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Photos: Susto at The Music Farm Columbia

November 20, 2017 - Charleston's Susto performed at the Music Farm Columbia and will be heading back out on the road during the month of Dec...
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David Bazan at New Brookland

November 16, 2017 - David Bazan performed last night at New Brookland Tavern in West Columbia. Upcoming shows below: Nov 16: The Earl – Atl...
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Photos: Third Eye Blind last night at Music Farm

October 28, 2017 - The last time I saw Third Eye Blind my friend Fred punched my not friend Larry at a stadium show in D.C. It rained durin...
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Photos: Jam Room Fest with Guided by Voices

October 15, 2017 - You know something’s afoot when a dude walks past you on Main Street in Columbia wearing a Merge Records t-shirt and you...
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Photos: Last night with Manchester Orchestra & Tigers Jaw

October 07, 2017 - Atlanta's Manchester Orchestra booked their first out of town gig in Columbia, SC and singer Andy Hull, along with his b...
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Photo of the Day: "Brookland" Takes Shape in West Columbia

October 05, 2017 - Construction workers build the $40 million mixed use "Brookland" project in West Columbia on Thursday, October 5, 2017....
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Photos: Columbia responds to need in Puerto Rico

September 30, 2017 - “One is running out of food and the other is running out of water,” says Yanira Rivera about family members who are batt...
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Protestors, pirates, politicians, giant weiner highlight Chapin parade

September 04, 2017 - As republican senator Lindsey Graham rolled by a group of demonstrators from the back seat of a white convertible in Cha...
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Photos: Friday night at Hoechella - Columbia, SC

August 27, 2017 - So far this weekend, I’ve made photos at an Apache helicopter team’s deployment to Afghanistan, a youth golf skills tour...
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Photos: Sneak attack finishing move on the dance floor

August 24, 2017 - It was a sneak attack from behind. Energized by the crowd’s appreciation for his jive, sporting a black fanny pack and a...
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Photos: Soda City preps for eclipse

August 21, 2017 - I hear something weird is going on this afternoon in Columbia, SC. Here's how folks prepared. Photos: Tourists Flock To...
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Photos: Billboard battles lasers on banks of the Congaree

August 20, 2017 - Last night hundreds gathered on the eastern banks of the Congaree to take in a laser light installation that will cris c...
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Sipping on Capri Sun backstage at Girls Rock (Photos)

July 23, 2017 - While I overheard one comment that the green room wasn’t even green, I saw no other dissatisfaction from anyone backstag...
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Photos: American Dream Car & Bike Show with Plies, Jeezy and Rick Ross

July 03, 2017 - Before yesterday I hadn’t been to a car and bike show concert combination since I was the de facto “manager” of a rap gr...
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Photos: Party at the Library - Columbia, SC

July 01, 2017 - “Sarah created this amazing sea monster that was grabbing a boat and it was delivering it from the sky. Our monsters… mi...
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Photos: Make Music Day in Columbia SC

June 22, 2017 - If you passed through Five Points in Columbia yesterday you may have seen Joe Robinson celebrating Make Music Day walkin...
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Soda Citizen: Tyler Morris Listens to Phish

June 16, 2017 - Sean: If you are eating peanut butter, how or with what are you putting it in your mouth? Tyler: With a spoon. Or in a...
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Photos: March for Science - Columbia, SC

April 24, 2017 - In coordination with Earth Day celebrations on Saturday hundreds of cities across the globe participated in pro-science...
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Soda Citizen: Lindsey Vidal, back from church retreat with pink hair

January 07, 2017 - Sean: Everybody is talking about snow on Saturday. What are you gonna do if it snows? Lindsay Vidal: I hope all my appo...
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Soda Citizen: Josh Bumgarner vs. the Giant Duck

December 13, 2016 - Sean: Would you rather fight one donkey-sized duck or 100 duck sized donkeys? Josh Bumgarner: I’d probably go with the...
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Soda Citizen: Aaron Graves on What Makes a Good Donut

December 12, 2016 - Sean: What makes a good donut? Aaron Graves: A good yeast donut or a cake donut, you can dunk it. The cake or the yeast...
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Photos: Anti-Trump Protest in Columbia, SC

November 12, 2016 - Just before I left Friday night's Anti-Trump protest in downtown Columbia, a couple hundred demonstrators held hands on...
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Photos: All-American Halloween in the Soda City

