Special Story Written By JR for Diversity News Magazine
On Thursday, February 7, 2013 several A-list celebrities and other notables were seen celebrating the grand opening of the Morrison Hotel Gallery at the Sunset Marquis Hotel in West Hollywood at 1200 Alta Loma Rd. in West Hollywood, CA 90069.
Produced by The Press House, the trendy event went from 7:00 PM to 11:00 PM and featured the incredible images of some of the best music photographers in the world. Some of the iconic photographers’ works on display in the gallery, and throughout the hotel property are: gallery co-owner Timothy White, gallery co-owner Henry Diltz, Neal Preston, Bob Gruen, among many others.
Also on hand, (featured in the image) about are gallery owners Richard Horowitz and Peter Blachley, along with Julian Lennon, whose work is also a part of the gallery. Also in the picture are Henry Diltz and Timothy White.
(Note: Please click on pictures to view regular size)
Guests were treated to complimentary h’orderves and drinks, while mixing and mingling through the stellar exhibit. Photographs of several music and celebrity icons included: Ray Charles, John Lennon, The Who, Billy Bob Thornton, Mick Jagger, , Steve Martin, David Bowie, The Beatles,Steve Jobs, Sly Stone, Patti Smith, Miles Davis, Martin Scorsese, Joni Mitchell, John Belushi, John Mellencamp, The Rolling Stones, James Taylor, Frank Zappa, Cher, Carly Simon, Andy Warhol, and many more.
Photos credit to: Ryan Aarstad and FFD Images
On Sunday, October 14, 2012 from 4:15-7:15pm hundreds of zombies took over the streets of Hollywood for the 4th Annual Hollywood Subway Zombie Walk. Around 600 people dressed as zombies, met up at the North Hollywood Metro Red Line, bought train fare, boarded the subway train to Hollywood and Highland, then proceeded to walk up and down Hollywood Blvd. Pretty impressive for a bunch of dead people to do all that. (Please click on the photos to view them regular size).
Organized by Jeff Schiffman, invites went out on Facebook with 623 stating that they were going. All ages were found walking dead. The youngest was 4 years old. Leo Palisano, age 6 was a zombie resembling Jack Skellington from Nightmare Before Christmas. When asked if he was having fun as a zombie, he shyly replied “Yep.”
There were prom queens zombies, business men zombies, baseball athlete zombies, housewife zombies in curlers, mom, dad and child zombies, birthday party zombies, Marilyn Monroe zombies, dancing zombies, Dr. zombies, nurse zombies and even a Beethoven zombie. Reactions were varied from unsuspecting tourists, by standers and store owners, as the dead moaned, groaned and walked slowly in a dazed state, often reaching their arms out towards living people.
The first zombie walk on record took place August 19, 2001 in Sacramento, California and was billed as a “Zombie Parade.” Since then the idea has spread all over the world, and is wildly popular in the United States. For more information visit http://www.zombiewalk.com
If you’re in the Los Angeles area and you would like to participate in a zombie walk, there is one happening on Saturday, October 27, 2012 in Long Beach. For more information on the upcoming event, visit http://zombiewalklb.com.
Photos credit to: FFD Images, Gud Stuf Photography and The Steel Shark.com
Editor’s Note: For more videos of the event, please come back.
Some people don’t know when to quit while they’re ahead. This seems to be the case with reality ‘star’ Kim Kardashian. First she’s ‘floured bombed’ last month in West Hollywood, California on the red carpet, then her DASH store in Calabasas, California is targeted by close to100 concerned citizens protesting her use and promotion of fur.
On Saturday, April 14, 2012 from 12-2 protestors chanted rather peacefully, “Hey Kim what do you say, how many animals did you kill today?” and “40 animals, one fur coat.” The very cooperative and respectful group of people consisted of animal activists, animal lovers and concerned citizens who are disgusted with Kim Kardashian being a role model for their children. Last Chance For Animals Investigator Bryan Monell commented, “Kim Kardashian has admitted to having seen the footage of raccoons, cats and dogs being skinned alive for their fur and she STILL has fur in her line.” To this comment, one person was heard saying, “If she saw that and still has the nerve to sell fur and promote it then she has no soul.” Hit singer-songwriter Fawn said, “If we put people like the Kardashian’s on a pedestal and as role models for our youth, then what does that say about us as a collective people?”
