Twilight in the Garden: Little Tokyo Summer Concerts every Sunday in July at JACCC!

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by Tom Nguyen

If you’ve been to Little Tokyo lately, you’ve no doubt noticed the gleaming new buildings, construction and cranes on San Pedro St. and 2nd St. Easily overlooked just across the street, some steps away is the sprawling, open courtyard of the Japanese American Cultural & Community Center (JACCC) and its Aratani Theater. The JACCC has hosted so many great recent events to showcase our diverse communities, like Fandango Obon, the fusion of Japanese, Mexican and African traditional music and dance and the Aratani World Series which drew thousands to an eclectic series of world music and dance performances the past 6 months. Now, they are doing another first: Opening up their beautiful James Irvine Japanese Garden to Twilight in the Garden: Little Tokyo Concert Series! 4 intimate, outdoor Sunday concerts in July, featuring Quartetto Fantastico, Buyepongo, Ethio Cali and Shafiq Husayn & Dove Society along with DubLab DJs! In addition to an amazing lineup of LA’s finest live music, there will be food and special curated summer drinks by Far Bar. This first-time series featuring an eclectic lineup of some of the best musical talent in LA playing in an intimate garden will be a unique musical experience and perfect way to wrap up your summer weekends in July!

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Hollywood Bowl Summer Season Picks!

JanelleMonae Who doesn’t love the iconic Hollywood Bowl, the premiere outdoor summer venue in LA? There’s something for everyone from an eclectic lineup of global talent from different genres, to great jazz and classical music. On top of that, it sits up near the picturesque Hollywood Hills and is one of the only venues where you bring your own food and wine and enjoy a picnic with your favorite music under the stars! I’m especially a big fan of the KCRW-sponsored World Festival concert series there each season! The Hollywood Bowl Summer season starts Sat., June 14 and runs through Sun., Sep. 28 and here are my picks: Continue Reading →

Weekly Music Discovery: Tara Priya

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This is my first of what will be regular weekly new artist discoveries! Most new music I discover listening to my favorite radio station, internationally known KCRW. I am a part of a few groups of music lovers on Facebook and World Music – The Music Journey is one of my favorite new music blogs. I hear a lot of new artists live at School Night, my favorite weekly music night in Los Angeles. I’m surprised how many new artists I discover through random Youtubing and their recommendations. Of course, I’m fortunate to have so many great friends with wider knowledge and richer music palettes than myself and word of mouth and stalking their Facebook music posts yields wonders! But none of those led to me to Tara Priya — I usually ignore the tiny Facebook ads & recommendations but hers caught my eye and wow what a wonderful random find! I was immediately smitten by her sultry voice, sassy persona and interesting background. Continue Reading →

Pravini US Tour and Exclusive Interview

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Pravini, soul singer and songwriter from Netherlands, will be touring the US from April 19th to May 4th with 4 stops in the LA area. I was intrigued by Pravini’s eclectic fusion of soul, hiphop, Indian and South American rhythms and in researching her diverse heritage, I learned that there has been a strong, thriving East Indian community in Suriname, a former Dutch colony in South America, since the 1800s. Many emigrated to Netherlands, where Pravini was born, and she has really broken boundaries there and put a spotlight on the rich, diverse talent of the Dutch-Indian-Surinamese community. Pravini is excited to be performing her new music in the US and was gracious enough to grant me an interview, so enjoy her new single Move Me to Tears and read on! Continue Reading →

Centric Happy Hour Tour featuring Cee Lo Green protege V. Bozeman March 22

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(UPDATE 3/20/13: There are still a few tickets left so better hurry!)
The CentricTV Happy Hour Tour is halfway through its free concert tour of 10 cities nationwide in 4 weeks, featuring R&B, hip hop and soul singers in intimate shows with complimentary cocktails and soulful cuisine. They stop in LA on Friday, March 22, at the Playhouse in Hollywood with a special performance by V. Bozeman, born right here in South Central Los Angeles! The first time I heard of her was when I saw this exquisite (and not work-safe) video of Timothy Bloom‘s ‘Til The End of Time. Continue Reading →