On the second Thursday of every month, I join my pals Verdilak at Begbie at Alpine Village for Jupiter 8. We play synthpop, electro and industrial tunes for your dancing pleasure.
This month Fractured Transmission and D/Sir play live at the party. We’re pretty excited about this and would love to see you there too. Jupiter 8 is 21+ only at Alpine Village in Torrance. Party starts at 10 p.m. and the cover is $5. For more info, see the Facebook invite.
I have a few DJ gigs coming up on the horizon. Here are the details.
Friday June 21
Underground @ Grand Star Jazz Club
I’m back at Underground this Friday night and we’re doing a tribute to one of our Britpop heroes, Jarvis Cocker. Larry, Diana and I will be playing our favorite Pulp tracks, plus a lot of other hits from the U.K. and beyond. RSVP on Facebook or through Underground’s website for free entry before 10 p.m. and $5 entry thereafter. Without an RSVP, the cover is $8.
Saturday June 22
Beat Swap Meet
On Saturday afternoon, I’ll be back at the Grand Star with a few stacks of vinyl for Beat Swap Meet. This is one of my favorite events in L.A., a record swap meet that takes over Chinatown every couple months, and was so excited that I was asked to play for this event. I should be on the decks at around 3:45 upstairs at the Grand Star. Even more exciting is that Free Moral Agents is playing live. Make sure you catch their set. Beat Swap Meet is free with a canned good donation. Check out Facebook for more info on the event.
Saturday, June 29
Remember how we did a couple goth nights at Underground? The response was so good that we decided to let Shadowplay go off on its own. Our first proper Shadowplay party is June 29 at the Grand Star in Chinatown. Larry, Diana and I will be digging into our record collections once again for the spookiest tunes we own. RSVP on Facebook or through Underground’s website to get in for free before 10 p.m. Otherwise, the cover is $8 all night.
Saturday August 3
Club Microwave @ CIA
This is a ways off, but you might as well mark your calendar now. I’m DJing at Club Microwave on August 3. This is a cool event from the fine people behind 8 Bit Weapon and ComputeHer and I’m excited to be playing it. RSVP on Facebook.
If I were to rank the shittiest years of my life, 2007 would be at the top. I was struggling to finish grad school on an almost non-existent income so that I could get a good job in an industry in which good jobs had suddenly ceased to exist. The resumes I submitted went unanswered. The query letters I sent for freelance work were met with rejection emails. The music magazine that I was editing folded. The DJ gigs had all but completely dried up. I was working part time at a law office with the sneaking suspicion that filing paperwork would be the rest of my life. Nothing I could make would even come close to paying off that grad school debt, plus the lingering loans from undergrad. On top of that, my dad spent nearly the entire last month of the year in a hospital bed.
At the dawn of the new year, my dad came home from the hospital and I decided that I needed a change in my life. Up until then, I was strictly a music writer. I interviewed bands. I wrote record reviews. I used the words “burly” and “ethereal” far too often. Music writing was getting to be a bore. The stories I wanted to write– the ones about electronic and experimental artists getting all philosophical with their approach to remix culture– were the ones no one wanted to buy. The ones that were a market success were run-of-the-mill short band profiles that hit when the album or tour did. Sometime during that first week of 2008, I was goofing around online at my day job when I stumbled across an anime convention, Anime Los Angeles, that was taking place in Burbank the following day. It looked interesting and, at the very least, I could probably find those Paranoia Agent DVDs that I wanted there. That Friday, after my office shift was done, I headed over to the Burbank Convention Center in a godawful January storm. I stayed there until late in the evening and was so inspired that I wrote about the experience for a Razorcake Magazine. That was my first convention story.
One of Jeaux’s thumbnails from our forthcoming comic.
At the tail end of 2012, Jeaux and I decided that we would release the comic we have been working on forever online on February 14, 2013. As of today, that means we have a little over a month to get the first chapter finished.
Yesterday, Jeaux came over to my place so that we could have an extensive jam session. I busted out the script, he busted out the thumbnails that he had already sketched and we started working. After hours of reading and re-reading lines and drawing and re-drawing panels, we came up with something we really liked. The photo above is one the thumbnails that Jeaux thought was appropriate to post online.
As far as the comic goes, I’m the writer, Jeaux’s the artist, but there is so much back and forth between the two of us that, sometimes it’s hard to say when one person’s job ends and the other begins. That’s what is making this project really fun.
The character in the above panel is Manda. We’ve worked with her for years in various forms on different projects. She is a completely different character than she was when we first developed her, which was about seven years ago. It’s been fun to watch her evolve, something I imagine will happen a few more times before we get the comic rolling.
We’ll show you a few more updates after next week’s jam session.
I just got my copies of the latest issue of Hi-Fructose. It’s a beautiful issue with work from Beth Covener Stichter on the cover and artists like Sage Vaughn, Mars-1 and more inside. On top of that, I wrote a whopping three articles for this issue. In Volume 26, I talk to Michael Mapes, whose specimen box portraits are intensely fascinating. I also write about the work of German siblings Low Bros and the haunting landscapes of Vasilis Avramidis.
