Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Female Performers Will Dominate Stage at LA Pride Festival 2015

By Karen Ostlund in West Hollywood
Fifth Harmony will perform at LA Pride Festival (photo at Billboard)
LA PRIDE’s Festival entertainment lineup features a diverse collection of talent ranging from Grammy Award winning singers to hip-hop heavy weights and pop divas to nostalgic classics.
The female performers are dominating the stage this year, except for country singer Ty Herndon and Wrabel.

Wilson Phillips will be bringing their vocal harmonies to Pride 25 years after the release of their self-titled debut album. In recent years they’ve been best known for their cameo appearance in 2011’s Bridesmaids, which has brought them a legion of new fans.

left,Wendy Wilson, Chynna Phillips and Carnie Wilson of Wilson Phillips
Christopher Street West is celebrating its 45th Anniversary of LA PRIDE this year. The Festival’s entertainment lineup is set to deliver another rocking year of performances, one that may be the most exciting performances to date.
This year’s festival highlights will include performances from singer-songwriter and pop rock sensation Kesha along with super group, Fifth Harmony and Tamar Braxton who will all hit the festival’s Delta Air Lines main stage between June 12-14th, 2015 which is located in the heart of West Hollywood's San Vicente, between Santa Monica blvd and Melrose Avenue.

Latin singer Ana Barbara
This year’s Festival will also host one of the best voices of Mexico, Latin Grammy Award winner Ana Barbara who will be headlining LA PRIDE’s Latino Carnival stage on Saturday (June 13th)  which is produced by Club Papi. 
Ana Barbara is one of Mexico's top powerhouse singer/songwriters with her hits "Los Busque", "Fruta Prohibida", "Quise Olvidar" and "Dos Abrazos". She was featured in Sharon Stone’s "Border Run". Her Latin Grammy win was for her album in the ‘Best Grupero’ category, which also received a nomination for an American Grammy.
On Saturday night, June 13th, pop superstar Kesha commandeers the LA PRIDE / Delta Air Lines main stage. Her long list of award-winning party anthems include  hits like “TiK ToK”, “Your Love is My Drug” “We R Who We R” and “Timber”, Kesha is no stranger to the Top 40 charts, and has been entertaining the masses with her high energy, rock-the-house shows. Eight consecutive Top 10 hits and four #1 singles,

Rapper Kesha
Kesha has been nominated for a Billboard Music Award, a MTV Video Music Award, and won the 2014 iHeartRadio Music Award for Best Collaboration, and has sold over 4 million copies in the US and over 3.7 million copies internationally.

Fifth Harmony toured last summer with 2014 LA PRIDE Grand Marshal Demi Lovato, and just wrapped their sold out REFLECTION Tour, They will join the LA PRIDE family when the all-female five-piece take the stage at LA PRIDE’s music and arts festival on Sunday night, June 14th.

 Fifth Harmony's will perform their gold-certified lead single “BO$$” along with its follow-up gold-certified “Sledgehammer” (a synth-pop powerhouse penned by Meghan Trainor) They recently debuted “Worth It” featuring Kid Ink.
The five singers were ultimately assembled as a group by Simon Cowell making it to as finalists and signed by Epic Records. Fifth Harmony have been seen charming audiences on Ellen and The Today Show. The group recently won “Favorite New Artist” at the Nickelodeon Kids’ Choice Awards where they debuted their latest music video for their single “Worth It” featuring Kid Ink. 
Tamar Braxton
This year LA PRIDE’s Festival will see the return of ‘Lavender Menace’ "The Free Friday night, June 12th - A Celebration Of Women".
 'Lavender Menace' combines a community celebration of women with activism honoring Lesbians who have paved the way for today's TLGB community. 
Before the show kicks into full gear, LA PRIDE is proud to present the WeHo Dyke March in conjunction with the City Of West Hollywood and the Lesbian Visibility Committee, where attendees can honor, march and then celebrate the accomplishments of the Lesbian community. 
The annual Dyke March, June 12th will start inside the Festival and moves its way into the streets of West Hollywood, down Santa Monica Blvd and then returns back to the Festival to celebrate.

