In the mid-’90s, L.A. Weekly managing editor Kateri Butler came up with the perfect name for an events column that ran in the paper throughout the decade and into the 2000s — “Slush” conveyed a cool, multifaceted mixture of scenester reportage from various local happenings every week. In hopes of bringing the same informative and irreverent perspective on culture, but this time with a local news focus, we use the name here and every week henceforth for an aggregated list (and links) covering the stuff everyone is talking about in L.A., or should be.
Out and About
We begin with a heartfelt goodbye to Highland Park nightclub the Airliner which closed its doors for good this past week. The space was best known for the alternative hip-hop fave Low End Theory (which ended a few months ago), but it also hosted an array of themed events over the years, including rockabilly and Latin music. The place apparently has been struggling for some time now. They even enlisted the help of Bar Rescue’s Jon Taffer to save it not too long ago and none other than yours truly(!) was tapped as a nightlife expert in the episode (watch “Not Cleared for Takeoff” here). Owner Rueben Beltran tells us he’ll be back soon with a new venue. Updates here first!
Exclusive nightlife scoop: No one has reported thus far about the end of an era over at fabled bikini bar Jumbo's Clown Room, but as of the beginning of the year, the legendary drinking hole ceased its sexy day shifts. The city’s most bodacious alternative and burlesque dancers rocked the stage and pole here from morning till night for decades, and the daylight hours definitely offered a break from the hip peepers who pack the place at night. Guess we'll all have to wait in line to throw dollar bills at our favorite dancers now. We’re just glad the enduring rock & roll circus isn’t closed altogether, especially since everything surrounding it seems to be getting demolished. See Jumbos’ current schedule here.
A happier report from the legendary Formosa: 1933 Group's restoration is nearly complete and, ahead of the relaunch, they are holding a hiring event Monday, March 25, at the space (7156 Santa Monica Blvd., West Hollywood). They also invite those interested in working there to go to 1933group.com/work-with-us to submit an application.
While the crazy rains this week were a bit disconcerting, nature was on everyone’s mind, even more so last week thanks to the winged wonder of the Painted Lady migration that swept through the city. The insect excess was, of course, due to more rain near the Mexican border, where the butterflies lay eggs. This, coupled with more vegetation, also due to rainfall, led to the b-fly bounty. Those interested in tracing their path further can do so here.
The li'l ladies may have left SoCal but the blooms are still booming here and, sadly, the selfie swarms have made for a big mess at some popular locales. One of the best places to get your poppy on like Dorothy in Oz, Lake Elsinore, has been shut down due to the a-holes who amassed there. Thankfully, NBC has a list of 11 alternative locales in which to fulfill your floral fantasies for Instagram, but if you go, be careful, be courteous to others and for godsakes don't over-filter.
Sucking in the City
Proposed developments in Hollywood (at the site of Amoeba Records) and West Hollywood (where the Viper Room stands) are starting to rouse more opposition. This week a neighborhood meeting was held at West Hollywood Library to discuss ways to halt the “hideous” new hotel/condo/shopping center planned for the Sunset Strip (see architect rendering above). Meanwhile, online outrage about the coming changes in Hollywood are getting more aggressive as well, though the plans for Amoeba's move and the new development that will take its place were announced a couple years ago. This week, the city's planning commission unanimously denied an appeal against the 26-story tower and monstrous parking garage near Sunset and Vine. Curbed L.A. has a full report from the hearing.
The poster for Quentin Tarantino’s Helter Skelter–themed movie Once Upon a Time in Hollywood was released his week, and it was slightly underwhelming, highlighting star power over the murderous L.A.-based narrative most of us who live here in L.A. really care about. Hopefully more evocative promo is to come. When the film opens this summer, it will mark the 50th anniversary of the Manson Family murders. More info on the movie that's been causing excitement while filming all throughout Hollywood the past several months here.