours.
Sufficiently fueled by iced-Americanos and breakfast paninis, we end our mother-daughter ritual with a stroll down North Highland Avenue.
Photography by Angie Webb of Angie Webb Creative on location at Morningside Farmer’s Market and Alon’s bakery in Atlanta, GA.
2015 is fast approaching. While it’s always a good time to reinvent yourself, the New Year is a particularly poignant occasion to do so. Perhaps you’re planning to look for a new job or pursue a new career in 2015. Maybe you’re hoping for a promotion at your current company in the New Year. Is 2015 the year you monetize your hobby into a serious side project? Have you been considering launching a blog? There are numerous reasons to think about renewal as a New Year draws near.
A portrait session is the perfect way to jump-start a new you for the New Year.
There was a time when portraits were primarily reserved for special occasions – think yearbook photos or family Christmas cards. No more! Anyone with some disposable income (or, hey, some Christmas cash) can afford a professional portrait and present a more polished image.
We live in a time when social media has given almost everyone a public persona, and sometimes it’s tough to say where personal ends and where professional begins. A social media photo is often the first impression you make, and more and more it seems an iPhone and an outstretched arm won’t suffice. Don’t you want an image that makes people stop and say, “maybe I want to look a bit closer,”?
If you’re ready to kick off the New Year with a new you, join Angie Webb of Angie Webb Creative for a Headshot Mini Sessions Event from 10:00am to 1:00pm on Saturday, January 10. Each session lasts 20 minutes, and you’ll get the opportunity to shoot with up to two different backdrops. Afterward, you’ll be able to view your proofs online and select two images to be fully retouched by Angie. This exclusive event is limited to eight slots, and space is filling up fast – register now!
BONUS – Complimentary Styling Consultation from Yours Truly
As a bonus, I’m offering complimentary styling consultations for those participating in the event. Once you register with Angie, connect with me to arrange an in-person or online styling consultation free of charge!
Who needs a headshot?
Anyone and everyone! Business professionals, small business owners, entrepreneurs, event planners, photographers, makeup artists, hair stylists, models, actors, students, fellow bloggers – people from all walks of life can benefit from a high-quality headshot.
Where can I use my headshot?
Again, the possibilities are endless – personal or professional social media accounts (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Google+, and so on), personal or professional websites (digital portfolios, personal blogs, your company’s website, etc.), job applications… believe me, you’ll get good use out of your headshot! I know I have!
Why would I need styling assistance for my headshot?
When you look good, you feel good – dressing well boosts your confidence. Many people feel they can’t afford to be stylish, but you can show your personal style without overspending (or spending at all). Sometimes all it takes is looking at your wardrobe with a fresh perspective – it can be as simple as accessorizing.
About Angie Webb Creative
Angie Webb is a brand designer and consultant who assists businesses and individuals in creating a visual look and feel for their brand. Angie’s services go beyond that of a typical designer with her holistic branding approach. First, Angie walks each and every one of her clients through an in-depth process of discovery to find out who they really are and how they want to portray themselves to the world. From there, Angie helps them create a visual identity and other supporting elements, including but not limited to photography, website design, and print materials. Her work doesn’t stop there! Angie then assists her clients in implementing their new identity and moving forward with their renovated brand. Through a clear and thorough process, comprehensive strategy, and coaching, Angie helps businesses and individuals succeed and thrive for the long term.
This summer I had the opportunity to work with the Atlanta-based alternative rock band Amsterdam Station. When I was approached by band member Greg Jarvis (vocalist, bassist, and keyboardist), he explained that the band was in the process of re-branding. They released their first album three years prior and have since developed a more polished, mature sound. Amsterdam Station was looking for a united concept across the board that both reflected and complimented their new album, “Stories from the Subtext.” The band recognized that their personal style would be a key component of their new look, so they enlisted me as stylist.
The first step was styling Amsterdam Station for a photo shoot for their new album. We started by discussing the band’s style influences, which included Interpol, The Killers, and Queens of the Stone Age. The next step was, of course, listening to the new album to gain inspiration. After going back and forth with a lot of notes and ideas, we landed on four cohesive yet unique looks, each of which were slight variations on the dressed down suit – replacing a blazer with a trench coat, trading slacks for jeans, adding a tee under a button down, opting for suspenders instead of a tie.
Photographed by Alyson Jarvis of Alyson Jarvis Photography
The next step was styling the band for their Album Release Party. We wanted to keep with the established style while ensuring the ensembles were performance friendly. Originally we discussed sticking to basic jeans, button downs, and strong accessories, like great shoes. As the show grew closer the band’s vocalists decided they were going all out and adding ties despite the potential for hindered movement during the performance.
Greg opted for a bold, statement look with mixed patterns on the tie and button down. He added a solid vest to neutralize the prints and finished the look with dark denim, classic leather shoes, and fun socks for a unique pop of color.
Chris Connelly (vocalist and guitarist) complimented Greg’s look with a solid black button down, patterned tie, jeans, and some amazing black boots that I sadly didn’t snap a photo of. He also coordinated his guitar with the ensemble, bringing in burst of color.
Having the pleasure of watching Amsterdam Station perform live was an unparalleled experience. The night of the show I realized I had never been to a concert where I personally knew the musicians. Their new album, “Stories from the Subtext,” is characterized by thought provoking lyrics, seamless composition, and an elevated sound. While you can preview and purchase the album on their brand new website, I highly recommend you attend one of their concerts if you’re in the Atlanta area. Amsterdam Station has an outstanding stage presence and a contagious energy. Bottom line: they put on a kick ass show.
Their next performance is set for Friday, October 24 at Smith’s Olde Bar in Atlanta – show starts at 8pm, Amsterdam Station goes on at 9pm. Stay tuned to their Facebook and Twitter pages for more details on the event!
I had the pleasure of styling singer/songwriter Erica Bryan AGAIN for her recent concert in Atlanta. This time, Erica and I wanted YOU to be involved in the styling process. So, we complied two distinct looks reflecting Erica’s style and the aesthetic of the show, then we launched a Viewer Vote for you to weigh in on which look she would rock at the performance.
For this show, Erica opened for the alternative rock band Amsterdam Station. While Erica performed some of her country/folk classics (like her single This House is Haunted), overall, her set incorporated an indie vibe with covers of Daft Punk’s Get Lucky, Avicii’s Wake Me Up, and Maroon 5’s Sunday Morning. So, as we complied both looks, we strayed slightly from Erica’s typical country/folk aesthetic. We started by selecting the denim dress with stud detailing and patterned romper as the key pieces for the two ensembles. Then, each outfit was completed with some staples from Erica’s closet: western style booties and belt for the Dreaming in Denim look and wedges and fedora for the Rompin Around look. Jewelry was the finishing touch to add a little edge to each ensemble. Erica and I worked with the Chicago-based jewelry brand Must Love Sparkle to accessorize both outfits. The rest was up to you to determine the Fan Favorite Look! And the winner was…
What’s next for Erica Bryan??
She’s a guest blogger for Beaver Dam USA…
She’s part of the Nashville Songwriters Association International Top 40 List – go VOTE for her single This House is Haunted NOW to keep her on top…
AND She’s debuting her music video for This House is Haunted next Wednesday, August 13 – watch the teaser here!!
Romper: Jessica Simpson
Jewelry: Must Love Sparkle
Fedora: Her Own
Wedges: Her own
Romper: Blaque Label
Two Finger Ring: Must Love Sparkle
Earrings: Jocelyn Negron Collection
Necklace: Wouters & Hendrix
Photographed by Alyson Jarvis of Alyson Jarvis Photography