Tamar Braxton will take to the Lavender Menace stage on Friday night with her soulful mix of modern R&B. She is recognizable from the hit show “The Braxton Family Values”, which she also Executive Produces, Tamar has struck out on her own musical journey and has garnered a strong following with over 7 million Youtube views for “Love & War” a single which also won the artist a BET Award in 2013.
Gay country singer Ty Herndon will travel from Nashville
Ty Herndon will make debut at LA Pride, and perform at the main stage’s country music cherry.He is one of the few  gay country stars with the genre’s undergoing a bit of a gay renaissance. Herndon will be coming to Pride straight from Nashville.

Singer-Tinashe at the Bet-awards
Wilson Phillips and Herndon will be joined by L.A. native Tinashe, who has made a name for herself with singles ‘2 On’ and ‘All Hands On Deck’, which showcase her mix of hip hop and pop.
The final new inclusion is Eden xo, whose single ‘Too Cool To Dance’ has been a slow-burning success, though there’s likely plenty more to come from the Iranian-American singer-songwriter.

Latest additions:
FANCY, WRABEL and returning artists LUCIANA along with comedian DINA NINA MARTINEZ.

Wrabel latest addition at LA Pride stage
Wrabel- The pop star and songwriter's first single "Sideways" was downloaded nearly half-a-million times and the artist has written songs for Phillip Phillips, Adam Lambert, Will Young. He wrote and was featured on the first single "Ten Feet Tall" from Afrojack's debut release.   

 Fancy is known for hit "Goodbye", the single hit the Top 40 Billboard Pop Charts as well as The Hot 100 Billboard Song charts.
The queen of electro, LUCIANA will return to LA PRIDE's Festival this year. Luciana, a crowd favorite, grabbed international attention in 2006 with "Yeah Yeah" and hit "I Like That". In 2012, "I'm Still Hot", most notably, Betty White's version.
Also returning to LA PRIDE's Festival stages is DINA NINA MARTINEZ, a Trans* comedian and actor known for her disarming sass and charm.
The festival will feature a collection of local talent and recognizable DJ names including: LEX, TOSH, NVIDA, MACEO PAISELY, SEAN VAN DER WILT, BEAUTY IN THE BREAKDOWN, MICHAEL MERCURY. Making an appearance on the LA PRIDE / Delta Air Lines Main Stage is PETER PAIGE, Co-Creator and Executive Producer of ABC Family’s hit drama series, “The Fosters”.
The "Trans Party" will also make a return to the "Free Friday night" experience with a fun collection of entertainment celebrating the 'T' in TLGB. This year's social is even bigger and better and will be taking place on the FOX Pride Latino Carnival area of the Festival. The Transgender Social boasts an amazing lineup of performers including comedians, dancers, DJs and the cast of Transparent. Trans* party starts at 7PM -12AM
FRIDAY, JUNE 12th 5PM -12AM (Free to the public)
Trans Party 7PM - 12AM
Dina Nina Martinez
Jakob G.
Lunden Reign
Sissy Debut
Angel Bonilla
Jason Taylorson
Latino Carnivale:
SUNDAY, JUNE 14th 11AM -12AM
Latino Carnivale:
For LA PRIDE updated show schedule and tickets 

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Frontiers presented Summer & Fall Fashion 2015 by Antti Asplund, Ca-Rio-Ca and Andrew Christian

By Karen Ostlund 
Fall Fashion 2015 from Finnish designer Antti Asplund during Style Fashion Week LA

Antti Asplund's fashion "Heterophobia"
Style Fashion week LA dedicated its closing night to the LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Trans gender) community presented by Frontiers Magazine. Frontiers Magazine presented designers Antti Asplund, Ca-Rio-Ca and closing designer, Andrew Christian.  


