Wednesday, June 10, 2009

MIA: Jimmy (Adja)

This MIA song 'Jimmy' is great especially because it's originally a part of the soundtrack to an old Bollywood film called Disco Dancer, a film that I really enjoyed. Makes MIA's version that much more fun...

And the original from Disco Dancer!!! I Love It! Death by Electric Guitar!

The GTOs (Girls Together Outrageously)

Following the Money: Billboard Company Lobbyists Speak Out Against New Sign Ordinance, Deliver for L.A. City Election Campaigns

According to...

A predictable sight at the seven public meetings held to date on the new city sign ordinance has been billboard company lobbyists at the speakers’ podium, all arguing that the proposed ban on digital signs and the limitations on the height and size of billboards and other signs will impede business activity and cost jobs. While they have offered scant evidence to support these predictions, one thing is clear. The process of revising the sign ordinance has provided plenty of employment for lobbying firms that have also raised significant amounts of money for the campaign coffers of city politicians.

For example, the four largest billboard companies in the city-Clear Channel Outdoor, CBS Outdoor, Van Wagner, and Lamar Advertising, paid $217,000 to lobbying firms in 2008 and the first quarter of 2009, according to reports filed with the City Ethics Commission. The biggest spender was Van Wagner, a New York City based company that has supergraphic signs in L.A. in addition to conventional billboards. Van Wagner, one of a number of companies that have sued the city to block enforcement of a ban on those supergraphics, paid lobbying firm Cerrell & Associates $90,124 in 2008 and the first quarter of 2009.

Other lobbying payments made during that time period were: CBS Outdoor to Afriat Consulting Group, $71,127; Clear Channel Outdoor to Urban Solutions, $36,281; and Lamar Advertising to Ken Spiker & Associates, $20,000. In addition, the California Sign Association, whose membership includes those companies, paid $18,000 to the lobbying firm, Arnie Berghoff & Associates.

Those same lobbying firms also helped bankroll 2009 election campaigns through fundraising for candidates for city attorney, city controller, and the city council.

According to Ethics Commission reports, a total of $173,900 was raised for candidates, although it should be noted that the above lobbying firms have a variety of clients in addition to the sign companies. The most favored recipient of this largesse was City Councilman Ed Reyes, who was given $26,450 for his re-election campaign against token opposition. Reyes is chairman of the council’s Planning and Land Use Management Committee, which conducted hearings on the new sign ordinance...

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Curious Oddysees @ C.A.V.E. Gallery

June 12 2009 Opening Reception

Afro Funke 6 Year Anniversary

Ok this is it...our Afro Funke' 6 Year Anniversary is THIS Thursday. We have spared no expense to put together an amazing line up. Please come out early (doors @ 8pm!) and pre-sale is recommended for the no-wait list (and $5 discount.) Jeremy, Cary, Rocky, Glenn, Tatiana, and Jordan can't wait to celebrate with you.

Thank YOU for 6 beautiful is to many more!!

$15 / $10 advance
Thursday June 11 (9pm–2am)
Zanzibar (1301 5th St)

Nosaj Thing 'Drift' Record Release Party

Wednesday June 10 @ 10pm
The Airliner: 2419 N Broadway

Thu Tran's Food Party on IFC

You or Someone Like You by Chandler Burr

With this academia-obsessed novel, New York Times perfume critic Burr branches out from his nonfiction scent-based books. Howard Rosenbaum is a Jewish powerhouse in Hollywood with an Anglo-Saxon wife, Anne, whom he met at Columbia University, where they both earned Ph.D.s in literature. Now they live among "pathologically narcissistic" people with an "utter disdain for the written word." But when narrator Anne is solicited to compile a book list for Dreamworks CEO Stacey Snider (Burr weaves actual Hollywood bigwigs into the tale), the list becomes a small book club, then morphs into a huge gathering with Anne the literary guru to virtually all of Hollywood. Anne and Howard's only child, Sam, travels to Israel, and Howard's initial delight sours when Sam is rejected by a rabbi in Jerusalem for an intensive study "program" because he is not officially Jewish and therefore "unclean." A true celebration of intellect, Burr's tale does, occasionally, misstep into a pedantic bog, but ultimately examines the personal decision each of us must make to run from, or embrace, our identity. (Publishers Weekly June)

Monday June 22 (7pm)
Book Soup (8818 W Sunset Blvd)

Pasadena at Vroman's on Tuesday, June 23, at 7pm

Monday, June 8, 2009

Sarah Sophie Flicker of Citizen's Band

Comrade Couture: Revisiting Communist Germany's Fashion Scene

I really hope that this documentary makes it out for a screening in Los Angeles...
According to Spiegel Online International...

