Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Going off the grid


Don't panic! Mickie's Zoo will be back, but I will be out of the office through Monday, Dec. 17, so there will not be updates to the blog until then. In the meantime, I wish you happy adventures! 


Sanrio and Forever 21 launch Hello Kitty Forever

Hello Kitty spreads more smiles
By Michelle J. Mills
Photos by Dean Lee

Sanrio and Forever 21 have partnered for Hello Kitty Forever, an exclusive collaboration that includes bedding, bath and home accessories. In addition to expanding the product line, the offerings boast a more "grownup" attitude with styles and patterns that are even appropriate for office wear, as well as fun fashions for any age. But best of all, nothing in the entire collection is more than $30.

The new Kitty color palette ranges from classic black and white prints to cool apricot, teal and light pink hues and further into lime greens and bouncy yellows. You will also find more of the characters from the Hello Kitty family playing up the patterns, such as Chococat, Badtz-Mardu and Hagydon.

Some of our favorite pieces in the fashion line, include sweaters. There is a black sweater emblazoned with a comic strip rendition of Badtz-Mardu, which is perfect for casual days, and a preppy tangerine v-neck sweater with a sweet Chococat applique that even moms on the go would love. The black and white filigree print collection features a jacket, leggings, miniskirt, scarf and more, plus bedding. Our must-buy in this set is the scarf print top with its back and long sleeves done it lace- sophisticated and sassy.

We also liked the use of Peter Pan collars on many of the dresses and the attention to detail. One example of perfect embellishment is a white shirt with a thin black Badtz-Mardu patterned tie and a clutch of silver studs at each shoulder. On the sweeter side, we liked a flowing apricot top with long sleeves and a print of Hello Kitty peeking from one side. 

There are many casual items available, as well as pajamas and loungewear. One of the hits here is a green thermal hoodie with a sunglass-wearing Hello Kitty on the front. It comes with thermal pants in cool yellow with a smaller Hello Kitty pattern.

There is a jewelry line created by Onch Movement to complement the fashions. Pair cute bow and pretzel stud earrings with oversized Hello Kitty pendants on bold chains or strands of big pearls with smaller Kitty touches. The styles are playful, yet many are quite elegant. 

Rounding out this new collaboration is a selection of travel, bath and bedding items. There are totes and umbrellas, along with hats, scarves and travel kits so you can share your love of Hello Kitty everywhere you go. 

Large pillows in black and white or apricot and teal prints are just right for finishing the look of a bed decked out with sheets, pillowcases and a duvet cover that matches. On a side note, Hello Kitty is not prominent on every bedding pattern, so they can easily work in an adult's bedroom without making it look childish. 

But don't hesistate to show off your fun side with character bath mats, towels, trash bins and more. And did we mention the lip gloss and nail polish sets? There are so many new things, well, you really need to see them for yourself.

The Hello Kitty Forever collection is available at all Forever 21 stores and ranges from $5-$30. For more information, visit and

Help a Hathaway-Sycamores child over the holidays

Holiday joy is most often associated with children, but for many other youngsters— particularly those who are in foster care, as well as those who are struggling with mental-health issues or whose families are financially fragile—the holidays can be a particularly challenging time of year. Hathaway-Sycamores Child and Family Services—the largest private provider of children's mental-health services in Los Angeles County—serves more than 9,000 such youngsters and families annually, and it is on their behalf that the nonprofit agency is reaching out and asking caring members of the community to help bring holiday happiness to those in need. There are several ways that members of the community can support Hathaway-Sycamores' efforts,including:

Buy a gift for a child—Gifts are needed for all age groups, from infants to age 18, as well as for those with special needs ages 19 through 25. Gifts should be unwrapped and nonviolent in nature.  Often requested items include: sports equipment; electronic and board games; art supplies; DVDs (PG or PG-13); CD walkman; boom box/alarm clock; beauty products; video games (G rated); stuffed animals; clothing; backpacks; hair accessories; and watches. Many of those in Hathaway-Sycamores' care are teenagers, so gift cards (such as Bath and Body Works, Best Buy, GameStop, Footlocker, Target, Walmart) are always a good choice, as are movie passes.  Cash donations are especially valued for helping Hathaway-Sycamores to fulfill children’s special wishes. Donated items can be mailed or brought—by Dec. 17— to Hathaway-Sycamores Child and Family Services Development Department, 210 S. DeLacey Ave., Ste.110, Pasadena, CA, 91105.

