If I could kiss you, Los Angeles, I would…

with compliments to Lizzy Eggert and Olentangy John Atzberger
...just right...

My visit to Los Angeles was phenomenal.  This was my 4th visit here, but the first where I really got it.  It the past it just struck me as a dissipated, sprawling lamesville, but it turns out I just wasn’t hanging out with the right people.  My dear friends Olentangy John and Patrick Bourland, along with the always excellent Lizzie Eggert welcomed me with carrots, absinthe and a show in a funny french restaurant.  The night grew surreal after John went to bed, leaving Pat and I to roam Sunset Blvd in Echo Park playing guitar and mandolin.  We quickly found our third bandmate in the form of a kindly Mexican homeless man pushing a shopping cart.  He established himself as bandleader, calling La Bamba, Guantanamera, and finally, a rubato, experimental Ave Maria (recordings will be posted later, as I have 25 minutes of iPhone voice memo to edit down).

My adventures continued, to be chronicled in bullets:

  • Had lunch with Michael Skloff, writer of all the music for “Friends” (including the clap clap clap clap thing).  Totally sweet guy writing beautiful Jewish liturgical music these days
  • Met with Seth Kaplan at Evolution Music Partners–maybe a licensing deal is in the cards?
  • Played beautiful custom guitars at Old Style Guitars, which lead to a wonderful show with Kelly Jones and Mike Viola.
  • Played mandolin and drums at a Tom Petty sing-along
  • Jammed with Charlyne Yi at said party
  • Sang an Aliyah in my cousin’s Bar Mitzah
  • Met a man who writes music for Barbie-themed straight-to-DVD releases from Mattel (a very nice man)
  • Finished the weekend like I started it: Pacifique, Olentangy, Pat, Lizzie, a guitar, and many many songs: Some originals, some Joni, some vintage Elephant Army, some jazz standards and LOTS of Gillian Welch.  I recorded a spontaneous arrangement we did of Ruination Day.  If it sounds good I’ll post it.

LA, you have been abundant with your gifts on this trip.  Thank you.




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