Not the terrible twos....

Go Go’ers, sometimes you have to bow down to the inevitable.  Cocktails are king. Chocolate cures everything.  And this weekend, Eagle Rock is your one-hop-stop for  culture and fun.

You might want to bring a toothbrush and spend the night.

Drinking at a Toddler Celebration

The first brewery to set up shop taproom in Los Angeles in over 60 years, Eagle Rock Brewery is celebrating  two years of beer, brew awards, beer, ladies beer forum, beer, growlers, and beer this Saturday, January 28 from noon to 4:00 p.m.

Clearly, this two-year-old birthday party is not for kids.

Last year’s first anni celebration was at the ERB taproom but this year’s event is taking off at the nearby Verdugo Bar with its spacious, beer garden patio, sinuously curved OG bar, and extensive,  alcoholic, grandfathered-in “To-Go” menu.

You won’t get a goodie bag at this “toddler” party (although seriously, NO kids or pets) but your $12 ticket does get you four drink tickets — many of the Brewery’s special beers will be on tap — plus a commemorative glass.  (Sooo much more fun than a cheap kazoo and some glitter stickers)

There won’t be goldfish crackers or a Toy Story cake but the Mandoline Grille and Grill ‘Em Up will be parked in the lot and dishing the no-host delish for you and your fellow beer revelers.

You should definitely not expect pin-the-tail-on-the-donkey, a pinata, confetti or a clown at this birthday bash.

Ms. Go Go thinks that somehow, you’ll still manage to have fun.

(EAGLE ROCK BREWERY TURNS 2! — Sat, Jan 28, noon-4pm; $12; 21+ — the Verdugo, 3408 Verdugo Rd, LA, 90065, 323.257.3408 (Verdugo); http://verdugobar.com/.  For more info: http://eaglerockbrewery.com/events)

Don't try this at home.

Killing Me Softly….

Think about it.  What did people do back in the day before horror movies gave the id an outlet to act out, twist and shout?

Beserkers not included.

According to singer/songwriter Dudley Saunders, the answer is murder ballads —  think love-gone-wrong tales like Frankie and Johnny.   Saunders, who’s presenting Murder Music: A Night of Songs About Killing  with and at Center for the Arts, Eagle Rock at 8:00 p.m. on Saturday night,  believes songs about the tragic and the terrible “let us walk in the devil’s footsteps without risking going to hell.”

Ms. Go Go is getting out her devil-walking boots right now.

Joining Saunders are nine other songwriters — David Serby, David Poe, Brian Wright, Phil Krohnengold, Carla Werner, Amy Raasch, Vivek Maddala, Edward Tree and Sara Lov  — who will be giving modern voice to emotions as old as Cain and Abel…

…who presumably didn’t yet have the outlet of murder ballads at their disposal.

Saunders has been working for weeks with video artists Gray and Carpentier on images and videos, both interstitial and backdrop, to be projected behind the performers.  Actual L.A. crime footage will add verite and authenticity.

Are you ready, boots?  Start walkin’….

(MURDER MUSIC: A NIGHT OF MUSIC ABOUT KILLING — Sat, Jan 28, 8-11pm; 18+/$10 atd —  Center for the Arts Eagle Rock, 2225 Colorado Blvd, Eagle Rock, 90041; 323.226.1617; www.cfaer.org)

"Members of the Los Angeles Free Music Society Testing Pyramid Headphones, 1976." (Photo by Fredrik Nilsen)

Use Your Car to Time Travel

Time travel.  Love the idea but really, still so risky.  What if you stepped on a butterfly and  changed the course of  history?

Now, making visiting the past safe for life as we know it: the Welcome Inn Time Machine  presented by The Society for the Activation of Social Space Through Art and Sound (SASSAS).  The latter, a non-profit that mix/matches experimental music with unconventional venues, is transforming a humdrum Eagle Rock hostelry into a multiplicity of  motel room micro concerts featuring experimental music compositions created between 1949 and 1977.

Coincidentally, the precise decades you’d most like to visit.

Part of the city-wide, months-long Pacific Standard Time Public Art and Performance Festival, the free concert on Sunday, January 29th from 4:00 to 10:00 p.m.,will feature works by or inspired by artists such as John Cage, Ornette  Coleman, James Tenney, and Bob Wilhite performed simultaneously and sequentially.  Highlights include music played by a violin tuned to D.E.A.D. and a concert you experience by calling one hotel room from another.

Bonus: no danger of time-space-continuum headaches.

(WELCOME INN TIME MACHINE Sun, Jan 29, 4-10pm; Free — Welcome Inn, 1840 Colorado Boulevard, LA 90041. For more info: on SASSAS and this event please call 323-960-5723 or visit http://www.sassas.org/welcomeinn.)

Ready?  U Know U Want 2 Go Go….

Baby IKKI flies high at the Farley Building (Photo by Fredrik Nilsen)

 

With its open-’til-late art galleries,  strategically placed, graze-as-you-go food trucks,  copious watering holes, and scattered sound scapes, NELA Second Saturday has long been one of the best ‘hood parties in town.   

