Visit 1940′s Los Angeles in this Vintage Video

This video from the 1940s gives you a nice tour, including going inside the original Von’s on Olympic Blvd. Another interesting stop is a drive-through shoe repair business! Here’s the full list of locations visited:

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Interview with Sam Sweet, Author of the Forthcoming “All Night Menu,” A Secret History of Los Angeles

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Sam Sweet lives in Highland Park and has written about surfing, music, and Los Angeles culture for the New Yorker and the Paris Review. His latest project is All Night Menu, a 64-page book that is the first in a five-volume series about the lost heroes and miniature histories of Los Angeles. The writing takes to you places you didn’t know were real but are right in your backyard and introduces you to people who shaped this city in unseen ways. Created wholly in Los Angeles, the booklet is only available locally, in stores like South Willard, Mollusk Surf Shop, and Anzen Hardware. More info at the end of this interview.

How long have you lived in Los Angeles, and what neighborhoods do you like best?

I moved here in 2007. I like the usual stuff. How can you not? No amount of overexposure can diminish the greatness of driving on Mulholland, or loitering on the rim of the Venice Skate Park, or being on the top floor of the Arclight parking garage. Even so, I think you get the best of Los Angeles in places undefined by any particular attractions. I’m happiest when I’m doing nothing much in Lincoln Heights, Chatsworth, El Segundo. I love Sun Valley because it’s so fiercely unattractive but within that labyrinth of auto recyclers is a living culture that is unique to LA. In a more conventional sense, I think San Pedro is one of the prettiest towns in America.

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10 Years in Los Angeles ~ Photography by Kwasi boyd-bouldin

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Kwasi boyd-bouldin has lived in and photographed Los Angeles for over 10 years. His new project, the Los Angeles Recording, seeks to document his city, from Downtown to Hollywood over that period. Kwasi focuses on architecture, the small details of urban life, and the contrasts between soaring towers and daily pedestrian life. We asked him for 10 photos, one for each year to help show the scope and style of the archive.
From the project description:
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Wattstax (1973) ~ Los Angeles Colliseum

Wattstax is a 1973 documentary film by Mel Stuart that focused on the 1972 Wattstax music festival and the African American community of Watts in Los Angeles, California. The film was nominated for a Golden Globe award for Best Documentary Film in 1974.

The concert was held at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum on August 20, 1972, and organized by Memphis’s Stax Records to commemorate the seventh anniversary of the Watts riots. Wattstax was seen by some as “the Afro-American answer to Woodstock”.

Tracklist:
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GIF of the Day: Los Angeles at Night in 1985

Reddit user /u/BigMurph26 made this gif from the 1985 film Chronos (YouTube embed below).

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Fun With Archives: Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Los Angeles Items

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Los Angeles
Carleton E. Watkins (American, 1829–1916)
Date: 1876, printed ca. 1876

The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s new Open Access for Scholarly Content now provides free access to almost 400,000 high-resolution digital images of public domain artworks from their collection. We’ve gone through the archives searching for Los Angeles related items that we present to you for your non-commercial enjoyment. This use is part of our longstanding digital study and survey of Los Angeles, its artists, and its history. All images via The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

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Real Noir ~ LAPD Photo Archives

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Gallerist Robin Blackman and her husband, LAPD Reserve officer have spent the last thirteen years combing through the LAPD photo archives looking for gems in a collection of crime scenes, mug shots, and other on-the-job photographs and negatives that were due to be destroyed. The result is a collection of about 50 images that will be made into prints and sold at this weekend’s Paris Photo LA. You can view some additional images at the official site, and also at this Daily Mail article. Keep reading for some of our favorites…

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Remember Your Roots w/ Rootcheck Vol. 4 – GTA Style Anaheim Chase W/ Arbe Kog / SUMEN / Betue

@Rootcheck – Remember Your Roots @LAtaco / Vol.4

BELIEVE IT OR NOT EDITION + ANAHEIM ARCHIVE #1

At first the plan was to cram the story of that night in, but some history of Anaheim came up in the archives, small detour.

