Archives for posts with tag: Events


Tongue & Groove

If you’re in the L.A. area on Sunday, August 14, 2016, check out Tongue & Groove — a monthly offering of short fiction, personal essays, poetry, spoken word + music produced by Conrad Romo with an impressive roster of featured performers. The 8/14/16 event has a music theme — featured performers include Eric Spitznagel, James Fearnley, Lisa Jane Persky, and David Kendrick, plus music by Kaylee Cole.

Sunday, August 14, 2016
6-7:30 p.m.
The Hotel Cafe
1623 1/2 No. Cahuenga Blvd.
Hollywood, California 90028

Come early! Seating is limited and the event starts on time! The club is a two-story black brick building, a third of a block below Hollywood Blvd. There are parking lots on Selma as well as Cahuenga. Meters need to be fed till 8pm. Avoid Cahuenga street parking

eric s

Eric Spitznagel is an Executive Writer at Men’s Health Magazine, where he’s written about a range of topics. He’s also been a frequent contributor to Playboy, Esquire, Vanity Fair, Rolling Stone, Maxim, Billboard, Details, The Believer, and the New York Times Magazine, and many other publications. He’s the author of seven books, including Ron Jeremy’s bestselling autobiography The Hardest (Working) Man in Showbiz. He’s also edited several humor anthologies, most recently Care to Make Love in that Gross Little Space Between Cars?, which features questionable life advice from people like Louis C.K., Zach Galifianakis, and Amy Sedaris. His most recent book is Old Records Never Die. You can read all about it at


James Fearnley, a founding member  of The Pogues, has written a memoir, Here Comes Everybody, drawn from his personal experiences and the series of journals and correspondence he kept throughout the band’s career. Fearnley describes the coalescence of a disparate collection of vagabonds living in the squats of London’s Kings Cross, with, at its center, the charismatic MacGowan and his idea of turning Irish traditional music on its head. With beauty, lyricism, and great candor, Fearnley tells the story of how the band watched helplessly as their singer descended into a dark and isolated world of drugs and alcohol, and sets forth the increasingly desperate measures they were forced to take.

Persky + Divine

An early participant in the CBGB’s scene, Lisa Jane Persky was a founding member of the staff of the New York Rocker and more recently a founding editor of Los Angeles Review of Books. Her work as journalist, photographer, and artist has appeared in Mojo, The Pitchfork Review, The Los Angeles Times, and elsewhere, and her fiction has appeared in Bomb and has been anthologized in Eclectica: Best Fiction Volume 1. She has appeared on, off, and off-off Broadway, and in numerous films and television shows. Lisa also anthologizes at

dave kendrick

David Kendrick came to Los Angeles by way of a phone call from the legendary Kim Fowley. He has played with 90 bands more or less. Some of note have been Gleaming Spires, Sparks, DEVO,and Andy Prieboy. He is an avid collector of odd art and some of his finds have appeared in Clown Paintings by Diane Keaton. David’s ongoing music project, “The Empire Of Fun,” to date has released a box set plus six other collections, including the fiction story  CD set I’m sorry Mr. Kendrick, there’s a skull inside your head. Recently he has had essays on cycads and fear published by the Laboratory Arts collective Hymn magazine.

Kaylee Cole Promo

Kaylee Cole has opened for bands such as The Lumineers, The Head & The Heart, Damien Jurado, and Emily Wells, performed with the Seattle Rock Orchestra and Portland Cello Project, and nearly finished a debut album (recorded and produced by Dave Sitek of TV On The Radio). Whether she’s behind a grand piano at an ornate theater, or sitting with a keyboard on her lap at a cozy house show, Kaylee Cole is a true entertainer who leaves no audience member without an impression.


The sixth season of The Mission Poetry Series wraps up on Saturday, April 18th, at 1 p.m. in Santa Barbara, California, with “People, Earth, Sky, Stars: Two Poets in Spring” featuring nationally acclaimed poet Denise Duhamel and San Francisco poet and activist Paul Fericano.

WHAT: The Mission Poetry Series

WHEN: Saturday, April 18, 2015 at 1 p.m.