Most think of East Germany as having been drab, gray and boring. But an underground fashion scene did its best to spice things up. A new documentary takes a look at the perils of creating avant-garde couture in a communist country.

Marco Wilms clearly remembers an early lesson from his days as an elementary school pupil in communist East Germany. One day, the director drew a crooked tree on a chalkboard. She then explained to the class that her job, and that of the socialist collective, was to bend that tree and make it grow straight.

"It was obvious that she was referring to me," said Wilms, laughing.

Under a regime that demanded conformity, Wilms preferred individualism, and wasn't afraid of speaking his mind. He paid the price. As a teenager, he was labeled a "potential enemy of the state" and barred from finishing high school, despite top grades. Instead of applying to art academies as planned, he spent the next three years waking up at 6 a.m. to work at a factory making fish hooks.

But when a scout spotted Wilms at a disco and recruited him to join East Germany's elite cadre of state-sanctioned models, Wilms finally found his niche: Pulsating on the fringes of East Germany's highly regulated mainstream fashion world was a brazen alternative scene that reveled in self-expression, subverting precepts of how a citizen of the German Democratic Republic (GDR) was to dress and act.

Twenty years after the fall of the Berlin Wall, Wilms -- now a fairly ordinary-looking, if sleekly dressed, 43-year-old filmmaker -- has documented this thrilling movement. His touchingly personal "Comrade Couture," which hit German cinemas earlier this spring, combines film footage and photos from the 1980s and revisits four of the scene's most vivid personalities in an attempt to summon the thrill of freedom and economically unencumbered creativity that lent East Germany's fashion underground its potency.

Opposition Cloaked in the Guise of Aesthetics:

One of those is Frank Schäfer. Once one of the GDR's most sought after stylists (who recently drew attention for advertising pubic hair styling at his Berlin salon), Schäfer has a maxim that underscores the intensity that marked Communist Germany's fashion netherworld. "A tiger that lives in a cage is much wilder than a tiger that is free to roam," he says.

The scene's illicit shows, staged everywhere from living rooms to abandoned chapels and bath houses, were ebulliently theatrical, heavily influenced by punk, Goth and New Wave aesthetics and peppered with undertones of morbid and aggressive sexuality. The models' dark makeup and exquisitely freakish get-ups contradicted East Germany's wholesome state-approved fashion. For many, the stage was not just an opportunity to strut on catwalks and perform, it was a rare venue to express an element of their true selves under a repressive regime.

Over the years, the performances, hosted by two main groups -- Allerleirauh (All Kinds of Fur) and Chic, Charmant und Dauerhaft (Stylish, Charming and Enduring), known simply as CCD -- grew increasingly elaborate, eventually featuring original music scores and over 100 designs created purely for a handful of packed performances attended by a small network of fashionistas and rebels.

The fact that the scene blossomed primarily in the 1980s, a time in East Germany when the state took a slightly more tolerant view of non-conformism, may explain the survival of the groups in a communist dictatorship. Still, a constant fear of arrest fueled the intimacy and excitement at the shows. Those lucky enough to be clued in say they were unforgettable.

"I got goose bumps watching them. It was clear that they might be taken to jail at any moment," recalled Grit Seymour, who worked as a model and designer in East Germany -- even tailoring a dress for Erich Honecker's wife -- and later parlayed her experience into work for Donna Karan, Max Mara and Hugo Boss. "They pushed things very close to the edge and it felt very moving, very illuminating and freeing to be there. It was an act of strong opposition cloaked in the guise of aesthetics and beauty."

Making Due With Shortages

The German title for Wilms' documentary, "Ein Traum in Erdbeerfolie," translates as "A Dream in Strawberry Foil." It refers to the durable plastic that farmers use to cover strawberries -- a material that served the underground designers well, as the GDR offered little in the way of quality fabric, most having been reserved for export.

"We also used black and white striped shower curtains...and hospital bags meant to hold organs and intestines," remembers Sabine von Otteginen, the dynamo behind the group CCD and another of Wilms' protagonists.

