Eric Garcetti Inauguration Block Party with Moby and More! Sunday June 30!

Instead of ringing in his new administration on the traditional July 1 inauguration date with some stuffy fancy gala, Eric Garcetti, the mayoral elect, is choosing to make the celebration a big free public block party this Sunday, June 30, 6-9pm, featuring food, music and fun for the whole family! Moby will be performing (check out Garcetti jamming with him below) along with 3 or 4 other acts…not yet publicly announced but a little birdy has leaked that they are Buyepongo and Jungle Fire, 2 of my favorite LA bands, and DJs Raul Campos (KCRW) and Canyon Cody (Subsuelo). There will be food trucks galore and it’s going to be a hot, sunny weekend…perfect weather for an outdoor evening party, so get yourself to City Hall to meet the new Mayor and celebrate! If we’re lucky, we might even get a taste of Garcetti’s break-dancing skills! If you get there early, you can enjoy Grand Park‘s monthly Sunday Sessions right across the street too!


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Afro DZ ak LA Show Sat June 29 and Latest Video against LGBTQ Bullying & Suicide

Afro DZ ak is a a multi-instrumentalist MC and trumpet maestro from Boston who uses music, hip-hop and spoken-word poetry to promote positive social change. He’ll be playing a special free show in Los Angeles on Saturday, June 29, at the weekly Planet Rock hosted by Subsuelo DJ Canyon Cody and Captain Planet at The Virgil in Silverlake. Planet Rock is one of my favorite Saturday night events for great music and dancing with no cover and this special edition is not to be missed…it’s the only place in LA he is appearing! Check out his music below including his latest video and song Memories Live On, a poignant story of a gay teen driven to suicide. It’s a very appropriate topic today as I head to West Hollywood to celebrate today’s historic Supreme Court decisions in favor of LGBTQ rights to marriage equality. More love, less hate – let’s come together this Saturday and groove to the man’s positive messages and musical vibes.


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Brazilian Summer Party benefiting AfroLatinos: The Untaught Story Thu June 27

My friends, entertainer Daniela Brazil and DJ Chris Brazil, are hosting Party Like a Brazilian, this Thursday, June 27, at Level 3 nightclub at the Hollywood and Highland Center. If you’ve never been to Brazil nor any of the many great events in the large Brazilian community here in LA, you’re in for a treat. Both Chris and Daniela organize fun events featuring the best music, dance and entertainment that Brazilian culture has to offer and all the fun and festivities are for a special cause. The night is a fundraiser for AfroLatinos: La Historia Que Nunca Nos Contaron (AfroLatinos: The Untaught Story) documentary series. The series by Alicia Anabel Santos, an Afro-Dominican screenwriter, and Renzo Devia, a Colombian filmmaker, sheds light on Afro-Latinos, the descendants of the enslaved Africans who were forcibly taken from their land and dispersed throughout Latin America. Known as the “Third Root” after indigenous and European roots of Latino populations, the histories, stories and contributions of African descendents to Latino culture and society are often lost or unacknowledged, and their communities today are still the most marginalized, impoverished and invisible in their societies.

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Music, Dance, Film, Art & Cultural events June 24-30

weekly list

Another beautiful hot week as we enter the last week of June! Here are just some of the very many awesome events happening around LA! Thursday alone, there are 3 great events: the weekly world music night Afro Funke celebrates its 10 year anniversary with Ozomatli, La Cita Bar celebrates its 7 year anniversary with Buyepongo and Subsuelo DJs, and my friends are organizing a Brazilian Summer party to benefit the AfroLatinos documentary series, about the marginalized black culture in Latin America.

Friday is going to be a funky, soulful night with Afrolicious, Fanny Frank and Subsuelo DJ Canyon Cody at The Mint and Death, the first black punk band (first punk band for that matter!) ahead of its time in the 70s, will be playing a free show at Amoeba as well as after the Saturday and Sunday screenings of the new documentary A Band Called Death about the band’s trailblazing ways and re-discovery by a new generation.

Friday is also the start of the weekend-long celebration of Costa Mesa’s 60th anniversary, with a great variety of acts like Wanda Jackson, Berlin, Eric Burdon & The Animals, Mr. Little Jeans, Boogaloo Assassins, Beach Fossils, Bleached and more! Saturday, my good friend Subsuelo DJ Canyon Cody has a special guest at his weekly Planet Rock at the Virgil, Silverlake: Afro DZ ak, a multi-instrumentalist MC who uses music, hip-hop and spoken-word poetry to promote positive social change. He’s here from Boston for 1 night in LA only and that’s at Planet Rock!

Sunday is the 3rd anniversary of the Leimert Park Art Walk, featuring special guests Adunni & Nefertiti direct from Lagos, Nigeria, a multitalented group of seven women and the day coincides with the 3rd annual Day of the Ancestors: Festival of Masks. It’s fun for the whole family. Also Sunday, as part of the Brazilian Nites Summer Series, Ana Carolina from Brazil makes her LA debut, the final show of her US tour.

Don’t forget there are tons of free summer concerts and activities each week, so check out the full schedule of summer goodness here…my favorite summer outdoor venues are the Levitt Pavilions in MacArthur Park and Pasadena and these 3 in downtown: Grand Performances at California Plaza, Grand Park and FIGat7th.

This week’s list is always a work-in-progress (still many more events I have to post when I get back to the computer, as well as new ones I learn about as the week goes along!). So keep checking back! Do you have an LA hidden treasure or great cause people should know about? Let me know!

Have a great week, Angelenos…I’ll leave you with this song and video by Sara Bareilles. With so many wonderful outdoor activities and events around LA, don’t be afraid to dance, be silly and express yourself out there!

MON 6/24 TUE 6/25 WED 6/26 THU 6/27 FRI 6/28 SAT 6/29 SUN 6/30


Afro Funke 10 Year Anniversary featuring Ozomatli Thu June 27

The weekly world music night Afro Funke at Zanzibar, Santa Monica will be celebrating 10 years going strong this Thursday, June 27 with Ozomatli in the house! The people behind Afro Funke are Rocky Dawuni, Cary Sullivan and DJs Jeremy Sole (KCRW) and Glenn Red (Eclectica) and they have been faithfully bringing great global music and culture every week to the west side in Los Angeles.

I had an opportunity to ask them a few questions about the upcoming celebration: Continue reading

Tara Priya: Exclusive Interview

I’ve been pretty crazy about Tara Priya since discovering her music on Facebook. She’s very active there and on Twitter and Youtube, where she was unbelievably responding to every user comment until her most recent video Who You Do hit a million views! Now there’s no going back…Tara is on a hot trajectory with her retro-soul feistiness and is busy as ever, but she still found some time to grant me an interview. Thank you, Tara, for sharing such a personal, candid side of you with your fans!

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DJ Potira Spins Infectious Booty-Shakin Baile Funk all over LA! Every Sunday and this week at Afro Funke and Bombilla!

(Update 8/7/13: Brasilia Sundays is on hiatus until a new location.)
One of my favorite DJs in Los Angeles by way of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil is DJ Potira! She earned the nickname Potira which means “Warrior Indian Girl” through her dedicated practice and teaching of capoeira, the Brazilian martial art, and believe me…the title is well-earned! Not only does she kick ass on the mat, Potira brings the same feisty fierceness to the dance floor with her signature Baile Funk booty-shaking beats!

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