Recently on Off-Ramp®
“No blue skies and no green grass” is animator Genndy Tartakovsky’s rule for "Samurai Jack." He tells us about bringing back the wandering samurai (right) for Adult Swim. ... Meet jazz singer Donna Fuller, a sultry contralto who made two albums that are now eBay gold. ... It would be enough if we went to the shop where they make custom limousines and hearses, but they also make custom hunting trucks Middle East potentates use when they hunt with their falcons.
The remarkable George Takei gets the whole hour. We get an exclusive preview of JANM's new George Takei exhibit, talk with George himself about his life and times and his new role in the Sondheim musical “Pacific Overtures,” hear from "To Be Takei's" director that George is NOT a performer at heart (WTF?!), and hear George and John Rabe sing. Maybe. If there's time.
Downtown LA’s historic Angels Flight railway may be running by Labor Day ... We sample the LAPD’s old daily newspaper, a window into a time when cops weren’t supposed to smoke in uniform, and when a stolen car might be traced by the make of its battery or speedometer ... The other dinosaur museum in Southern California, the Alf Museum in Claremont ... A huge new exhibit at the Hammer of an artist overshadowed by Pollack, De Kooning, and Rothko. (Photo: LA Public Library's Security Pacific National Bank Collection)
Granted, the homeless make it hard to run a business near downtown LA’s Skid Row. But one man’s solution is raising eyebrows: spraying water on the sidewalk overnight. ... One of the local pianists in The Van Cliburn International Piano Competition is already famous as the Video Game Pianist on YouTube. ... We visit the Alf Museum in Claremont where most of the fossils – some of them extremely significant to science -- were dug up by kids. ... Richard Simmons has gone from being the most accessible celebrity in LA to disappeared. A new podcast “Missing Richard Simmons" asks what happened. ... And we visit Beth Goodnight -- self-proclaimed "mad scientist" of set building -- to see the last of her Oscar sets before they’re sent off for this weekend’s show.
Director Ava Duvernay on her new documentary, “13th,” as in the 13th Amendment to the US Constitution, which banned slavery ... Backstage with La Santa Cecelia, a Grammy-winning LA band that tells modern stories with traditional music ... Frank Romero finally has his first major museum retrospective, and he's interviewed by Cheech Marin ... Another “date which lives in infamy” is the day FDR ordered the imprisonment of 120-thousand Japanese-Americans, and it happened 75 years ago this weekend ... We get a sneak peek at “Girl at the White Horse,” a brand new cocktail bar at Sunset and Western, owned by the son of the Shah of Iran’s social secretary.
We spend a day with the California Wildlife Center in Malibu, which rescues all kinds of animals, but this time of year helps the growing number of sea lions that strand themselves on the beach ... Marc Haefele applauds a new program that has LACMA putting on exhibits in other museums around the Southland ... The Blue Whale, now one of Southern California’s hippest spots for live jazz ... How to celebrate Valentine’s Day without paying a fortune for a fixed-price meal.