Amoeblog

An Interview with Karie Bible for Women's History Month

Posted by Eric Brightwell, March 9, 2015 08:48pm | Post a Comment
In the past most of my posts for Women’s History Month have focused on historical figures. This year I decided to instead focus on living breathing women who’re contributing to the vibrant cultural landscape of Los Angeles. This week’s subject is Karie Bible, an independent contractor who maintains Film Radar, volunteers for the American Cinematheque in conjunction with the Film Noir Foundation for the Noir City Festival, sometimes volunteers for the Los Angeles Conservancy’s Last Remaining Seats series, and since 2002 has been the house tour guide for Hollywood Forever Cemetery. Check out her website Hollywood Forever Cinema Walking Tour for upcoming tour dates and more details. 

Film Radar


*****

Film wasn’t invented in Los Angeles but no city in the world is more closely associated with the movies and yet film is rarely afforded the respect which it deserves. When I moved to Los Angeles, I discovered the largest collection of picture palaces in the world, the Broadway Theater District, but that all of their huge screens had long ago gone dark. There was no plaque at the site of Edison’s old Kinetoscope parlour in front of which oldest known footage of Los Angeles was filmed. There is no plaque at the former location of Chun Fon's Sing Kee Laundry, where the first dramatic film shot entirely in California was made in 1908. The storage facility behind my local Jack in the Box had been Mack Sennet's Edendale film studio only to spend its second act enabling hoarders as a public storage warehouse. Grand historic theaters, when not churches, were subdivided into closet sized rooms with screens smaller than some peoples televisions. 

All-Female Bands of the 1970s -- Happy Women's History Month!

Posted by Eric Brightwell, March 4, 2015 09:31pm | Post a Comment
All Female Bands of the 1970s

I wrote a post on all-female bands from the 1910s-1950s, and a post covering all-female bands of the 1960s -- here's my attempt at a conclusive A-Z (and other alphabets) of all-female bands of the 1970s. Details are often sketchy or non-existent and as always corrections and contributions are appreciated!
 

DIE ATZTUSSIS


Die Atztussis were an anarcho-punk band from the Kreuzberg section of West Berlin, active at least as early as 1979 when they played the Antifaschistischen Festival. The members were Cordula (vocals), Kiki (bass), Menusch (guitar), and Petra (drums).


‘B’ GIRLS

'B' Girls in 1977 (image source: Rodney Bowes)

15 American Pop Hits That Aren't in English

Posted by Eric Brightwell, February 23, 2015 10:00pm | Post a Comment
In the United States there is no official language and in roughly 18% of American homes, one of hundreds of languages other than English is primarily spoken -- all of which, unless they're indigenousshould be considered "foreign languages." In Los Angeles, everyday you can hear pop songs on the radio in Cantonese, English, Farsi, Japanese, Korean, Mandarin, Spanish, and Vietnamese and although I often find that pop music is better when the lyrics are unintelligible, only a handful of pop songs in a language other than English have made the journey onto the pop charts -- here are fifteen (or so).


Harry Choates - Jole Blon



Harry Choates's "Jole Blon" (1946, French


Dirty Roots: Southern Hip-Hop Part I -- The 12" Era (1979-1983)

Posted by Eric Brightwell, February 16, 2015 07:21pm | Post a Comment

As far as my ears can tell, pretty near every rapper from Inglewood to Plumstead nowadays owes more than a little something to the rise of the Dirty South sound that pretty much took over hip-hop in the late 1990s. As anyone with more than a passing familiarity with the genre knows, however, southern hip-hop was for many years primarily a regional concern. In the 1970s the hip-hop scene was firmly centered in the Northeast. In the early 1980s it made its way to the West Coast but as far as mainstream audiences were concerned, skipped the third and fourth coasts. In the 1990s, many casual fans and scholars alike will tell you, there was a war between the East and West Coasts during some Southern upstarts crashed the party and, despite the efforts of the backpack Taliban, restored a sense of fun to a genre which had increasingly grown joyless and conservative. 

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Black Hillbilly - or - What you really know about the Upper South?

Posted by Eric Brightwell, February 9, 2015 09:08am | Post a Comment
The first non-Native American settlers of Appalachia and later, the Ozarks, were of primarily of three ethnicities: Scots-Irish, English, and German. These hard-working farmers and craftsmen created a distinct culture which in the 19th Century came to be named “hillbilly.” Although the Northern European roots of hillbilly are routinely acknowledged, even scholars on the culture are far less likely to recognize hillbilly’s other significant place of ancestral origin, West Africa.

19th century black music ensemble

Hillbilly music’s biracial parentage should be immediately evident to anyone with any knowledge of the music’s primary instruments, the fiddle and the banjo. The modern fiddle (or violin) may have originated in 16th Century Italy but similar bowed instruments preceded its development by several centuries and the violin made its way to the Americas thanks to English colonists. The banjo, descended from the numerous plucked instruments of West Africa such as the akonting, ngoni, and xalam, was introduced to the Americas by African slaves.

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