The pub/grub/gallery crawl just got art-world-serious, though, with the arrival of  “A Voyage of Growth and Discovery”:  the multi-media installation by artists Michael Smith and Mike Kelly, based in the latter’s studio at the Farley Building in East Eagle Rock.  The video aspect of the “Voyage…” (on six suspended screens) follows the road trip that Baby IKKI, a bemused child-man dressed in diapers and sporting a bonnet and a pacifier (and conceived and portrayed by Smith for several decades), takes to the annual Burning Man Festival where he stumbles through the bacchanalia with alternately hysterical and heart-wrenching innocence.   In addition to a giant, suspended sculpture of Baby IKKI (assembled from trash and resembling the heroic Iron Giant more than the iconic Burning Man) and creepily juxtaposed porta-potties and plush toys, Geodesic jungle gym structures dot the open space of the former storage facility, evoking Baby IKKI’s disorienting festival excursion in the desert.   The exhibit opened two weeks ago but Saturday is the NELA debut of the installation, curated by Emi Fontana and co-produced by public art non-profits West of Rome and SculptureCenter of NY.  The show has also gotten extensive media coverage, Go Go’ers, so get there early or expect crush crowds.  

Baby IKKI may be getting the most press but there’s plenty of Opening Reception Fabulosity to peruse at this month’s Second Saturday: cult fave Walt Hall’s solo show “through the forest of our endless numbered days” at the Cactus Gallery;  Metal Urges” at Avenue 50 Studio; and “The Photography Exhibition and Evil Bunny Show” at The Land of Odd.  Of course there’s odd, Go Go’ers.  Remember whose blog this is.   

Want to work off the calories you KNOW you’ll be consuming at scattered food trucks (including Cool Haus at Cactus Gallery and Frysmith at The Land of Odd)?   Opt for the Spoke(n) Art Ride starting from the flagpole at Figueroa & York  in Highland Park.   Desperate to get your Dad’s Day shopping done?  In addition to gallery goodies, selected Eagle Rock merchants will be open for your shopping pleasure at the Eagle Rock Block Party.  (Let their lit lanterns  guide you, Go Go’ers.)  

After your art appreciation, food fun, and multitudinous adventures are complete, wrap up the night at the Verdugo’s late night/after party where you can soak up the alcohol you’ll consume with Baby’s Badass Burgers.  

Go Go’ers, let’s hear it for all the Babies….  

Ready?  U Know U Want 2 Go Go….  

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Have some Rajas Fries @ Frysmith's All-You-Can-Eat-Night @ the Verdugo! Tonight! May 25th! (Photo courtesy of Frysmith)

 

Go Go’ers, your eyes are not deceiving you!  

Tonight, Tuesday, May 25th, you can stop by the Verdugo (where you were probably going to go anyway since it’s one of your fave nabe bars), grab one (or more) of their gazillion global beers,  hang out on their foliaged and fenced patio, and for an hour, chow down on the tuber-onderful fare of  Frysmith (one of your fave gourmet food trucks).  Better yet, it’s only $9.99.  (That doesn’t include the beer, for which you can spend as long and as lavishly as you like.)  

If you’ve got the stomach, the stamina, and the speed, you can get an order of : the Chili Cheese Fries (two words to describe the beef chili: beer and chocolate); Vegan Chili Fries (all you need to know is soy chorizo and smoked paprika);  Kimchi Fries (heirloom Kurobata pork belly – ’nuff said);  Chicken Sweet Potato Fries (a mixed marriage of tomatillo-tamarind sauce and cashews);  and the Rajas Fries (fire roasted poblano chilis, carmelized onions, and shwarma-marinated steak.  A best seller, natch.)  But wait, there are more choices: cheese (yes, no, what kind?) and regular or sweet potatoes.  (You’re on your own with this one.)  

You’ll finish, take another slug of beer, heave a sigh of contentment, maybe loosen your belt.  Just another pomme de terre-ific Tuesday.  

Tonight, you’ll remember why you love France.  

Ready?  U Know U Want 2 Go Go….  

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Go Go to Museums of the Arroyo Day on May 16th! (Photo of Arroyo Seco Parkway circa 1940 courtesy of MOTA Day.)

 

Love to looky-loo at historical homes?  Interested in LAPD gangster-gumshoe struggles? Wish you could travel back in time?    

Check out the 21st anniversary of the Museums of the Arroyo Day (MOTA) on Sunday, May 16th for all of the above (well, maybe not ACTUAL time travel…) plus suffragettes, a helicopter, and an Edwardian-era fashionista. You can park once, (or take the Metro Gold Line), pay nothing, and spend the day meandering around the museums  that line this leafy tributary of the Los Angeles River.    

Ms. Go Go recommends absolutely every museum but if you can’t dedicate the day, here are highlights of events at the participating museums:  Heritage Square Museum, Lummis Home and Garden, Los Angeles Police Historical Society Museum, Pasadena Museum of History, and the Gamble House.     