WHERE: Antioch University, 602 Anacapa Street, Santa Barbara, California, 93101


MORE: Refreshments, poets’ works for sale, complimentary broadsides


DENISE DUHAMEL‘s most recent book of poetry Blowout (University of Pittsburgh Press, 2013) was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award and winner of a 2014 Paterson Poetry Prize. Her other books include Ka-Ching! (Pittsburgh, 2009), Two and Two (Pittsburgh, 2005), Queen for a Day: Selected and New Poems (Pittsburgh, 2001), The Star-Spangled Banner (winner of the Crab Orchard Award, Southern Illinois University Press, 1999), and Kinky (Orchises Press, 1997.) She is the recipient of awards, including fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts. The guest editor for The Best American Poetry 2013, she is a professor at Florida International University in Miami. ¶ Her poems have appeared in some of the country’s most prestigious literary journals, such as The American Poetry Review, Ploughshares, and TriQuarterly, and her work has been translated most recently into Polish, Italian, Arabic, and Romanian. In 20008, Bartleby Editores, the leading Spanish-language press publishing poets in English, released a bilingual edition of her poems, Afortunada de mí (Lucky Me). Entertainment Weekly writer Ken Tucker has noted that her work is accessible and culturally relevant. “Learn and have fun while you read,” writes Tucker. “Using prose poems, 
 sonnets, sestinas, and other forms . . . Duhamel is a wily technician, a touching humanist, a poet deserving stardom.” He gives her book an “A.”


PAUL FERICANO is a poet, satirist, social activist, and community organizer born in San Francisco. He is the editor and cofounder of Yossarian Universal, the nation’s first parody news service, and the editor of The Broadsider, an ongoing project of limited-edition poetry broadsides showcasing previously published work by a diverse group of authors. His poetry has been widely anthologized and was featured in 2014 in Four By Two, a limited-edition handcrafted arts journal edited by poet and lyricist Klipschutz. His chapbook, The Hollywood Catechism, was one of thirteen chosen by Silver Birch Press of Los Angeles for Swallow Dance: An Anthology of Poetry Chapbooks (2014). His new and expanded collection, The Hollywood Catechism, was also published by Silver Birch Press in March 2015. ¶ Since 1971, his poetry and prose have appeared in literary and media outlets in this country and abroad, including Mother Jones, MiPoesias, The New York Quarterly, Poetry Now, Projector, The Realist, Saturday Night Live, SoHo Arts Weekly, Vagabond, The Wormwood Review, Charlie Hebdo (Paris), Punch (London), and others. Additional chapbooks and books of poetry and fiction include Cancer Quiz (Scarecrow Books, 1977), Commercial Break (Poor Souls Press, 1982), The One Minute President (with Elio Ligi / Stroessner Verlag, 1986), and Interview with the Scalia (Peabody Press, 1994). His 1977 collection, Loading the Revolver with Real Bullets, published by Second Coming Press and partly funded by the state of California, achieved notoriety in 1978, when one of its poems, “The Three Stooges at a Hollywood Party,” was read on the floor of the California State Senate as a reason to abolish the California Arts Council. He currently serves as director of Instruments of Peace (IOP), a nonprofit that focuses on healing and reconciliation for survivors of clergy sexual abuse, and writes an online column on these issues (“A Room With A Pew”). He is a resident of the San Francisco peninsula.

If you’re in Orange County, California, on Sunday, Jan. 25th, head on over to the Tongue & Groove OC event, produced by Conrad Romo and Cynthia Romanowski, with a pop-up bookstore courtesy of Gatsby Books.

WHAT: Tongue & Groove OC

WHO: Featuring poetry and prose by Jim Ruland, Steve Westbrook, William Hillyard, Sheila J Sadr, and Michael McBride, music by Linda Douglass, and hosted by comedian Caitlin Cutt.

WHERE: The Continental Room, 115 W. Santa Fe Ave., Fullerton, CA, 92832.

WHEN: Sunday, Jan. 25, 2015 at 7 p.m.



Jim Ruland is the author of the short story collection Big Lonesome and co-author with Scott Campbell, Jr. of Discovery Channel’s Deadliest Catch of Giving the Finger. His debut novel is Forest of Fortune by Tyrus Press. And on occasion you can read a book review of his with the LA Times or attend his popular reading series called Vermin.


Steve Westbrook is an associate professor of English at California State University Fullerton, where he teaches courses in rhetoric, poetics, and cultural studies, and where he serves as faculty advisor for DASH Literary Journal. His poetry, which was nominated for a Pushcart Prize, has appeared most recently in Slab, Rattle, Pank, The Los Angeles Review, Literal Latte, The Great American Literary Magazine, Good Foot, and Clementine. Westbrook’s chapbook, Vox Americana is forthcoming from Orange Monkey Publishing.

William Hillyard photo

For approximately 48 hours, William Hillyard was executive producer of Wonder Valley, a documentary TV project inspired by his essays set in California’s desert fringe. Prior to that and since, he’s been unemployed.