November 01, 2016 - I went to Autozone last night around 8:30 p.m. and picked up a camouflage hat with a black and white American flag patch...
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Photos: Pride in the City - Columbia, SC

September 04, 2016 - Yesterday morning I got up at four a.m. to drive over to Gate 2 at Fort Jackson. Another in many recent newspaper assign...
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Capitalist at house show convinces photojournalist to change career goals

August 08, 2016 - When I ran into Summer Ruisseaux on Friday night at New Brookland Tavern she was a bit apprehensive about hosting a hous...
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Photos: A dissident, cameraman, po-po shit sandwich - On the streets at the RNC

July 20, 2016 - "NAZI SCUM!...OFF OUR STREETS! NAZI SCUM!...OFF OUR STREETS! NAZI SCUM!...OFF OUR STREETS! I can hear protestors in the...
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That time I threw 50 cheddar cheese cubes into the crowd

June 24, 2016 - Back when Susto's Justin Osborne fronted Charleston's Sequoyah Prep School I used to tend bar at New Brookland Tavern wh...
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About Last Night: How I Shot It - Say Brother at New Brookland

May 23, 2016 - I've been shooting shows at New Brookland Tavern in West Columbia since 1998. That's ridiculous and I don't know how I f...
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"Tour Brain" with Slingshot Dakota - THURSDAY night at New Brookland

April 06, 2016 - One of my favorite memories during my days as a bartender at New Brookland Tavern was a Slingshot Dakota show. So when I...
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People watching like it's my job: Five Points on St. Pat's - Photos

March 20, 2016 - I imagine The Drive by Truckers have seen some interesting things in their days. Despite that, Saturday evening they tha...
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Shamelessly Hot - Burlesque on State Street

February 13, 2016 - "The word deflowered sounds like this pretty word but it's like this horrible thing. Some bad thing that somebody does t...
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The Year in Photos / by South Carolina photojournalist Sean Rayford

January 07, 2016 - In Andrews, South Carolina on October 9, 2015 Davey Morris showed me around his neighborhood where floodwaters from the...
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In Photos: Soda Citizens Celebrate Famously Hot New Year

January 01, 2016 - I felt for the folks last night celebrating New Year's Eve when I watched a girl finish a Bud Light at the front of the...
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Photos in the News: November 15-21, 2015

November 23, 2015 - A week ago this morning, I was preparing to cover a student organized walkout and protest at the University of South Car...
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Queen of Sheba meets Swamp Metal in Soda City West

May 24, 2015 - Kicking off the Memorial Day weekend on Friday night in West Columbia, it seemed there was little more personality reari...
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Behind the Scenes: "Walmart Parking Lot" by Can't Kids

May 22, 2015 - Among other things, Bono is terrified of a vacuuming werewolf. Or at least that's what I gathered from the ET Anderson f...
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About Last Night: Of Montreal at Music Farm - Columbia, SC

May 16, 2015 - I'm balancing between a Red Bull table and a metal stool during Of Montreal's headlining set when Tyler Morris of E.T. A...
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About Last Night: Toro y Moi at Music Farm Columbia

May 14, 2015 - What are we going to complain about now that Columbia has a venue to accommodate it's very own hometown indie rock super...
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Mudbugs. Mudbugs. Mudbugs.

May 05, 2015 - I ran into my friend Chris, operator of Hippy Do-Da Creations a local hand-crafted jewelry vendor inside the artists' vi...
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About Last Night: Defeater at New Brookland Tavern

April 03, 2015 - There are 7,070 miles between Columbia, SC and the hometowns of the five bands who visited New Brookland Tavern last nig...
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Riding the White Whale in NOLA with Say Brother

March 18, 2015 - It's 1164 miles from Columbia, SC to Austin, TX and a little more than halfway sits the city of New Orleans. Headed to S...
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Photos of J. Roddy Walston's Hair at St. Patrick's Day Festival

March 15, 2015 - J. Roddy Walston and the Business was the last band to perform at yesterday's St. Patricks Day Festival. Here are a bunc...
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About Last Night - The Courtroom in Rock Hill, SC

February 22, 2015 - I've had my eyes on The Courtroom at Gettys in Rock Hill, SC for good while now. I'd see photos from friends' bands pass...
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Reno Turns Forty - Doesn't Fight Entire Bar

February 13, 2015 - A few weeks back Reno Flowers Gooch and I were in Tiger Town Tavern in Clemson, SC and when some college kids asked me a...
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About Last Night: BoomBox at The Music Farm Columbia

February 04, 2015 - "Bogeyman (also spelled bogieman, boogeyman, or boogie man, and pronounced / b ʊ ɡ i m æ n / or / b oʊ ɡ i m æ n /; see...
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ET Phone Home - On the Road with ET Anderson

January 20, 2015 - Westbound on I-26 out of Charleston, SC following Sunday night's gig at the Royal American the ET Anderson spaceship sha...
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Life in the Pit with Christian Metalcore

January 17, 2015 - Last night in West Columbia, throngs of young Christian metalcore fans wrapped around New Brookland to catch the Sioux C...
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About Last Night - Debbie and the Skanks

January 16, 2015 - At the turn of the century I was at a house party on South Waccamaw St. when I walked into the kitchen and my buddy's li...
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The Angry Whale's Year in Music - Photos - Vol. Four - 2014

December 31, 2014 - For me, 2014 has most resembled the journey our elementary school kickball used to take during homeruns and when someone...
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The Angry Whale's Year in Music - Photos - Vol. Three - 2014

December 31, 2014 - It's the morning of the final day of the year and we've only reached June of 2014 in this 365 day music narrative. That...
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The Angry Whale's Year in Music - Photos - Vol. Two - 2014

December 30, 2014 - Welcome back. If you've been following along with the narrative, we're about a third of the way through 2014 and picking...
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The Angry Whale's Year in Music - Photos - Vol. One - 2014

December 28, 2014 - Against Me! at New Brookland Tavern At first, I thought that I might be able to cram a years worth of my music photogra...
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Soda Citizen: Brian Timmons of fk mt.

November 21, 2014 - Sean: Draw me something in this space in five minutes or less. Brian: Anything? Yea. Goddamnit. Anything as long...
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Microphone Perplexes David A. During Ivadell Set

October 28, 2014 - Ivadell's Josh Gilley watches as OG David Adedokun tries to rescue the vocal mic last night at Foxfield on Rosewood in C...
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Superchunk praises Soda City dance moves at Jam Room Music Fest

October 12, 2014 - "The drums exploded and our amps are down, but Mathew's got it wired and we're coming around." The sounds of Superchunk...
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South Carolina State Fair Gracefully Kicks Off 2014 Season

October 09, 2014 - Fascinated by the organization of shapes and colors and avid observer of human behavior - the fair for me is heaven. The...
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Friday Night Lights: South Carolina HS Football Enters Week Five

September 19, 2014 - Last Friday I found a seat on the River Bluff team bus on a trip to Fort Mill High for a match-up against a team that ra...
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Soda Citizen: Bakari Lebby at Diarrhea Planet

September 14, 2014 - I met up with Bakari before the Diarrhea Planet show at Art Bar the other week. Before I could get the questions rolling...
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Rude Awakening - Aggies Clobber Gamecocks 52-28

August 29, 2014 - Before being steamrolled by Texas A&M on Thursday night to kick off the college football season, South Carolina was ridi...
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Dear Traveler: Rachel Kate talks Rambo Brite

August 27, 2014 - I've been meaning to do this photo column (which will be a sibling to " Soda Citizen ") for several years and I am pleas...
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Soda Citizen - Daniel Machado of The Restoration

August 21, 2014 - I met up with Daniel Machado of the Restoration for coffee and meaningless conversation last week. "Constance," a stage...
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50 Awesome Moments from the Dixie Youth World Series - Lexington, SC

August 16, 2014 - I had forgotten the implications of being an out during the last inning when your team is losing an elimination game or...
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Soda Citizen: Curt Heiny of Archnemesis

August 07, 2014 - A few weeks back I got a phone call from Curt Heiny, an EDM producer from Columbia, who makes and performs under the mon...
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About Last Night: Oathbreaker, Cult Leader and Steely Dan

July 30, 2014 - Just before Steely Dan took the stage last night at the Township Auditorium, I had a conversation with a venue employee...
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Throwback Thursdays - Warped Tour Turns Twenty

July 24, 2014 - July 18, 2007 - Anthony Green of Circa Survive - Charlotte, NC I bought my first and only ticket to a Warped Tour on th...
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"For He's a Jolly Good Fellow" Happy Birthday Josh Scogin!

July 17, 2014 - I've been photographing and working shows involving different projects from Atlanta musician Josh Scogin for most of my...
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Ville de Soude Photo du Jour - Saturday, July 12, 2014

July 12, 2014 - July 12, 2014 - 10:52 am - Highway #1 Flea Market - West Columbia, SC 28 mm - f/2.8 - 1/320 - ISO 1600
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Live Music Survives in West Columbia Despite City Ban on Posters

July 11, 2014 - In West Columbia, SC posters are against the law. Land of the free unless you are a business like a live music venue wan...
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"The only reason for making honey is so I can eat it"

June 23, 2014 - Just on the inside of the the doorway to the runway it was like a colony of bees. Make-up artists and hair professionals...
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Spaghetti Taco dumped for Joe Biden Special - Can't Kids Album Release

May 15, 2014 - Last week Can't Kids introduced a new item to the Beezer's menu, a staple in most young Soda Citizens' diets. The "Joe B...
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"Bizarre Celebrations" - Soda City Gets Weird with Of Montreal

April 20, 2014 - For a few minutes on Thursday night, patrons at the Columbia Museum of Art were teleported to Antarctica with a large he...
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Soda City Kicks Off Indie Grits Film Festival

April 14, 2014 - Entering it's eighth year, the Indie Grits Film Festival in Columbia, SC showcases 15 feature and almost 50 short films,...
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That Time I Went To a Party on Willie Nelson's Ranch - Photos

March 27, 2014 - This time two weeks ago during the SXSW Music Festival I was avoiding cacti while driving my bicycle around Willie Nelso...
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Street Rat in a Ball - SC at SXSW Part Two - Photos

March 25, 2014 - "Street rat in a ball," said the young man wearing a knit cap on Sixth St. in downtown Austin on a Wednesday night durin...
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The Soda City invades SXSW - Austin, Texas - Photos

March 24, 2014 - While scarfing a huge plate of nachos in a forgettable bar in Austin, TX I listened as Kylesa's Phillip Cope talked abou...
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Moe's Burrito Dash - Columbia, SC - March 22, 2014

March 22, 2014 - If you were driving around town near the statehouse or the USC campus on Saturday morning, your regular traffic pattern...
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The Street Sound of the Crescent City - Lawlessness in NOLA

March 18, 2014 - "GET YOUR HENNY! GET YOUR CIROC! GET YOUR RITAS!" announced a "bartender" from the back of his pick-up truck on North Br...
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Someone's Mom Rips Beer Bong at St. Pat's Festival - Photos

March 17, 2014 - "MOM! MOM! MOM!" I could hear the chant behind me funneling through the chaos of St. Patrick's Day in Five Points, Colu...
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13 Lucky St. Pat's Moments with Humans Posing for the Camera

March 17, 2014 - Sometimes the humans react in strange and awesome ways when they see me with a camera. A long time ago (think Jesus time...
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Welcome to The Live Music Capital of the World - Photos - SXSW 2014

March 11, 2014 - "It's about to get real windy out here," says the dude carrying the leaf blower on the deck of the Javelina Bar at 69 Ra...
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Mardi Gras at City Roots - Soda City Style 2014

March 04, 2014 - As the sun crashed across the City Roots Farm near Owens Field Airport on Saturday, groups of children played on piles o...
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Can't Remember the Weekend - Ep. 4 - Rainbow Pooping Unicorns

March 03, 2014 - The premise of this photoblog is a pursuit of rainbow pooping unicorns. Saturday morning I came pretty close, when I sho...
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Can't Remember the Weekend - Ep. 2 - Hump Mountain Roller Derby

February 10, 2014 - On four Friday nights each year Soda citizens gather downtown at the Columbia Museum of Art to listen to live music, dri...
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Don't Remember the Weekend - Ep. 1 - The Hamburglar Strikes Again

February 03, 2014 - The game ended and I thought the Gamecocks had won. There was no scoreboard to look at and I wasn't even sure how points...
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Soda City Begins Snow Freakout

January 28, 2014 - There's been a buzz of excitement during the last 24 hours concerning the possible accumulation of snow in the capital o...
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Photos from last night at New Brookland - Against Me!

