Felix In Hollywood

A Blog for the Smart Set

Friday, October 19, 2012

It's Yesterday Once More...Every Day.

Last evening, I wandered up to Hollywood Blvd. to attend a book signing.  Great fun it was, too.

Me and Author Randy Schmidt

Randy is the knowledge king of The Carpenters and his books are terrific.  His latest is “Yesterday Once More-the Carpenters Reader, (revised & expanded)”.  This book, along with his Karen bio, “Little Girl Blue”, will tell you everything your Karen and Richard lovin' heart need to know!

And now, a bit  about the location where all this fun took place.

We all know that Hollywood is, and always has been, the home of movies, radio, records and television.  But here's the funny thing, for years Hollywood Blvd. was actually a mecca for..........books!  That's right, book buyers and book readers could browse by the hour though any number of terrific (and now legendary) bookshops along the boulevard like Pickwick, Stanley Rose, Larry Edmunds, Cherokee and Book City.   However, between corporate booksellers and, finally, the internet, the civilized recreation of book shopping is almost as extinct as the wide-track Pontiac.

There is one remaining holdout on the Boulevard and it's a beaut:

Let's walk in shall we.

The Larry Edmunds Bookshop opened in 1938 in a Cahuenga Blvd. location.  But it was sometime in the 1950s when the magic happened.  It was now located on Hollywood and the owners wife, Git Luboviski, hit on the idea of putting together a small brochure of featured books that all had one theme in common -- they were all cinema related.  And when all the titles sold out lickety-split a new Larry Edmunds was born.  By the mid '60s it was exclusively a cinema bookshop.  Hey, let's meet the proprietor!

This is my friend Jeffrey Mantor.  An employee of the store since '91, Jeff has been the owner for the last several years.  And yes, he has a Rita Hayworth tattoo on his arm.  Maybe the Anita Ekberg tattoo needed company.

These days, in addition to film, the shop offers titles on tv, music and theater as well.  And books aren't the only thing on offer, by a long shot.  An incredibly comprehensive inventory of collectible memorabilia, in all price points, is on hand too!

Just a few of the hundreds of files containing 8x10 stills

These are copies and are only $6 each!  There's zillions of originals too.
Vintage Fan Magazines anyone?

Posters, lobby cards, one-sheets!

If you live in the area or are planning a visit, scamper over to 6644 Hollywood Blvd., treat yourself to civilized browse and buy yourself a present.  You deserve it and the bookstore deserves your business.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

We're Simply The Best!

Los Angeles has a newspaper of record;  it is the venerable Los Angeles Times.  But almost as well known, and probably more wide read by locals, is the LA Weekly.

It was first published in 1978 as an underground weekly by a bunch of good ole radicals (young actor Micheal Douglas being a board member).  Every large city has an alternative newspaper and the LA Weekly is ours.

This was the cover of the Weekly when I first visited LA in Apr. '86

Now as we all know, 'alternative' has a way of becoming 'hip', and 'hip' has a way of becoming 'marketable', and 'marketable' has a way of going 'corporate takeover'.  Such has been the path of the Weekly.  Indie for years is was bought by New Times Media who then renamed themselves Village Voice Media and, as of a couple of weeks ago was bought by Voice Media Group.

I will say that even though they sold they never have (entirely) 'sold out'.  They still raise hell and print some edgy investigative stuff.  When I started this post, I googled "LA Weekly history" and, as if to prove to me that they haven't let go of their smart-assedness, one of the first links was to a piece in the paper titled, "A Brief History Of The Blowjob In Pop Music".  Nice.

The Weekly's most read, most saved issue is an annual L.A. institution:  LA Weekly Best Of issue and the 2012 addition is out:

Now just take a guess who's been named "The Best Hollywood Walking Tour".  Go on, guess.  Give up?  Well then just click Here to find out.....

Woohoo!  Wheeee!!  Yippee!!!