Sheila J Sadr is a member of the Slam Poetry Team at Cal State Long Beach. She’s featured at the Definitive Soapbox and CSULB’s Poets lounge. She happily facilitates an open poetry workshop at Long Beach State. J. Sadr is currently pursuing her B.A. in Creative Writing and Comparative World Literature with an emphasis in cultural studies. Find her work at hellopoetry and youtube.


Michael McBride is a novelist, actor, and security guard. Michael grew up in scenic Northern California but now lives with his wife and two sons in the parched Los Angeles neighborhood of Mt. Washington. He enjoys the view from his deck, meals with family and friends, and rooting against the Los Angeles Dodgers. Michael is currently studying fiction at University of California, Riverside’s low res MFA in Palm Springs. He graduated with a BA in from the UCLA School of Theater, Film and Television, where he studied acting and playwriting.


Caitlin Cutt is from Long Beach, and she’s currently putting her degree in Comparative World Literature to good use by embarking on a career in stand-up comedy. She got her start at Flapper’s Burbank, and is gaining steam performing all over the Los Angeles comedy scene. Currently, Caitlin´s career goals are simple: hosting The Tonight Show and getting the opportunity to finally hug Steve Martin who, unbeknownst to him, basically raised her via airwaves . . . and, of course, she loves working on story-based material.


Lisa Douglass is influenced by bad boys and tragedy, alcohol, and fine literature. She is also an actress and a writer with an MFA in fiction from UC Irvine.



Tongue & Groove — a literary variety show tonight of short fiction, personal essays, poetry, spoken word & music produced by Conrad Romo — tonight (Monday, August 26, 2014) features Taylor Negron, Tonya Ingram, Carlos Kotkin, Ann Buxie, and music by Logan Heftel.

Taylor Negron is a comedian, novelist, playwright, and a damned good cook. As an actor, he can be seen in the upcoming films Pledge This, Retirement, and Surf School, which he also co-produced. He just got back from an off-Broadway show The Unbearable Lightness of Being Taylor Negron, and was met with standing ovations. Visit him at

Carlos Kotkin is a monthly contributor to the online literary magazine Smalldoggies as well as a featured performer on NPR’s The Moth Radio Hour, KCRW’s unfictional and the popular podcast Risk! He is a 10-time Moth storyslam winner and author of the recently published humorous memoir of romantic misadventures Please God Let It Be Herpes: A Heartfelt Quest for Love and Companionship. Learn more at
Ann Buxie is a poet/storyteller raised in Yuma, Arizona, who now lives in Malibu, where she produces the wonderful home concert series, Tales by the Sea.


Tonya Ingram is the 2011 New York Knicks Poetry Slam champion, a member and cofounder of NYU’s poetry slam team, a member of the 2011 Urban Word-NYC team, and the 2013 Nuyorican Grand Slam team. She is the author of Growl and Snare. Her work has traveled to Ghana, California, Michigan, Texas, Georgia, Massachusetts, Washington D.C., New York, The Literary Bohemian, Cultural Weekly, Upworthy, Youtube, and season four of Lexus Verses and Flow. She is a New York University alumna, a Cincinnati native, a Bronx-bred introvert, and a hopeful Los Angeles flower-child, where she will be pursuing her MFA in Public Practice at Otis College of Art & Design. Learn more at silenceturnedshotgun.


Logan Heftel is a producer and singer/songwriter based in Los Angeles. Visit him at


Conrad Romo grew up in L.A. short, stocky and swarthy. He is the producer and host of the literary reading series Tongue & Groove, now into year 11. He is also a cofounder of the NoHo Litcrawl and earns his daily bread as a salesman. His writing has appeared in Los Angeles Review, Wednesday Magazine, Noveltown, Tu Ciudad, Brooklyn & Boyle, Palehouse, Huizache, and Latinos in Lotusland. Visit him at

WHAT: Tongue & Groove Literary Event

WHEN: Tuesday, August 26, 2014, 6:30-7:45 p.m.

WHERE: Annenberg Community Beach House 415 Pacific Coast Highway, Santa Monica, CA, 90402


Congratulations to founding editor Joan Jobe Smith and editor Marilyn Johnson on the 40th anniversary of Pearl Magazine. Help Joan and Marilyn celebrate at a birthday bash on Saturday, June 28, 2014.

WHAT: Pearl Magazine‘s 40th birthday celebration

WHEN: Saturday, June 28, 2014, 3-5 p.m.

