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Sophia Loren and 400 of her closest friends are in Napa next weekend for her 80th birthday. LA restauranteur Piero Selvaggio is cooking something special.

Miss the fireworks? A listener helps out.

A listener sends in a great recording of fireworks from his North Long Beach rooftop.
Vaka Burger
The L.A. Times' Russ Parsons says that while convivial and a summer favorite, the grill is too uneven and prone to flare-ups. Use a cast iron skillet or griddle.

Animator Floyd Norman, from Disney to 'Fat Albert'

Off-Ramp contributor CJ Greenspon profiles Disney's first black animator, Floyd Norman, who also helped create 'Fat Albert.'
As AnimeExpo descends on LA, Roland Kelts talks about how shifting demographics in Japan are leading to a change in how anime and manga are developed and marketed.
Harbor Party, a yacht rock group, includes lead singer Landon Beard; Alex "Huntington Newport") Ellis, backing vocals; John Schroeder, guitar; Jack Kovacs, bass; Dan Reckard, keyboard & sax; Ben Rose and Sam Brawner, drums. Photographed at Rockwell in Los

LA band Harbor Party pays tribute to Yacht Rock

Landon Beard, Harbor Party's lead singer, says yacht rock (The Doobies and Eagles, Steely Dan) may seem fluffy, but the tunes are complex and surprisingly difficult to play.
Marlon Brando Smiling In Suit

4 things you probably didn't know about Marlon Brando

July 1 of this year marks the 10th anniversary of actor Marlon Brando’s death. Here are a few things to surprise you about this master thespian.
New NPR President Jarl Mohn, with KPCC's Stephanie O'Neill and John Rabe, and NPR's David Folkenflik.

In-depth with NPR's new president, Jarl Mohn

John Rabe talks with new NPR President Jarl Mohn, who has been a top radio DJ, a guiding force at MTV and VH1, and now promises to raise the kind of money NPR deserves.
Vietnam Baez Comes Back

Joan Baez: Don't talk during my concerts!

Baez is performing July 3 at the Greek Theatre in Los Feliz and in anticipation of her show, Off-Ramp producer Kevin Ferguson got her on the phone.

The American Way: Freedom, liberty and buying stuff

As the finance guy collated papers, I asked, "Do you know the difference between freedom and liberty?" He looked at me like I'd said I had a bomb under my shirt.