October 31, 2009 by Kirby Scudder
For the last 30 years photographer Michelle Benson has been photographing the musical acts that have made their way to the local Santa Cruz venues. She has captured everyone from the Doobie Brothers, Captain & Teneille to Neil Young and along that path she has created a few stories of her own. Starting in 1976, months after the opening of The Catalyst Club, Michelle was hired by the Good Times to shoot local music acts. Michelle had an All Access pass to all of the acts, big and small that came through Santa Cruz and Michelle captured every moment of it. At a time whereby Santa Cruz was a musical weigh station for musical acts between San Francisco and Los Angeles, one never knew who might show up unannounced at the local clubs. Michelle documented Crosby, Stills and Nash on a 1 night stop over, multiple sessions with Neil Young, and on the list goes. A selection of Micheles photographs, spanning 30 years are on display through December at Community Television of Santa Cruz County, on Pacific Avenue. “All Access” is a powerful historic look at the music that made this town a legend.