Carrying signs and facing them towards the store to obvious uncomfortable employees inside, as well as lining the walls, walkways and street corners, the demonstrators kindly left a path for shoppers to walk through to the store. It was no surprise that the store eventually turned it’s lights out, hoping that the individuals exercising their constitutional right to express their opinion, would just go away.
Animal Rights Lawyer and Award Winning Director and Producer of “Skin Trade,” Shannon Keith said “We’re here trying to educate them on the atrocities of the fur trade and educate them, but they won’t allow me in the store. They don’t want to see this, (holding the film Skin Trade) because then they would know the truth and they wouldn’t want to wear fur.” She went on to say: “This reflects poorly on DASH and their policies because if they’re going to discriminate on people that just want to peacefully educate them, then who else are they discriminating against – what other classes of human being’s are they discriminating against from walking into their store?”
Organizer of Fur Free West Hollywood, Ellen Lavinthal said, “What’s very interesting and hypocritical is that Khloe Kardashian, one of the main owners of the store and one of the main people who ran the store originally before she moved to Texas with her husband, posed for PETA in an ad that said ‘I’d rather go naked then wear fur’ and yet she is condoning this behavior.” She went on to point out that “Most people are missing the point – Whether DASH is currently carrying fur is not the issue, as right now is not the ‘fur’ time of year, it is their continual promotion of fur on the red carpet, in their stores and on their reality how. It’s their arrogant refusal.
Rumor has it that Kim would just like this all to go away. Silly Kim. This is NOT going away. You will keep getting Twitter messages slamming your affinity to kill innocent animals for your vanity until you finally learn compassion and a bit of class. Don’t you know that it isn’t fashionable, appealing or even vogue to wear something that once had a mother, just like you? Lovers of the animal world don’t hold your breath. With some one like Kim, it may never happen.
On Saturday, March 3, 2012, Ric O’Barry, star of the Academy Award winning film, “The Cove,” was honored at a red carpet fundraising event, “A Night For The Dolphins.” The posh affair was held in a Beverly Hills mansion owned by James Costa and raised much needed funds to continue to save slaughtered Dolphins around the world and advance awareness for the protection of them.
Tickets were $150 each, which included vegan hors d’oeuvres, a cocktail reception, champagne toast and a generous gift bag. Around 200 people crowded into the scenic home and were entertained by vocalist Mia Maestro with a DJ set by Michelle Rodriguez, a seasoned actress from the popular TV series, “Lost.”
A new PSA, ‘Kids Speak Out Against Dolphin Captivity” was shown at the party, which featured children – “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world.” Ric O’Barry was introduced to a supportive audience by event producer Deborah Bassett and brought the crowd up to speed with the latest happenings around the world stating that “(The dolphin) hunting ended early this year, due to lack of demand. It usually goes from September to April.” He continued, “I guarantee (the hunting) will stop.” Speaking over a cheering flock of supporters, he explained that they had signed contracts with other places and that had stopped hunting completely. He made it clear that he “likes” Japan, and only “has an issue with certain men who are killing the dolphins.” He ended saying, “this is an ongoing campaign and thank you so much for supporting it.”
Well known animal activist and Animal Alliance Founder, Ellen Lavinthal said, “Tonight is a night for the protection of the intelligent and sensitive mammals of the seas– the dolphins who are needlessly slaughtered, all for the sake of having entertainment at Sea World and other water parks.” Environmental activist, Earth Island/Dolphin Project consultant and “A Night For The Dolphins” event producer Deborah Bassett explained, “Ric is one of the most dedicated activists working on behalf of marine mammal protection and wildlife conservation on the planet today. I have a profound respect and admiration for his sincere desire and tireless mission to eradicate dolphin slaughters around the world and put an end to the captive dolphin industry.” Bassett continued, “Having worked in the field with Ric in Taiji and as a consultant for Earth Island Institute and Ric O’Barry’s Dolphin Project, I have witnessed firsthand his unique approach and it is one that encompasses the people of Japan. Ric has always been about embracing the culture and working with the Japanese people to effect change from within as he understands that this is ultimately where it needs to come from. He remains steadfast in this vision and those of us who are honored to work so closely with him support his efforts 100%.”
