L.A. the Blog Poetry: ‘Cover Letter’

Poster photographed on the corner of Grace Avenue and Franklin Avenue, in Hollywood, simply named “Pink Goats.”

To whom it may concern,

Educated and experienced with references.
Currently not working, a perfect fit with a
Strong skill set and all the necessary interpersonal
Technopacity, stuffed into file cabinets of first
Impressions labeled smiles and handshakes, and folded into
Organized years.

After a year of dedicated time spent interning
Within corporate walls within walls that
Subdivide halfway to the fluorescent sky,
With a lake view of mountain paradise
Flickering on the user-friendly Apple window of 1’s and 0’s,
In between data sets entered with 10 digits,
10 years later still interned with a new name:
Assistant.

Work hard like the tough get going,
Dedicated to hard work with abundant time
With a willingness for the above and beyond
Means always open and available, nights and
Weekends, in the hope for upwardly mobile
New identifications, advancing 401Ks and a parking spot
Personally surnamed.

Feel free to contact at anytime, thanks and hope all is well.

Sincerely,

The Unemployed

Advertisements

L.A. the Blog: Happy Independence Day!

Time-traveling Pirate Surfers!

Damn good holiday to you!

Today, we have no heroic stories – we will leave those for television; we have no personal triumphs – other than finding happiness while working at the mall; and we have nothing reverent to say – we even have a draft dodger here at L.A. the Blog.  What we do have is a few pictures we collected in the last week.

So have fun out there, go see some pretty explosions in the sky, eat some good ole’ BBQ, wave an American flag, drink some beer, kiss your girl, put on some music really loud, shoot a gun, attack the beach, sing the national anthem, peel out in your ride, spend money, build a bonfire, push someone in a pool, scream you love America, and if you need too go to the store and get yourself some!  We love Amerika, it was such a great book.

Butt Paste – happy 4th of July!

L.A. the Blog: One Love Improv In Session

Improv group Nonstop Pregnancy Scare onstage at One Love Improv – June 25, 2012

Monday night, a sleepy night, a night of wholesome television and family gathering, the start of the work week and mostly uneventful. A night of recuperation, extra rest and nothing much. That is why L.A. the Blog says thank you to One Love Improv for taking Monday night from the cradle of normal and making it hilarious, raunchy and more fun than a bag of raw chicken.

The brainchild of comedians Mike Callaghan (a friend of ours who turned us onto the show), Victor Lopez and David Danipour, the weekly show invites local comedic talent from all over, and the jokes are as varied as the performers. So for those wishing to escape the confines of the couch and disappear into the Hollywood night, One Love Improv provides the perfect excuse, and at the same time a fun comedy show with a guaranteed laugh.

Originally started back in May as a one-off event they dubbed the Secret Improv Show held at the Neon Venus Art Theatre, they packed the house (albeit a small house) as guest improv groups like Sticky Nights, and the founders own act Gummy Tears provided enough immodest and off-the-hook improv to garner them an ongoing weekly show. Still in the same location and retitled One Love, Mondays will never be the same.

So far L.A. the Blog visited the last two shows along with those first few Secret Imrpov shows, and the events bring in top, underground talent. The group Nonstop Pregnancy Scare, who’s making their rounds in the L.A. area performed a few weeks back and they left a soul-scouring mark on innocence as they profaned everything from love to religion. We won’t mention the Star of David poop joke or the abandoned Evangelist child skit … oh, whoops!

MurderCliff onstage ripping one of their signature and uncanny raps at One Love Improv – June 25, 2012.

This last Monday, July 2, saw Gummy Tears onstage again in a courageous display of dragon slaying and sleepwalking children, along with their astounding guests Elephants Gerald and The Lady’s of Anne Taylor’s Loft. Elephants Gerald, a two-person improv show staffed by Suzi Barrett and Rebecca Drysdale stole the night as the experienced duo bantered and generally poked fun at everything from cell phone family plans for gay couples to Hollywood screenwriter’s critiquing Total Recall the total remake.

Some other fabulous acts that have graced the stage: MurderCliff, Monika Smith, Colton Dunn & Friends, and Mr. and Mrs. All-Star.

While a light crowd at the last show took some of the energy away that the first two shows brimming with standing room only put forth, generally the comedic troupes bring the humor. A trip to One Love is a guaranteed laugh, or your money back … haha. The best part is the show’s donation only (in other words free) so the jokes on you. We haven’t heard the lineup for next week but as soon as we do the Blog will provide an update. Below find some pics we shot, and some info on the Neon Venus.

One Love Improv happens every Monday night, from 10:30 pm to midnight, at the Neon Venus Art Theatre, 7023 Melrose Ave (@ La Brea), Los Angeles, CA 90038.  Please check their facebook page for updates and show information.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

L.A. the Blog Poetry: ‘Friendship Lingers’

Pain lingers,
Friend,
Inside, Shown only
When lashing out speech
Destroys patient hope, or
Friendship’s gift, as if
Words burned angry scars
Upon the silence around us.