Order a 2013 Children's Calendar—Iconic local landmarks are interpreted anew through the eyes of aspiring young artists on the colorful, enchanting pages of the 2013 Hathaway-Sycamores Children's Art Calendar. Created through the “I Love LA” art project by students who receive academic enrichment and other support services from the Hathaway-Sycamores Highland Park Family Resource Center, this one-of-a-kind calendar is an ideal holiday gift. Not only is the calendar both beautiful and affordable ($10, plus $5 shipping and handling), but proceeds will help fund life-changing services for the thousands of youngsters and families served annually by Hathaway-Sycamores.  The calendar can be ordered at or by calling (626) 395-7100 ext. 2516.

Adopt-a-Family—Gifts, household items, food, and grocery-store gift certificates are among the items needed by local families who might otherwise go without. Donated items can be mailed or brought—by Dec. 17— to Hathaway-Sycamores Child and Family Services Development Department, 210 S. DeLacey Ave., Ste. 110, Pasadena, CA, 91105.

Donate to Food Pantry—Hathaway-Sycamores Highland Park Family Resource Center operates a year-round food pantry for families in Northeast Los Angeles who are receiving mental-health services from the Center and who are living below the poverty line. This need escalates during the holiday season and the Family Resource Center is especially in need of : rice, beans, spaghetti, granola bars, juice boxes, bottled water, breakfast cereal, lunch meats, instant noodles, canned soup, bread. Items can be dropped off at the Family Resource Center—weekdays between the hours of 8:30 a.m. and 7 p.m.—located at 840 N. Avenue 66 in Highland Park.    

For additional information about these opportunities to support Hathaway-Sycamores, contact Andi Sica at (626) 395-7100 ext. 2516 or e-mail 

Jamie Wolford to release solo album

“At the risk of sounding horribly pretentious, the title A Framed Life In Charming Light is kind of a metaphor for how we promote a better version of ourselves to each other. This alternate version hides how we actually feel about ourselves deep down inside,” cheekily explains JAMIE WOOLFORD, frontman of such influential bands as Animal Chin, The Stereo and Let Go about his debut solo album (Release date: January 15, 2013; Get Well Records). While bit heavy on the meaning behind the title, the music on A Framed Life in Charming Light fluctuates in weight from rock to pop to ballads to alt-punk, all without losing its cohesiveness or its focus on Jamie’s songwriting.

Known for crafting such indelibly-infectious songs as “New Tokyo Is Calling”, “Ramona” and “Don’t Say Uncle”, Woolford’s new material hearkens his trademark uber-melodicism that’s influenced countless alternative bands including Fall Out Boy, fun., and Cobra Starship to name just a few. The ebb and flow of the opening track,“Safe, Warm & Boring” kicks off the record with a waltzy backdrop, highlighting his velvety vocals amidst a piano-led melody. “[This song] sort of ‘leaks’ my love affair with softer music,” he explains. “My fans will hopefully be surprised to hear something this ‘classical’ from me, which is exciting.” From the chugging breakneck alt-pop of “No Contact” to the metallic guitar attack of“Rock Beats Money” to the harmonic balladry of “Gravity”, A Framed Life in Charming Light captures all his diverse strengths and packages them into a cohesive and tight album that is at once comfortable and familiar while expansive and challenging.“’Short Term Memory’ which closes the record, is one of the most poetic and artistic songs I've written to date,” Jamie says. “I love it for that and other reasons but in the end, people are going to like what they hear or not. My only role as an artist to honestly express myself and be as good at it as I can. Once it makes it into the hands of the listener it becomes something else entirely.”