Ric O’Barry was first recognized in the 1960’s for capturing and training five dolphins, which were used in the well-known TV series “Flipper.” After witnessing the ‘suicide’ of one of the beloved “Flipper” dolphins, Kathy, who swam into his lap and died, O’Barry made a radical turn around and began combating the industry which captures dolphins. In 1970 he founded the Dolphin Project, a group that aims to educate the public about captivity, and whenever possible, free dolphins. He was front and center in the 2009 Academy Award-winning film, “The Cove” which used brilliant and gutsy covert techniques to expose the yearly dolphin hunting drive that occurs in Taiji, Japan.
Prominent guests who came out to honor Ric O’Barry included One Tree Hill’s Sophia Bush, Ed Begley Jr., Veteren actress Joanna Cassidy, Breaking Dawn actress Maggie Grace, Biggest Loser fitness icon, Jillian Michaels, Licoln O’Barry, Hit recording artist Fawn, Lost actress Michelle Rodriguez, Whale Wars Ady Gil, Q’orianka Kilcher, Leilani Munter, Eric Balfour, Lina Esco, Abilgal Spencer, Ashley Scott, Lasse Larsen and Steve Hart.
Some of the event sponsors were Zico Coconut Water, Golden Mean Café’, Julian Hard Cider, Ecojoia and many more. All proceeds benefitted Richard O’Barry’s Dolphin Project, a campaign under the International Marine Mammal Project at the non-profit Earth Island Institute.
To find out more about Richard O’Barry and the Dolphin Project, go to www.dolphinproject.org and Dolphin PSA
By: Songirl Sez, Special for Diversity News Magazine
Grammy Nominated Electronic and Pop Recording Artist Moby performed a 30 minute acoustic set in Beverly Hills on February 12, 2010 for the PCRM (Physicians Committee For Responsible Medicine) Fundraiser to a crowd of around 300 people.
Guests were shuttled up to the private estate of James Costa, a long time animal rights advocate with tickets going for $50 and the event running from 6-10pm. PCRM is a nonprofit organization founded in 1985 which has led the way for reforms in federal nutrition policies. Opposed to unethical human experiments, they promote and offer alternatives to animal research and testing. About an hour after the fundraiser began, a slide show was shown, with frightening statistics given on the obesity rate in children, stating that 1 in 3 children are now obese and 1 in 5 teens have abnormal cholesteral levels. Data showed a correlation of eating meat with these facts. The average American now eats 75 pounds more meat and 30 pounds more cheese each year, compared to a century ago. PCRM showed a new chart, called the “Power Plate” with four equal corners of Fruits, Grains, Legumes and Vegetables, promoted as “the well-rounded diet that could save your life” from the thepowerplate.org.
The slide show also discussed important animal issues at hand, as well as recent triumphs due to the tenacity, passion and compassion of PCRM. There were disturbing photos of a small squirrel monkey being squished into a narrow tube to be flown up into space for testing of the affects of ionizing radiation to simulate hazards of interplanetary space travel. When the photo was shown of the helpless animal, several gasps were heard in the crowd. Moments later the gasps turned to sighs as the guests were informed that PCRM was able to convince NASA to cancel the proposed monkey radiation experiments.
Shortly after the slide show and stories of triumphs and future areas of concern were shared, recording artist Moby performed an acoustic set. Although his performance was interrupted after just one song by Ady Gil who offered 2 all access Grammy passes, eventually selling to the highest bidder for $8,000, Moby seemed to take the auction intrusion in stride. Once continuing his set, he commented in between songs regarding the continual talking, asking people to go downstairs to chat. Moby played both guitar and piano during his performances, with the highlight being his vocal / acoustic guitar rendition of “Ring Of Fire” originally recorded by the late Johnny Cash.
Notables in attendance were Film makers Shaun Monson and Charles Hambleton, Recording Artists Moby, Fawn and Persia White, Book Authors Rory Freedman and Karen Dawn, Shannon Mann, Jane Valez-Mitchell, Patty Shenker, Ady Gil, Ellen Lavinthal, Robin Torme’, Kristin Bauer, Cindy Landon, Jennifer Landon, Chris DeRose, Libra Max and a host of others.
