What’s Your Resolution? L.A.’s Creative Class Tells All

Every year, we make a resolution. Some of us are, uh, erm, more resolute about these little lists than others. And so I queried people in L.A.’s nightlife scenes—everyone from restaurant owners, chefs, DJs, performers, and photographers—about their 2009 resolutions, and their success rates, as well as their promises to themselves for 2010. Here’s to a brand, spanking new year. Let’s hope this one’s better than the last one!

Jackie Beat, drag performer, genius. What was your resolution this year and did you keep it?: “I cannot even remember my resolution for this year.  It probably had something to do with my weight.  Did I keep it?  Sadly, no.  BURP!” In 2010?: “My New Year’s Resolution is to be more gentle and loving towards myself!”

Mick Cole, DJ and promoter, Moonshadows and Monday Social What was your resolution this year and did you keep it?: “Quit smokin’ ‘n’ stop drinkin’. No “ In 2010?: “Turn the music up and the keep the vibes positive.”

Ken Jordan, The Crystal Method: What was your resolution this year and did you keep it?: “Finish and release a great new album.  I think we did.” In 2010?: “Surf… A lot.”

Ana Calderon, DJ What was your resolution for this year and did you keep it?: “My resolution from 2009 was to become my own boss… strangely enough, it was the first resolution I’ve ever kept. On january 20th, the day of Barack Obama’s inauguration, I called my boss of four years, Mr. Steve Aoki, and quit my job over at Dim Mak records. I then went on an adventure of not knowing where the next paycheck would come from but an understanding that I was in charge of my own professional destiny for the first time since I was a teenager. i officially became a full time DJ and must admit, best year of my life so far.” In 2010?: “2010 is the year of travel. I hope to hop around as many continents as possible. Yah, much of it will most likely go hand in hand with DJ tour dates, but travel nonetheless. Oh, I also resolve to stop drinking tequila, the devil’s juice.”

Mister Cartoon, LA tattoo and graffiti artist. What was your resolution this year and did you keep it?: “Stop cursing so much in front so much in front of my kids!! Did I keep it? Fuck no.” In 2010?: “Slow down and spend more time with my family.”

Luke Nero, promoter Mr. Black LA What was your resolution this year and did you keep it?: “To meet Tony Ward and I did that. In 2010?: “Next year’s resolution is to fuck him.”

Mario Melendez, owner of King King nightclub in Hollywood: What was your resolution this year and did you keep it?: “My resolution for last year was to stop getting parking tickets, and I didn’t get a single one. In 2010? “I would like to produce three new musicals for the King King, and get my 1975 Argosy fixed up in time for Burning Man.”

Christian Meadows, guitarist of Los Angeles rockers After Midnight Project: What was your resolution this year and did you keep it?: “My New Year’s resolution for 2009 was to work as hard as I could for the band and by the end of the year be playing huge shows. I did keep it. Tonight we just finished up the year playing a sold-out show in Detroit with 30 Seconds to Mars. It is interesting what happens when you put your heart and soul into something 100 percent. In 2010?: “To write a ton of music , get in amazing shape , eat healthy and spend more time letting the ones I care about know how much they mean to me and appreciative I am of how supportive they have been through this crazy time.”  

Christian Schultz of Studio Collective, boutique design agency. What was your resolution for this year and did you keep it?: “To maintain our respective, current design positions……..and no, we were all cast aside to find a new path. In 2010?: To be so successful with our new design firm [ studio collective ] that we can stop jockeying for our sole parking space.”


Daisy O’Dell, DJ What was your resolution for this year and did you keep it?: “I was asked my opinion on New Years resolution last year about this time and my response was: They are wonderful ambitions, but made to be broken. They then asked, If I would make one this year and if so, what it would be? I will, but I always keep my resolutions private. I hate to publicly fail at anything. Sadly, even with the best intentions, I have very little willpower. In the end I did make a resolution, and did break it.” In 2010?: “My view has shifted and now I care slightly less about public failure and so here it is: I resolve to spend more time with my family and friends in 2010. We are all busy, but I am guilty of letting work almost completely dominate my life. My job is fun, but it’s demands leave little time to connect with the people outside my professional scope. My family and friends are spread over countries and continents, but this year I will make the effort to see much more of the people I love.”

