News from the Brown Side of Town, 7.28.09

Chismes & happenings in the Land of 1000 Dances

By Frankie Firme ~ Contributing Editor
Published on LatinoLA: July 28, 2009

News from the Brown Side of Town, 7.28.09

It's been a hot summer indeed, so far, Mi Gente, but it ain't over till the fat lady sings,the frijoles get cold, and the manteca floats to the top, know what I mean ?

Things still be jumping in the Land of 1000 Dances, and it's not just the music and parties‘«™

My heroes of the week are Douglas Epplehart of San Pedro, and new L.A. City Councilman Nick Patsaouras These guys are getting attention on both sides of the street of L.A. City Hall that is the root for some GREAT chismes & jokes in barber shops & coffee houses all over the City of Angels‘«™trip on this:

Old Doug wants to start a grass roots proposal that would cut salaries and perks of L.A. City Council persons in half. Currently the highest paid in the nation at $178,789.00 a year, plus fully paid medical, dental, & holiday pay, 3 day work weeks (and if you don't show up, so what?), FREE cars & gas & travel, and discretionary spending cash up to $1 million, they also have the perks of hiring more staff than they need at $70,000.00 a year or better, and it's usually their family & friends who don't do a darn thing for the city of L.A. but be arrogant & unapproachable, and cost $$ at OUR expense‘«™they are truly busted & out in the open thanks to Douglas‘«™thanks, Bro!

My man Nick, former President of the Board of the Los Angeles Department of Water & Power, one L.A.'s biggest bureaucracies and unstoppable cash cows, somebody who knows all about the shenanegins, rip offs, and waste that goes on in that department that we pay dearly for, was recently rebuffed (some insiders say almost threatened) by the DWP Board and Executive Brass for attempting to create a position of Rate Payer Advocate. "The DWP should let the ratepayers know the true cost of what the DWP is doing," Nick was directly quoted as saying. Orale, Nick! Gracias !...you may have lost some golf buddies...

NOW!!...era TIEMPO!!...the manteca has hit the fire !! SOMEBODY finally has the heart, soul, and huevos to come out against the "big boys" besides the Unions and community activists. RIGHT ON Doug & Nick!! 5 stars and a taco to both of you!

If both these guys don't get shot, publicly discredited by political arrows, or disappear into the L.A. night, these 2 proposals will end up on the ballot in November. They got MY support‘«™and YOU KNOW you will hear more about it here, on LatinoLA.com .

But the rip offs continue in my beloved Los Angeles‘«™here's another new one:

Just taking your cash isn't good enough for the L.A. City Department of Airports anymore. Trying to whitewash the laying off of people while raking in more of your hard earned cash on the sly. Starting August 1st, you can no longer purchase tickets for the popular LAX Flyway Bus Service with green folding paper, which serves passengers from the San Fernando Valley, Union Station, and the West Side. You now have to swipe your credit or debt card for a ticket, which will cost you an additional $7.00 "courtesy fee".

Talk about a bold face rip off and robbery!! They even had some baboso spokesman publicly state, "It's part of a money saving effort, allowing the City to do away with cashiers who sold tickets to passengers"‘«™talk about sophisticated criminals and wolves in sheep's chonies!!

So‘«™.the elimination of hundreds MORE jobs, while scoring on an additional $7.00 from the over 10 million or more passengers who pass through LAX every year, plus an added "courtesy fee" on top‘«™.the city is saving more, charging more, getting more‘«™and us hard working stiffs are getting less and getting it from behind again from our so called "leaders"‘«™where will it end ???? ...I'm taking the train for my next visit to Chicago!

Hijo su! Enough of that mierda‘«™life's too short to cry about criminals. We voted for most of them, we try to lock up the rest‘«™and the World still turns. Check EVERY one of your bills, Mi Gente. It seems everybody is tacking on new "fees", "rate changes", and charges VERY sneakily‘«™a buck here, a buck there‘«™add it up by millions of customers, and you see where the greedy rich class comes from! Pinche legal freeloaders !

But for now‘«™on with the music & entertainment, watcha:

As expected, the bill of TIERRA, EL CHICANO, and the COMPANY Band at the Santa Paula Citrus Festival was a straight out, well-attended party with well over a couple thousand Gente enjoying the sunshine, food, and music.

"Man! It was fun, it was festive, and it was REAL nice," TIERRA bandleader Rudy Salas told LatinoLA . "The Gente greeted and treated us like familia, dancing and singing along to almost every song. We haven't played that area for awhile, so it felt like a homecoming party. The people of Santa Paula and the surrounding area are truly beautiful people, and they made us feel so welcome."