To donate of find out more about PCRM go to http://www.pcrm.org
Video and Photos Courtesy & (C) 2011 by FFD Images. All Rights Are Reserved.
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Over 250 Animals Right Activists Take Action To Make West Hollywood The First Fur Free City in the USA
On Saturday, January 29, 2011 over 250 animal rights activists and concerned citizens, young and old stood side by side in the Matthew Shephard Memorial Triangle Park on the corner of Santa Monica Boulevard and Crescent Heights in West Hollywood, California to rally for a fur-free West Hollywood.
With this ground-breaking action, the City of West Hollywood could become the first completely fur free city in the United States, leading as an example for the rest of the world to follow. The progressive city of “WeHo” was the first town to pass an anti-declaw bill and all out ban on live pet sales in the nation. With WeHo referring to human companions of animals as “guardians” instead of the past term, “owners,” it’s no wonder that they would make this unprecedented move to have an entirely fur free environment. Award winning director and animal rights attorney Shannon Keith said “in 1989 West Hollywood signed a resolution to make an animal cruelty-free zone, and it can’t be an animal cruelty-free zone unless they stop the selling of fur.”
To help make this happen, John D’Amico has stepped up to the plate, supporting the fur free message in his campaign for West Hollywood City Council. He is going to focus on this legislation while in office and be a continual advocate for a fur free world. He said that “West Hollywood has the opportunity to once again be a leader for animal welfare by becoming the first fur-free city in the nation.” D’Amico continued, “We have pledged to be a place that is free of cruelty to animals and we can no longer support the barbaric fur trade by selling the products of that cruelty in our city.”
Ed Buck, one of the organizers of “Fur Free WeHo,” said “This campaign is not just about banning fur but promoting West Hollywood as the capital of fur-free fashion, especially in its boutique district that includes a Stella McCartney store, which already shuns furs.” Buck was instrumental in helping get the ordinance passed which bans the sale of puppy mill animals in pet stores.
The initiative would make West Hollywood the first fur-free community in the United States and possibly the world. Hit Recording Artist Fawn commented “West Hollywood has always been a city ahead of it’s time, and the time is NOW to stop killing helpless and loving animals for their fur. The vanity of the fashion industry is utter insanity. People who wear real fur and even some faux furs have blood on their hands.”
Fawn walked through the crowd and streets, turning heads and hearts with a stark reminder written on a double-sided sign, adorned over her stunning rescued white wolf dog Coda, which read “15 of me = 1 fur coat” and “My father died for your fur coat.” When resident Deanne Sire saw the sign, she said “I guess I never thought of my fur having been a living being and having had a dad.”
Actor Bill McNamara stated “Fur is definitely something we need to abolish, there is no reason that anybody today, in America needs to wear fur. It symbolized meanness of spirit. There is no other reason to wear it.”
New York Times Best Selling Author, Rory Freedman agreed with McNamera, sporting a shirt which read “Mean People Wear Fur.” Freedman explained, “Amongst other horrors, animals killed for their fur are subject to neck-breaking, strangulation, drowning, and anal or vaginal electrocution. Some are even skinned alive. All this so people with low self esteem can wear this shit and someone can make a few bucks selling it? Totally unacceptable and completely unnecessary.” She added, “I am thrilled that John D’Amico is making this issue his running platform and that West Hollywood can set a precedent for other cities to follow. Real change is not only possible, it’s imminent.”
Lords Of Acid vocalist Lacey Conner declared “The fur industry will never make itself humane and the only way to stop the fur industry is to make it go out of business.” She continue, “Don’t buy fur, if no one bought fur, the fur industry would go out of business and this mistreatment would not happen. I’m just asking people to please take a few minutes to to find out what is really going on.”
Film Producer Shannon Keith pointed out, “We have an election coming up on March 8th and it’s a great time to vote for the candidate that has a platform against fur. Once we get those candidates in place in city council, we will be able to move forward with this.”
“This is not about punishment or shame, it’s about really thinking creatively about how we live in the world and taking action and stopping the barbaric actions of harvesting fur, and really looking at who we are as individuals and as a people and West Hollywood is a great place for this to start.” Concluded Candidate John D’Amico.
