Date: 15th February 2007
From: Jim Lange
Subject: ETPost

Had to share about this issue of photography. I am not trying to cast blame here, but merely to express some thoughts about this issue. To accurately quote the ET posters, I have copied the words for the sole purpose of accuracy, not to be inflammatory.

"While it's certainly Robert's choice to walk off the stage because someone makes the mistake of *gasp* photographing him without permission, by doing so he's also giving the finger to all the audience members who behaved correctly, not to mention paid good money to see him perform. What a lovely message, to punish everyone in the audience for the dastardly deeds of an individual. But to each his own, I suppose."

I can only speak from my experience, which is in no way as vast as RF's, but given the thousands of distractions a musician has to deal with while performing music, the flash of a camera seems to certainly and instantly take away the immediate attention of the performer away from the music. There is also the element of being with the music, feeling its presence and then the indescribable moment of "being in the zone". Something I would say the audience experiences as well and to have this moment ripped away by someone whose own desires, by their own calculation, are more important than everyone else's is selfish and arrogant. There is such an element of "ME" in audiences today that people seem to go to concerts only to draw attention to themselves. It's as if to say, "I paid good money to act like a jackass and ruin the concert for everyone. Why shouldn't I? I paid money." No element of goodwill or respect for anything.

And true, one person can spoil a helluva lot. Ever play a gig and there's that one creepy guy who keeps bothering you because he wants to play your guitar? Then, because you refuse to let a total stranger play your beloved instrument, he tries to make you feel like you are the jerk?

Fripp and Crim have explicitly asked that no photography or recording take place. Why is that so difficult to respect?

"I am a loyal KC fan. Its a shame that arrogance and piety seem to get in the way sometimes of something creative and worthy of respect. The street is two ways, the giver and the receiver."

Not sure about what you mean by "piety" in this case, but arrogance is surely abundant.There is an element of giving and receiving, a mutual reciprocation, between performer and audience, but inherent in this has to be respect-respect on both sides of the stage. A photograph is an exchange as well, but one side has politely asked that no photography take place, yet it still happens. Concert goers refuse to respect the wishes of the very performers they have paid to see as if the price of the ticket gives them permission to act as they wish. Dudes! There's no logic in that at all. You, the precious money giver, have come to listen and not to impose your will upon the performers or to break the rules of the house. "Picture are momentents in time desired to capture that moment to hold as a re-collection of that time and space."

Can't agree more. That's why you should just buy Tony Levin's book-filled with great photos. Great Crimso moments captured forever. Pictures taken with permission, I might add.

"The understanding of personal freedoms to act or re-act is always there in any given situation, the freedom to walk off stage is always with Fripp.I've been there and seen it, it is a sad commentary."

Personal freedom? Does that include doing what the concert venue prohibits? If you mean that it's a sad commentary on concert goers who act inappropriately, then I agree 100%. If there wasn't any security at a Crismo concert, no doubt people would be shoving cameras three inches away from the performer's faces and asking them to sign album covers WHILE they play.

I've said enough. Thank you for your time.

Mike Stok