Arts & Culture, Featured, News, Video »

Who is Raymond ‘Shrimpboy’ Chow?


Today’s must-watch is this “Gangland” documentary about Raymond Chow, the Chinatown gangster who was arrested yesterday as part of a major FBI operation that also included State Sen. Leland Yee.
Here’s more from the San Jose Mercury News:
The notorious Chinatown criminal known as “Shrimp Boy” spent nearly a decade carefully crafting his “redemption story,” inspiring kids to defy lives of crime and reaping proclamations from …

California Elections, Commentary, Featured »

Twitter reacts to the arrest of State Senator Leland Yee


State Senator Leland Yee was arrested today on corruption charges. He was also a candidate for Secretary of State, but this likely ruins his chances at that office. His arrest was part of a major FBI operation in the Bay Area, which included the arrest of a Chinatown gangster. From the San Jose Mercury News:  
Federal law enforcement officials have been chasing Raymond “Shrimp …

Featured »

What should be in your earthquake kit


Many were jolted awake this morning as a 4.4 quake shook Los Angeles. The temblor was the largest since a 5.5 earthquake hit Chino Hills in 2008.
Writing on KCRW’s Facebook page, Licia Owolo, says, ”My 10yr olds screamed thru the whole thing, her closet doors and bed were shaking like crazy, here in West Hills. Good drill for us to be more calm and prepared for something …

Arts & Culture, Oscars2014 »

What’s on the 2014 Oscar menu?


Good Food got the rundown on this Sunday’s Oscar menu, and it sounds pretty good! From Good Food:
Per tradition, the 86th annual Academy Awards will be catered by none other than Wolfgang Puck. The chef and restauranteur, a celebrity himself, has been catering the affair for the past twenty years.
Although the atmosphere may have become more casual, putting together the after-party is no small feat. …

Arts & Culture, Oscars2014 »

Look for ‘stunningly conventional’ gowns at Sunday’s Oscars


This comes from our friends over at DnA:
The Oscars are this Sunday. And you can expect the usual breathless media coverage of the red carpet arrivals. But just how thrilling will they be? Not very, says Simon Doonan, who cautions that we shouldn’t expect any fashion surprises like Bjork showing up in a swan dress  or Cher in a diaphanous Bob Mackie outfit, as in yesteryear’s Academy …

Arts & Culture, Headline »

Remembering Philip Seymour Hoffman


Philip Seymour Hoffman, one of the most talented actors of his generation died Saturday from an apparent heroin overdose. The 46-year old actor appeared in more than 50 films over the course of his career, and won an Oscar for “Capote.”  As The Atlantic writes, “He could puff himself up and play larger than life, but his specialty was to find the quiet dignity …

Featured, Warren Olney »

Interview with LA County Interim Sheriff John Scott

Orange County Sheriff's Department Undersheriff
John Scott

Orange County’s Undersheriff John Scott will replace Lee Baca, who retires from office Thursday amid an FBI probe into corruption and allegations of abuse in the jails. Before moving to Orange County, Scott spent 36 years in the department he’s about to lead. He’ll serve until June–if one candidate gets a majority in the primary election–or until November if there’s a runoff. Warren talked …

Arts & Culture, Headline »

Remembering folk icon Pete Seeger

Pete Seeger at age 88 photographed on 6-16-07 at the Clearwater Festival 2007 by Anthony Pepitone (Wiki commons)

Below, Warren talks to David King Dunaway, an oral historian and radio producer whose many books include, “How Can I Keep from Singing?”, a biography of Pete Seeger.
Legendary folk singer Pete Seeger, who fought for social justice through music and activism has died at age 94. He wrote ”If I Had a Hammer,” “Turn, Turn, Turn” and “Where Have All the Flowers Gone,” and inspired a …

News »

Interview with earthquake expert Lucy Jones

Lucy Jones with the U.S. Geological Survey

Earthquake scientist Lucy Jones was tapped earlier this week to lead Los Angeles in its effort to make the city safer when it comes to earthquake issues. KCRW’s Avishay Artsy caught up with Jones to ask her a bit about what we know, and don’t know about the temblors.
Jones was in LA, when the Northridge quake struck  in 1994 and remembers the shaking.