Continuing their popular annual trek across the Southwestern United States, Rudy & the guys in TIERRA travel to El Paso, Texas soon, and THEE MR. DURAN brings the guys back home to Steven's Steak House in East L.A. along with the COMPANY Band and the Big Manny Band on August 15th. For more info: www.tierramusic.com or e-mail mrduran@yahoo.com.

The City of Glendale has reinstated "Friday Cruise Night:", according to master blaster Randy Tivens of Rockinradio.com, celebrating last Friday with a free , well attended concert by SHA-NA-NA....heard it was a party !! For more info, check out www.rockinradio.com.

The San Fernando Valley Marine Corps League continue their popular "Friday Night at the Legion" dances at the Reseda American Legion Hall, with the high octane BAG OF TRICKS band (www.BOtricks.com) making a popular demand second appearance last week to the delight of a good sized crowd, and these guys rocked da house! Drinking, eating, dancing, and merry making was the order of the night, as the Marines made it happen once again. Once again, I was honored to serve as host & MC , when I wasn't out there tirando chancla with my Lady and partying with my brother Marines! (tuff job‘«™but SOMEBODY's gotta do it! )

In August, the SFV Marine Corps League welcomes BECKY CORDOVA & THE COMPANY Band (www.thecompanyband-tcb.com)on the 14th, and L.A.'s hard hitting SOUL PURSUIT Band (www.soulpursuitband.com )on August 21st for some great parties and dancing action on a Friday night.

The SFV Marine Corps League invites the entire world, especially former U.S. Marines and U.S. Navy FMF Corpsmen to join the family and join the party. For tickets & info: Abelardito USMCsgt7@aol.com or Abelardito fred.flores29@gmail.com or call 818-621-3920. FREE PARKING, food, drink, dancing, raffles & door prizes all night long. The party is on, and I will see you there!

And speaking of the SOUL PURSUIT band, Fred Magallanes & the guys help welcome back promoter STEVE CAUDILLO to the Lakewood Hop on the southside of town this Friday, where Chicano Music & Soul is again the name of the game, after a brief stint of cowboy hats, banda~norteno music, and horses in pickup trucks in the parking lot that just didn't work out too well...sorry ! Now, let's get back to rock & roll for the Gente!! For more info: text or www.soulpursuitband.com.

And speaking of the Marine Corps League, I was also recently honored to serve as host & MC of the official installment of the Eugene Obregon~East L.A. Detachment of the Marine Corps League at Steven's Steak House. A prouder group of Chicano U.S. Military Veteranos your NEVER saw! Looking good and standing tall, the East L.A. Marines served up a generous prime rib and baked chicken banquet with all the trimmings, and provided music and dancing afterwards to a large crowd of Veterans & their wives who came as far as San Diego and Antelope Valley to help celebrate this historic occasion.

SEMPER FI , guys! Continued success to you, the Country, and the United States Marine Corps! For more info: espara@dcfs.lacounty.gov.

The Gilbert Esquivel OLD SCHOOL MUSIC & COMEDY REVUE SHOW held at the Odyssey Restaurant Grand ballroom went off like fireworks as expected last week and was a sold out, well attended success with everyone having a ball. Laughing, drinking, eating, and dancing go together SO well! For info on future shows, e-mail : gnrentertainment@aol.com.

The hard hitting Chicano rock & soul group LOUIE PARRA & THE MAD LATINS join DOWN WITH THREE and DJ RICH R at Stinger's in San Bernardino for a party to rock the inner soul of the Inland Empire on August 15th. The MAD LATINS have been rocking the southland all summer, and they show no signs of slowing down, and I highly recommend you catch brother LOUIE PARRA in action...this vato can rock & roll and thrill your soul! Quote me! For tickets & info: 562-686-4952 or go to www.stingersbarandnightclub.com.

And if that don't wear you out, Los Lonely Boys join East L.A. legends LOS LOBOS at L.A.'s Greek Theater on August 16th for an evening of music, love, and good feelings under the stars in the Land of 1000 Dances. For tickets & info: rickortiz2000@yahoo.com or www.ticketmaster.com.

