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...
Just as organizations such as A/V Geeks and the Prelinger Archives have been busy digitizing Super-8 and 16mm home movies, instructional films, and other forms of celluloid ephemera, Everything Is Terrible (EIT) is dedicated to finding the most god-awful casualties of VHS and virtually every kind of media thereafter. Everything Is Festival is a series of public screenings showcasing some of the most mind-glowingly bad shit out there. This year's fun, five-day film fest, Everything Is Festival: The 5th Dimension, kicks off with EIT's very own Memory Hole, a visual assemblage of rejects from America's Funniest Home Videos, which offers a window into America during the last quarter-century. Ticketed presentations include the 1991 amusing atrocity Samurai Cop (with star Matt Hannon in person!) and the sophomore edition of The Most Outrageous Video Games. Other highlights: Barry Hansen aka Dr. Demento's favorite finds, as well as the Found Footage Battle Royale, a community invitational for anyone hankering to share their own funny and/or disturbing under-recognized gems. Cinefamily at the Silent Movie Theatre, 611 N. Fairfax Ave., Fairfax District; Thu., Aug. 28 to Mon., Sept. 1 (various showtimes); opening night free. All other screenings $12/$15, members free. (323) 655-2510, cinefamily.org.More
With more than 60 performances on offer in hip-hop, ballet, tap, modern, tribal, contemporary, jazz, belly and pole dancing, the Mix Match Dance Festival returns with its annual terpsichorean tasting menu of local dance troupes. Billed as L.A.'s largest dance festival, the Hart Pulse Dance Company–hosted event has some repetition in groups and dancers over its four days, but each of the four shows has a distinctive and different lineup. Friday's groups include Ashley L. Jones, Lexi Stillanos, Hazel Clarke, Kelela Batinga, Diane McNeal Hunt's Elevate, Merge Dance Theatre, Amaterasu Dance Company, Gabriela Hernandez Cardenas, J.J. Dance, Brooklyn Hughes Melton, Julianna LaRosa, Sara Kempa-Leon, OdDancity, Rosie Trump (With or Without Dance), Reach Dance Academy Burbank and the host company. Now in its eighth year, Mix Match Dance Festival is a weekend of shows offering an unmatched chance to measure the temperature of current SoCal dance. For the full lineup and tickets, go to hartpulsedance.com. Miles Memorial Playhouse, 1130 Lincoln Blvd., Santa Monica; Thu.-Sat., Aug. 28-30, 7:30 p.m.; Sun., Aug. 31, 2 p.m.; $17. (661) 755-2182, brownpapertickets.com/event/239532.More
Game lovers will be gathering at the Hilton Los Angeles Airport over Labor Day weekend for Gateway 2014. Part of the Strategicon family of holiday weekend gaming events, this four-day convention features tournaments, demos and more, for board game lovers and card sharks alike. A full roster of events is planned every day right up until Monday afternoon, so check out strategicon.net for the schedule. For those who want to simply play with friends, head to the library. It's stocked with old favorites and more recent titles. Whether you're looking for something with zombies, Cthulhu or Dungeons & Dragons, there is something here you can take on loan for a few hours. Hilton Los Angeles Airport, 5711 W. Century Blvd., Westchester; Fri., Aug. 29-Mon., Sept. 1; $60 weekend pass ($50 in advance), day pass $30 (Sat.-Sun.)/$15 (Fri., Mon.)., $5 kids under 12 with adult admission. strategicon.net.More
The Los Angeles Times kicks off its annual food festival, the Taste, on Labor Day weekend. The folks from that paper's Food section join local chefs for a weekend of discussions, cooking and cocktail demos, wine seminars — and actual food and drink. Among the many activities: cooking demos by Nancy Silverton, Jimmy Shaw, John Sedlar, Karen Hatfield and Casey Lane, among many others; a butchery demo by Amelia Posada; Russ Parsons chats with Thomas Keller; Jonathan Gold and Betty Hallock host a mixology demo; and a farmers market cooking panel with Roxana Jullapat, Jessica Koslow and Josiah Citrin. A weekend pass goes for $299; tickets for individual events run from $175 down to a kids' brunch for $5. Check out the website for details and to buy tickets. (LAT subscribers get a $25 discount.).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...