If you want to skip all that and jump straight into what happened that night, look for the BOLD SENTENCE as a jump off.

Isek LTS and Arby KOG some time around 98.

Isek LTS and Arby KOG some time around 98.

Back in the day (96-99) in Anaheim there was a big ass construction zone.

Disney was building underground tunnels, Cal-Trans was all over the place and they were mean as hell in general. During this construction big ass chunks of the 5(lots), the 405(lsds dtd ek), the 22(aubs) etc. freeways would shut down and black out completely. A lot of bombing took place, kings/crews came and went throughout the tag banging days. Just195 and Earn (some straight OGs in graffiti) were holding down the Anaheim Swap Meet with a little hip hop / airbrush shop. Just195 had a wall behind the swap meet, with Lucha libre wrestlers doing their thing in the background. A lot of writers met up there so speaking on Anaheim, Masterpiece was sort of a middle ground for OC to meet LA. Earn and Just called the shop Masterpiece and in 1999 the MP2k crew was formed there, a lot of them are still around to this day.

The Lucha Libre truck at the Anaheim Indoor around 99 - Just195 / B2.

The Lucha Libre truck at the Anaheim Indoor around 99 – Just195 / B2.

In a way, Just and Earn took writers in at Masterpiece, and gave them a gateway to something bigger. OC writers looked up to the LA writers, and in some cases OC produced the same originality. Getting way off the point, but the BALL yard, behind the indoor, is where the dudes in this story all met.

Czer UCA / WGS / MP - behind the Anaheim indoor (Masterpiece shop wall).

Czer UCA / WGS / MP – behind the Anaheim indoor (Masterpiece shop wall).

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Los Angeles From the Air in 1961

What did L.A. look like in 1961? Dodger stadium wasn’t built, most of the Freeways didn’t exist, but there are a lot of fun similarities to that time and today. Explore them with this informative film from 1961, provided by the people at travelfilmarchives.com.

Drive the Sunset Strip in 1964

The above video dates from 1964 and has nice and clear footage of driving the Sunset Strip at that time. The vintage cars, the billboards, it’s all there for your viewing enjoyment.

Sadly, the video lacks a soundtrack which could also be a plus. What song to listen to while you cruise? Here are the top 20 songs from 1964, unsurprisingly dominated by the Beatles:

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Remember Your Roots w/ @Rootcheck Vol. 2 ~ Koos Cafe – The 90′s Gateway to LA for OC Writers

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Rootcheck Vol. 2 @ LA TACO
Vintage Koo’s Cafe – OCxLA

If you were painting in the LA/OC area in the mid 90′s, you probably remember Koo’s Cafe. For OC writers, Koo’s was the place to be considering there wasn’t as much culture in Orange County as there was in LA. Hence the exodus of writers that CAME from OC, that have now infiltrated LA. At Koo’s OC heads could end up meeting and even painting with their favorite LA writers randomly. Koo’s stood out as a middle ground, where Los Angeles and Orange County merged in a beefless fashion. In those days people still had ciphers, you could stroll through Koos on any given day and find someone like DJ Babu cutting for a circle of 10 kids.

In those days, passion was high, money was low – and “street art” was not a term all were familiar with.  There weren’t many legal walls in Orange County back then. When LA heads came down to paint legally their first stop was usually Koo’s. This way, Los Angeles styles migrated into Orange County. Hell, there was once talk of a super city, combining the two counties. The same way LA style migrated on to Orange County walls, OC writers migrated into LA. At first there wasn’t much love for people who ranked on their city, in time it became so redundant it was almost unnoticable.

It took a lot for the dudes from OC to work their way into the system of LA graffiti, depending who they were. To get any sort of fame in LA, OC cats had to do twice the work of most residents. Many lost sight of their roots once dedicating their lives to trying to make it in Hollywood.To those left behind, Remember Your Roots dedicates these vintage views of Koo’s in the Mid 90′s.

Find shadows of Koo’s @KCETartbound on Twitter.
Follow @rootcheck for more glimpses of the past.

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