Category Archives: West Coast USA News

The West Coast Get Down Breakdown

Step aside, New York City– the West Coast is here to establish its thriving jazz scene.

 

What began decades ago in cultural hot spots like Harlem and New Orleans is now sampling heavy influence from all over. Jazz music, whose prime component favors unique improvisations and has always welcomed new ideas, has forever been a melting pot of imprints. The jazz of now savors rhythms from Philadelphia, sultry chords from Chicago, and a whole lot of flavor from– yes, Los Angeles.

 

East coast to west coast, the genre is transcendent. LA-hailing saxophonist Kamasi Washington is not only bring jazz to the California scene, but back into the contemporary scene. Besides famously collaborating with the likes of Kendrick Lamar and Snoop Dogg, he released his now triple-lauded album “The Epic” two years ago, which featured a full string section, 20-person choir, and a collective performing under the title, West Coast Get Down.

 

Just this winter, four of those members released solo jazz albums of their own, each approaching a contemporary take of the genre in their own stylized way:

 

Thundercat’s Drunk is a celebration of modern afrocentric acoustics and 80s hazy electric, blended with finger-picked six-string bass harmonies. There’s an east coast melancholy to the tone and lyrics, but a west coast flare which features cameos by both Kendrick Lamar and Pharrell Williams.

 

Older brother to Thundercat, drummer Ronald Bruner Jr.’s Triumph blends a mesmerizing jazz with modern funk and expansive, atmospheric prog-rock. Consider it neo-soul, a traditional old-school jazz feel mixed addictingly with a Princey swagger.

 

Cameron Graves’ Planetary Prince delivers astronomic energy, a reverberating momentum driven by funk, harmony, and wild eighth notes. Grave’s piano serves as percussion and swerving melody, generating tracks that are as big as they are bright– just bright enough in fact, you won’t fear weird blasting it with the windows down en route to a day at the beach.

 

Last but not least, is Miles Mosley, whose album Uprising draws upon inspirations from the politically-infused jazz of the 1970s. Nostalgic of Harlem, but ringing with LA visions, Mosley weaves nostalgic yet hopeful orchestrations of strings and horns with his upright bass.

 

 

Statewide Health Plan In California Possible

California is poised to make a universal health care plan available to residents who live in the state. Lawmakers are in the home stretch of working out the details and hope to be able to finalize a plan as soon as possible. The plan that will be created will give insurance coverage to undocumented residents as well. This is a first in the country, but at least the state is willing to try to come up with a solution that works for everyone instead of the disaster that has been created with Obamacare.

 

It seems as though everyone will benefit from the plan that is created, even seniors who have Medicare and other federal and state assistance. The one thing that needs to be addressed is how much it will cost. There will likely be a process in getting money from Washington to flow to the funded program as it will be like a trust fund that will provide coverage for everyone. If California can show that this type of health plan can work, then it might be an idea that is adopted by other states. California is one of the largest states in the country, and to give everyone healthcare is a small challenge in itself, but if it’s run the right way and the system works, then it would be something that would help so many people who can’t afford the coverage that is needed for basic services.

 

The system is easy to understand. Residents wouldn’t buy an individual policy that changes every month. They would simply pay a tax fee that would go into an account for the coverage. If the fees are adjusted the right way, some people might pay less for coverage than they would if they had private insurance, which would also be a benefit for many people who pay based on how much money they make.

 

Mountain Areas of Northern CA Brace for More Storm Impact

As a major storm approaches the Sierra Nevadas, people are preparing for the worst. The National Weather Service has issued a winter storm warning which will start Saturday at 4pm and last for 24 hours. More than a foot of heavy snow is expected to fall in the mountains during this period, and gusts may reach up to 50 mph.

 

So far, parts of Highway 120 and Highway 41 are closed. Previous storm damage has made it necessary to close the roads to motorists. Emergency road repairs are underway, yet it can be difficult to complete comprehensive repair during the winter. Drivers who plan on heading to Yosemite or other areas in the mountains should take Highway 140 instead.