The Finnish-based artist and designer projected a black and white video starring himself as the designer, really helping set the tone to a different kind of runway show. Antti is a vocal artist, and a member of his team,musician Obi Blanche, He wrote, produced and directed the video & music that was played simultaneously throughout the show with Obi behind the DJ music booth, making sure to perfectly match the video and music with the catwalk as models showcased Antti Aspland's political street-wear collection "Heterophobia." 
Antti Asplund has been designing clothes under his name label since 2007, written one novel in Finnish and released a vocal single in September 2014. From the cold and dark outskirts of Finland, Antti finds his inspiration in "darkness and light, night-less nights and the deepest dark." He was born in Oulu, Northern Finland during the coldest night of December in 1981. 

Antti describes spending his childhood playing in and out of the imagination of his own mind, where anything was possible. In spring 2000 he packed his hats and feathers and moved south to find his home in Helsinki. He is a General Linguistics and Fashion drop out who switched academia and theory to vision and storytelling. 
His workshop is a rabbit hole away from the world, a shady cellar where the floor is stained with coffee and ashes. The room has only one window, but the view is interchanging. 
Last season, with a sole purpose to spread the message of the power of free imagination, Antti packed his bags to tour globally, making his way to Style Fashion Week's platforms both in New York City with Mercedes Benz Fashion Week and now in Los Angeles, CA. 
Antti Asplund has two fashion lines - eponymous Antti Asplund collection and a political street wear collection HETEROPHOBIA by Antti Asplund. (Images below are from Heterophobia) 
Designer Ca-Rio-Ca from Rio de Janeiro, (Brazil)  brought sexy back with men of vigor in swim wear as Samba Dancers, to debut his latest collection. The runway show was on fire with audience going wild for sexy men or "real men who wear sunga" (as the brand likes to describe it) The show featured both female and male booty shaking Samba dancers. Male models wearing wings showing killer abs. Ca-Rio-Ca's show set a new standard for runway entertainment, fashion & fun -  leaving everyone in the room with dancing fever. 
The swimwear collection was a combination of fun prints and colors.  Each pair is handmade in Ipanema Beach with high quality of fabrics, that embody the spirit and energy of Rio de Janeiro. 
Ca-Rio-Ca mens Swim Summer 2015 during Style Fashion Week LA

Ca-Rio-Ca is proud to offer their consumers a distinctive line of swimwear that complements the male physique without being overly revealing and promotes unique style, active lifestyle, and self-confidence. 
Designer Ca-Rio-Ca swimwear from Rio de Janeiro

Samba dancing models at CA-RIO-CA swimwear fashion show
(Center,) Designer Ca-Rio-Ca from Rio de Janeiro
Andrew Christian's mens underwear Summer 2015
Designer Andrew Christian closed the night with his famous line of underwear"Blow"-ing collection. Andrew debuted new concepts of underwear for men such as the Peek-A-Boo Brief Jock, describing its functionality as "Just pop open the pouch to show off what's underneath" brief. 
This jock featured the surprise pouch that you pop open to reveal its contents.  Pieces that were different were the "Trophy Boy Gigolo" and the "Almost Naked Gigolo" which had the signature neon Andrew Christian waistband, which glow in the dark under a black light.
 Andrew Christian's briefs are made keeping men's health at mind,and designs are made to place a man's package up and center keeping its parts at just the right temperatures (best for conception and clean hygiene). 
Designer Andrew Christian himself at Style Fashion Week LA closing night

Sunday, May 17, 2015

DEVO's Casale talks about THE 50 BY 50 Wine Brand at Wally's Beverly Hills

Photos & story by Karen Ostlund

GERALD V. CASALE, legendary musician and co-founder of the band DEVO, announced yesterday the launch of two new Pinot Noir for THE 50 BY 50–the wine brand. 
left, Swedish Egil was KROQ DJ in the 80's (today Groove Radio) tasting w Casale at Wally's Beverly Hills store

The “2013 Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir” and the “2014 Sonoma Coast Rosé of Pinot Noir,” made their debut at the spring tasting party yesterday, May 16th at Wally’s Beverly Hills, 447 N. Cañon Drive.

