It was the happiest day of Phillip Cho's life. Shortly after New Year's Day in 2005, he learned that he had acquired a fortune of $600 million — a windfall from his brother, who had won a settlement in a corporate espionage lawsuit, and who planned to give Cho access...
The Lotus and the Storm, Lan Cao's high-profile follow-up to her best-selling debut, Monkey Bridge, revisits her preoccupation with how U.S. involvement in the war in Vietnam continues to reverberate through both countries, via a family saga. Reportedly the first Vietnam War novel written by a Vietnamese-American, Monkey Bridge illustrated Cao's talent for graceful prose that deftly evokes lives stranded between two worlds. Cao, who was born in Vietnam, lives here now and teaches international business law at Dale E. Fowler School of Law at Chapman University. She'll read tonight at Skylight Books in Los Feliz. Skylight Books, 1818 N. Vermont Ave., Los Feliz; Tue., Sept. 2, 7:30 p.m.; free, book is $27.95. (323) 660-1175, skylightbooks.com.More
Sept. 3: Dustin Lance Black, Craig Borten.
Love books but hate literary events? That's the tagline for Reza Aslan's monthly conversation series, "The Writer's Room." The third installment happens this week — and it's an accurate hook. For starters, the event happens in a posh, glittery nightclub. There's a house band and a full bar (even a two-drink minimum). The crowd is eclectic, engaged and, frankly, a bit raucous — with the encouragement of Aslan, who conducts the interviews with irreverent verve and a side-splitting humor not frequently in evidence during his public-intellectual cable news appearances. Defining the literary community as "anyone who makes their living with words," Aslan's guest list includes journalists, poets, songwriters, scholars, comics, novelists — and, of course, screenwriters. The August edition is a double bill, as Aslan (himself a practitioner of fiction and teleplays in addition to his scholarly journalism) welcomes the screenwriters behind two of the year's most high-profile books-turned-movies: Scott Neustadter (The Fault in Our Stars) and Kelly Marcel (Fifty Shades of Grey). Expect personal and professional insight, anecdotes and advice among the clinking of glasses and waves of laughter that happen when writers get real. DBA Hollywood, 7969 Santa Monica Blvd., W. Hlywd.; Wed., Aug. 6, 8 p.m. (doors at 7 p.m.); $30; 21 and older. (855) 367-7969, dbahollywood.com.More
Twice each year, the MAK Center hosts young artists from outside the United States, giving them an apartment they can stay in for three months while working on a project based on Los Angeles. The spring-summer residency just ended and Copenhagen-based Maria von Hausswolff is showing the four-minute film noir she made. It delves into suicide, scandal, murder and romance. Vienna-based Björn Kämmerer made a 16mm film inspired by the "bad guy" targets used for shooting practice. 1137 S. Cochran Ave., Mid-Wilshire; on view through Sept. 7. (323) 651-1510, makcenter.org.More
Designed to demonstrate solidarity with the values and goals of the Martin Luther King's I Have a Dream speech, this event boasts a line up of professional and student dancers, plus LA Opera Young Artist soloists, a high school choir, a violin prodigy and a marching band. Register at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/dance-the-dream-los-angeles-registration-6951609451 to participate in the dancing which will be filmed for a documentary.More
fri 7/25 Dierks Bentley GREEK THEATRE For the better part of the past decade, Dierks Bentley has helped usher in a new era of country music. His catalog has spawned seven No. 1 hits on Billboard's Hot Country Songs charts and cemented his status as one of mainstream country's superstars...
Visual allure often isn't a virtue we value when chasing obscure flavors in L.A.'s international neighborhoods. In fact, adventurous diners tend to appreciate the opposite: The grungier the location, the more accomplished we feel for having sought it out. Looks be damned — let the fireworks happen on the flavor...
The Los Angeles art world has been saying a collective "hallelujah" since the arrival in January of Philippe Vergne as MOCA's new director. Although some East Coast commentators condemned the appointment — citing in particular a budget crisis scandal in which Vergne resorted to selling off a number of works...