Alternative Press has premiered “The Miracle Mile” which can be heard here: 

Aside from being a master musical craftsman, Jamie has his humanitarianism in check as well - a portion of the proceeds made from this album will be donated to a very important cause that he supports. “The Polaris Project is a wonderful organization aimed at ending human trafficking,” he continues. “It's such an enormous problem worldwide that we HAVE to do something about. I'm no politician or preacher but I think that, in my own small way, if I can help bring a little more awareness to this problem then I have to.”
“The challenge is being able to truly recognize what you have and what you're making in the moment as it's happening, Jamie concludes about this record. “That's not hard for a good producer but in almost every case, the artist is actually the MOST blind to their material and its potential. So when you choose to be artist, engineer, and producer all at once, it really becomes a challenge to keep all those roles in perspective and perform them well. I'll be honest, this is the most ambitious record I've ever made both in a musical and technical sense. Someone please remind how difficult this was next time, ok?”

A Framed Life in Charming Light will be released on January 15, 2013 on Get Well Records. It was written, performed, produced, engineered and mixed by Jamie Woolford.

Atlas Genius to release new album

When It Was Now, the debut album from Atlas Genius, will be released on February 19, 2013 via Warner Bros. Records. The Australian band has been touring the U.S. non-stop for the past four months with groups like Silversun Pickups, Wolf Gang and Animal Kingdom and will wrap up their 2012 run with a sold-out headlining show at Los Angeles' Troubadour on December 11th. While in L.A., the band will perform on KCRW's "Morning Becomes Eclectic" on December 10th and make their U.S. television debut, performing the hit song "Trojans" on Jimmy Kimmel Live on December 12th.

"Trojans" Official Video on YouTube

"Back Seat" (Goldroom Remix)

The band wrote, recorded and produced When It Was Now themselves at a studio they built in their hometown of Adelaide, Australia. It was mixed by Michael Brauer at Electric Lady Studios in New York City.

Once their studio was built, the first song that Atlas Genius finished was "Trojans." After spending weeks tweaking it, they put "Trojans" on SoundCloud, Spotify, iTunes and Australia's Triple J Unearthed website. Then, they pretty much forgot about it.

"We began to think that music was a pipedream and we had all gone back to university to pursue more realistic careers," says lead singer Keith Jeffery. But as they crammed for their fall semester final exams, the blog Neon Gold discovered "Trojans" on the Triple J Unearthed site and wrote a post praising the song as sure to "invade your head, all dressed up in a clever disguise of earnest vocals riding a hooky riff." Checking the band's email account for the first time in over a month, they found their inbox being barraged by fans, record labels, booking agents and management companies from all over the world.

The band continued to write and record new songs in relative isolation in their studio as word on"Trojans" spread organically across the internet, with blog support leading to the song charting #1 on both Hype Machine and the We Are Hunted "Emerging Artist" Chart. SiriusXM Alt Nation found the song on a blog and started spinning "Trojans." The song spent four straight weeks as the #1 requested track on their listener generated Alt-18 countdown in early 2012. "Trojans" began to sell over 1,000 tracks per week in the States and soon climbed to 45,000 downloads sold - all with zero promotional efforts from the still-unsigned band.

Atlas Genius signed to Warner Bros. Records in the spring of 2012 and quickly released the three-song EP Through The Glass in June, featuring new songs "Back Seat" and "Symptoms." The band has released a variety of remixes for all three tracks through their SoundCloud page, including remixes by Lenno, Goldroom, Xaphoon Jones (of Chiddy Bang), Aislyn (of Passion Pit), Wild Cub, and Fred Falke. Each one charted on Hype Machine, with Lenno going to #1 and Goldroom and Xaphoon Jones going Top 5.

