The new photobook Fanatics by photographer James Marcus Haney reminds us of pre-pandemic life with images of concert and festival attendees that span a decade.
James Marcus Haney’s debut photobook tracks the excitement, the dirt and the sweat of countless shows and festivals across 35 countries. Between 2010 and 2020, Haney photographed his experiences touring with acts ranging from Metallica to Elton John. The result is a collection that expresses unforgettable hedonistic experiences, as well as the unity that music provides.
Artists Elton John, Chris Martin and Lars Ulrich have all contributed to the book, speaking on the connection between fanatics and musicians. Haney told Dazed, “I’ve been drawn to photographing music fans for as long as I’ve been a fan of music myself.”
“There’s something really unique about a crowd of strangers smashed together, singing and giving themselves to the moment and the music. None of these people would be this vulnerable and open and intimate anywhere else in public, but here in a crowd at a show they are dancing, singing, crying, lost in another world.”
Some highlights include a girl sharing a mystical connection with a moth, wheelchair-user Ryan Chen crowdsurfing, and a topless and glitter-strewn fan up on the photographer’s shoulders.
On the loss of festivals to the pandemic, Haney says,
“I personally get nostalgic looking at these photos, but also hopeful. It serves as a reminder of what we have to look forward to again. Except this time, it will be so much sweeter because we’ll know how precious togetherness is.”
Check out some of the shots below:
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