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.