Stevio...LA LA Lovin' It?

I'm British-born Chinese from Bristol, UK. I’m LA-based. I’m a hip hop aficionado. After 15 years in London I moved to LA to pursue a new career and outlook on life.

Back in the 80s I was a DJ. In the 90s I contributed to the world's first street style exhibition at London's Victoria & Albert Museum. In 2011, I had my first interviews published. Today, I’m keeping busy with music, art, photos and writing.

Friday, August 29, 2008

Notting Hill carnival vs. Jason & Britt's wedding

This weekend is Jason and Britt's wedding in Beverly Hills. This very same weekend is also Notting Hill Carnival, Europe's biggest street party, where 750,000 people are expected to cram into the west London streets for the 44th year of this West Indian carnival!

There's no competition - a bunch of Brits are heading across the pond to bring a bit of the UK flavor to 90210!

Labels: ,

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Subway art

There's an odd, but spontaneous thing going on in NYC's subways. People are cutting the advertising posters and sticking the removed pieces on other posters. The effect, on the one hand, is disturbing faceless posters and, on the other, freakish appendages added to other posters. Odd.

Labels: ,

Monday, August 18, 2008

Five Points...graff Hall of Fame

So good I gave it its own posting. Five Points in Queens has been around for yonks. I first saw the Blade pieces in the late 90s when Tina lived in NYC. The art still continues as artists from around the world come to paint.

Labels: , , , ,

Queens has been cool for a minute

Queens is Chinatown, P.S.1 art gallery, Five Points graffiti Hall of Fame and now Raychel's new home too.

To live there and hang out in Jackson Heights gives you a different perspective on the borough. And seeing Lil' India and the Colombian 'hood made me feel like I was in Holloway, north London a bit. Then heading towards the East River you get to see P.S.1 and within walking distance, the seasonal Water Taxi Beach bar. There's not actually a beach as we know it, with the waves lapping up on the shore, but you are next to the water.

Labels: , , ,

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Hip Hop Karaoke...Don't forget the words!

Back in New York, the highlight of my weekend had to be Hip Hop Karaoke. After all I postponed my return to LA because of this! It's the original joint that started in The Knitting Factory in Manhattan and has become an export around the world. And as Kirstin's friend, Maaike, had also just arrived in NYC I threatened her with doing a duet!

This time the event was in a hall in Williamsburg. And this area has gotten crazy trendy since I last came to stay. It's like Hoxton...full of revellers, oddities and characters. Maaike and I met Bruno, the 50-year old Brit punk rocker from the 70s in a band called The Homosexuals, and his squeeze, Linda, the 25-year old from Romania who had the biggest lovebite we'd seen this side of the Mississippi!

Labels: , , ,

Saturday, August 16, 2008

B-Boys break!

When I heard about the b-boy battle in the Bronx I charged up there to see how they do in NYC. Hosted by Boston-based Floorlords and their DJs tonight was pure hip-hop...breakbeats, ciphers, and b-boy antics.

What surprised me was that it was a family affair with moms, kids and community groups as well as those who weren't going home without recognition. The b-boys in the house included the French and Japanese who were awesome!

Labels: , , , ,

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Summer holiday on the east coast

So finally the folks arrived in Toronto to hang with the family and that was the signal to get the east coast party in full swing. So I dragged Mum and Dad to New York (good idea TYP!)

I met Mum and Dad at the hotel near Bryant Park which is an awesome location for a short trip. In the summer there are free yoga lessons a couple of times a week and free films there too. We hit the water taxi tour all around Manhattan, the Hudson River, the East River and back to Pier 17, all for $20. That ride gave us killer views of the Statue of Liberty, Olafur Eliasson's waterfall installations (that cost $15m), Brooklyn and Manhattan.

The plan was to hang in NYC for a few days before the folks went on their cruise. but then after talking to an east coast seaside regular I decided to cut our trip short and rent a car to get the hell out of Dodge (whatever that means?!)

I brought my TomTom GPS from LA and programmed in "Newport, Rhode Island". 200 miles and 4 hours to drive north out of New York. The GPS freaked out with all the tall skyscrapers that obscured or bounced the GPS signal around. I almost got seasick looking at the map as it spun around confused! But once on the FDR freeway it was plain sailing! No pun intended with all the sea references.

I booked us into the cute, Victorian Sarah Kendall bed & breakfast overlooking the harbor. It was an old house with small rooms without ensuite bathrooms and close to 60 restaurants. I think we explored about half of them looking for the perfect clam and crab combo for Dad's ravenous appetite!