As usual, these stories are only available in the print edition of Hi-Fructose. If you can’t find a copy at your local magazine supplier, you can order one online.
In other news, I recently interviewed Claude VonStroke, who is playing Holy Ship!! this weekend, for Pure Volume. Read it when you have a chance.
And there’s still more news, maybe. I just finished writing a story that will be the first installment of a podcast thing I’m putting together. Should time permit, this will be online within the next week. More details when they’re available.
We’re spending the last few minutes of 2012 inside a club, drinks in hand, horns on standby. I’m wearing glitter and velvet platforms that I bought at H&M the day prior. They are huge shoes. I might be hovering around the six feet mark when I wear them. I’m taller than all the girls around me, some of the guys too, but I don’t feel any of that anxiety that I did back in junior high, back in the days of “How’s the weather up there?” jokes. Instead, I think I’m Wonder Woman. A clumsier, wimpier Wonder Woman, but you get the point.
After midnight, I try doing a Morrissey rockabilly dance as I fire off lyrics from “Sing Your Life.” Dancing in platforms is rough for a girl like me, the kind of girl who can hardly stand still without injuring herself. I get through it, though, because it’s a new year and anything can happen. I might actually wake up one morning and not be a trainwreck in really big shoes. Anything can happen.
All that is to say that I’m excited for 2013. My friend Jeaux Janovsky and I will finally release our comic on February 14 of this year. (We’re keeping the title so secret right now that even we aren’t sure what it is.) There are some other projects on the horizon as well, but I can’t talk about those yet.
I’ve been writing constantly lately, writing about every stupid thing I see as I walk down the street. The fruits of those exercises will be coming up soon– probably tomorrow– and will be available to read here. Bookmark this page or whatever it is people do these days.
Happy New Year. Hope you have an awesome 2013.
I’m already pulling the Siouxsie vinyl.
I had just turned 15 when I saw Siouxsie and the Banshees. I think I actually used birthday money to buy my ticket. It was at Universal Amphitheater, the place now known as Gibson. I wore a purple dress that I bought at Saturdays. It was corpse purple, I thought, and therefore an appropriate alternative to all-black. My friends and I did our make-up all spooky. To be honest, I looked a little tragic, an ungraceful, awkward gothling. I knew that when I walked into the show and saw all the beautiful people with their perfect MAC faces and thrift store velvet dresses. I had a lot to learn.
That was the only time I saw Siouxsie and the Banshees. They toured again a couple years later, after I had figured out how to dress and dance like a proper goth, but I missed it for some odd reason or other. I saw The Creatures, Siouxsie and Budgie’s side project, several times. In fact, I met them when they played Coven 13. I thought I might faint. I’m kind of a big Siouxsie fan.
Okay, it’s not really breaking news. I just wanted to add some urgency to this all-important reminder that yours truly is celebrating a birthday for an undisclosed age very soon.
This year’s Birthday DJ Gig will take place at Underground on December 14. It’s not my actual birthday (that’s December 8, for those keeping track), but it’s the next date I’m scheduled to play at the club. All are welcome to attend, as long as your 21 or older.
In the coming days, I’ll let you know the theme for the night and RSVP details.
Donner Memorial State Park (Photo: Liz O.)
I’m traveling this week. Headed up to Lake Tahoe, a trip that’s unusual given that I’m far from the outdoorsy type.You’ll read more about the trip later, but I will tell you that we went on an excursion to Donner Memorial State Park. That’s the site of the Donner Party incident and it’s about 20 minutes away from Lake Tahoe.
It’s lovely in Tahoe, but I miss Los Angeles. I miss city streets and bright lights on every corner. But, I’ll be back soon with lots of updates from my thrift shopping for music adventure. (Yeah, that’s what I do in the Great Outdoors.) Also, got a post coming up from last weekend’s Saint Etienne show.
In the meantime, check out my post for L.A. Weekly’s arts blog on arcades in L.A. I spent a lot of quarters on this one, so it should be worth your time.
Also, my pal, fashion and travel blogger La Carmina was in L.A. recently and we headed out to Crazy Hook, my favorite spot in Koreatown, for dinner and then hit up a great opening at Pop tART Gallery. You can read all about it on her blog.
I’ve been writing a lot, just not on my blog. I have a notebook full of pieces of essays that were meant for Beatique, but none are complete. They may stay that way. I don’t know.
A few weeks ago, I made the effort to submit at least one pitch every day. I did that for two weeks straight. Most of those pitches were accepted and, on top of that, a few editors gave me some extra assignments. Now I’m racing to try and finish everything. I’ve talked to Bassnectar, Peter Murphy, Soul Clap, Foreign Beggars and a few more people whose stories are yet to be told.