In late 2010, Meghan and I decided we wanted to return to Seattle. As soon as we heard that Chris Cornell was going to be playing a Songbook show there [See Our Photos From This Show], we scheduled our trip around it, and added a Los Angeles stop [See Our Photos From This Show] to catch a second Songbook show.
For the Seattle show, we were able to contact Chris Cornell's publicist and score 2 photo passes and tickets for the show, leaving us with 2 extra tickets. So we went to Twitter to find someone who needed tickets and found Mike and Jaye English. We met up with them at one of the 19 million Starbucks at Pike Place in Seattle, and didn't stop tagging along with them for the rest of the trip.
We ended up going to Soundgarden and Chris Cornell Songbook shows together in Newark, Jones Beach, Las Vegas, Dallas, Denver, Miami, Tampa, New Orleans, and Orlando, and we had the privilege of seeing a rare Temple of the Dog reunion at the 2 PJ20 shows. The PJ20 shows falling at the same time as Jaye's Birthday and Meghan and I's Anniversary, as an added bonus.
[See our PJ20 page] [See Photos From Our Soundgarden and Chris Cornell Shows]
As we slowly weened off of attending shows, Mike & Jaye continued following the band and taken photos at every show, and as they write on their Photofantasm page, came up with the idea for this book.
We started this journey back in 2010 taking photos of a band whose music truly inspired us. Our original goal was simply to keep those memories alive since we didn't know how long Soundgarden would continue touring, but as they continued to tour, we continued to follow. Toward the end of 2012, after countless shows following Soundgarden in five countries, we knew we had captured some extraordinary Soundgarden moments. Our Preface describes exactly how we got here, but we ultimately decided to create a Soundgarden compilation photobook knowing that one did not exist (let alone as a fan based book). We took our experiences and photos and collaborated with other fans and artists around the world to create Photofantasm Soundgarden: Nudedragons to King Animal as a dedication and thank you to Soundgarden.
In the beginning, having been somewhat naive and not grasping the enormity of completing a project like this on our own, we were forced to quickly learn! We were adamant about keeping it an authentic fan based book so we pressed on during all our free time, vacations, and in between the responsibilities of our daily lives. In July, 2012 we publically announced the start of our project Photofantasm Soundgarden.
In 2013 we continued on for several more Soundgarden shows knowing we would conclude the book with some highlights of the King Animal tour. In 2013, during the course of making this book, we were faced with a number of personal challenges with one of the toughest being the passing of our friend Tiffany Patterson-Gross. She made this project an even greater labor of love as we also decided to dedicate this book to our friend and fellow Knight. She was a pillar of strength and inspiration to us and everyone she touched.
We paused for part of 2013, but having witnessed Tiffany's own strength in her battle with cancer, we promised ourselves we'd finish this book in her honor. We don't believe we would have finished Photofantasm without her inspiration, making it an easy decision to donate all the net proceeds from this limited edition book to charity.
In September of last year, Meghan and I had a chance to fly up and visit Mike & Jaye and see the book in person for the first time. The idea was that we would provide fresh input and help with editing. This turned out to be much more difficult than we imagined as there was nothing in this book that we felt should be removed. We read through some interviews, fan recaps of their experiences, and went through endless great quality photos and layouts. We compared the as-yet-unfinished (at the time) book to released photo books from other bands and we honestly felt this was going to be leagues ahead of those. The fact that it was entirely fan created made it even cooler.
We're incredibly stoked that this is now completed and available to order. We feel honored to have been a small part of it's creation and are proud to have helped out with it. This is a massive sized book that's a must-have for any Soundgarden fan. I mean, clearly, if you're on this site, you've exhausted all other means of getting your Soundgarden fix. And for that reason, I can say for sure, that you should get this book while you can.