We die,
Alone,
In moments of
Denial about what we
Suffer from; it never came to
Light that alone mirrors
Twisted upon themselves take
Light and reflect back what
Is hated most –

It reflects back
What is you and what is me.

The truth,
Together,
We know:  You see me
I see you.  Only together, though,
Never any other time, never with
Family close, or love in the picture
Bringing soft stares from opposite
Here, as conversation moves time.

Like lies,
Words,
Hide the truth,
Confuse the issue, drag the
Doom beneath layers of
Pain – remember our doom?
It consumes like fire, but
Exists as phantoms, cold
Memories that strip life away –

And it never leaves,
For it is you and it is me.

It pauses,
Lessens,
Almost drifts away
Until raging it scars not
Just you, not just me.
You loved her, like I loved
Another, yet where
Are they now?  Consumed,
Spent, the memories smoke.

Alone again,
Friend,
Turning inward
We breath what’s left –
What we left for us
Becoming that very thing,
That same very thing
That haunts our sleep.

Pain lingers friends,
Inside you, and inside me.

—————————————————————————————————————

Dedicated to my friend Charlie (who wants to remain anonymous)

L.A. the Blog: ‘bright lights & fist fights’ Gallery Show; Next Stop ‘The Art of Coop’

Annie Preece

Annie Preece frames her own painting during the exhibition opening of ‘bright lights & fist fights’ group show at the Rebecca Molayem Gallery in West Hollywood – June 14, 2012

Is Los Angeles essential to the art world at large?  L.A. the Blog can’t answer that question but the scale of art happening in this city on a daily basis makes art essential to understanding Los Angeles.  A city dreamed up from behind a camera with an identity inextricably enmeshed with visual arts making it a tide pool of artists birthing pictures, stories, scenes, music, canvases, books, tunes, compositions, scripts, reality and fantasy; where often as not the creativity becomes harnessed in an art department for film, a stage setting for theater, or a gallery full of stunning visual art.

Better late than never the pictures have arrived!  Arrived for what (as the statement goes?), arrived for another round of art happening in the city of Angeles.

A three-person gallery show opened a few weeks back that spotlighted a diverse young group composed of a street artist, a tattoo wizard and a graphic artist who stepped into roles respectively as a painter, a caricaturist and a furniture sculptor.  At this point some analogy to the Wizard Of Oz keeps trying to escape but that would make this writer either Dorothy or Toto, and the only yellow brick road somewhere hidden along Santa Monica Boulevard between Doheny Drive and La Cienega Boulevard.

The highlight of the show Annie Preece displayed her most recent paintings done in vivid, bright colors of contorted faces, haunted imagery and taboo subjects.  Her art is best described in the statement ‘having too much fun,’ with a mixture of recognizable and iconic images and symbols re-purposed with confrontation, dripping paint and intensity.  Yet as stated all of them rebalanced with the light atmosphere that reds, yellows and bright blues elicit emotionally.  Almost like the perpetual Los Angeles sunshine even makes suffering look happy.  The one painting in the show that is the exception to the bright colors comes from an early series of Annie’s work to a project of paintings, photographs and public art installations entitled ‘Persecution Takes A Holiday In L.A‘, that takes a critical look at the oppression of women in the Middle East.  This exception to the rule simply puts eyes staring from a black surrounding.  By the way Annie do you have any free artwork for us to decorate our headquarters?

Candice Molayem

A series of portrait caricatures by Candice Molayem from the show ‘bright lights and fist fights’ – June 14, 2012

Tattoo artist and painter Candice Molayem showcased a series of portraits keeping with the bright-color motif in classic caricature style.  With 1950’s hair-dos, thick rimmed glasses and jewelry-to-match the words ‘hip and cool’ rise from the dark recess of the subconscious and immediately yearnings for indie rock take over.  L.A. the Blog is curious if any persons posed for the paintings or if the inspiration came from classic comic books.

Jad Dovey

A naked lamp by artist Jad Dovey from the ‘bright lights and fist fights’ show – July 14, 2012

The final artist presenting at the show Jad Dovey subtly created lamps in a style you might expect to find at The Factory during the 1970’s and 80’s.  A wonderful use of color and the nude form, or maybe just ‘found’ mannequins and some electrical ingenuity Dovey created a post-pop art presentation that seemed so natural in the gallery they belonged more to the entire space and less to the name tag that marked them for display.

A fun event basking in the glow of a hot summer ahead, and art definitely worth visiting.  Please see a slideshow below of pictures from the show.  Included in the photos are other artists’ work showing and hanging in the gallery including artists Rebecca Molayem, Lynden St Victor and sculptures by Leon Leigh.  ‘bright lights and fist fights’ is now showing at Rebecca Molayem Gallery, 306 N. Robertson Blvd., West Hollywood, CA 90048 for another few weeks, please check online for the current and future shows.