The David Smith exhibition that LACMA put on in 2011 was full of competent metal sculptures, made by the sculptor from the 1940s to the 1960s. It was called "Cubes and Anarchy," a very macho, modernist title. L.A. artist Evan Holloway, who's poked at the over-confident grandeur of modernists before, took a notebook with him to Smith's show. He sketched Smith's sculptures from the side; seen from this angle, they lose their boldness. Now, suddenly, they're compelling because they're wispy, delicate and sweet. Holloway's drawings are part of the Armory Center for the Arts' current show, "The Fifth Wall." 145 N. Raymond Ave., Pasadena; through Dec. 14. (626) 792-5101; armoryarts.org.More
Artist Tony Greene made all his work between his 1987 CalArts graduation and his 1990 death from AIDS-related complications. In his paintings, he walks this fine line between control and excess: carefully calculated rectangles surrounding yellowed images of body parts, which have been accented with cream- and rust-colored lettering that's garishly rustic. They're hanging in midcentury architect Rudolf Schindler's Kings Road House now, and they're perfect there, against the smooth, minimal concrete walls. The house gives the paintings all the seriousness they deserve, while the paintings make the house more human. 835 N. Kings Road, W. Hlywd; through Sept. 7. (323) 651-1510, makcenter.org.More
Weep at another whiff of an Elmore Leonard adaptation, one that nails down neither the peppery laughs nor the street-crime desperation that are key to the writer's work. Instead, the comedy is too broad to take the characters seriously, and the vibe is breezily aimless, a mistake in a story...
After The Princess Bride made Robin Wright a star, she shocked Hollywood by saying no. No to The Firm and Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves. No to Jurassic Park, Dirty Dancing, Born on the Fourth of July and Batman Forever. She even said no to the cover of Vanity Fair...
Supernatural teen angst and romance are in the chilly air of fashion photographer–turned-filmmaker Carter Smith's (The Ruins) brooding and mostly naturalistic psychodrama, ripped from the pages of Christopher Barzak's young-adult novel One for Sorrow.
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Long Beach Funk Fest THE QUEEN MARY
Each summer, the Long Beach Funk Fest lands in the heart of the city and unloads several decades of funk founders and fundamentalists — recently including Shuggie Otis, Charles Watt, Bernie Worrell, Dennis Coffey, Steve Arrington, Fred Wesley and more. But for its fifth anniversary this year, the festival has relocated to the Queen Mary with arguably its funkiest lineup ever, with headliners George Clinton and Parliament Funkadelic, support from The Meters’ Leo Nocentelli, and a truly staggering selection of Southern California DJs, topped by the mighty Dam-Funk. (Dam and George Clinton on the same bill? You should already be driving down the 710 right now.) Reinforced with DJs from L.A. institutions Funky Sole and Subsuelo, it’s the kind of event that quite possibly could transform that stately old ocean liner into the P-Funk Mothership. —Chris Ziegler
When L.A. State Historic Park underwent renovations earlier this year, the Hard Summer festival was forced to move to a new location. They chose Whittier Narrows Recreation Center in the San Gabriel Valley. Reviews for the new spot were mixed; it's further out, but a much bigger space.
But according to sources with inside information who wish to remain anonymous, Hard Summer will not be coming back to the L.A. County-managed property.
The reason appears to be related to a spate of arrests at Hard Summer this year, and a death.
Held every Wednesday at Lincoln Heights club the Airliner, Low End Theorycan be wild, filled with lots of hard-partying fans with a love for avant-garde hip-hop.
But the calm behind the storm rarely has more than a couple of drinks himself, and sticks to the periphery when he's not DJing or MCing. Kevin Marques Moo, better known as Daddy Kev, is a Low End Theory co-founder and the owner of Alpha Pup Records.
On Wednesdays he's focused on making sure the signature event runs like clockwork, but he's also scouting future beat scene talent.
In a way, Low End is as much talent incubator as performance space. It has paid big dividends for Alpha Pup, whose roster includes noisemakers (literal and figurative) Nosaj Thing, Free the Robots, Dibiase, and Jonwayne.
But anyone looking to get signed to Kev's label should know it takes more than a good show and an easy smile. At Low End Theory, Daddy Kev is always watching.