Mr. White, DJ. What was your resolution this year and did you keep it?: “Last year my resolution was to run/exercise more. And yes I kept it. In 2010?: That’s why this year my resolution is only to stretch my fingers before each set. ”

Nic Adler, owner of the Roxy.2009: What was your resolution this year and did you keep it?: “Not to use plastic bags (85% kept it).” In 2010?: “Find ways to get people motivated to better their community.”

Mary Weiland, author of Fall to Pieces. What was your resolution for this year and did you keep it?: “Often the New Year’s resolution is a set up for failure and feeling bad about myself so, two years ago I stopped making them. Every year on my birthday I pick three things that I’d like to accomplish. I try to keep them fun so I don’t feel bad if I they don’t happen. Two years ago the goal was to master the splits. Not something I would have beat myself up for if I didn’t follow through. Last year my goal was just to finish Fall to Pieces.” In 2010?: “Once again this year I’m keeping it simple and fun. I want to learn how to roller skate backwards and travel somewhere that allows me to sit on a beach and do nothing, perfect for a procrastinator.”

Droog, DJ crew What was your resolution this year and did you keep it?: “To start a label, travel Djing and win a lottery. Two out of three ain’t bad!” In 2010?: “To keep pushing good music, including our own, through our label Culprit, and to continue transforming our “Bunker” space from a world-class afterparty den into a world-class studio.  While still having weekend-long afterparties, of course!”

Austin Young, photographer to the stars. What was your resolution this year and did you keep it? : “To quit smoking: yes. To publish a book of my art: no. To make another feature film: no. To get in shape and lose weight: yes, I lost 15 pounds. more to go. To have a show at a museum: yes, my show with Fallen Fruit, EATLACMA runs from Febuary through November at LACMA. In 2010?: To spend more quality time with friends and enjoy life more. To publish a book of my art. To make another feature film. To get in shape and lose weight. To have a solo show of my new work at a museum or gallery.”

DJ PAUL V. (Club Bootie LA) What was your resolution this year and did you keep it?: “My 2009 resolutions included always finding & posting the YouTube videos that everyone on Facebook would want to repost for days and days. Yet my other resolution was steadfastly refusing to join Twitter (and I’m still Twitter-free).” In 2010?:”My 2010 resolutions are to break my Facebook habit, break my nicotine habit, and break my habit of actually believing that ANY politicians ever put the citizens of this country first. Yup—I have ’Democratic Party Buyer’s Remorse’ now.”

Cody DeBacker, Founder, Smoke and Mirrors LIfe production What was your resolution this year and did you keep it?: “To no longer relive the past, and instead focus on building the future.  I have completely moved forward in every aspect.” In 2010?: “Party all the time, every time.”

Matthew Cape, owner of Vinolio restaurant What was your resolution for this year and did you keep it?: “It was to open a friendly neighborhood eatery with gourmet food at a peasant price. And yes I kept my resolution.” In 2010?: “My New Year’s resolution is to make the restaurant as green as possible, using recycled materials as far as to go boxes, pizza boxes, bags and so on. And continue to use organic products as much as I can.”

Chef Ludo Lefebvre What was your resolution this year and did you keep it?: “Hmmm, I don’t know if I really had one. It is hard to set resolutions. I just try to be happy and do the best I can. Why put myself through the agony of failing? I change my mind all the time so if I set a resolution I would probably just change my mind 50 times and drive myself crazy. I guess this is why LudoBites works for me. I am always changing my mind. Maybe I should work on not changing my mind but I get bored.” In 2010?: “To make a resolution.”

Dan Wilcox, KCRW DJ. What was your resolution this year and did you keep it? “My New Year’s Resolution for 2009 was to not get my wife pregnant. Was I able to keep it?  See attached…” image In 2010?: “Spend more time with my newborn son Gordon.”

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