If you know painter Joe Goode, who road-tripped to L.A. from Oklahoma in 1959 to make his go as an artist, you probably know his drawings of torn paper or paintings of blue skies. They're pretty nonchalant and usually modestly sized, so it's surprising to see how big and majestic the new paintings in his "Flat Screen Nature" show at Kohn Gallery are. They're two-tone expanses of color painted on sheets of fiberglass. Even though you could tumble right into those deep blues, Goode's still not taking himself too seriously. Every piece has weirdly ragged edges and the titles are jokes: Honk if You See Jesus for one with a ghostly shape near the bottom, or Coming Attraction for one that looks like a big-screen sunset. 1227 N. Highland Ave., Hlywd.; through Aug. 29. kohngallery.com.More
An enormous steel structure, like a giant birdcage by Escher, rises up from the grounds of Materials & Applications, an independent, progressive design studio off Silver Lake Boulevard. Architect Warren Techentin's installation, La Cage Aux Folles, presents nested helixes in a complex system of small lines and hyperbolic dimensional math, which occupies sculptural space and explores traditions of simple-shelter and decorative architecture — but it turns out it's also a stage. It opened in April with a series of performances that occupied and activated the space in ways linked to its name's semiotic origins: cage and folly, as in "inside and outside, captivity and protection, function and ornament, shape and line, stasis and dynamism." The installation remains open every day through Aug. 29, but this weekend, La Cage welcomes Matt Kivel to celebrate the release of his appropriately named and suitably experimental new album, Days of Being Wild. Known for his complex, subtly asymmetrical, lyrical style, Kivel's work rather echoes the spirit and form of the cage; his afternoon also features solo sets from Sophia Knapp and Kevin Morby (Woods, The Babies), plus beer by Craftsman Brewery. Materials & Applications, 1619 Silver Lake Blvd., Silver Lake; daily thru Aug. 29. (323) 739-4668, emanate.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...
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Pacific Ocean Park profiles the former Venice Beach theme park that, for a time in the early-to-mid-'60s, rivaled Disneyland in innovation, if not appeal.
Pacific Ocean Park (P.O.P.) closed in 1968 and was razed into the sea by 1975. But in its heyday, acts like Sam Cooke, Johnny Cash, Ritchie Valens, The Doors and The Byrds all played the pier's legendary Cheetah Club.
Sitting outside Angel City Brewery in the Arts District, Marcus Haney shakes his head in disbelief. A makeshift photo gallery is being set up by his team of interns, displaying four years of his improbable career as a concert photographer and documentary filmmaker.
The Arcadia native had nearly completed his junior year at USC in 2010 when he decided to do something that would change his life: Attend Coachella. He was broke and had no ticket, but the girl he liked at the time was heading to Indio, so he had no choice but to attend. After placing an ad on Craigslist offering a ride to whomever could paid for gas, Haney and his new pal Acid Chris hit the desert hoping to get into the festival.
On August 24, 2009, interns working for NBC’s Tonight Show (then hosted by Conan O’Brien) were surprised when musical guests Kings of Leon insisted on a closed rehearsal. Normally, employees and interns could watch artists sound-check during their lunch break, but Kings of Leon shut them out. It seemed an unusually douchey move, though that alone might not have been such a big deal …
… but the band’s antics were just getting started.
Let's be clear: Stories of stars acting like complete assholes around the little people are a dime a dozen in Los Angeles. But when we started asking industry insiders for some of their worst horror stories, we were so struck by Kings of Leon's Tonight Show visit that we stopped right there (for now, anyway — other assholes, you're not off the hook yet).
From 1995 to 2001, veteran Los Angeles hip-hop artist General Jeff (of Rodney O & Joe Cooley fame) served as an assistant and advisor to DJ Quik, handling such things as driving, security and other behind-the-scenes duties. During that period, Quik and Jeff went into hiding after learning that the LAPD believed Quik was involved in the shooting of The Notorious B.I.G.
In an interview with HipHopDX, DJ Quik opened up about the incident. But now we have an inside account from the person who drove him around while he was hiding. Currently working as a Skid Row activist, General Jeff took the time to give us more details about the incident.
Tell us what you remember from that night Biggie was murdered?
Earlier that night we were all at the Ambassador Hotel for Suga Free’s “If You Stay Ready” video shoot and decided to go to the Vibe party. We had to park on Fairfax because we arrived very late and the valet wouldn’t even park our car. It was taking really long to get in.
A moment later I saw people running frantically from the Wilshire and Fairfax area, including Quik, who told us there had been a shooting. We all left as quickly as possible.