In addition to the preserved, historic structures, the Heritage Square Museum can be an all day destination in itself for families; myriad, kid-friendly activities include historical storytellers, period crafts, and Victorian games.   Be prepared to explain “women’s rights” to any kids in tow; suffragettes will  be in attendance in keeping with MOTA Day 2010’s theme: “Women of Early Los Angeles”.    Maybe the ladies will wear bloomers, which would further entertain the small fry….    

Started in 1898 and finished in 1910 by Renaissance Man Charles Lummis (founder of the Southwest Museum, among many other accomplishments), the Lummis House, with its use  of stone, wood and decorative detailing, is considered one of the earliest examples of the Arts and Craft aesthetic.  If you only have time for a couple of museums on MOTA Day, check out the Lummis House and Garden (lots of native plants and a nursery/ shop to help you plan your new low-water garden!) then grab a shuttle from Highland Park to Pasadena to see the gorgeous Gamble House, which was built in the Arts and Crafts style in 1910 and is considered one of the finest examples of Greene & Greene architecture.  The other big draw?  Cookies and lemonade on the Gamble House lawn.  (You need sustenance for your stroll through history, right, Go Go’ers?)    

Linger longer on Pasadena’s former Millionaire Row….  Just down the street from the Gamble House is the Pasadena Museum of History, which is honoring Eva Scott Fenyes: Pasadena art patron, adobe archivist/watercolorist, and Edwardian fashion plate. The Fenyes mansion (the museum’s main building) will be closed but Ian Whitcomb and his Bungalow Boys will play music on the elegant grounds at 1:00PM and 3:00PM; period clothes are encouraged so you can tap your twinkle toes in button up shoes if that’s your fancy.   Historians-in-Residence Walter and Sheila Nelson will share  early 1900’s etiquette tips.   Hmmm…maybe you’d better stop here first before you gobble up Gamble House cookies.    

The  1925  Renaissance Revival style Los Angeles Police Historical Society Museum is the perfect place to take big and little wannabe crime fighters who can climb into a police helicopter, sit on a police cruiser, try on police gear, and pose for a “booking photo”.  (Bring your own camera to immortalize the faux felon.)   Fans of nonfiction crime can meet John Buntin, author of the well-reviewed L.A. Noir: The Struggle for the Soul of America’s Most Seductive City, which details Police Chief William Parker’s decades-long attempt to thwart gangster Mickey Cohen’s efforts to become the biggest crime lord in the City of Angels.    ‘Cause every boy needs  a dream….    

MOTA DAY ends at 4:00, which is basically cocktail hour. Relax and imbibe at one of the Eight Great Bars of the Arroyo Seco, reviewed in Ms. Go Go’s three-part guide  (links after the jump) to Northeast Los Angeles watering holes.     

Go Go’ers,  history doesn’t have to be dry….    

Ready?  U Know U Want 2 Go Go….    

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Sweets Truck, Auntie Em's Kitchen and the Verdugo pair up for "Sinfully Sweet Sunday" on April 11th.

 

It’s the ultimate Big Kids Bash: exotic beers paired with exquisite sweets while lazing on an urban patio on a Sunday  afternoon.   Then, sashay on over to the  Echo  for the opening night of the Grand Ole Echo’s  5th season of BBQ, americana and country music.   Really…does life get any better than this?  

Your “Sinfully Sweet Sunday” starts on the Verdugo patio;  Sweets Truck  has collaborated with Michelle Risucci, pastry chef of Auntie Em’s Kitchen, who created a special menu for the Sunday, April 11th event.  The five item pairing includes: Citrus Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting and Candied Orange Rind (baked with Belgian Witbier) served with Coney Island Albino Python – White Lager brewed with Ginger, Crushed Fennel, Sweet Orange Peel (6% ABV);  Red Velvet Tea Cake with Dark Chocolate Ganache and Chocolate Pearls served with Spaten Optimator – Dopplebock (7.2% ABV); and Beer Float – Vanilla Bean Ice cream and Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout (9.0% ABV).   Ms. Go Go knows you’re swooning over the anticipated Sunday  sweetness  but you still have to reserve your spot with a pre-sale ticket; a Jefferson gets you all five pairings.  

Mosey your beer buzz/sugar high over to the legendary Echo to sweat and sway at the 5th season kick-off of the Grand Ole Echo: the start of the summer season of free, all-ages, americana and country music shows every Sunday with BBQ on the patio.  The opening night bill features respected local faves I See Hawks in L.A., Wheelhouse (with Ross Fluornoy and Brian Whelan of power pop band the Broken West), country/rock ‘n roll duet Mars ArizonaSam Mellon and the Skylarks (alt-country on the back porch) and Chris Morris, host of “Watusi Radio” (on Scion Radio) as emcee.  

What a way to kick off the season…and your Go Go week.  

Ready?  U Know U Want 2  Go Go….  

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