The freaks come out at night - Bounce Queen Big Freedia visits L.A. and the sissies' strange path to the spotlight

Posted by Eric Brightwell, March 5, 2010 06:00pm | Post a Comment
Tashi Condelee and Big Freedia
Tashi Condelee takes the stage whilst Big Freedia does her thang

Wednesday night I was mulling my options about what exciting way to spend my evening. Since my brother won't let me come to his house to play Battlefield 2 - Bad Company, I was weighing whether or not to go to the Support Your Local Actresses event (which I'd said I would but suddenly wasn't feeling), watch Departures or The Isle, or have a low-key game night. My friend Karen Lee offered a solitary vote for game night, but after another friend, Anne Kelson, offhandedly said, "There's some Nola thing going on at El Cid," I received a sudden jolt of energy. Of course I was intrigued. She told me someone named Big Freedia was performing. My Lenten abstinence of booze was thrown out the window (again).

Big Freedia and Katey Red Eric Brightwell in a Big Freedia T-shirt
             Big Freedia and Katey Red                             A fan modeling what may quite possibly be the sissiest shirt ever

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Korean film festival of Los Angeles - KOFFLA 2010

Posted by Eric Brightwell, March 2, 2010 02:20pm | Post a Comment


I’m kind of embarrassed to admit it, but up until three months ago, the only Korean films and dramas I’d seen were 녹색 의자 (Green Chair), 미녀는 괴로워 (200 Pound Beauty) and 소울메이트 (Soulmate). I’d been given a grip of dramas by the good folks at MBC but I’d dutifully passed them along to my own soulmate’s mom, who’s a raging Korean drama addict.

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The Mezzanine Shuffle - Turn and face the strange

Posted by Eric Brightwell, February 25, 2010 02:55pm | Post a Comment
Amoeba Music Hollywood Mezzanine Move Sign
Do this don't do that can't you read the sign?

As some of those who know me know, I used to work in the movie department here at Amoeba Hollywood. I was assigned to Black Cinema and Latino Cinema. You could say they were my beat. But I was a bit of a lone wolf who played by my own rules. But after one too many high-profile disasters, the sarge stuck me with a desk job, writing this blog. But I still take interest in my old neighborhood and some (OK one) of the customers still tell me to come back... he also gave me a couple of candy canes for Christmas which (since I don't much like sweets) sit in the guampa on my desk. They're yours if you want 'em. ,

Anyway, so the mezzanine just went through a major overhaul, which I had/got to be a part of...

 Amoeba Music Hollywood Mezzanine
The Mezzanine - Officially the largest selection of movies in the universe

Occasionally, when something big like this goes down, the powers that be will promise me some nice change if I bust the right brains. Or, to paraphrase Sean P, "They callin' me to come back to the streets, Eric B, a.k.a 'Sharp Crease'/Said it was necessary, these sucka weddoz out here very scary/They comin' whole they livin' in the month of February" to which I replied, "OK den." Also I was promised pizza. More about that later.

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Novmichi Tosa of Maywa Denki pays a visit to GR2 - めいわでんき

Posted by Eric Brightwell, February 23, 2010 05:01pm | Post a Comment

Novmichi Tosa, the Willy Wonka-like figure like genius behind Maywa Denki made a rare US appearance at GR2 in Little Osaka. They were selling the Otamatone, a new instrument/toy that's sort of like a cross between a đàn bầu and a theremin.

Novmichi Tosa at GR2 

Maywa Denki's so-called Nonsense Objects are kind of like a mix of Harry Partch's instruments, Rube Goldberg's overly elaborate machines, a bit of Kenji Kawakami's absurdist Chindōgu filtered through the utilitarian, mid-century futurist spirit (if not the aesthetic) of prop designer Wah Ming Chang.

After the soft-spoken Toshi san signed autographs and demonstrated the pachi-moku and otamatone with stirring renditions of "Greensleeves" and "Amazing Grace," it was all over and I went outside, where a beaming stranger said to me, "Now my life is complete!" as she proudly clutched her new toy.

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California Fool's Gold -- Exploring Echo Park

Posted by Eric Brightwell, February 22, 2010 05:44pm | Post a Comment

Echo Park Lake
Cloudy skies over the bottomless Echo Park Lake

This blog entry is about the Los Angeles neighborhood of Echo Park. Please vote for more neighborhoods by clicking here. Also, please vote for more Los Angeles County communities by clicking here. To vote for Orange County neighborhoods, vote here.


Echo Park Sign

Echo Park
is a Mideast Side neighborhood located north of Downtown Los Angeles in the Elysian hills west of the LA River. Echo Park has long associations with several arts, most notably literature and film. It's one of the city's oldest neighborhoods and is full of many old (by Angeleno standards) Craftsman, Spanish, and Victorian homes built between the 1880s and 1930s.

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