Out of all the arts, music is the most direct. It’s like a cord that plugs directly into your heart, and I try to hit a similar note with my music photography. When I film musicians, I’m trying to capture the feeling that music gives me. Music actually hit me before photography – I played bass in a band with friends, but when I discovered photography I realized there was something there for me. The two have remained intimately tied for me, though; some of my most meaningful work has been with musicians. At its best, I feel like I’m working in their frame of mind, whether it’s a guitarist strumming or a jazz musician withdrawn deep in a note.
Tom Waits was a huge influence on me. I found his work during a darker time in my early 20s and I’ve had a strong connection to him ever since. He doesn’t tour often, so when he did play a series of concerts in 2008 I found a way to shoot him. I was looking for the raw emotions that his music has given me throughout my life. I must have succeeded – he ended up choosing five of my images to use in his live album, Glitter & Doom.