The new “2013 Pinot Noir” hits the winning notes of his debut bottling and beyond with its 50/50 blend of Dijon and Pommard clones from Rodger’s Creek
"2013 Pinot Noir” gives way to a smoky, silky finish with hints of Cinnamon and palate-pleasing flavors of Cherry and Blackberry.

The “2014 Rosé of Pinot Noir” is a crisp, dry and pink wine.
DEVO's hit "Whip It" 1980 hit nr. 14 at Billboard Hot 100

THE 50 BY 50 estate marks the evolution of GERALD’s longtime passion for wine which started in 1978 when DEVO, the iconic new wave, art punk group CASALE co-founded with Mark Mothersbaugh, who left Ohio for the promise of California. 

Casale explains how it all started: 
"I met restaurateurs Michael McCarty (Michael’s)Bruce Marder (Brentwood Restaurant, House Café)Wolfgang Puck (Spago, Wolfgang Punk, Chinois on Main, WP24)Piero Selvaggio (Valentino) and Jeremiah Tower (Stars) among others,” 
 “I became a disciple of the new California cuisine and the California wines with which it was often paired. After attending many California winemaker's dinners with wine-pairing - I can say I drank my way to knowledge.”
How I fall in love in Pinot Noir (Casale):
"One fateful night before a show in Parisa French promoter started opening some legendary Domaine de la Romanée Conti (DRC) wines.  
- After enjoying a bottle of 1989 Williams Selyem Pinot Noir with breast of duck, I never looked back"  
Devo's Casale 50 by 50 Pinot Noir 2013

Pinot Noir varietals remain the focus of THE 50 BY 50.
Since Pinot Noir grapes don’t thrive in Napa’s Wooden Valley, THE 50 BY 50 went to the best location nearby to purchase the fruit where they do thrive–the Sonoma Coast. 

(Casale) “Our ambitious five-year plan for releasing our first vintage of complex, Bordeaux-style Estate wine is on way of course". 

"The fruit for both our Pinot Noir and Rosé of Pinot Noir. were grown and harvested at Rodger’s Creek, in the Sonoma Coast AVA (American Viticultural Area), with helped by Randy Luginbill and Jonathan Goldveterans with 30 years of experience"

"Rodger’s Creek vines are 13 years-old, and the soils are a Kidd stony loam. Our grapes come from vines on a 9 percent slope at an elevation of 675 feet.” concluded Casale.

Last year, CASALE launched and celebrated his debut vintages of “2012 Pinot Noir”.  

Virginie Boone from "Wine Enthusiast magazine" awarded the 2012 Pinot Noir a 
94 point rating and described it as, “a feminine Pinot, sublime in color and texture, bright in tart cherry, brisk in acidity with an undercurrent of dried herbs de Provence, cinnamon and exotic spice" (February 2015).

 Casale's “2013 Rosé of Pinot Noir” was described by Phil Gallo of Billboard as”a nose of strawberry, peach and lychee nut and an appealing weightiness” (April 2014).

THE 50 BY 50 Estate is a 23-acre property situated southeast of the Atlas Peak AVA (American Viticultural Area)and north of the Wild Horse AVA on the Monticello Road incline in the Wooden Valley of Napa, CA

The anchor of THE 50 BY 50 vision and its namesake, rests in the creation of its estate housea realization of a never-built architectural masterpiece known as the “50 by 50″  The house was designed over 60 years ago by the pre-eminent, 20th Century Modernist architect Mies Van Der Rohe

More info:

THE 50 BY 50 Wally’s Wine and Spirits in Los Angeles

Friday, May 15, 2015

Wine Technology: LAWineFest Presents new "Wine Tasting App" for the 10th Anniversary, May 30-31st

LAWineFest Announced a New “Popular Choice Awards” for its 10th Anniversary,
 May 30-31st

This year the festival will celebrate the 10th Anniversary's most popular wines; Voted directly by attendees in Real-Time and Powered by Quini - A Revolutionary New Wine Tasting App.

