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Sunday, September 25, 2016

In the Mix Today: Culture Collide Festival; danzón & world music fandago; and Q&A with Stones Throw Records founder

Acoustic indie pop band  The Black Atlantic (pictured above) plays Saturday, 9pm at 826LA in Echo Park as part of Culture Collide Festival.

By Jennifer Cuevas

This week marks the launch of a local music festival that takes listeners on a journey of indie rock music from around the world, all within the comfort our Eastside communities. Plus, get your “dance on” for a cause to help flood victims in Mexico and feed your soul with soulful DJ sets by an impressive list of local (and skilled) DJs and producers.  We’ll will also dive into a quick Q&A with Peanut Butter Wolf, the Founder of Highland Park-based, Stones Throw Records.

But, first,  this weekend’s picks …

Filter Magazine’s “Culture Collide Festival,” which continues through October 10, is a four-day festival that features indie rock to rock-fusion from around the world. The shows will highlight DJs and live band sets at numerous venues, like Spaceland and The Standard, from Echo Park to Downtown L.A. Tonight, check out the compelling Spanish indie rockers, Cápsula live at Spaceland in Silver Lake at 9pm. This Saturday October 9, don’t miss out on the acoustic indie pop sounds of the Dutch group The Black Atlantic at 9pm at 826LA in Echo Park; and Sunday, October 10 marks the last installment of the “Culture Collide Festival” with FREE shows at their ‘Toyota Antics’ block party. For the finale, get energized with Canadian indie rockers The Tokyo Police Club live at 7pm and experience headliners Jenny and Johnny at 8pm- both on the main stage. Tickets through October 9th are available via Ticketweb.com or click here to R.S.V.P for Sunday’s block party.

On Saturday October 9, Trópico de Nopal will host a benefit for victims affected by floods in Veracruz, Mexico, as a result of last month’s hurricane “Karl.” The fandango event will be hosted by Betto Arcos (KPFK’s “Global Village), as well as César Castro (Jarochelo). This night will feature some of L.A.’s finest son jarocho, danzón and world music musicians; with bands like La Santa Cecilia, Domingo Siete (video below), zocaloZuë, Cambalache, Son del Centro, members of Conjunto Jardín, plus video appearances by Ozomatli and Quetzal. The event is $10 and starts at 7 p.m. Trópico de Nopal is located at 1665 Beverly Blvd. in Echo Park.


In the Mix Q&A with Peanut Butter Wolf, the founder of Highland Park-based, Stones Throw Records

Q:  I read the [Stones Throw] label started in 1996. How long has Stones Throw been based in Highland Park? What brought the label to the “Eastside”?
A: I started the label in San Francisco in 96. When I moved to LA in 2000, I knew nothing about LA and wanted to live by the airport cuz I travel a lot. For some reason, it just didn’t click with me. I felt like an outsider. A friend of mine told me to check out Mt. Washington. I found a great spot and moved there. At first the label was out of my house. We eventually found a good work space in Highland Park. For what I do, the east side feels more like home. Maybe it’s because I grew up in East San Jose.

Photo by Eric Coleman

Q: Tell me about Stones Throw … its mission as a record label.
A: The mission is to bring the music industry back to putting out good music. I wanna prove that it can be done. Not just putting out bad music because industry types think people wanna hear crap. I had a talk with Geoff Barrow of Portishead about this the other day. Even some of the critical darlings are making a name for themselves putting out garbage and disguising it as underground. Even the “underground” radio stations and “underground” websites are promoting disposable stuff. Bring it back to good song writing, regardless of genre. Soapboxey I know.

Q: Who are the key players at the label – as far as staff?
A: Everyone is key. Nobody on staff gives 100% effort. We each gotta give 150%, start-up company style. More soap.

Q: How many artists are currently on your roster? Genres?
A : There’s 38 artist pages on our site. But our roster constantly evolves and a lot of our artists put out a record here and there, but aren’t constantly recording, touring or promoting. There’s around 8 or 10 artists on the roster now who are consistently recording and doing shows. As for genres, it’s at the point where I can ask a person on the street to name their favorite artist in music (any genre) and then show them someone from my label that they’d also like.

Q: What are your newest releases this fall?
A: Either singles or albums upcoming from Aloe Blacc, James Pants, Anika, MED, Steve Arrington, Vex Ruffin, Stepkids, J Rocc, and CX Kidtronik.

Q: Tell us about the upcoming 10/10/10 event…First of all, why 10/10/10? Who will perform? Anyone in particular we should look out for at the show?
A: On 6/6/6 I played an all heavy metal DJ set kind of as a joke cuz I was sick of being only booked for “golden age hip hop” gigs. The next year, for 7/7/7 I did an all spiritual DJ set. That year, I took it a step further and spun vinyl 7 nights in a row in different clubs in LA. I think it started as a joke. I had fun that week so for 8/8/8 I did all music videos 8 nights in a row. 9/9/9 I did vids 9 days in a row in 9 different area codes. This year, I didn’t wanna do the week long tour again. Was getting to be too silly. Opted for one day, on the 10th. 10 hours, 10 DJs and everyone’s playing 45s. I’m not gonna single out any DJs, other than maybe Danny Holloway cuz he’s done a lot for the music industry since the early 1970’s (if not earlier) with little fanfare.

Photo by Jake Green

Q: What is your favorite (if any) part about working in Northeast Los Angeles?
A: It’s close to my wife’s parents’ dog.

Q: What’s your favorite music club to attend on the Eastside?
A: Can’t think of any off the top of my head. Ironically, the club I go to most is on the west side (Funkmosphere), but I’m always down for a house party or warehouse event and most of those are on the east side.

On Sunday, Stones Throw Records presents 10-10-10 – 1o, ten hours of 10 top DJs and producers playing hip hop and soul on 45s in downtown Los Angeles.

In the Mix will appear weekly. Please send press releases or story ideas, at least two weeks in advance, to [email protected].



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One comment

  1. You forgot to mention the event on Friday at Tropico de Nopal. The listening party for the legendary Ruben (Godfather of Chicano Funk, Rock and Soul not to mention Doo-Wop) Guevara’s new album, ‘The Tao of Funkahuatl’.

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