 

Highway 50 is down to one lane in one area due to a landslide near Pollock Pines. Anyone planning on going to Lake Tahoe should plan extra time.

 

Heavy snow could cause additional road closures, so it’s always a good idea to check the road conditions before traveling. Many people are expected to head up to the mountains on Friday before the storm hits.

 

Just south of Lake Tahoe at Phllips Station, the snowpack so far is about 179% of average. In other areas, the level is closer to 200% of average. These numbers can be remarkable on their own, but they’re even more so given the fact that much of California has been facing drought conditions for five years.

 

This amount of precipitation is great news for the most part, but some structures, roads, and public workers have struggled to keep up with it. Dams are overflowing, creeks are running more like rivers, and flooding has been a common occurrence this year. In some areas, the roads have succumbed to the elements, but the state and regional departments in charge of them will have a chance to catch up with repairs this spring.

 

Major Beer Business Battle Brewing in the West Coast

The Big Beer oligopoly reaches out to all global corners, particularly in the United States, one of the most lucrative beer markets in the world. The current beer business battle is unfolding in the West Coast, specifically in the Pacific Northwest, where two locally respected beer brands are being unceremoniously turned over to a Big Beer conglomerate.

 

According to a March report published by the Seattle Times, Olympia and Rainier are now in the hands of Columbia Distributing, a West Coast beer giant based in Portland. The two local beers are popular among locals and visitors alike; until recently, they were part of the sizable Pabst Brewing portfolio and handled by three families in Washington State.

 

The aforementioned brewing families were caught off guard by the harsh decision by Pabst Brewing. At this time, the three families are now plaintiffs in a federal lawsuit against Pabst; the claims are based on breach of contract and unethical business practices.

 

The Washington families were not the only ones surprised by the Big Beer episode. Business analysts who follow the brewing industry were also shocker, albeit to a lesser degree.

 

It so happens that Americans are not drinking as much beer as they used to. Big Beer thrives on growth; when it cannot find this crucial aspect of business, it tends to move towards consolidation for the purpose of streamlining. The problem is that Pabst essentially handled two local beer brands to a single Big Beer operator that now essentially controls all beer distribution across the Pacific Northwest.

 

Beer market analysts are concerned that the abruptness of the Pabst incident could become a new and uncomfortable standard in the brewing industry. Consolidation is usually a longer process of buyouts and warnings.

 

With Columbia handling a venerable beer such as Rainier, beer lovers in Southern California may be introduced to a new brand; however, this will be done at the cost of business lost by three distributors in Washington that never got a chance to expand their market because of Big Beer operators such as Columbia. These drastic moves do not always translate into savings for beer drinkers, who will probably pay the same price for Olympia and Rainier.

 

Rain Catches Padres by Surprise

Following a rain storm that dumped more than 9 inches in some places of San Diego, Petco Park could not escape the flooding from a recent winter storm on the west coast of the United States. While grounds crews were busy getting ready to lay sod for the upcoming season on Monday, mother nature sent downtown San Diego a visit by bringing with it enough precipitation to exhaust the drainage system built into the Padre’s home stadium.

Fox News 5 of San Diego reported that this recent storm has contributed to the overflow of the Lower Otay Reservoir that contains much of the city’s imported drinking water. According to the news source, the last time the reservoir flooded was in 2011.

The recent rain storms on the west coast have been a huge relief for many parts of the state, who have been in a drought for more than five years. The U.S. Drought Monitor is reporting that 17% of the state now remains in a drought, as opposed to the near 100 percent number at this time last year. San Diego’s recent rainstorm was officially reported to have dumped more than 2-3 inches by the National Weather Service.

As crews at Petco Park knew the weather was coming, they began to lay sod Monday morning until rain began to puddle in various places throughout the outfield. In less than twenty four hours, the field began to look unrecognizable from the recent moisture. There has been no damage reported from the water and crews expect to resume laying sod once the moisture clears.

Thankfully for the San Diego baseball team, they were away practicing at their Spring training in the Phoenix desert. The Padres will wrap up Spring Training on March 30 in Scottsdale, Arizona.