To find out more go to www.ourWEHO.com, www.arme.tv and www.uncagedfilms.com
Photos courtesy & (C) 2011 by Brenda Calvillo, Ciddy Fonteboa, Gary Smith, Gene Blalock, Vicki Melton, Mary Cummins and FFD Images.
Editor’s Note: JR, Special Writer/Correspondent contributed to this story. Also story first published on January 30, 2011 on Examiner.com at http://www.examiner.com/events-in-los-angeles/over-250-animals-right-activists-take-action-to-make-weho-fur-free-city-usa
Writer’s Corner: How do you feel about FUR. Do you like animals to be killed in pain? Many farms are killing the animals alive in a brutal way. They take away their skin to make clothes for us and make a profit? How do you feel about it? Please leave your comments.
On Friday, July 30, 2010 In Defense Of Animals held a fundraiser at The Strange in Los Angeles, CA from 7:00 pm to 10:00 pm.
The event entitled “Story Time” (A night of storytelling) raised funds to assist IDA with it’s plight to help the innocent animals who fell victim of the Gulf Oil Spill.
Hosted by Actress Elaine Hendrix, the evening consisted of a silent auction, raffle tickets, drinks, h’orderves and inspirational, funny and sometimes tear jerking stories and song. There were appearances onstage by Debra Wilson, Scotlund Haisley (President of IDA), Gina La Piana, Actress Daisy Eagan, Actress Melinda Hill, Laura House, Maggie Rowe, Charlie Schlatter, Morgan Sheppard and Larry Sullivan.
Other notables in attendance were award winning director Shannon Keith, actress/musician Traci Dinwiddie, actress, hit recording artist/songwriter Fawn, Gene Blalock of The Faded and several well respected animal rights activists and rescuers.
100% of the proceeds benefitted In Defense of Animals on behalf of the animals devastated by the Gulf oil spill. To make a donation directly, visit http://www.idausa.org
About IDA: Their mission is to end animal exploitation, cruelty, and abuse by protecting and advocating for the rights, welfare, and habitats of animals, as well as to raise their status beyond mere property, commodities, or things. In Defense of Animals is a registered 501 (c) 3 non-profit organization.
It was a compelling evening with moving performances this past Saturday night, July 24, 2010 at the Club Inspire U 3rd Music Showcase held at Club Cobra in North Hollywood from 6:30 pm to 9:00 pm.
Vocalists, songwriters, comedians and inspirational speakers took the stage including Rosy Donovan of Local Celebrity LA 2010, Jarid Williams of Shine On 1 and 2, Gloria Bigelow, Weather, MTV’s GG Smith, Billboard Hit Recording Artist Fawn, Kenneth Thomas, Richard Virgen, Claudine B. Said, Ian Brookfield and International Singer/Songwriter Kris Searle.
“Music invokes many different emotions such as sadness, happiness, motivation, etc. Musicians and listeners can always relate to some type of music or song and more importantly making music is a creative and effective way to deal with emotional issues.” said GG Smith.
Club Inspire U was created by Inspire U Records to create a safe haven where people feel like it’s a “home away from home” – to come to refresh, vitalize, and leave inspired.
“As soon as I could talk, I would sing. I am deeply touched by music. The words, the emotions, the very unique and special way that songs communicate those things we cannot voice ourselves. I am blessed with the gift to feel music for all it can be, and the gift to sing and share that same feeling with others. We are one and in music we find that universal thing that is so elusive.” said music artist Rosy Donovan.
The showcase succeeded in it’s goal to “touch, move, support and enlighten,” which is the Club Inspire U mantra.
“I can write songs that vent about problems or I can write fun songs that make me want to go out and forget my problems. I love to write songs that are controversial and touch on topics that exist, but are not discussed.” concluded Ms. Smith.
Club Inspire U Showcase is held every month and 20% of it’s proceeds go towards The American Cancer Society. For more information go to http://www.inspireurecords.com and http://www.clubinspireu.com
Sources: http://www.diversitynewspublications.com & FFD Images
Editor’s Note: The only problem with this kind of showcase is the they expect media oulets to pay a cover charge but they still want us to write about it. Also they need to hire a goood promoter who knows how to get more people at the venue and the artists needs to bring fans to support their performance.