January 16, 2014 - Last night Gainesville's Against Me! played at New Brookland Tavern in West Columbia, SC. I didn't have to bartend so I...
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Twenty Fourteen: More Action Figures & Mosh Pits - Less Ignorant Cops

January 11, 2014 - "Are we that interesting? That you must photograph us?" said one of the officers who approached me on the sidewalk last...
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Vultan's Theme: Attack of the Hawk Men

January 08, 2014 - "Pathetic Earthlings! Hurling your bodies out into the void without the sligthest inkling of who or what is out here. If...
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Photo evidence shows Soda City told 2013 to suck it - Pt.1

January 07, 2014 - In 2014 I promise to photograph more mosh pits, more portraits and more action figures. Hopefully all at the same time....
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Homecoming 2013 - Toro y Moi at the CMA

October 19, 2013 - When I was a regular contributing photographer at the State Newspaper, I made it a habit to stop by the music editor's d...
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Bear Attacks Man at SC State Fair - Uses Ladder as Weapon

October 10, 2013 - I somehow feel that my life is now more complete because I saw a bear attack a human with a ladder. It was "part of the...
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No Unicorns at SC Pride Fest - Photos

October 01, 2013 - If you regularly read this photoblog, then you already know that I'm a professional unicorn hunter (See "When Rainbows P...
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"Two Star Hotel" A Book of Photography by Sean Rayford

August 09, 2013 - My favorite photography medium to work in is now "book" - followed closely by buttons. I'm happy to announce that...
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Weird Al Yankovic Ruins Birthday Party

June 21, 2013 - "Was it dark or light beer?" "That's awesome if that is your first question - and it was a PBR." So begins my phone co...
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Soda City Salutes Legendary Rockafellas' Music Club

May 20, 2013 - I saw three notable bands at Rockafellas' during my freshman year at USC before the music venue shut it's doors: Machine...
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Unicorn sighted at Kenny Chesney Concert - Photo

May 13, 2013 - I spent the Saturday before last hanging out at Williams Brice Stadium photographing the Kenny Chesney concert. Most of...
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Guitarist John Vail Suffers from Bangover - Photos

April 29, 2013 - "The Bangover lasts about three days. The first show, you lose your mind [onstage]. And then the next two you are in ago...
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Drunk Guy at the Festival & Hula Hoops - Photos

April 23, 2013 - The drunk guy at the festival has always been a side attraction for me, orchestrating a ballet of intoxication that is o...
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Clowney Catches TD Pass - South Carolina Spring Game Photos

April 14, 2013 - Jadeveon "Hammer of the Gods" Clowney was standing next to me on the sideline in sneakers and shorts when the quarterbac...
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Mardi Gras in the Soda City - Columbia SC - Photography

February 15, 2013 - I would compare Columbia's third annual Mardi Gras Festival held at City Roots, to the long running St. Partick's Day Fe...
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Welcome to the Soda City: Jan 16-21 - Columbia, SC

January 23, 2013 - I found out about last Wednesday night's show at Cult Classic after running into a band from Miami outside of Drip Coffe...
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How the Soda City Rocked in 2012 - Part 3 of 3 - Concert Photography

January 02, 2013 - "Could you take my picture - cause I won't remember." -'Take a Picture' by Filter (1999) Can you blame me? Here's th...
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How the Soda City Rocked in 2012 - Part 2 of 3 - Concert Photography

December 26, 2012 - Shoot for the Moon. Hopefully, Santa was able to fit that 400mm AF f2.8 down the chimney the other night and you woke u...
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The Final Days of the Soda City - Columbia, South Carolina - Photos

December 21, 2012 - I spent the final week before the end of the world wandering around Columbia observing how my fellow citizens of the Sod...
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How the Soda City Rocked in 2012 - Concert Photography by Sean Rayford - Part 1 of 3

December 17, 2012 - Columbia, South Carolina By my rough estimate - come New Year's Eve - I will have seen over 600 bands play this year an...
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Aiken County Slurtoth vs. Serbian Zastava M70 AK47 - Photos

December 04, 2012 - After the recent acquisition of another AK-47 by a co-worker at the music club, it seemed like an opportune time to revi...
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Almost Halloween in the Soda City - Photos