Portion of a painting done by Coop showing at his book release party – June 16, 2012

Moving right along into the week and arriving at our next stop where well-established artist and instigator Coop partied and celebrated in high fashion for the release of his new artbook entitled, ‘Idle Hands: The Art of Coop.’  So much has been said of Coop (click this link here), so to avoid mundane repetition, and pointless conjecture it is enough to say that even if you haven’t heard his name before you definitely have seen his art.  His images of devils, dames, drugs and cars make pop culture an afterthought and fine art an everyday accessible experience.  Mickey mouse gloves on a drug anyone?  If you can’t relate I am sure Walt Disney and Salvador Dali hanging out making pink elephants would.

Coop’s show took place at a great location in downtown Los Angeles hidden away in a produce distribution factory/building.  Industrial-scale loading elevator and all with a great view of a seedy downtown strip club made the entire experience some strange descent into Coop’s world.  Did we mention naked devil girls cruised the party?  Included in the slideshow below please find pictures from the event held at Studio Servitu, a downtown venue that the L.A. Weekly names the #4 essential location of 2011.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

L.A. the Blog: ‘Grimes’ At Make Music Pasadena 2012

Indie Rock Stage

Old Pasadena Indie Rock Stage as the Cults perform – Make Music Pasadena, Saturday, June 16, 2012

Last weekend L.A. the Blog visited Make Music Pasadena 2012 to listen to recording-artist Grimes perform live. Tipped off about the show well-worth seeing and scheduled for the 5 o’clock hour, we arrived via the Metro Gold Line from downtown at 4:30 p.m. right near the main stage as the Cults finished their set. As a free event, the city of Pasadena definitely knows how to throw a good party, and the main stage area with great sound and a stellar lineup made concerts look fun again. The Cults sounded amazing and left an ache inside for missing the majority of their show.

The point of heading into conservative Pasadena wasn’t the Cults, though, nor was the reason we came performing on the Indie Rock stage. At this point, describing how Make Music Pasadena works will help understand the sheer scale of the event. The main stage area drew a humongous crowd stretching two blocks down the middle of old town Pasadena’s main drag Colorado Boulevard. They closed off the street at the stage but not the whole downtown area for the event, as streets leading off in various directions remained open for traffic. This way business and life went on as the concert rocked. Five smaller stages setup in various directions from the main stage, ranging from a few blocks to 10 blocks away, allowed for more bands with a wider variety of genres. From a Jazz stage to straight Rock ‘n’ Roll with old-time Blues and Funk mixed in between the event offered a bit of everything for everybody. Six stages are just the tip of the iceberg as different bars, the local library, coffee shops, a book store, the playhouse and even a church opened their doors to different musicians. In total over 30 venues setup for live acts and the number of musicians can make the head spin. A little something for everyone – literally.

Grimes on stage

Grimes singing live on stage to adoring fans during her performance at Make Music Pasadena, June 16, 2012.

So heading over to the Eclectic Stage, aptly name with KCRW as a sponsor (the stage highlighted a DJ set by their own Jason Bentley who hosts their signature morning show Morning Becomes Eclectic), we arrived just as local-based Dengue Fever finished up and Grimes setup for her show. Eclectic indeed as Dengue Fever plays tunes best understood as music suited for the old, silent film ‘Lost World” (literally); and Grimes represents the heart and soul (or call it rhythm and blues if you like) of electronic music with driving deep bass and ethereal vocals that easily capture the mind as well as emotion. Originally from the underground Montreal music scene dating back to 2006 Claire Boucher (aka – Grimes) recently moved to the L.A. area, that is if the Blog heard her announcement correctly, bringing with her a style of music both intense and alive in a synthesis of pop, punk and rave culture. A well-needed infusion of fresh talent to shake up the music scene in sunny Southern California.

Not to mention that young boys and girls love her – really, never have so many teenage boys and early-20’s men screamed for attention at a beautiful lady with pink hair. This writer understands for no one is a bigger sucker for a girl with pink hair, or blue, or red, or purple for that matter. Highlights of the show include the crowd surfers who kept popping up and the young dancing fan who jumped on the stage, well, dancing. As security removed the fan, Grimes between verses told security to let him stay to no avail. Even as they roughed him up she voiced her support.

The only hitch of the entire show came from the horrible sound system provided for the stage. The lows and highs played alright through the speakers but all the mid-level tones arrived muddied and weak. Even so the show definitely left an impression, and if it is an example of things to come, Grimes promises to deliver many more memorable events. Check out video we shot on our trusty cell phone, and since its a crap video we are placing a link below to an official music video of the same song.