Our half-day tour of Newport, Rhode Island included the Vanderbilts' summer home...or the Breakers, a massive ostentatious mansion on the coast. They say their fortune ($50 billion) came from the railway system they build across America. One documentary also explained that this area was the hub for rum, sugar and slave-trading too. As we were in the Breakers the sky turned dark grey and rain poured for 30 mins so we got a bit wet as we tried to get more pics on Ocean Drive. They weren't joking about the temperamental weather!

Labels: , , ,

Monday, August 11, 2008

Beautiful graffiti

"Hello stephen pang, Nike invites you and a guest to a free exclusive, live performance..."

That's always a nice thing to receive in the (e)mail! This invite was especially welcome because I'd heard so much about this film from Brittany and on investigating a bit I found that the prolific photographer Henry Chalfont is featured in the film (he released Subway Art in 1984! with Martha Cooper and directed Style Wars in 1982!! with Tony Silver, RIP). I believe all the featured artists also released limited editions of work to commemorate the release of the film. Some of which was available on a too-trendy webstore I won't name, cause I'm a hater! ;)

So, the bitter-sweet part of this invite is that I gonna miss the performance by Money Mark and the inside peek at The Montalbán, "Nike's radical new concept store and special events venue in Hollywood," as I was gonna be away in NYC. Balls!

But, I won't miss the indy release of Beautiful Losers opening at the Nuart Theatre on August 29th.

Labels: , , , ,

Saturday, August 09, 2008

Meth', the man, the comic...

Rapper Method Man was in town for the "Rock the Bells" festival and he took a break to promote his comic book simply entitled, "Method Man", created with graphic novelists David Atchison and illustrated by Sanford Greene!

I missed his comic signing as he dusted outta Golden Apple comic store early, but I still got myself a t-shirt and signed comic. History people.

2008 Rock the Bells Festival

Labels: , , , ,

Militant black England!

Taking a leaf out of Public Enemy's book, this Professor Griff inspired comedian takes this gag way out there. I wonder what the out-takes looked like?!

And yes, this was aired on British TV. God bless the programmers! Thanks to Andrew W. for the link. Isle of White (sic), Blackpool, Can-coon (sic). Hilarious, man!

Labels: , ,

Friday, August 08, 2008


Never again will this lucky date come about...well, not in my lifetime...once every century!

The Chinese coordinated the Olympics around this date and Zhang Yimou pulled off a spectacular opening ceremony in Beijing with 15,000 partipants and $300 million?! Yes, 30x the budget of the Athens Olympics. Incredible and outrageous...way too much!

I recorded the Olympic ceremony and went out to another 8-08-08 inspired event in the neighborhood. The Japanese performance art band, The Boredoms, were in the driving seat of an 88-minute (actually they went on forever?!) drumming extravaganza in La Brea Tar Pits. 88BoaDrum was organized in a drum circle in the middle of the park allowed the 5,000-strong audience to have a 360-degree view of the drummers. I sat still and enjoyed my Trader Joe's picnic and beer.

Labels: , ,

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Plenty should be enough!

After hours of searching I found the Barbara Kruger t-shirt in size small. The irony of the fact that I bought the last two shirts was not lost on me.

"Plenty should be enough" is Barbara Kruger's message. "Computers, Sunglasses, Watches, Furniture, Houses & Art". But, its message was a little lost in my spending fever! ;)

Labels: , ,

Saturday, August 02, 2008

Cool supports Obama

The Obama campaign got some modest, but vocal support from the LA cool crew: Shepard Fairey aka Obey and all of his propaganda styled pop art, plus musical support from the legendary DJ Z-Trip.

So, indirectly I put $20 into Obama's campaign fund, but it was all in the aid of a good party. You should be able to cop a download of the hour-long mix mash-up of political speeches, beats and basslines from Z-Trip's website soon...

Labels: , , ,

Friday, August 01, 2008

Stevio on a geek panel

I got invited back to USC to talk on a CTM (Center for Telecom Management) panel on the topic of IDM (interactive digital media) as part of the series on NDI (networked digital industries).

As you can tell, these academics and techies like their acronyms!? IDM is all-encompassing subject so everyone's got a story to tell. I told mine in 15 mins, which took about a day to prepare?! Hahaaaa.


It's coming...5.4 Richter scale

...and I don't mean the summer Hollywood blockbuster! No, this afternoon we experienced a 5.4 Richter scale quake which shook the apartment for 2-3 seconds. I thought a large truck rolling down the street was causing the bottles to rattle as I peered in the fridge, but when I peered out the window it was empty and peaceful. Hmmm...then the penny dropped!

In my 8th floor Burbank office the effects were more prolonged with at least 20 seconds of rumbling. But it's nothing to worry about. Look how many quakes there are in the SoCal area and 5.4 only means "often felt, but rarely causes damage."

Labels: ,