Pop & Hiss

Pop & Hiss The L.A. Times music blog
In a time of political and social upheaval, artists at SXSW turned to self-preservation

Mid-20s Australian artist Stella Donnelly was about halfway through “Mean to Me,” a song about a no-good significant other who criticizes her jokes, acts bored in her presence and lacks even a sliver of human decency, when she decided to lighten the mood with the lilt of a violin.

It was a clever sleight-of-hand, given that the only instrument in sight was her electric guitar. So she improvised.

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Charlie Quintana, drummer for the Plugz and Social Distortion, dies at 56

Charlie “Chalo” Quintana, a fixture on the Southern California punk and roots music scene for decades, has died after struggling in recent years with emphysema and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, or COPD, his sister Elizabeth Montoya confirmed to The Times. He was 56.

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SXSW looks to the past and future with Todd Rundgren, Cuco and DJ Jigue

The music (and film and tech and everything else) at South by Southwest almost always looks to the future. Emerging acts and novel sounds and panels try to make sense of a music industry turned inside-out.

So what a treat to wander into a club set from ’70s rock experimentalist Todd Rundgren at the end of Thursday evening’s slate of music at 1 a.m.

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California Sounds: Jonathan Wilson, DJDS remixes St. Vincent

Jonathan Wilson, “There’s a Light” video (Bella Union). The singer, songwriter, producer and musical connector has long tapped into the history of Los Angeles guitar rock, and in a new video for a song from his just issued album, “Rare Birds,” Wilson zeroes in on the reason: “There is a feeling in the California air,” he sings. “There is lust for peace and righteousness everywhere.”

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With triumphant El Rey show, Charli XCX prompts a question: Why isn't she even bigger?

It was the afternoon of Charli XCX's debut L.A. outing of her new “Pop 2” mixtape, and the British pop rebel posted a picture of herself outside a Staples office store opposite the El Rey Theatre on Thursday.

The cheeky Instagram caption read: “pop 2 at staples tonight. ultimate success. (obviously kidding — don't go to the wrong venue).”

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With a newly opened STEM center and a revolutionary marketing strategy, Nipsey Hussle is music's biggest disruptor

One day before the February release of his highly anticipated debut album "Victory Lap," L.A. rapper Nipsey Hussle cut the ribbon on a combination co-working space and STEM center in the Crenshaw district.

The center, partly dedicated to calling attention to the lack of diversity in the science, technology, engineering and mathematics fields, launched under the name Vector 90.

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