John Rabe Host, Off-Ramp

John Rabe bio photo
Contact John Rabe

John Rabe is the creator and host of Off-Ramp, KPCC's weekend news and arts magazine program, which has been named "best local public affairs show" by two national journalism associations.

Prior to his time on Off-Ramp, Rabe was KPCC's host for "All Things Considered" and the station's housing & healthcare reporter, for which he garnered many awards – including several Golden Mikes.

Rabe began his career as a commercial DJ in high school in Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan, then found his niche as reporter and anchor at WKAR, Michigan State University's public radio station, where he earned his BA in English.

Rabe has also worked in public radio in South Florida, at WHYY in Philadelphia, and Minnesota Public Radio. He came to KPCC in 2000. Off-Ramp debuted in 2006.

He lives with his husband and Irish terriers in the foothills of Mt Washington, north of downtown LA.


Stories by John Rabe

Surrealist Film Festival coming to Downtown LA; Rabe offers entry.

“Dadaists would remove the wings from a dragonfly and call what is left a red pepper. Surrealist would put wings on a red pepper and call the creation a dragonfly.”

Oscar my neighbor and his damned green thumb.

My neighbor Oscar is showing off again.

No great shakes, but a fun local tidbit … the origin of Shakers Restaurant’s name.

Shakers Restaurant, on Fair Oaks in South Pasadena, across from Bristol Farms (there’s another in Glendale), has pretty good food at reasonable prices. Service is usually fast and friendly, and I can’t name another place that serves Portuguese sausage for breakfast.

LA Times’ Steve Lopez explains his and Jon Bon Jovi’s parallel paths to fighting homelessness.

This week on Off-Ramp, we walk through LAMP Community, the Skid Row homeless center, with rocker Jon Bon Jovi (right), whose Soul Foundation has built hundreds of units of affordable housing in the last 6 years.

NY Times notices Oscar-nominated “Secret of Kells” … But Solomon and Off-Ramp had it long before.

(Our hero gets a tour of the woods from what he thinks is a little girl. (GKIDS/Cartoon Saloon))

Rabe’s "Vast Wasteland Project" takes shape. Guggenheim app to come to document abandoned TV sets.

WARNING: By reading this blog, you are participating in an art project.

Power Trio: Jon Bon Jovi, Steve Lopez, and John Rabe tour LAMP, talk homelessness.

(L-R: LAMP Interim Executive Director Shannon Murray, Jon Bon Jovi, LA Times columnist Steve Lopez, KPCC’s John Rabe. I know it’s blurry. I didn’t take the picture.)

RIP Bobby Espinosa, and Viva El Chicano.

How sad. I just heard that Bobby Espinosa, of the band El Chicano, is dead. He was only 60. Listen to the Off-Ramp interview with Espinosa – featuring the wonderful Jesus Velo of the band Los Illegals interviewing his hero – and you get a sense of why Espinosa and El Chicano made a difference.

The TV Giveaway marches on! More free tv’s in Cypress Park and Lincoln Heights.

Some photos from Monday morning.

“Family Circus” marks 50th anniversary by being actually funny … in a rerun.

Nowadays, Dad’s only job in the daily panel comic strip “Family Circus” is to act the foil for his kids' treacley naïveté, and cartoonists Bil and Jeff Keane’s only hope seems to be that we will cut out the strip and tape it to the fridge.

The Gourmet Magazine mourning period is officially over – Rabe notes “The Gourmet Cookbook’s” return to used bookstore shelves.

I’m an habitué of used bookstores. Cliff’s in Pasadena, the late Acres of Books in Long Beach, Brand Bookstore in Glendale. I buy books at these stores and usually read them, and am always looking for cookbooks, as our kitchen bookshelf attests:

NYT tells of slave - Henry Box Brown - who “special deliveried” himself to freedom

I know a reasonable amount of black history – I can recite a few lines from Paul Laurence Dunbar, I know who Dred Scott was, I understand the pernicious effects of Jim Crow – but I had never heard the story of Henry Box Brown, whose middle name says it all.

Rabe sets new record ...

Just so you know, I went all day today without my iPhone, having accidentally left it on the coffee table when I left for work.

Mmmmm. Parks & Rec’s Sweetums makes for contented cows and docile people.

Who could have predicted, that crazy night at House of Pies …

Two free televisions for you, as great LA TV Giveaway continues

Sorry I’ve been away from the blog for a few days. The fundraiser demands singular focus. But on my way in this morning, I spied the latest entry in my ongoing series on discarded television sets … and it’s a two-fer: