Name & Position: Beowulf Sheehan, contributing photographer
Best Album: Blunderbuss by Jack White. I told someone White was Jesus with a guitar when I first saw him live, and on this album he’s post-Biblical.
Best New Band: Toss-up among Fidlar, Io Echo (I love the album art for both, too), and Melody’s Echo Chamber (Lush and My Bloody Valentine, reborn!).
Best Underappreciated Album: Bears for Lunch by Guided by Voices – but I feel this way about every album the band puts out.
Best Reissue: If the Stones’ GRRR! Greatest Hits counts, that’s it. I suppose I’ll never see “Lady Jane,” “Winter,” and “Heaven” on a Stones greatest hits album.
Best Live Band: Of Montreal. I got stepped on by Spiderman, hit in the head by a man-pig, and caught a burlesque dancer. All members of the band.
Best Live Audience: Sharon Jones, Williamsburg (Brooklyn) Waterfront. 10,000 people, all shapes and sizes, nobody standing still.
Favorite Photoshoot: Ann Leary. Amazing person and spirit. Strong, engaging, beautiful, smart, kind. Fantastic shoot, start to finish. Denis Leary is a lucky man. Be sure to pick up Ann Leary’s “The Good House” when it publishes in 2013.
Best Movie/TV show: Movie – The Intouchables. If you see it and disagree, see it again. Brilliant. And I don’t watch much TV, but I can’t imagine anything better than the Colbert Report.
Best Book or Graphic Novel: I was surprised to have enjoyed Mark Allen Smith’s “The Inquisitor” as much as I did. The “information retrieval business” was never so hauntingly – and humanely – portrayed. The novel will be a great film soon.
Best Game: Video games aren’t my thing. Otherwise, the Olympics rocked.
Biggest Surprise (Good): Obama’s reelection. Or maybe that was the year’s biggest relief.
Biggest Surprise (Bad): Hurricane Sandy. Six weeks since the storm devastated the northeast coastline, and most homes are still without electricity, heat, or worse.