Here is our weekly roundup of news and happenings in and around L.A. Big news in local music this week.
Burger Records Folds after being Swamped with Sexual Misconduct Allegations
After a short-lived attempt to make amends, change up the management and rebrand itself, Burger Records in Fullerton is closing its doors for good. Members of both the staff and bands signed to the indie record label were hit with allegations of everything from grooming minors to sexual assault on the Instagram account @lured_by_burger_records. The Burger Records’ website and social media have been shut down, and they are removing their artists, including Black Lips, the Growlers, King Tuff and Peach Kelli Pop, from music streaming services. The promoters of the popular Burger Boogaloo festival have reported that they would no longer be working with the label. Founder Sean Bohrman concluded his communication this week with a reporter for Pitchfork with a GIF of Porky Pig saying, “That’s All, Folks.”
Spaceland/The Satellite Shuts Down
Last Friday, Jeff Wolfram, owner of the popular music venue called Dreams of L.A./The Satellite, which was once home to Spaceland, announced he would be removing the stage and becoming a restaurant due to Covid. The Silver Lake scene exploded in the 90s, and Spaceland was the center of it all, with bands like The Foo Fighters, Beck, and Wire, But it was the locals, regulars from shuttered clubs like Raji’s and Jabberjaw who really kept the scene going. Lutefisk, the Muffs, Possum Dixon, and Paper Tulips were all regulars on that stage. I think the last time I was there, My husband, (and our Music Editor), Bob Lee, put on a mind-blowing performance of “Jesus Christ Superstar.”
Bill’s legendary hamburger stand is nestled on a side street in Van Nuys populated with auto repair shops. Bill Elwell has owned the burger joint since 1965 and he still mans the grill. His 5th wife (or possibly girlfriend), Hiroko, runs the place with him, and his 2nd and possibly 4th ex-wives help out (It gets confusing). Eater LA recently noticed for sale signs in the window of the little eatery. When asked about the signs, the cashier said, “Bill will do what he wants,” as Bill silently flipped burgers. When the reporter for Eater tried again to get an answer, the cashier said, “Who knows. The signs go up, the signs come down.” Bill Elwell certainly deserves to retire after 55 years of serving hungry diners, and it’s impossible to predict what will happen during Covid Summer. I know I will miss the comraderie of the little stools that have reportedly been removed from the front counter, where you could sit elbow to elbow with your fellow diners and watch the action on the grill. If you head down there, I recommend the double chili burger with grilled onions. Bill can be cranky, but if you give it right back, he will laugh with a charming twinkle in his eye. Cash only.
The Donut Man Opens a Second Location at Grand Central Market
The Donut Man is a Los Angeles legend, even though it is located all the way out in Glendora. The faithful have been making their pilgrimage every summer to buy his seasonal strawberry donuts. He has now opened a stand in the Grand Central Market downtown, so we don’t have to travel so far. The Market is open with some social distancing restrictions from 7:00 am – 10:00 pm daily.