Our photojournalist Amber Patrick loves Tommy's milkshakes, wishes she could see Janis Joplin live and envies the kid from Almost Famous that gets to tour with a band to write a story for Rolling Stone. Get to know her by reading the interview and spinning her playlist, which includes Spoon, Lucius and Fall Out Boy!


You are offered a private jet for 5 days. Where do you go?

Ireland would be my first stop. It's somewhere I've always wanted to visit because my family is Irish and my grandpa was always proud of that. It'd need to be an independent pilgrimage because I think I'd feel really introspective there. Next, I'd hit up LA. My best friend just moved there, I miss him terribly and if I'm going on adventures, I want him by my side. I've always wanted to go to France or Australia, so spending the rest of the time in either would be fine, but honestly, I wouldn't care where we ended up as long as he was with me.

If you could bring back one of these artists back for one more concert AND to be the exclusive photographer, who would you choose?

1. Freddie Mercury

2. John Lennon

3. Janis Joplin

4. Jimi Hendrix

5.Donna Summer

6. Bob Marley

7. Billie Holiday

8. Lou Reed

9. Marvin Gaye

10. JS Bach

This is a terribly difficult question!! I'm torn three ways: Lou Reed, Janis Joplin and Billie Holiday. But I think if I only get one choice, it's gotta be Janis. When I'm photographing, I look for raw, human emotion and from the videos I've watched of her performing, that's Janis to the core. That voice just cuts right through you. She didn't put on an act for other people; she was just authentic. She lived her truth and loved what she was doing.

What is your favorite place to get a milkshake?

Tommy's has the best milkshakes in Cleveland, maybe the world.

Why do you work for CYO?

I work for CYO because this organization revitalizes me. The time I spend with them is what I look forward to every week. I leave rehearsals feeling inspired to take on the world! Being around these amazing (student) musicians who aren't afraid to try anything pushes me to be a better teacher for my own student and reconfirmed for me that a great teacher isn't someone that is going to be pushed through a mold. Liza inspires me to harness my own strength--as a woman, as a musician, as a teacher--to trust in myself and make my dreams reality. CYO isn't afraid of stepping into uncharted territory. They don't let the fear of failure rob them of the opportunity to succeed. They try. If they fail, they get back up and try harder. They dream bigger. I love and respect all of that. I wish I'd auditioned as a student, but I'm grateful as an adult to be given a second chance to experience this phenomenal group and all of the people who make it possible.

What is your favorite pair of shoes that you own?

I just bought ankle boots for an upcoming trip that I'm obsessing over! They're black with a Western heel and have some chain details on them that kind of scream rock 'n roll. I feel really confident in them and like Rolling Stone should be offering me a job.

Would you choose driving to San Fran in a VW bus (original) or Amtrak with free access to sleeper and amenities?

I'd take the VW bus. First off, it'd make me feel even more like I'm living out the movie Almost Famous. I'm like "The Enemy" because that boy in the movie is basically living my dream life. I also have some soul-searching I need to do and I feel like that vehicle would make that easier. Plus, it'd look more aesthetically pleasing in my photographs.

Do you have any tattoos?

I have one tattoo right now, on my mid-back, left side. It's the last line from my favorite e.e. cummings' poem, which reads "and death i think is no parenthesis." I got it for two reasons. First, it serves as a memorial to a friend who died far too soon. Secondly, it serves as a reminder to me that you don't end when your body does. You live on forever in the lives you have touched and through the work you have done. It reminds me to dedicate myself to enhancing the world around me, so that my impact is forever a positive one.

Spin Amber's playlist here: