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A Remembrance: Teena Marie
A Remembrance: Teena Marie

Long before she became an '80s funk-pop infanta, or Rick James' protégé and lover, Teena Marie was a Motown-enamored schoolgirl in one of L.A.'s last historic black enclaves. The singer-songwriter, who died Sunday at her Pasadena home at age 54, grew up in Oakwood, a working-class wedge of Venice sandwiched between the 405 and the tonier beach areas. With an African American population that peaked at 45% in 1970, a substantial Latino presence and a small white minority, Oakwood was a "stable, close-knit community" where different ethnic groups lived side by side and the barriers between private homes and public spaces (parks, churches) were blurred, said...