Friday, 05 April 2013 16:38

Tough Love

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I was first introduced to Steve Pecaro at Jimmy Lee Kennett's Benefit Concert in the summer of 2011, he was a nice guy but he's also fairly quiet. I hear from Steve a few months later asking me to photograph the Stevie Ray Vaughan Tribute show at The Pageant and I say, heck yes. Having never been to one of the SRV tribute shows, having never met any of the musicians that were there, this was by far the most intimidating situation for me. Usually, I know SOMEONE and I can breathe a little easier but not in this case.

As the show gets underway, I’m walking around and being hesitant with my shooting, not wanting to get in anyone’s way and not wanting to be noticed . . .but apparently Steve was very aware of my hesitance. I go into the backstage area at one point and Steve is standing there chatting with some people. He stops what he’s doing, looks at me and says, “Hey, get on that stage and shoot, own it.” Meaning, don’t apologize for being in anyone’s way, get out there and get your shot. I kind of just hung my head and said, “Alright, Steve”, but I continued walking around the stage like a scared little kid.

A short while later, I walk past Steve and he’s standing in a corner by the soundboard, completely in the shadows. If you don’t know Steve Pecaro, picture the biggest guy you know, make him Italian, then make him an intense guitar slinger. Scary scary stuff. He stops me as I go by his corner. With the calmest voice but the most intense authority he looms over me and says, “Madison. Get on that stage.” it was absolutely horrifying. I don’t even know if I managed a response, maybe a shaky nod of my head, maybe a quiet “yes, Sir.” But that would be the last time he had to tell me, I practically danced across the stage for the rest of the night. And because of that I got some of my favorite shots of all time, after I sucked it up and did what I’m good at.

I’ll always give Steve credit for reminding me to do what I do best at all times, without being uncertain. I re-told this story to Steve recently and he laughed and said, “Tough love.” And that’s exactly what it was. Here's a few of my favorites from that night. . .

Steve Pecaro


Nick Collico



Tony Campanella



Part of the SRV Tribute "Family". . . .Steve Pecaro, Tony Campanella, Jimmy Lee Kennett and George Potsos