As always, Steven Chavez's world wide Internet Radio station www.eastLArevue.com is serving up a full musical buffet of all you can hear 24/7, featuring radio personalities Chico Manqueros, Crazy Chuy Hernandez, Dona Pancha, La Traviesa, El Betoman, El Chino, El SAPO, Ray & Josie Ramos, la SK8er, and of course, archived shows of Mr. Frankie Firme himself! (Contract negotiations are under way which may have Frankie back in Chavez Bay by mid-August for some new shows‘«™.a ver‘«™)

www.ChicanoExpress.com and the Lost Memories Show at www.www.ChicanoExpress.comare also jamming 24/7. For a little extra of some good stuff: www.rockinradio.com, www.QVOradio.com, and the homies at www.Chicano.org got themselves a little Internet radio thing going on, just for you!

Besides a successful tour throughout Asia which included them being the first U.S. Chicano band to EVER perform in Bejing, China, the hard hitting & popular SOTO Band continues their summer tour throughout L.A. and Southern California with a blistering performance schedule that has them ending the month of July and starting off August with performances at the Santa Fe Swap Meet, Original Mike's in Santa Ana, the Pechanga Casino in Temecula, the 2nd Annual Taste of East L.A. Celebration at St Alphonsus Church, and the Commerce Casino. These guys jam and jam hard, bringing out the sweat & good times in everybody! For more info: www.sotoband.com.

Word on the street of a hip, new, BROWN website for Latina ladies: www.wiselatinas.com. Check it out‘«™.nothing but love, here!

Besides great parties, concerts, and dances, Peter Jaramillo's WHITTIER RADISSON Hotel & ballroom will be hosting a fundraising event benefiting the students of L.A.'s School of Music & Art in October, featuring heavy hitters like ORQUESTA SON MAYOR, CHINO ESPINOSA, and L.A.'s favorite chignon Salsero, JOHNNY POLANCO. Comedians, DJ's, and other entertainment are being lined up as all three clubs & ballrooms will join together for a party to rock Aztlan in the spirit of love, Carnalismo. For more info: www.jegrp.com, and watch for more info here on LatinoLA.com.

Author/Music Producer RUBEN MOLINA brings you one of the bigger better Chicano music productions on the West Coast this year and you're all invited! Featuring Chicano Music Legends JOHNNY HERNANDEZ ( of Little Joe & The Latinnaires fame) RUDY T GONZALEZ (of RUDY T y Los RENO BOPS fame), RUDY PALACIOS, LITTLE HENRY LEE, CHENTE MONTES ( of SUNNY & the SUNLINERS fame), GIBBY ESCOBEDO & FRANK PEREZ (of LATIN BREED fame), RALPH CORTEZ (of ROYAL JESTERS fame), LARRY LANGE ( of LARRY LANGE & the LONELY KNIGHTS band fame), STEVE SALAS, BOBBY LOYA & BOBBY NAVARRETTE ( of TIERRA fame), ERNIE GARIBAY, and introducing East L.A.'s next "big boys" of Chicano music, THE BIG MANNY Band. With all this great talent from East L.A. and Texas, this show will make a whirlwind tour throughout the southland on September 25th, 26th, and 27th , with stops in San Pedro, Covina, and the City of Industry. Tickets are only $15.00 if you get 'em now. For more info: www.mictlan.com.

This last Sunday I was also privileged to host & MC the South Bay PHAROAHS 17th Annual Car Show at the Wilmington Sports Complex in Wilmington. Over 2,000 people, and some of the finest cars, bikes, trucks, and women were out in the beautiful Califas sunshine on a Sunday afternoon enjoying the food, refreshments, and great company. Music & entertainment was provided by your truly at DJ, the MAIN SQUEEZE Bnad, and the glorious brothers of Chicano Gospel music, THEE GATO BROTHERS. "Every last weekend in July, every year...se you there!" was the slogan of the PHAROAHS. Pictures of this event can be found at www.layitlow.com.

As always, we end this piece with love, prayers, and nothing but respect for our brave men & women in uniform serving overseas in Iraq, Afghanistan, and all around the World. THANK YOU ! YOU HAVE NOT BEEN FORGOTTEN !

Be well, Mi Gente, tough times are almost over! Love & respect our women and ourselves, protect & educate our children, honor your family and friends, dance to the music in your soul, and never forget‘«™.IT'S A BROWN THING, BABY !!

Ay te watcho, from the Land of 1000 Dances,
Frankie Firme

About Frankie Firme ~ Contributing Editor:
Frankie Firme is the Al Capone of the microphone & the Hitman of West Coast Chicano Soul, sometimes referred to as " The Voice of Aztlan"
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