 

Giants Look to Compete Against Cubs

Heading into the 2016 major-league baseball playoffs, the San Francisco giants were considered one of the favorites to advance to the World Series. The Giants were fan favorites and expert picks due to their recent successes that includes winning 3 championships in the past 7 years. Their goal of winning another title seemed to get off to a great start after they won the Wild Card game in the National League Playoffs over the New York Mets. While they started off great, a recent news article (http://www.espn.com/mlb/story/_/page/playoffs16_nldsgame3sfchc/nlds-chicago-cubs-san-francisco-giants-mega-preview-win-game-3) has pointed out that the Giants are in a tough fight against the Chicago Cubs.

 

On Friday and Saturday night against the Cubs, the Giants got off to a tough start. In Game 1 of the Divisional Round of the playoffs, the Cubs ended up scoring a key run in the bottom of the 8th inning and held on to win a tight game by the score of 1-0. During Game 2, the Cubs started off quite hot and ended up winning by the score of 5-2 despite losing their starting pitcher early in the game due to injury.

 

After the first two games were played in Chicago, the series now has shifted to San Francisco where the Giants will host Game 3 on Monday night and potentially Game 4 on Tuesday night if the Giants are able to win on Monday. Monday night has a lot of potential to be an absolute classic matchup. The Giants will be led by Madison Bumgarner who is well regarded for being one of the best playoff pitchers of all time. The Cubs, on the other hand, will be led by Jake Arrietta who is the reigning Cy Young award winner.

 

If the Giants are able to get by the Cubs in Game 3, they still have a tough road ahead as they will have to win both Game 4 and Game 5 in order to advance. The winner of hte series will end up facing either the Washington Nationals or the Los Angeles Dodgers in National League Championship Series.

 

Raiders Continue Success in Win Over Chargers

Coming into the 2016 NFL season, the Oakland Raiders were considered by many NFL experts to be one of the teams in the league with the most potential for improvement. While they fell short of team goals last year, the Raiders are led by a number of young stars including quarterback Derek Carr, receivers Amari Cooper and Michael Crabtree, and linebacker Khalil Mack. According to a recent news article (http://www.raiders.com/news/article-1/Five-Questions-Answered-In-The-Oakland-Raiders-Win-Over-The-San-Diego-Chargers/e5445694-b1d8-47db-bdb4-01ae0dca6795), the first five weeks of the NFL season have shown just how good the Raiders can end up being.

 

On Sunday, the Raiders were very dominant offensively and ended up beating division rival San Diego Chargers by a score of 34 to 31. This win helped the Raiders to improve their record to an impressive score of 4 wins and 1 loss. The most impressive feat for the Raiders is that they were once again led by their young stars. Derek Carr is considered by many to be a top-tier quarterback and he as able to throw two touchdown passes, one of which went to Amari Cooper.

 

Thanks to the win, the Raiders now look like they are ready to take over the Denver Broncos as the top team in the division. The Broncos looked great to start the season, but struggling to play without their starting quarterback, Trevor Simien. In his replacement, Paxton Lynch was not able to get control of the offense and the Broncos lost at home to the Atlanta Falcons.

 

After yesterday’s win and the Bronco’s loss, the Raiders are now tied for first place in the division and actually own the tiebreaker over the Broncos. If the season was to end today, the Raiders would actually own the top seed in the AFC Playoffs. While the Raiders have gotten off to a very good start, they doe have a number of tough contests ahead of them. The team will still have to play the Broncos twice and need to continue to play well in order to win the division and make the playoffs.

 

 

QVC Continues to Expand Footprint by Building New Distribution Center in California

QVS is well known for being the owner and operator of the Shopping Network on television and also being one of the largest e-retailers in the world. While the company has a very dedicated group of customers and has hundreds of millions of dollars in sales each year, their lack of presence in retail malls can be a disadvantage. The main way that they are able to compete with other retailers is finding the quickest ways to get products to their consumers. According to a recent news article (http://www.businessinsider.com/qvc-opens-first-west-coast-distribution-center-2016-8), QVC is taking major steps to ensure they are able to service their customers’ needs on the West Coast.

