VIDEO: Rocking “Away in a Manger” with a three camera setup

In addition to making my living as a visual journalist here at the BDN, I am, and always have been, a working musician. I write songs, I sing, I play guitar, banjo, accordion — I’m no Heifetz, but I get by. Mostly, I’m an entertainer. I stand on stage. I make people laugh, sing along and think once in a while.

I’ve been playing with Mike The Drummer and Steve-O for years. Mike has been playing with me for more years than he hasn’t, when you do the math. Steve’s been Mr. Rock Solid for at least 13 years. We call ourselves the Half Moon Jug Band. The jug is implied. We’ve  played gigs all over New England in the last decade. We’ve been on the radio, we’ve been on TV and we’ve even been in the pages of the Bangor Daily News (before I worked here). We’ve been paid pretty well. We’ve had a whole lot of wicked decent fun.

The band’s unofficial start came somewhere back in the 90s, playing Christmas music on the sidewalk. Every year, we head back out to Exchange Street here in Portland to annoy the shopkeepers and entertain the passersby, just like the old days, before we had a website or CDs. It’s still our favorite way to play.

We met up at HMJB HQ (my house) on Sunday with the intention of getting out there. But the rain just wouldn’t let up. Then the fog came. We can take the cold, but the cold and wet is too much. So, we decided to play music in my living room.

That was OK with me. I’d been wanting to try out my new multi-camera video skills on something with less pressure than my average BDN assignment. In my never-ending quest to tell better stories for my readers/lookers/viewers, I recently got a hold of some video editing software that would let me record a scene with more than one camera and then sync the video clips.

First, we hauled out some Christmas decorations. Then, I set up three cameras and we commenced to butcher some beloved classics. “Away in a Manger” is just one of the carols we sacrificed to goofiness and technology on Sunday. I’ll post more when I ge them edited. Please let us know what you think — good or bad — we can take it.



Troy R. Bennett

About Troy R. Bennett

Troy R. Bennett is a Buxton native and longtime Portland resident whose photojournalism has appeared in media outlets all over the world.