Patrick O’Heffernan

LA/LA Land : Beychella and the Top Notch Recordings fire: triumph and tragedy.

Coachella weekends are usually a little quiet in LA.  The clubs  and venues are all open of course, and bands are playing in the usual places.  But a good bit of the music community – musicians, fans and executives, not to mention agents and media (except me) –  is frolicking in the desert.  The allure of Coachella was especially strong  this year because the BAF – Beyoncé Anticipation...

Blake Morgan’s tour with Tracy Bonham ends in Hollywood, but the beat goes on.

I could not think of a better pairing than Blake Morgan and Tracy Bonham.  That was evident last week at their final tour stop at Hollywood’s Hotel Café. The music was sublime, the stories were funny and the chemistry was perfect. It’s easy to see why the tour was sold out – twice.  So many Angelinos wanted tickets to see this New York combo that the original Second Stage on the Hotel ...

LA/LA Land : Alligator Beach packs Harvell’s: a perfect word of mouth storm

One of the great mysteries of the music business, at least to smaller bands, is how to get people to show up at gigs. Bands build mailing lists, post on social media, pass out gig flyers, run contests, hire PR firms, register with BandsInTown, and try to do advance radio shows.  For established bands with big fan bases, that is generally more than enough;  shows and tours get sold out. For smaller...

The Golden Shore by We Are The West. Musical endorphins and a sonic refuge.

(Los Angeles) You can’t classify We Are The West, nor would you want to. The trio of Bret Hool (vocals, guitar), John Kibler (bass/vocals) and Elizabeth Goodfellow (percussion/vocals) started with the guys as a duo in a shipping container on a sheep farm in Holland.  They came to California via Brooklyn, recruited one LA’s city’s most innovative drummers, and developed a style and a body of work t...

Kat McDowell’s new album Ten just makes people happy.

(Los Angeles) Kat McDowell’s music just makes people happy and her new album Ten absolutely does that – it makes you feel good all day, all over. As the title suggest, there are 10 songs on Ten – which also refers to “hanging ten” on a surfboard, which Kat does – each one offering a different approach to happiness but always with Kat’s trademark pop sound of ukulele, guitar, rhythmic melodies and ...

Interview: Cesar “Vampiro” Lopez and Hector Geronimo on their new band Monoplasma

The band Monoplasma is a fusion between three-time Grammy Award winner guitarist Cesar “EI Vampiro” Lopez, and chart-topping Spanish singer/songwriter Hector Geronimo. Vampiro played with iconic the Latin bands Maná, Jaguares, Azul Violeta.  Geronimo served as the front man of the enormously popular alternative Spanish rock trio, Moebio.  Together, they have created a unique, modern, indie rock so...

LA/LA Land : Pop up EP and Poem Zine release (don’t mind the working factory across the street)

We have all been to pop-up concerts.  You know, you get a poster on Instagram or Twitter with a date, place, names of bands. The place is often in a sketchy part of the city, but what the hell, there will be lots of people there. I got a poster last week for a CD release party for Cusi Coyllur, a group I did not know. But I did know the intro band, ¡APARATO!, headed up by my friend Alexandro D. He...

LA/LA Land : Womxn Warriors, history lessons and great music in a print shop

Sometimes great music happens where you don’t expect it.  Last week I attended the Womxn Warriors live art show and exhibition grand opening commemorating the 50th Anniversary of the role of women in The East La Blowouts, the student walkouts in 1968 protesting unequal conditions in the LA Unified School District.  The location was Self-Help Graphics, an East LA  nonprofit graphics design and prin...

LA/LA Land: Where is music going? Maybe to your local hair salon.

If you are reading this magazine you probably know about SOFAR, the London-based organization that produces house concerts in 350 cities around the world.  Los Angeles is one of their most active SOFAR cities, producing two or three concerts a night four or five nights a week.  In fact SOFAR-LA  may be the largest music event producer in LA in terms of number of weekly events.  London is equally p...

Vega at the Hotel Café: comfortable in her own tattooed skin.

(Hollywood) Vega pulls back her red and black plaid jacket to show her trademark tattoos.   “That’s my life”, she says pointing to the flowers and lines and words on her shoulders and arms.  ”These are the things that are important to me. My mother doesn’t like it, but I like it.” She is relaxing Wednesday afternoon  in the offices of the Criteria Agency in Hollywood after taping an interview with...

LA/LA Land : Chicha Summit 2018: Grateful Dead-length songs and acid jam bands in Español

I had never heard of “Chicha” music when I got an invitation to attend the Chicha Summit at The Echo on upper Sunset in LA. The invitation came from Mercedes Romana of the PressJunkie PR, whose judgement I trust.  She put me in touch with a band called Money Chicha.  I had never heard of them either, but when I learned they were  members of the Grammy-award winning Grupo Fantasma and its funky off...

LA/LA Land: The future of songwriting from Laurel Canyon” a back deck conversation.

LA LA LAND  usually takes you on an adventure to an obscure or unusual or famous place in Los Angeles for a music event that may not be available or even known to the general public.  Today I am going to take you to a place in LA that is chronicled in song, story and bus tours, but  is not really available to the general public.  The event is not musical – it is a back yard deck for a conversation...

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