 

QVC recently announced that they would be opening their first distribution center on the West Coast of the United States. While the company has typically operated out of distributions centers in the Midwest, the growing communities located across the West Coast and favorable demographics made it perfectly clear that having a West Coast distribution center would be a huge advantage. This should greatly cut down the speed and cost that it takes to deliver products to customers on that side of the Untied States.

 

Due to its proximity to a variety of highways and close proximity to the major cities in Southern California, QVC ultimately chose to Ontario, California as the destination for their new facility. The online retailer has been preparing the new space for months, but officially held its opening ceremony on Monday.

 

While the facility will be advantageous for QVC, it will please a variety of other groups of people as well. The Inland Empire and Ontario, CA area should experience some modest job growth. The company has already hired around 500 people to start working and another 500 people are expected to be hired to manage the new 1 million square foot property in the next few years. The new property will also be carbon footprint conscious, as it will greatly reduce the amount of miles that QVC needs to drive. It has been estimated that trucking miles will be reduced by as much as 10 million per year.

 

Real Estate on the West Coast

The real estate market is booming in many areas. Not only are prices going up, but buyers are searching for inventory on the market. If you want to buy a home, you will have to fight off other buyers for it. This kind of market is great for people who are in the real estate business. On the west coast, the real estate market is typically more volatile than in other areas of the country. Over the long term, a lot of people are looking to make a difference in their portfolio. Investing in real estate is a great start to this process. In places like California, some places have seen a huge increase in real estate prices in just the past few years. If you are going to invest in a home, you need to make sure you are thinking about the long term implications.

 

Financing

 

One of the most important parts of buying a home is finding the financing for it. A lot of people are excited about buying a home, and they end up borrowing much more money than they can pay back. This is never a good thing, and it ends up dragging down their personal finances in the future. If you are going to purchase a home, it is important to look at the purchase from a long term view. Working with a professional can help you during this process.

 

Future Changes

 

In the coming years, a lot of people are worried about what the economy is going to do. If you want to take the next step in the process of investing or buying a home, you have to be willing to risk your money. If the real estate market crashes again, you still have to make payments on your mortgage. That is why it is so important to be conservative with your purchases. A home is one of the biggest assets that you will ever own, and you have to take emotion out of the equation when looking at buying a home. This is the best way to have success in this area.

 

On the west coast, real estate prices are going up rapidly. It will be interesting to see if this trend continues in the future or if this is just a bubble waiting to pop.

 

How About A Trip to the Sci-Fi Version of the West Coast?

The west coast of the United States is unique in many ways. In the 19th century, as people moved west, an enormous number of great discoveries were made. Over the years, as the industrial revolution exploded to change the world, the west coast — and elsewhere — changed. In the 20th century, a number of amazing artistic changes combined with advancements in engineering and technology. This led to architectural experimentation on a grand scale.

 

People wish to visit the amazing sites of various structures and properties to look at the glory of mid-20th century architecture. Tourists interested in seeing such structures are able to look at something extremely interesting. The old architecture was once intended to be the architecture of the future. Interestingly, this “old modernism” still presents a glimpse into the possible future of what real estate may look like.

 

Looking at the design of a number of these properties can lead one into thinking he or she is peering into the set of a new science-fiction film. Maybe the person is watching and old sci-fi television show. In reality, the person is peering at architecture that is decades old and, ironically, remains an image of a possible future.

 

The west coast’s “modern utopia” is home to some truly stunning and brilliant works of futuristic art and architecture. There are so many wonderful reasons to visit the west coast of the United States. A trip to see all these unique architectural designs is almost like visiting a museum weaved into the landscape of a state. Actually, doing so is not so much “almost like” as much as it actually is. The uniqueness of examining such things is what makes these sojourns so memorable.

 

A visit to the west coast can encompass many different adventures. Sightseeing is probably one that people are most interested in when they hope to absorb the glory and grandeur of the Golden State of California and other points west. For a truly unique sightseeing experience,visiting all these neo-futurist architecture sights is worth investment.