Eastside News Roundup

A presidential candidate in E.L.A., composer Disasterpeace hits his stride and an Echo Park poet debuts Hate Poems. Monday’s News & Notes is here:

Echo Park poet launches new collection

Echo Park poet , artist and ex-Londoner John Tottenham released his third collection after 14 years, The Hate Poems, and according to the Los Angeles Review of Books, it’s filled with the some “tragicomic” musings and self-loathing that makes him a cult favorite.

Like this line, “I was on a roll, and I rolled into a rut,” or “Having sex with you is like going to church. I resent the obligation.”

A regular on the local art scene who works at Stories Books & Cafe in Echo Park, his work oozes with wink-worthy, self-flagellation. The LA Times once featured his Campaign to Stamp out Awesome from American overkill.

“To concentrate on the negative: that unfortunately is my talent, it’s what I excel at,” Tottenham told writer Anthony Mostrom. “Writing in a positive, life-affirming way doesn’t feel or sound right.”


Glassell Park film composer scores “Under the Silver Lake”

Film composer Rich Vreeland, known as Disasterpeace, scored two major recent films, the Netflix action thriller, “Triple Front” and L.A. noir, Cannes-favorite “Under the Silver Lake.”

Vreeland, who got his start in video games scores, stretches himself in Silver Lake with orchestral formats and music inspired by film history, explains reporter August Brown in a profile for the Los Angeles Times. Director David Robert Mitchell helped Vreeland find inspiration referring him to movies like “Citizen Cane” and “Taxi Driver.” Now, Vreeland, whose Glassell Park studio is a converted craftsman, wants to get into immersive theater.


Presidential candidate Julian Castro’s campaign stop in East LA

The only Latino presidential candidate, Julian Castro, made his first California 2020 campaign stop at Garfield High School in East Los Angeles on Saturday, reports MyNewsLA.

The former Housing and Urban Development Secretary and San Antonio hopes he can woo the heavily Latino state, in part by telling the story of his immigrant family’s rise. But Los Angeles Times thinks he’s in the lower-tier of candidates and will have a hard time pulling it off.

Delegate-rich California is moving up its primary elections to Super Tuesday in a bid to become more relevant and candidates are factoring that into their strategy. Castro told CNN after the rally that he thinks he can win the state and become a front runner by the time Iowa caucuses come. While in town, Castro made an appearance on Bill Maher’s show and hung out at Rodeo’s Grill with Mayor Eric Garcetti, who contemplated a run.

Saturday he tweeted: "Where I come from on the west side of San Antonio, much like many of you here in East LA, we weren't born frontrunners. We have to work hard to reach our dreams. But I believe that with your help, I can be a frontrunner on election day.”


Rachel Uranga is a Los Angeles-based writer

Talk is Cheap, Gathering News is Not

Join the readers whose monthly sponsorships defray the costs of gathering news and storytelling. That includes covering a variety of bills — from web hosting to bookkeeping — as well as payments to writers and photographers who have been generous with their time and talent. Only $5.99 a month!

Load comments