For the video to his band Fort King's haunting "Everything Falls Apart," singer-songwriter Ryan Fuller wanted to pay tribute to two of his favorite symbols of a bygone Los Angeles: the late poet/boozehound Charles Bukowski and Hollywood Park Racetrack, which hosted its last race back in December and is being demolished to make way for condos.
With the help of director Mike James and fellow singer-songwriter Matthew Teardrop, who perfectly embodies a modern-day Bukowski in scruffy New Balance sneaks, he succeeded. See the video below for a final glimpse of the Hollywood Racetrack before it gets shipped off to the proverbial glue factory.
Miles Tackett has been a professional musician for over 20 years. The 45-year-old Highland Park resident plays guitar, bass, cello and more. He’s played around the globe founded several influential, long-running weekly parties in L.A. and possesses an encyclopedic knowledge of the city’s musical history.
Tackett’s solo debut, the independently released The Fool Who Wonders, is out this week. The guitar-centric record marks a return to his roots, after decades of playing other instruments.
The parties Jirayr Zorthian threw at his ranch in the foothills of Altadena were invitation-only events, yet everybody in Los Angeles seemed to rub elbows there: Caltech physicists, modern artists, Pasadena bluebloods, jazz musicians, the famous and infamous, hipsters, hippies and hedonists of every stripe came to dance, drink and seek the divine under the moon. The parties featured bonfires, naked dancing nymphs, spontaneous art happenings, drumming that went all night and, of course, a roast pig borne by barechested men and blessed by a virgin. At the center of it all was Zorthian himself, a short, bearded Dionysus, who would take center stage clad in a red union suit and a bedsheet toga, and let the naked nymphs feed him grapes. The parties at the ranch raged for more than 60 years, until the old man died in 2004.
A Turkish Armenian who’d emigrated to New Haven, Connecticut, as a youth, Zorthian came out West in the 1930s with his wealthy first wife, Betty, and bought 27 acres of scruffy land in the foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains. They had three children and divorced — Jirayr was awarded the land in a settlement that is said to have made him the first man ever to receive alimony. He remarried and, with second wife Dabney, engaged in what Burners now call “radical self-reliance.” They grew their own food, including meat, slept under the stars, rode horses, raised five children and practiced sustainable living long before there was a term for it.
In February Daniel Wright-Fresco, the homeless man who considers himself a security guard at downtown DIY punk venue The Smell, was arrested.
The mostly-beloved Skid Row resident was charged with the crime of "criminal threats" after flashing his knife. Shortly before his trial was to take place on Friday, he cut a deal, and was sentenced to serve 486 days in prison.
If you've ever been to downtown DIY venue The Smell, chances are you've met Daniel Wright-Fresco. He's the 44-year-old homeless man who hangs in the alley out back every night, telling stories about how No Age played his birthday party (which is true) and how he returned from a honeymoon vacation in Waikiki by bus (probably not).
Mostly, however, he focuses on his self-given role of unofficial venue security. Though his appearance can be scary to those who don't know him - he's short and thin, with dark shaggy hair and a penchant for baggy, found duds - he's genuinely protective of Smell patrons, many of whom are teenagers. He'll walk you to your car, he keeps the area (which borders Skid Row) clear of pan-handlers, and he enforces the venue's strict no-alcohol policy. He's completely sincere about all of it.
"He's an asset to the place," says Jim Smith, owner of the Smell. "It makes him feel good to be out there protecting people, providing a service."
So, when news recentlybroke that Daniel had been arrested, concern rippled through the Smell community.
Once upon a time, Sid Vicious walked into a tiny café in Little Tokyo, got six orders of fried rice and started a food fight. On another occasion, David Byrne ordered an Egg Foo Yung and a glass of milk. And on different night, an all-girl band from Los Angeles picked up a plate of Gogo Chicken and decided they liked the name.
This is 422 East First Street, the corner of First and Alameda in Little Tokyo. Down the street is the Digby Hotel. Beyond that, the Los Angeles Soap Company. And inside is the Atomic Café, noodle house and one time after-hours punk hangout.
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...
The worst part about running a metal venue out of your home is the mess. The proprietor of South Central club the Black Castle regularly puts on shows for hundreds of raging metalheads. He also lives in the facilities, which are housed in a former custom-car shop. Additionally, he’s a...
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...