Over the Weekend: Fishbone, Sam Sparro, I&I Soundsystem and Infinity at Sunset Junction Street Fair
The photo above was taken from atop (and we mean the very top) of the ferris wheel at this year's Sunset Junction Street Fair. We have lots just like it because the giant wheel got stuck --yes stuck!-- as soon as we got on.
Lina Lecaro High at Sunset Junction
"A tangled cable or something," is what the gal in the basket in front of us said (see her looking down to figure out what's going on). It was probably only about 10-15 minutes that we were up there, high in the sky, the sun beating down on our heads as thousands milled about blissfully unaware below. Yes the view was gorgeous, but thanks to several terrifying shakes that rattled and rocked the baskets as they tried to fix the thing, it felt like forever.
Of course it didn't help that we started to remember the ride operator's dazed face up there or that we had our 3-year-old daughter and a nervous-to-begin-with friend on with us. "Why did we get on this thing?" we said to ourselves as visions of firemen on ladders and TV crews filming a dramatic rescue started to enter our mind.
Well, they eventually got the thing working again and we're obviously fine and not too traumatized to write about the incident, but to those of you who have doubts about creaky carny rides, we say, go with your gut. You're not crazy. The things are old, the workers are creepy/possibly cracky, and though the contraptions are surely checked out for safety, you just never know. We shall never ride a ferris wheel, at least at the local fair, again.
After this somewhat harrowing experience on Saturday, we were looking to get some ya-yas out on the ground, that's for sure and if there was ever a band to celebrate life with, it's Fishbone.
The seminal LA ska-punk-party band led by Angelo Moore and Norwood Fisher has been bouncing about Los Angeles for too long to remember, but its performances are always --always!-- unforgettable.
Moore is still a big kid, with vocals as potent and bubbly as ever, mad sax skills and that wiry rubberband nimble body (he crowd-surfed the Junction, just as we expected him to do). The band brought it with the spazzy, jazzy jams and hammy thrash that in many ways, it invented.
Kinda strange then, that the guys covered a band whom they obviously influenced: Sublime, with a fun take on "Date Rape" (see clip). They pulled it off, and with everything from huge "Iron Man" riffs into their classic drunk rocker, "Alcoholic," to essential nuggets ("Ma & Pa"), Fishbone --who shockingly never played SJ before--- provided the centerpiece performance of the fest this year, even showing up Bad Brains.
Sunday's standout set, for us anyway, had to be Sam Sparro's neon-lit soul grind on The Fold Stage. Sexed up by some diva-voiced backup singers in bright green wigs, groovy backlighting and atmospheric keyboard synths, Sparro's turn was a seductive spectacle that kept our attention even amid the usual fair distractions--shrieking kids, drunk half-naked dudes, and DJ beats throbbing in the distance.
Lina Lecaro A (black and) gold-en set from Sam Sparro.
Speaking of distractions, the crowd (both days, both nights) was for the most part, the usual sea of tats, floppy hats, Raybans and Summer frocks. Hardly any queens or look-at-me freaks this year (bummer!) but still, some cute style to admire. See our slideshow this week for the best.
Other highlights over the weekend: