“I get that all the time!” Hallahan says.
The other two bandmates, Bo Koster and Carl Broemel, aren’t here for the shoot, so the masked doppelgangers are local recording maestro Kevin Ratterman (“They call me Barl,” he says, blending “Bo” and “Carl”) and Hallahan’s brother Chris, who pulls on a huge papier-mâché head.
“Are you a peasant?” Patrick asks him.
“I think I’m Stephen Hawking.”
“You’ve got a pretty mouth, boy,” James says in a Deliverance-worthy twang.
“Come over and kiss it,” Chris says.
Patrick hugs a bruised tuba. Blankenship’s in that frog suit. At one point James, in the tutu and boa and sitting before a miniature piano, thrusts a battered tambourine high above his head and distorts his mouth into a mock-screaming countenance. This tableau can only symbolize a band that’s made it.
Eventually, all of us climb into cars for a quick trip to Dairy Kastle. James (orange sherbet), Blankenship (butterscotch) and Hallahan (vanilla embroidered with Oreo crumbles) eat ice cream while wearing fly heads. Again: For this photo shoot, the My Morning Jacket guys eat ice cream while wearing fly heads. Anderson takes a short iPhone video that will later circulate around the office.
After nearly two hours, Winters shoots the last of her more than 600 frames. It’s almost 4 p.m., the ice cream-melting sun throbbing in the sky. Ratterman decides to stroll the few blocks down Eastern Parkway back to Squallis.
“Yeah, let’s walk,” James says. “It’s a nice day.”
Photo: Courtesy of Mickie Winters and Amanda Bates