Photos by Karen Ostlund

Hollywood, CA, May 15th, 2015
Last year's crowd at LAWineFest at Raleigh Studios in Hollywood
The first of its kind in California, the LAWineFest Popular Choice Awards will take place throughout event weekend, May 30-31, powered by the brand-new wine app called Quini.  
LAWineFest guests are encouraged to download, engage and vote for their favorite wines between 1pm on Saturday and 4pm on Sunday.(May 30-31st, 2015)  The awards will be granted based on Quini’s algorithm which uses the five pillars of wine tasting - eye, nose, mouth, finish, opinion - to tabulate the winning wines.

Founder Joel Fisher at 2014 LAWineFest
"We look forward to the debut of our LAWineFest Popular Choice Awards, and making this new distinction available to our winery participants," said Joel M. Fisher, Founder and CEO of LAWineFest Inc. "Collaborating with Quini has been exciting and a particularly great match, since our companies share a passionate belief in making wine tasting accessible to all."

"We're excited to partner with LAWineFest on California's first Popular Choice Awards to be powered by Quini," Roger Noujeim, Quini’s CEO said. "We’re proud to give wine lovers at LAWineFest the opportunity to share their views using their smartphones with detail only possible with Quini, while influencing the awards in real time.”

Music by SAZON LAWineFest
Top honors will be awarded in a total of 15 categories within the three major wine umbrellas: red, white and dessert/fortified.  The sub-categories are broken down into more than a dozen different grape varietals, listed below:

Awards for Reds:
Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Pinot Noir, Shiraz/Syrah, Zinfandel, Red Blend, Other (Sangiovese, Nebbiolo, Chianti, Malbec, Tempranillo, Grenache, Cab Franc, etc.)

Awards for Whites:
Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Gris/Pinot Grigio, Riesling, Viognier, White Blend, Other (Semillion. Chenin Blanc, Gewürztramineretc.)

Award for Dessert/Fortified Wine:
Single award, regardless of grape type

Quini will tabulate the voting results and the winery winners will be announced on the Main Stage at 4:30pm on Sunday, May 31st.  Winners will receive dedicated certificates to show off when they return home.  For every 5 votes, guests will be rewarded with wine swag; for every 10 votes, LAWineFest guests will receive entry into a drawing for a $100 gift card.
Tasting table at LAWineFest
LAWineFest At a Glance
 10th Annual LAWineFest is L.A.’s largest and longest-running consumer wine-tasting event..
 The festival was founded in 2005 by renowned wine personality Dr. Joel M. Fisher.
LAWineFest  supports local organizations while serving as the Southland’s signature celebration of all things wine.
Saturday, May 30 and Sunday, May 31, 2015, 1-5pm at
The historic Raleigh Studios, 5300 Melrose Avenue in Hollywood, CA 90038
Tickets at
Blogger code for discount:  BLOG15 - $48; General Admission for either day. (Door value is $85)

SOCAL MEDIA: | Twitter: @LAWineFest | Instagram: LAWineFest |   Hashtag #LAWineFest
PARKING:  Street parking (metered on Saturday) and paid parking available at Paramount Studios lots on Bronson and Van Ness.
LaWineFest also offer liqueur and beer tasting
About Quini
Quini provides leaders in the wine industry, research, publishing and technology with access to current consumer insights and predictive analytics to power more informed decisions and accelerate business results.
 In addition, Quini’s wine tasting app enables wine enthusiasts of all experience levels to discover their palate more quickly, and to organize, archive and share detailed wine reviews. Quini is available as a mobile application in English and French for iPhone and iPad, and for desktop, laptop and tablet computers at A beta Android is also accessible on the website.  
Google Plus: View | YouTube: Quini video | Twitter: quiniwine | Facebook: quiniwine | LinkedIn: quini-wine

Upcoming Wine-Tasting Dinner Buffet, 6.30 PM - 9:30 PM at Peninsula Hotel in Beverly Hills, May 20th, 2015:
Unlimited wine tasting 
Tray Pass and Buffet Appetizers
Over 35 wineries (many winemakers and/or owners) pouring over 100 wines
Silent Auction Benefiting TJ MARTELL FOUNDATION 
Tickets and more info at 
VIP Presentation with Kosta Browne


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