"Trojans" has slowly and steadily become a bonafide hit, selling over 100,000 singles to date and storming the Top 5 on the Modern Rock radio charts. The official music video for "Trojans" which was directed by Claire Marie Vogel, premiered simultaneously on MTV and VH1 earlier this month and can be seen HERE.


11/28 - Norfolk, VA: 96X Winter Meltdown @ Ted Constant Convocation Center/Winter Meltdown
12/01 - Chicago, IL: Q87.7 The Night We Stole Christmas @ Aragon Ballroom
12/06 - San Francisco, CA: Live105 Not So Silent Night @ Mezzanine
12/08 - Portland, OR: 94.7 A December to Remember @ Crystal Ballroom - SOLD OUT
12/11 - Los Angeles, CA @ The Troubadour - SOLD OUT

Official Website: 

Mike Tyson in Anaheim March 6


Mike Tyson: Undisputed Truth
ON SALE                               Fri., Dec. 7 at 10:00 am
SHOW DATE                       March 6, 2013 at 8:00 PM
TICKET PRICES                   $500.00* /  $300.00** / $67.50 / $47.50 / $37.50

*SUPER VIP tickets include a post-performance meet & greet and photograph with Mike Tyson plus a boxing glove, which he will sign at the meet & greet.
**VIP tickets include a post-performance meet & greet and photograph with Mike Tyson.

Volkswagen event to aid Elizabeth House in Pasadena Dec. 14

For the past two years, hundreds of Volkswagens have gathered in Pasadena to donate toys for the children of Elizabeth House. The local VW Club, Stadt Der Rosen, and Jeff’s Kaddie Shack began the charity drive in 2010 and, since then, it has become one of the most favored events for classic VW owners during the holiday season. This year's event will take place on Friday, December 14, between 7 p.m. and 10:30 p.m.
Chapter President Elias Mena said, “We wanted to do something to give back to the community. When we started it, it was just our club and a few friends, now we have so many clubs, sponsors and donations it seems unbelievable. I feel that the Volkswagen Community is really drawn to giving, and this is an event we can all be proud of."
Elizabeth House is a non-profit organization that specifically addresses the needs of pregnant women who are homeless and was founded in 1994. The collections gathered by the clubs and sponsors go directly to this 501 c-3 and are welcomed with open arms during the holiday season. Last year over 350 VW’s came from all over the Southern California area to donate toys and clothes to this worthy charity. For more information about Elizabeth House and the services it offers, visit
The event has drawn the attention of many sponsors, car buffs, and, of course, Volkswagen fans. 
"Seeing the fleet of cars gathered at the Original Tommy’s Hamburger Stand on Hill Street in Pasadena is quite a thrill," says Mena. "Guests can walk through a car show and see so many classic VW's of all shapes and sizes that any fan of classic cars would have a thrill...but that's just the warm up! Toward the end of the evening, the cars fire up their little four cylinder engines and a small roar of German engineering is heard as they make their way down Colorado Boulevard through Old Town Pasadena to the cheers of people out holiday shopping and seeing the sights."
Mena encourages those seeking a great event, combining fun and a worthy purpose, to join him and his fellow VW enthusiasts.
"Our 'Christmas Jam' will thunder through Old Town Pasadena, on its way to make a whole house full of kids jump with delight," Mena says with a smile. "As we like to say,  Merry Christmas to all, and to all a nice ride!"

Barbara Kaleta works at LACMA Dec. 1

Opening Night Reception - Saturday, December 1, 2012
Art Rental & Sales Gallery
Los Angeles County Museum of Art
Leo S. Bing Center, Lower Level
5905 Wilshire Boulevard, Los Angeles 90036
Reception: 5-7 PM

Barbara Kaleta's  Horses and Fish Series will be on display at the Winter Exhibition which runs through February 7, 2013.

If you can't make it Saturday, the Winter Exhibition will be up until February 7 ,2013.