KCRW: In …

Arts & Culture, Headline, News »

Culver City Ice Arena faces closure


The 52-year-old Culver City Ice Arena is slated to close February 2nd with a rock climbing/yoga gym is in line to take over the space. The vintage rink was home to the LA Kings, champion figure skaters, skating lessons, and many, many birthday parties. (It also transformed the earth underneath it to permafrost, which could be a problem when it comes to rebuilding on …

Headline, News »

Shaking, explosions, rumbling: Listeners remember the Northridge quake

Northridge Earthquake, CA, January 17, 1994 -- An aerial view of destruction caused by the 6.7 magnitude earthquake. Damage costs were estimated at $25 billion. FEMA News Photo
Date	17 January 1994

On January 17, 1994, Southern California shook. If you were living here, you probably remember being woken up confusedly getting out of bed and trying to find a safe zone in your home, searching for that emergency flashlight. It’s been 20 years since the Northridge earthquake,  killing 57 people and injuring thousands. More than 40,000 buildings were damaged and 20,000 people were left homeless after …

Headline »

Sheriff Lee Baca: ‘I don’t see myself as the future, I see myself as part of the past’

Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca announces his retirement during a news conference at Los Angeles County Sheriff's headquarters in Monterey Park , California January 7, 2014. Photo: Kevork Djansezian/Reuters

Updated 3:30 pm:
Today on “All Things Considered,” KCRW’s Steve Chiotakis spoke with Celeste Fremon, a freelance journalist and blogger at, about Baca’s announced retirement. Here’s what she said about Baca’s legacy:
“He’s been known as a very progressive sheriff. The fact that he’s put in this education-based incarceration program is something that is a model, is potentially replicable. And I think his progressive …

News »

Warren Olney’s Best Interviews of 2013

Warren Olney

When Did We Start Hating Congress?
From pistol duels on the floor of Congress to the government shutdown
Music that Fueled the March on Washington
Would there have been a civil rights movement without music?
 Rise of the Sharing Economy
The consumer economy is challenged by a new way of introducing people who own things to people who need to use them.
Obama “Broke the Silence on Trayvon Martin Case”
Playwright …

Featured, Headline, Interviews, News, Politics »

18 LA Sheriff’s Dept. officials charged with corruption, civil rights abuses


Charges of civil rights abuses and obstruction of justice have been filed against 18 members of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Dept. In a press conference, United States Attorney in Los Angeles André Birotte Jr. ran down a list of alleged crimes, including beatings, detentions and and a conspiracy to obstruct a federal investigation at the Men’s Central Jail.

The wide ranging investigation included unlawful …

economy, Featured, News »

What does Detroit’s bankruptcy mean for San Bernardino?

Via Flickr by taberandrew/ CreativeCommons

Detroit has been struggling for a while, and yesterday a federal judge ruled that the city is eligible for bankruptcy and can impose cuts to its municipal pension plans. That ruling could have a big impact in San Bernardino and other California cities that are seeking bankruptcy protection.
San Bernardino has not been able to make their CalPERS payments, explains bankruptcy attorney Michael Sweet. The …

Arts & Culture, Featured »

What would make LA a better place?

Photo via Flickr by vmiramontes/ CreativeCommons

There’s a lot to learn from this Reddit thread that asks, What’s one small thing every resident could do to make this city a better place? Reddit user runtobehappy posted the question and says that it’s open for those who don’t only want to complain about bad drivers.
In addition to driving tips (that’s putting it nicely) there’s a sentiment that there is too much litter in Los …

Featured, Politics »

Remembering JFK, 50 years after his assassination

John F. Kennedy motorcade, Dallas, Texas, Nov. 22, 1963. (Photo:  Victor Hugo King from the Library of Congress)

Where were you when Kennedy was killed? The Television Academy’s Archive has compiled a series of interviews with some of the journalists like Walter Cronkite and Dan Rather, who were rushing to cover the assassination on air, while experiencing their own shock at the news.

Arts & Culture, Featured, News »

Tech and cars at the LA autoshow


Saul Gonzalez headed to the L.A. autoshow, where he ran into Scott Frank and Keith Leung of Airbiquity, a company which makes data platforms connecting cars to the Cloud. Listen below, as they show off a system in a Nissan Rogue. Is it really safe to drive and tweet?

Environment, Featured »

Photos: LA’s elusive cougars

Photo by Steve Winter/National Geographic
A hidden camera records Hollywood’s most reclusive star—this male cougar first seen in Griffith Park in Los Angeles almost two years ago. A radio collar tracks his moves, but residents see scant sign of him.

If you’ve hiked in Los Angeles, you’ve probably been on the lookout for mountain lions. Also known as cougars, the cats are actually pretty hard to find. Photographer Steve Winter teamed up with biologist Jeff Sikich in LA. Together they figured out a way to photograph the cats for a series called Ghost Cats, which appears in the December issue of National Geographic. The ultimate …

News »

Who are the leaders in your community?

Los Angeles is a city of 10 million, but who really gets things done? (Photo: Mike Finkelstein/ Flickr/ Creative Commons)

Who is LA’s unofficial mayor?
Is it Brigham Yen of DTLA Rising, who one listener says is “the unofficial yet inspiring mayor?” Or as KCRW listener, Morgan Hall, suggested, her  neighbor, Jonathan? “He is always in the know about new businesses opening in the neighborhood, supporting clean up crews, reporting pot holes, getting street lights adjusted, helping out anybody in need with a tool, a jump, a smile,” …

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