From Santa Monica to DTLA, Silverlake to Venice Beach, Los Angeles is as diverse, creative and action-packed as it is big. Want proof? Look no further than On Location: L.A., the latest episode of the Recording Academy's new music and travel series.
In this second episode of the On Location series, host Charlie Travers digs into the rich musical and cultural history of the city that has something for everyone: Los Angeles. Much more than just the glitz and glam of Hollywood, L.A. contains countless rewarding gems just waiting to be experienced by those willing to go on a personal quest to find them. And who better to explore the city with than musicians who know exactly where to go?
Keen to capture the spirit of Los Angeles, Travers starts her journey halfway between the 101 freeway and the beach on a hike through the Santa Monica mountains with 311 vocalist/guitarist Nick Hexum. The two songwriters talk creative process and the eclectic music scene Los Angeles houses.
"To me, L.A. is the mecca. It's the center of great music," says Hexum. "Whether it's hip-hop or punk or reggae, Latin music or jazz, it's all here."
After the hike, Travers connects with Offspring bassist Noodles down by the ocean at the International Surfing Museum in a Huntington Beach building that was once a music club called Safari Sam's where all the local bands would play. Noodles reminisced about the rebellious freedom and natural connection between punk rock and skating or surfing — all elements that are integral to the cultural concoction of L.A.
Next up, singer/songwriter Jade Novah takes Travers shopping at a small boutique called House of Intuition. As they peruse jewelry and accessories, Novah tells the host about her travels across the country, how she chose her stage name and how she found a home in the City of Angels.
Travers also links up with GRAMMY-nominated DJ/producer and activist Moby to visit his sustainable vegan restaurant, Little Pine. A 30-year vegan veteran, Moby talks about the rise of vegan restaurants in Silverlake through the years and how the best parts of the city are not always the most obvious.
"In the early '90s, when I started coming here for work playing raves and that sort of thing, all my friends in New York told me that I would hate Los Angeles because I was born in New York City," admits Moby. "I ended up loving it. Everything beautiful in Los Angeles is hidden."
With a full stomach, our host gets ready for night out at the one-of-a-kind hair-salon-meets-record-store, The Artform Studio. Co-owner/stylist Sherry Younge gives Travers the royal treatment with a new do and tells her about the origins of the business she started with her musical husband, celebrated producer Adrian Younge.
Travers now has the look for a night on the town, but before committing, she swings by one of Downtown L.A.'s hottest attractions, the GRAMMY Museum, to get a heavy dose of music history and experience the interactive exhibits that take visitors inside the music.
When it's finally time to let her hair down for the evening, Travers meets up with singer/songwriter Maty Noyes. They end up at the legendary Two Boots pizza place in DTLA for a late-night snack, the perfect way to cap off a whirlwind day in Los Angeles.
Stay tuned for exclusive extras from On Location: L.A. as well as additional episodes as we explore these emerging communities in other well-known locales, including Miami, New Orleans and Chicago. See you there!