October 27, 2012 - It's not quite Halloween in Columbia, South Carolina but it's Friday night and we're living in Zombie Town Soda City sty...
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Scared Shitless: The Diving Pig at the South Carolina State Fair

October 23, 2012 - Friday - October 19, 2012 - Columbia, SC "Awe come on pig. Just jump in the darn water," pleaded the former strip club...
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Ghostface Killah Headlines First Night of Cola Con 2012 - Photos

October 06, 2012 - Columbia Museum of Art - Friday, October 5, 2012 - Cola Con I spent most of the evening at the Rock 93.5 Fall Out Festi...
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Photos - The Sheepdogs at New Brookland in West Columbia, South Carolina

September 26, 2012 - I didn't expect to see anybody at New Brookland Tavern when I dropped by mid-afternoon on Tuesday to double check my wor...
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South Carolina Gamecocks Defeat Clemson Tigers - Soccer - Sept. 19, 2012

September 18, 2012 - College sports rivalries are so much fun, especially when your alma mater comes out victorious over those nasty orange h...
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Photos - Famously Hot Music Festival - Day Three - Columbia SC

August 27, 2012 - August 26, 2012 - Columbia, South Carolina Sunday was the final day of the Famously Hot Music Festival at Finlay...
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Photos - Famously Hot Music Festival - Day Two - Columbia SC

August 26, 2012 - August 25, 2012 - Columbia, South Carolina I have come to the conclusion that some of the happiest people on earth ar...
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Photos - Famously Hot Music Festival - Day One - Columbia SC

August 25, 2012 - August 24, 2012 - Columbia, South Carolina As I walked across the perpetually soaked concert lawn of Finlay Park yest...
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Welcome to the Soda City: Columbia, South Carolina - Part 2

August 16, 2012 - Columbia, South Carolina: July 31 - August 11, 2012 A few months back I moved over to the west side of town, a mere 9...
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"Somewhere Over the Rainbow"

July 25, 2012 - From here on out I will be naming my cameras after Hall of Fame baseball players. I'm thinking that if I can give the tw...
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Click. Click. Clunk. It's Dead... 10 Ways to Cope With the Death of Your Camera

July 18, 2012 - Monday, July 16, 2012 - Columbia, South Carolina I stood at the top of the South Carolina state house steps and looke...
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Cult Classic Punks - The Hottest Day Ever in South Carolina

July 05, 2012 - June 30, 2012: Columbia, South Carolina It was the hottest day known to history in the state of South Carolina. Here in...
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Guns & Ammo: Hunting the Slurtoth in rural South Carolina

June 25, 2012 - June 22, 2012 My co-workers from the New Brookland Tavern like shooting guns and one of them just got an AK. It's also...
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Welcome to The Soda City - Columbia, SC #1

June 07, 2012 - Columbia, SC: June 5-6, 2012 Welcome to The Soda City. The first post in a regular series that is simply a product of...
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Flaming boobs at the Pretty Things Peep Show

May 22, 2012 - Monday, May 21, 2012 - New Brookland Tavern - West Columbia, SC You may recognize the Pretty Things Peep Show from NY I...
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Gin Blossom's singer: "Take a picture of that girl's legs"

May 07, 2012 - Rosewood Crawfish Festival - Columbia, SC - May 5, 2012 I'm pretty sure it was mid-song, during an instrumental interlu...
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La Dispute, Balance and Composure, All Get Out and Sainthood Reps

May 01, 2012 - Dudes in vans. Sunday, April 22, 2012 - New Brookland Tavern I have been bartending at New Brookland Tavern for too lon...
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"I lost my job today and that's worth celebrating" -Tim Barry

April 23, 2012 - April 17, 2012: New Brookland Tavern On a hobbled picnic bench in a parking lot next to an abandoned motorcycle co-op g...
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What I did yesterday instead of filing my taxes

April 18, 2012 - I filed an extension yesterday and decided to use the time I would have spent dealing with our unreasonably complex tax...
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No Unicorns at the Mt. Airy Castle

April 03, 2012 - While visiting my old stomping grounds from the grade school days a few months ago during the Christmas holiday in Mt. A...
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When Unicorns Poop Rainbows - An introduction to the Angry Whale

February 27, 2012 - I've heard people talk about unicorns dropping out of the sky and then pooping rainbows. You might say those people are...
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