Once a police officer threatened to ban the group for tempting East Germans with fashions that could not be bought. In response, von Oettingen cried, "But they can make it themselves!" and offered to have patterns thrown into the crowds from the catwalk.

The reality, however, was that even the garb in official magazines wasn't usually for sale. Aside from in pricy, under-stocked government boutiques, there wasn't much worth buying.

Dorothea Melis, a former editor of the GDR magazine Sibylle, writes that fashion spreads were cobbled together from found and individually manufactured items, which caused many a reader to write angry letters, complaining that the patterns were impossible to follow. "Our helpless answer was always 'improvise, sew things yourself, dig through old drawers and closets,'" Melis recalls in her book about Sibylle. Instead of clothing, then, magazines sold ideas and patterns.

In fact, creativity and individual style flourished in the context of East Germany's tight economy. A handful of independent designers profited from selling one-off items to a population with mostly hand-me-downs and ill-fitting, mass-produced government garb at its disposal. Improvisation was also common.

"My mother sewed me an outfit from bed sheets, and I decorated it with graffiti because Beat Street was playing in the theaters at the time and I was a huge break-dance fan," said Wilms, who also remembers having been wearing a half-finished, homemade faux-leather jacket with enormous shoulder pads when the model scout approached him.

Socialist Models With An Elite Touch

East German fashion photography was an art unto itself. Although magazine images were government monitored, Wilms says they "offered an aesthetic world that didn't need to be commercial but just had to appeal to a kind of longing."

For Full Article please see:,1518,628632,00.html

Dirty Projectors

The Dirty Projectors are playing at the Troubadour in Los Angeles on July 8 2009...

Kenny Scharf @ Celebrity Vault

Old-school New York scene chronicler Kenny Scharf, art historian Richard Marshall and writer Ann Magnuson present and sign copies of Scharf's new monograph book, "Kenny Scharf."

05:00 PM to 08:00 PM Thursday Jun 11
Price: Free
Celebrity Vault
345 N. Canon Dr., Beverly Hills, CA 90210

Radiohead's Pay-What-You-Like Model

According to Time Magazine...

Sure, Radiohead is on a sustained run as the most interesting and innovative band in rock, but what makes In Rainbows important — easily the most important release in the recent history of the music business — are its record label and its retail price: there is none, and there is none.

In Rainbows will be released as a digital download available only via the band's web site, There's no label or distribution partner to cut into the band's profits — but then there may not be any profits. Drop In Rainbows' 15 songs into the online checkout basket and a question mark pops up where the price would normally be. Click it, and the prompt "It's Up To You" appears. Click again and it refreshes with the words "It's Really Up To You" — and really, it is. It's the first major album whose price is determined by what individual consumers want to pay for it. And it's perfectly acceptable to pay nothing at all.,8599,1666973,00.html

Sex Galaxy - The First 'Green' Film?

According to Wired Magazine...

Sex Galaxy, which its makers call the world’s first “green” film, is also a blue movie. A feature-length mashup of copyright-free stock footage, the campy sci-fi comedy splices together strippers, Martians, rocket ships and robots into a semi-coherent romp.

Sex Galaxy director/producer Mike Davis, who collects old movies, said his film is 100 percent recycled. “The cheesy B-movies I love to cannibalize were never properly copyrighted,” he told in an e-mail interview.

The burlesque queens and ’50s sci-fi straight-arrows in the semi-NSFW Sex Galaxy trailer (embedded above) are a hoot, though watching the entire 78-minute opus — a crazy-quilt mashup of bouncing boobs, herky-jerky robots and hygiene films culled from the public domain, overlaid with a nonstop string of dirty jokes — would probably be more entertaining if you sneaked a flask of Saurian brandy into the theater. (Not that advocates that type of misbehavior.)

As sloppily dubbed as any Japanese sci-fi import from the ’50s, Sex Galaxy’s pinball dialogue comes off like a cross between Mystery Science Theater 3000 and an R-rated Futurama. It’s an amusing trip down memory lane, complete with a robotic pimp and cheesy kaleidoscopic freak-out scenes.

Davis’ movie screens Sunday during Another Hole in the Head, a sci-fi/horror film fest that runs June 5 through 18 at the indie Roxie Theater in San Francisco. The festival’s slate of blood-gushing zombie flicks, sexed-up sci-fi, Japanese imports and grindhouse treasures includes shorts and a couple of live performances (Brain Dead Alive! and Conanator) as well as feature films.