WHERE: Gatsby Books, 5535 E. Spring St., Long Beach, CA, 90808

WHAT TO EXPECT: Poets featured in the pages of Pearl will be on-hand to read their work.

To check out Pearl Magazine, visit

IMAGE: Pearl Magazine, Issue 46 (2012), cover by David Roy Scott.



The fifth season of The Mission Poetry Series wraps up on Saturday, April 5, at 1 p.m. with “April Voices: Three Poets for the Spring of It” featuring Teddy Macker, Phil Taggart, and Friday Lubina.
WHAT: The Mission Poetry Series

WHEN: Saturday, April 5, 2014, 1 p.m.

WHERE: Antioch University, 602 Anacapa Street, Santa Barbara, California, 93101


MORE: Refreshments, poets’ works for sale, complimentary broadsides


Teddy Macker is a writer, teacher, orchardist, and gardener, and lives with his wife and daughter on a small farm in the foothills of Carpinteria, California. His writing—poems, translations, essays, and short stories—appears in the Antioch Review, New Letters, Orion, The Massachusetts Review, The Sun, and various anthologies. Among his honors is the Reginald S. Tickner Creative Writing Fellowship of the Gilman School in Baltimore. He lectures in the College of Creative Studies at the University of California, Santa Barbara, where for years he shared an office with friend and fellow poet, Barry Spacks.


Phil Taggart served for nine years as the poetry editor of Art Life, and is currently co-editor and publisher of Askew, a literary journal he founded with his wife, poet Marsha de la O. He received a Champion of Mental Health Award from the Turning Point Foundation for his work promoting the understanding of mental disorders, and an Individual Artist’s Grant from the City of Ventura where he lives and serves as a Cultural Affairs Commissioner. Phil’s most recent book of poetry is Rick Sings (Brandenburg Press), and his two previous collections are Opium Wars (Mille Grazie Press) and Cowboy Collages, an art book in collaboration with Texas artist Ann Harithas.


Friday Lubina‘s poetry has appeared in ARTLIFE Limited Editions, Dance of the Iguana, Caffeine, ASKEW Poetry Journal and the 2011 anthology, A Bird Black As The Sun – California Poets on Crows & Ravens. In 2009, she became assistant editor for ASKEW, and in 2012, she edited The SpiritLife of Birds by Maia (Adder’s Tongue Press.) Friday has been a host of Ventura’s Annual Erotic Poetry Event for over a decade and hosted the poetry series, “Friday on Saturday” for several years. She emceed the Ventura County Arts Council’s Art Stars Awards and in 2013, joined their board. She has lived in Ventura for nearly twenty-five years, actively championing the arts and local businesses.


Charles Bukowski: Up Close and Personal, a popup exhibition of nine portraits by Joan Gannij will be on display at the American Book Center Treehouse Gallery on Thursday, March 13 & 20, 2014, from 6-9 p.m., and during the weekend of March 22 & 23 from 1-5 pm.

These oversized portraits of Charles Bukowski (118cm x 84cm — approximately 4 x 3′) on museum quality paper in a limited edition will be available for sale after the exhibition. For further information, contact

PHOTO CREDIT: “Joan Gannij with her Bukowski images” by Thom van der Heijden


On Sunday, March 16th, join S.A. Griffin at Beyond Baroque in Venice, California, as he reads from his new book, Dreams Gone Mad with Hope (Punk Hostage Press, 2014), and celebrates his 60th birthday.

LOCATION: Beyond Baroque, 681 Venice Blvd., Venice CA 90291

DATE: Sunday, March 16, 2014

TIME: 4 p.m.

SPECIAL GUESTS: Frank T. Rios and A.D. Winans, reading from his new book Dead Lions (Punk Hostage Press, 2014)

PRICE: Free!

Poster by S.A. Griffin, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.



Poem by Gawaine Caldwater Ross 

The Burning Man was eighty feet high
Atop a temple of Moorish lace
Confections of stars and midnight suns
All on a lake bed flat and sere, already
Old when primates first appeared.
Fire dancers whirled as the stars chirped
Hosannas to the primal rite.
Nothing is lost, but all is gained,
Extravagance is the law of the land.
Open now, as the clouds pass by,
Fire is water, and water itself
Soars into the stratosphere.
High art falls into the dust,
No one complains, and all rejoice.
Surreal it is, and yet romantic,
Bacchus himself rides on the wind,
And here it is that once a year
Artists bring about the birth
Of Shiva’s endless pillar of fire.