While working as a handyman in Los Angeles, Money Mark (née Mark Ramos-Nishita) was called to repair a gate at a house in the Hollywood Hills. At the time, the funky keyboardist wasn't playing too many gigs, but he had done plenty of writing and had a plethora of original material. Cue Fate: The home belonged to the Beastie Boys. A musical relationship sparked, and Money Mark became a member of the Beasties' Grand Royal posse, performing on both Check Your Head and Ill Communication. A solo career blossomed in '95 and Mark was able to put his quirky style in the spotlight with albums Mark's Keyboard Repair, Push the Button, Change Is Coming and this year's Brand New By Tomorrow.
The new album is mellower than the previous records, featuring a softer side of Mark's unique blend of funk, soul and pop that earned the musician a coveted spot at this year's South By Southwest music extravaganza.
Money Mark plays at Detroit Bar, 843 W. 19th St., Costa Mesa, (949) 642-0600. Sat., 9 p.m. $8. 21+.
Run, Run, as Fast as You Can!
"The Science of Gingerbread"
To our jaded, semi-adult minds, the thought of a museum devoting an exhibition to the science of gingerbread is rather lame. But I'm sure kids think differently, and there's no doubt they'll be entertained by the Taco Bell Discovery Science Center's new feature, "The Science of Gingerbread."
Beneath that giant cube looming above Interstate 5, participants can learn about the physics involved in combining maple with yeast and . . . zzzzzzz. What the kiddies willlove is the hands-on part, where they'll be able to make gingerbread and its subsequent manifestations: men, houses, even carousels.
Now, some gingerbread trivia courtesy of the delightfully nerdy Straight Dope syndicated column: In the late 16th century, at the court of Queen Elizabeth I, honored guests at court were sometimes presented with their portrait in gingerbread.
Start Your Holiday Swapping Early
Glass House Swap Meet
Like, really cheap.
And while I like buying nice things for myself, I like even more to buy my friends and family nice things—which is why events like the annual Glass House Swap Meet are perfect for rummaging around for gifts for the obligatory holiday gatherings.
The event is absolutely free to both vendors and its customers, so the Swap Meet acts more as a gesture of community-building than anything else. (Though, yeah, the companies get to make money, too.)
This year's Swap Meet features more than 30 booths from Alphacult, London Calling, Ambiguous, Black Market, Paul Frank and many others. Many kids flock to the Glass House for big names such as Paul Frank or Zoo York and end up falling in love with such little companies as To Die For Clothing or Paer.
Get there early to get dibs on the good stuff, and wander the many adorable vintage shops, record stores and galleries the Pomona Arts Colony has to offer afterward. At least you'll get all your shopping done at a discount—whether it's for you or not.
The Glass House Swap Meet at the Glass House, 200 W. Second St., Pomona, (909) 865-3802; www.theglasshouse.us. Sat., 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Free.