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by Joyce Chen [17 Apr 2009 | 2 Comments | 819 views]
So Super Sweet: The Sweetest Spots in L.A.

Economy got you down? Sure, jobs are hard to come by and that packet of stale saltines and tub of cottage cheese are starting to look like a great alternative to the bomb Bruschetta you used to enjoy down on Melrose, but this doesn’t mean the end of happiness. No, far from it. If anything, the nation’s financial funk just signals a new need to turn toward the powdered white stuff - no, not that powdered white stuff (it’s out of your price range, remember?). We’re talking sugar.

Celebrity, Guide »

by Joyce Chen [13 Mar 2009 | 4 Comments | 1,679 views]
THE POP FIX Pick: Louis Carreon

Los Angeles-based artist du jour and former prison inmate Louis Carreon is Tinsel Town’s go-to graffiti artist, mingling with Hollywood socialites at art gallery openings and schmoozing with rock stars at hot spots throughout L.A. - all while sober. Already popular with the young Hollywood crowd - Paris Hilton and Adrian Grenier are fans - Carreon is still in the precarious position of being simultaneously not-quite-mainstream and almost too “industry” for the art world.

Guide »

by Joyce Chen [6 Mar 2009 | 3 Comments | 1,402 views]
THE POP FIX Eats: Top 7 L.A. Restaraunts On A Budget

History has this irritating tendency of repeating itself. Mom pants, horrible rom-coms, and even the economic recession have seeped their way back into the cultural mainstream. And of the three, it’s probably best to guess that the recession is the biggest disaster, though mom pants veer in at a close second. But leave it to Angelenos to find a way to bend the rules and rewrite history with a flourish and a twist: in response to increasingly shallow wallets, trendy L.A. bars and eateries are offering up prime deals with reduced prices and recession-themed specials throughout the week. Foodies of Los Angeles, rejoice!

Features »

by Joyce Chen [28 Feb 2009 | One Comment | 1,128 views]
THE POP FIX Pick: Paul Dateh

Dateh’s unique brand of soul-searching has already caught the attention of Public Enemy and Run DMC, and his violin virtuoso can be head running smoothly over tracks by Keli and resident DJ Inca. At a time when Lil Wayne is trying to break traditional genre boundaries with rock song “Prom Queen,” Dateh’s already two steps ahead, one doo-bop scat above the norm. For his perfect pitch, vocal dexterity and undeniable passion, THE POP FIX predicts this Renaissance music man will be one to look out for in the very near future.

Celebrity, Music »

by Joyce Chen [2 Feb 2009 | 2 Comments | 2,128 views]
MUSIC REVIEW: The Best of John West

If India Arie and Jack Johnson had a love child and let Sam Sparro teach it to sing, its first soulful croon would sound an awful lot like John West. The 29-year-old’s LP features eight tracks of slick “neo-soul” samplings from his unique jazzy repertoire, plus one bonus acoustic track covering his well-known “Gravity.” The Baton Rouge, LA, native is one part jazz, two parts amp, and altogether soulful. His musical career isn’t so much a genre of music as it is an enveloping vibe, an offshoot of his extremely chill persona and his singular devotion to his love for music. The thing to know about West, however, is that his appeal doesn’t just rest on his sultry, course voice or on his simple, honest lyrics. Rather, the reason why West is able to hold his own in an industry so full of creative innovators and the next big fad is that his passion for song transcends genre. On “Hope It All Works Out,” West’s lazy drawl mingles effectively with the heavier bass beats and snaps that drive the song. Just a few tracks before that, however, West ups the optimism in “Loved You Tonight,” his broken voice bobbing gently against the backdrop of velvety keyboard and guitars. He is at once blues and funk, and his lyrics are dripping with smooth double entendre and desire.

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by Joyce Chen [19 Jan 2009 | 3 Comments | 612 views]
A Sexy SURprise

Step through the billowing curtains that lead into SUR, and it’s almost as though you’ve escaped into a sanctuary of luxury and romance right in the heart of Hollywood. White linen-covered tables topped with wine goblets and flickering candles line the sidewalk patio, and a melt-in-your-seat banquette with silk throw pillows line the left wall, setting off a luxe-boho vibe that keeps patrons feeling good long after the alcohol has set in. The dinner crowd is trendy without being pretentious; intellectual post-young Hollywood types out for a night of steady conversation or intimate whispers over dessert. Meg Ryan, Penelope Cruz and Ashley Olson frequent this sexy Mediterranean-Californian hub, and the exclusiveness of the restaurant means patrons are simultaneously privy to both privacy and people-watching.