Susie Glaze & the HiLonesome Band in Santa Monica Dec. 15

Save the Date! 
Folkworks Presents: Susie Glaze & The HiLonesome Band
December 15th
This is the best in lush newgrass Americana folk roots fusion, gorgeous eclectic blends of mountain folk and exciting new bluegrass and Celtic-inspired originals, all with the remarkable voice of Susie Glaze. Winner of the Just Plain Folks 2006 Music Award for Best Roots Album, and FolkWorks Magazine’s Pick for Best Bluegrass Album of 2005 for the band’s debut album, Blue Eyed Darlin.
Saturday, December 15th at 8pm
Santa Monica History Museum
1350 Seventh Street, Santa Monica, CA
Facebook event page:
Purchase Advance Tickets:
Susie Glaze & The Hilonesome Band has appeared at the Hollywood Bowl, The Broad Stage, CalTech Folk Society, The Freight& Salvage Coffee House, WFMT’S “Folkstage “ with Rich Warren, Grass Valley Bluegrass Festival, San Francisco Bluegrass & Old Time Festival, Don Quixote’s International Music Hall, FolkScene with Howard and Roz Larman, McCabe’s Guitar Shop, Skirball Cultural Center and California Traditional Music Society among many others. Their most recent recording, Live at the Freight & Salvage, was released in 2011 with guest banjo virtuoso Bill Evans. Their newest studio album White Swan will be released in early 2013
For more information:

Ian Whitcomb ukulele event in Claremont Dec. 1

This Saturday, December 1st 7:00pm sharp.
IAN WHITCOMB: Book Signing, Sing-Along and Discussion on all things Ukulele

  • Bring your ukulele and prepare to learn a lot and have fun. at the FOLK MUSIC CENTER in Claremont (free admission)...
  • Want to learn 5 holiday songs to entertain friends and family?

This Sunday, December 2nd 4:30-5:30pm $20

*bring a Uke or borrow one from us.
Sign up now!! *call (909)624-2928 for more info..

FOLK MUSIC CENTER 220 Yale Ave. Claremont, Ca. 91711

Public Enemy, X-Clan and more on tour

Nov. 28 - Dec. 13, 2012
Public Enemy, X-Clan, Monie Love, 
Leaders of the New School, 
Son of Berzerk & No Self Control, 
Davy DMX, DJ Johnny Juice, Schoolly D, 
Wise Intelligent & Awesome Dre

Nov 28: Washington DC @ 9:30 Club
Nov. 29: NYC @ Irving Plaza
Nov. 30: Public Enemy Philly Liacouras Center
Dec. 1: Burlington VT @ Higher Ground
Dec. 2: Boston @ Royale Theater
Dec. 4: Indianapolis @ Vogue Theater
Dec. 5: Chicago @ House of Blues
Dec. 6: Minneapolis @ First Avenue
Dec. 7: Lincoln NE @ Bourbon Theater
Dec. 8: Denver @ Ogden Theater
Dec. 9: Jackson Hole WY @ Pink Garter
Dec. 10: Aspen CO @ Belly Up
Dec. 12: San Diego @ 4th and B
Dec. 13: Los Angeles @ Club Nokia

Upcoming Live Nation concerts week of Nov. 28


2nd Night Added By Demand!
2nd Show On Sale Friday November 30 at 10 AM:
-Reuniting with the band’s original vocalist, Jim Lindberg!
With Special Guests: Lagwagon - Strung Out - Pulley
Hollywood Palladium
January 18, 2013 – Sold Out!
January 19, 2013 – Just Added!

On Sale Friday November 30 at 10 AM:
With Special Guests: Animals As Leaders - Intronaut
The Wiltern
Saturday – March 2, 2013

On Sale Friday November 30 at 1 PM:
Gibson Amphitheatre
Saturday – January 12, 2013


With Special Guest: Kacey Musgraves
The Wiltern
New show date: Friday February 8, 2013
-All tickets from the originally announced Nov. 29 show will be honored on the rescheduled night