Thursday, June 30, 2016


  Miss Lela Brown struck me as having almost too much talent and poise for a pre-teen rapper when I photographed her live show in 2014. Unreal! This very week she graduated to her own Disney show, for all the FAQs click LINK


 6.5.16 at Skinny's Lounge in NOHO (North Hollywood, L.A.) provided the rare treat of singer/guitarists Arwen Lewis and her father Peter Lewis, once of 1960s' psychedelia's best live band Moby Grape with its astonishing frontline of three singer/guitarists amidst its five strong songwriters' lineup.

  It proved a great acoustic set by Arwen and her dad, whom I hadn't seen nor photographed since a backstage snapshot 50 years ago (Click LINK for same.) Punchline: no retouching whatsoever on him, just color balancing from stage lighting! We of his contemporaries should all be so lucky.

With her Hollywood pedigree (although they reside in a wondrous ranch site quite aways from L.A.,) Arwen of course was an engaging performer with her clear soprano which bends around ballads or rings out true on the hard rock. Both sang on Grape material "Hey Grandma," "Fall On You" plus others, with a plaintive "Tennessee Waltz" amid a few other covers. Peter Lewis showed his renowned proficiency on lap steel, a weird double-neck electric Ovation and acoustic guitars. They return to this venue on July 17, 2016, so you locals, don't miss the chance to witness them firsthand...
 Purchase her fun cd or downloads of "Arwen Lewis" which is all Moby Grape covers at Arwen Lewis' website LINK. I would say it's worth just for their stunning reinterpretation of "Indifference" were not the whole album so great!

 Opening act Dani Hagen quite impressed with her onstage poise, comeliness, assurance and wry singer/songwriter material, one of which featured the lyrics "please come home, please come I can send you away!"


 photographer unknown, Scotty Moore and Elvis Presley
R.e. R.I.P. Scotty Moore, guitarist for Elvis Presley and for those wondering about the context of hearing this sort of music in a vacuum for the first time: I was just a wee tyke, but when my mother's maid found the one R&B radio station in our area that indeed played the then spankin' new Elvis' "Hound Dog" in complete R&B solidarity, that's when the Road To Ruin began instantaneously. Thought young HH "This is WAY better than Perry Como!"

Tuesday, June 14, 2016


This was an emergency photo session of five giant 40-foot rabbits in downtown Los Angeles (since they they were slated to leave within a single week) with esteemed rabbit owner Jeremy White, lead singer/ songwwriter/ guitarist/ harmonica player of esteemed band The Blessings (see LINK, LINK or LINK.)

The Brobdingnagian rabbits were a free to the public art installation called "Intrude" by Australian artist Amanda Parer (website: LINK) which has toured many major cities in the United States over the course of Spring 2016.

Lit from within, the inflatable rabbits were quite realistically depicted in genuine lepus poses, according to Jeremy, owner of white rabbit Marshmallow. (Long before the incompatible hunting dogs, I too had a pet rabbit named Pubic Hare.)

Of course instead of looking out
for art vandals to the fragile pieces or far worse, Security chose to try to stop our session in the midst of a veritable barrage of phone selfies by the surrounding public. "No professionals allowed!" they claimed saying it wasn't a public art installation (huh?) but an "event." So we just avoided them.
Lastly, my favorite photo from
the shoot herein since I also like whatever it is that the young girl is doing back there.

Tuesday, June 7, 2016


Upon recommendation of a good friend I enjoyed the recent 6-episode limited series of Le Carre`s The Night Manager. Casting of Elizabeth Debicki as a trophy girlfriend greatly benefited from costumer and stylist who knew EXACTLY how this character should look as a mega-rich person's arm candy plus what that really entails (even shows her prep toilette to become perfect the second she arises. I've no patience with stylists/casting directors who don't realize looking rich and spectacular is a full time job, and who cast "anyone" in these roles.) She played younger than her earlier The Man From U.N.C.L.E remake (in fact in her Night Manager entrance I thought the super-rich guy had arrived with a damn teenager) so she can act. 

Hugh Laurie roils in full Patrick McGoohan charming villainy form and it's fun to watch his technique; Tom Hiddleston will always be our favorite vampire since Spike, no matter what James Bond heights he soon attains. This is one of the few series where the super-rich at play actually look super-rich. Escapist locales? Breezy, balmy Mallorca, Baleric Islands, Spain; Marakesh, Morocco; Zermatt, Kanton Wallis, Switzerland; London, England; Cairo, Egypt... Oh yeah, it's a spy story regarding international illegal munitions...So... recommended, despite some brutal violence.

Sunday, June 5, 2016


 Above, guest photographer © Kurt Ingham.

 Smoke from yesterday's Calabasas wildfire blowing past where we live.

Saturday, June 4, 2016


The Wild Hairs, stylin' all female band of a while back, the Aquanet '80s. Left to right: Elaine Drake, April Carson Hailer, (Kat) Trash, Sharon Hannon and with the Pre-Raphaelite hair Tammy McNeil, who zoomed off with Billy Idol on the back of his motorcycle impromptu post-gig one time (for once I was way too sick to shoot that show.) The idea of the shoot was Meet the Beatles/Robert Freeman strong side-key lighting. A year later this exact same lighting setup was seen on a Van Halen LP cover...

The Wild Hairs were prone to musical chairs bandmember lineup changes over the years, so here's two other configurations of which I did studio sessions... 


Mobile phone photograph: Mr. Twister and Sarabelle, not the Harlan Ellison post-apocalyptic tale. Despite it grisly denouement, we women nonetheless liked the film of Ellison's book because Don Johnson was so cute then, and of course the dog...


Rest in peace Muhammad Ali, Champion, conscientious objector to the war in Vietnam, media hero.  Story of this amazing photograph: LINK*. I consider the uncropped pic above by (fair use) © Neil Leifer for Sport Illustrated to be the equivalent of Ed Caraeff's Hendrix burning the guitar at Monterey Pop Festival, one for the ages and forever, transcending its own specialty field...

He may have been the Mouth that Roared, but he stood by his convictions and paid the price... Fortunately, he received the Presidential Medal of Freedom in his lifetime...

There will be many erudite media pieces on Ali's legendary boxing career or even his physical woes (he had Parkinson's Disease and much damage from the boxing ring) in the days to come. Here then is a fan's personal story from the era after Ali's retirement, on his sterling qualities as a human being, from someone in the music business well acquainted with celebrity ups and downs:

It was just another amazing evening circa 1984 at the Magic Castle, Hollywood (Ed- a private magicians' club in a unique castellated building at an astonishing location for views in the Hollywood Hills) watching awesome shows, going into rooms most people weren't allowed to enter...laughing and loving it all...when what do my wondering eyes see?? Muhammad Ali, sitting alone in the dining room with his body guards. My BFF tripped/threw/shoved me into the room where I find myself crying from joy at meeting Muhammad Ali. He literally sat me on his lap and performed numerous magic tricks for my friend & me. I couldn't even speak. I was in awe of this gentle giant...I had him sign a check of mine because I had no paper. Friend & I were entertained by Ali who allowed no one to interfere with our conversation & endless magic tricks. I later wrote him at his house thanking him for this great evening and I wished him a happy birthday. This resulted in an amazing friendship & his letter writing every year. He sent me autographed photos and several cherished items. Ali was one of the kindest gentlemen I ever met who thanked me every time I sent him a birthday card. I'm so blessed he touched my life. I love you Muhammad Ali...thank you for being such a class act all the time.
-Cindy Kona 
KonaCindy Productions
5.4.16, Hawaii


Thursday, June 2, 2016


Disgusting!!! An out and out rights grab!  The country of France has ruled that legendary music photographer Gered Mankowitz (The Rolling Stones, Jimi Hendrix, everybody) did not do "original" photography work in the 1960s r.e. his Hendrix portraiture.

Note that this LINK* refers to Mankowitz' wholly justified lawsuit to stop unauthorized reproduction and actual changing the image of his Hendrix photo by strangers to suit a commercial advertisement.

The one frame, a solo shot not seen in this fair use proof sheet above from the same session, according to the country of France and its © laws, is not original, with their "explanation": the Court held that the framing, background, and the choice of black and white were fairly common for this type of portrait. 

The photographer then explained the choices he made in relation to the posture of the subject, his costume and general attitude. The Court then found that, since the photographer failed to give sufficient explanations about these choices, he failed to establish that his photograph was original. One presumes the Louvre must now deem DaVinci's Mona Lisa portrait as unoriginal, since it was done for a client and reflects the client's visual wishes rather than the creative skill of the artist who just places Lisa del Giocondo in front of a landscape. These are hard times for Francophiles nowadays...

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