Drew Bernstein, Freak Fashion Pioneer and founder of Lip Service and Kill City
The big dance clubs will all be poppin’ as usual with no work or school the next day, but there’s a wealth of alternative festivities going down as well, and good golly, this weekend all our faves happen in the Holly-jolly part of town.
Fanatics! I know that Autumn doesn’t officially start until the 22nd of next month and it could very well be that I still have a Pavlovian response to the end of the Labor Day and school starting but for me, the start of September is the end of summer. Doesn’t mean it won’t still be hot as a bastard for weeks to come.
Last week, we had a fair dose of Ty Segall. Lucky people in Los Angeles will have the opportunity for even more as the man is doing 28 – 31 at the Echo.
If somehow you get tired of seeing that night after night, you can also check out Sleep at the Troub on the 31st. I say you’re spoiled rotten for choice.
While most of America gets on with its business, Ferguson, Missouri, burns in archaic flames of exasperating, unresolved anger, for all to see. Once again, the world watches America roil in the mortifying echo of Jim Crow law brutality. Meanwhile, U.S. firepower explodes bodies of ISIS militia thousands of miles away. They and Boko Haram are seen as primitive, extremist scum that should be eradicated. Even the new liberal, socialist pope wants to see the American Shock ’n’ Awe Fire Revue focused on ISIS. Yet there’s Missouri, showing everyone where America’s at.Missouri has a history of despicable conduct. Abraham Lincoln’s Lyceum Address in January 1838 was in response to the hangings and burnings of humans there.
In the past few years, a lot of serious potheads have switched from smoking marijuana to vaping concentrates like wax, which require the kind of heat that only can come from a butane torch.
Unlike regular lighters, butane torches are fairly large and awkward. So a company called Errlybird is selling fanciful polyurethane torches including ones shaped like an Ewok from Star Wars, Heisenberg from Breaking Bad, and the Grateful Dead dancing bear.
The best one, in our humble opinion? Notorious B.I.G.'s crowned head.
Ty Segall THE ECHO
On the title track of his seventh album, Manipulator, Ty Segall takes the punk fuzz guitars and garage-rock keyboards of his early days and braids them together into a newly psychedelic swarm of sounds, his ethereal voice riding coolly above it all. By the very next track, “Tall Man Skinny Lady,” his disembodied vocals float over a similarly psychedelic stew of squealing lead guitars — a deliciously weird contrast. Elements of glitter rock ram into more primitive strains of garage, broken up occasionally by trippy ballads such as “The Singer,” on which Segall’s hazy lyrics are filled out with an unexpected string section. Newly relocated to L.A., the prolific performer usually dashes off albums in a couple of days, but he reportedly spent a full month recording Manipulator with producer Chris Woodhouse. Also Saturday, Aug. 30, and Sunday, Aug. 31. —Falling James
KCRW show at Mack Sennett Studios
August 26, 2014
Playing several songs from their first release in four years, El Pintor, New York aught-rock band Interpol followed up a strong set at FYF Fest with an intimate show for KCRW last night at Mack Sennett Studios.
The new recorded work shows that these black-garbed rockers haven't lost their ability to create lush textures. But the record doesn't have much in the way of hooks or captivating choruses, making us wonder if singer Paul Banks' time off, taken so he could work on other projects — as well as the loss of keyboardist Carlos D — has slowed them down.
Be sure to check out our constantly updated concert calendar! Monday, September 1 Long Beach Funk Fest THE QUEEN MARY Each summer, the Long Beach Funk Fest lands in the heart of the city and unloads several decades of funk founders and fundamentalists — recently including Shuggie Otis, Charles Watt,...
Interpol KCRW show at Mack Sennett Studios August 26, 2014 Playing several songs from their first release in four years, El Pintor, New York aught-rock band Interpol followed up a strong set at FYF Fest with an intimate show for KCRW last night at Mack Sennett Studios. The new recorded work shows that...
12th Planet is credited with bringing dubstep to America. Ahead of his performance at Made in America in Grand Park this Sunday, August 31, we talked to him at the Red Bull Studios in Santa Monica, where he is recording music for his new album. In contrast to his heavy sounds,...