My sister was hit by a snowboarder when she was sixteen. On skis, just a couple of turns from the bottom of the hill - in plain sight of a SLOW sign. The snowboarder was young; not as young as my sister, but still, a young man. My parents, long-time skiers, contacted him directly, trying to see if they could get any results at all: any reparations for their high-school sophomore, laid up on the couch for innumerable weeks. There was nothing they could do. I remember feeling helpless as a child, watching the entire drama unfold. I can’t imagine what my parents must have felt. No one could help. No loopholes. No empathy, from anyone else involved.
There is a longstanding joke in the mainstream media that all lawyers are snakes. The word attorney no longer brings to mind the grainy black and white image of Gregory Peck defending the downtrodden as Atticus Finch. Certainly, in some cases, the joke must contain some shred of truth. But at Allen, Flatt, Ballidis & Leslie, the welcoming, family-like environment they’ve curated isn’t too far off from the home ambience of the fictional Finch family. Folks who actually want to do good in the world. Right wrongs. Obtain real results.
Suzanne Leslie is a managing partner and attorney at Allen Flatt for more than 30 years, and prides herself on the reputation they have built. “Our years of experience have given us more knowledge in the personal industry field than other law firms can claim. What sets us apart is exactly as our tagline says: experience, compassion, results.”
As a firm, Allen Flatt have helped many families through the emotional trauma of a great many personal injury cases. Though they have attorneys that focus on estate planning, preparing wills, trusts, and contest matters, personal injury hits the closest to home. “We care about our clients, and our primary focus is to help them deal with the difficulties of being involved in an accident- be it pedestrian accident, automobile accident, slip and fall, or dog bite.” Handling the claims process for their clients lets them pursue their medical recoveries in peace, unlike my sister, or my parents. Fighting a losing cause often takes more energy than simply healing - or letting someone else rest, to do battle with their own body and take the necessary steps to get back to normal: whatever the new normal looks like.
Offering a free consultation, with the promise that no recovery means no fee, attorneys like Suzanne offer their services on a personal level. “I started out in the personal injury field to help people. I want to make sure my clients feel taken care of through every second of their claim.” Recognized by the American Institute of Personal Injury Attorneys and the National Association of Professional Women, Ms. Leslie has recovered millions of dollars for clients and thousands of settlements for clients.
“Everyone in the firm shares compassion for the clients more than on a business level, and many of us have had first hand personal experience in what they may be going through,” she says.
As a leader in her field, it is imperative to stay abreast of the newest strictures and developments in insurance law. The more she knows, the better her chances of winning your case. Atticus Finch would probably tell you that winning isn’t everything. But sometimes, to folks like my parents, to whom winning would mean seeing my sister get the reparations for her accident paid out, and letting her find her way back to walking again, winning is the only thing.
Fetch a calendar and bark the dates for Yappy Hour, the monthly cocktail party for canines and their companions at The Ritz-Carlton, Laguna Niguel. Posh pups, haute hounds, and dapper doggies will enjoy complimentary house-made dog biscuits and refreshing libations, thanks to bacon, chicken, beef and vegan water, while their companions sip a glass of Mutt Lynch Unleashed Chardonnay, Merlot Over and Play Dead, or Chateau d’Og Cabernet Sauvignon. Cocktails, beer and a selection of barbecue items are also available for purchase. Supporting the resort’s Community Footprints program, proceeds from Yappy Hour benefit The Veterans Initiative™ of Canine Companions for Independence.
Release the Hounds for Yappy Hour 2018 on
With a dramatic increase in wounded veterans, The Veterans Initiative provides an opportunity for veterans to regain their independence through the support of Canine Companions assistance dogs. Canine Companions is a non-profit organization that enhances the lives of people with disabilities by providing highly-trained assistance dogs and ongoing support to ensure quality partnerships.
May 5, 2018
Indonesian satay? Thai meat balls? Boba tea? Tacos? Polish sausages? Grilled rice balls? Italian ice? Korean BBQ? Dosas? Yakitori? Vietnamese food? Musubi?
Indonesian satay? Thai meat balls? Boba tea? Tacos? Polish sausages? Grilled rice balls? Italian ice? Korean BBQ? Dosas? Yakitori? Vietnamese food? Musubi?
These are just a few of the tempting international treats that will be served by student clubs and non-profit organizations at Soka University’s 17th Annual International Festival on May 5, from 10:30 am – 5:00 pm. Admission is free. Parking on campus is $10 (cash) and carpooling is encouraged. The 103-acre Soka University campus is located at 1 University Drive in Aliso Viejo, CA off of Wood Canyon Drive. Exhibitor Registration is now open. www.soka.edu/festival.
Soka University is a private, non-profit, four-year liberal arts college and graduate program. SUA offers an 8:1 student/faculty ratio and an average class size of 12. Soka is ranked in the top 10 liberal arts colleges in California by USA Today and Top 10 Best Value among national liberal arts colleges by US News & World Report’s “Best Colleges 2018.”
All undergraduate students participate in a semester of study abroad during their junior year which is included in the tuition. Full tuition scholarships are available to eligible admitted students whose annual earned family income is $60,000 or less. The university is open to top students of all nationalities and beliefs and was founded upon the Buddhist principles of peace, human rights and the sanctity of life. About 60% of SUA’s students come from the US and 40% have come from 40 other countries. For more information: www.soka.edu.
Featuring Cats and Dogs, plus Fish, Birds and Frogs…and More!
OC Fair & Event Center - April 27 - 29
This annual family-friendly event features all creatures cute and cuddly, furry, feathered and scaled of all sizes, shapes and colors.
New to America’s Family Pet Expo for 2018 is the Sea Lion Splash Show; a unique mobile aquatic experience combining both marine fun and environmental education. Sea Lion Splash Show features rescued sea lions from both California and South America. Ready to thrill and excite audiences of all ages, the sea lions balance balls, shoot hoops, dance, shake their flippers, and even do a handstand or two.
Returning favorites to America’s Family Pet Expo include The Catit Playground - a popular interactive activity bringing a close-up view for guests to watch charming adoptable cats and kittens to see how they interact with different toys and people. Repticon, reptile show and sale offers hundreds of common and rare species of reptiles such as lizards, snakes, and spiders. Plus, the ever-popular Splash Dogs and The Great American Petting Zoo, family fun the whole family will enjoy.
In advance of America’s Family Pet Expo, kids can design and create a 10-gallon aquarium in the Kid’s Aquarium Contest. The aquariums will be on display throughout America’s Family Pet Expo and are judged according to age group and two categories – Natural and Creative. Also, for the aquatic enthusiast is the Aquascaping Contest, where contestants will compete to make the most beautiful, and natural underwater environment in a small aquarium.
Pet Adoptions will be handled onsite for those looking for that perfect animal addition to the family. There will be hundreds of animals hoping to find their “furever home” from local community partner organizations at the Pet Expo.
For more info and to purchase tickets online visit www.PetExpoOC.org. America’s Family Pet Expo is created, produced and managed by World Pet Association, Inc., a 68-year-old nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting responsible pet care. Kindly leave pets at home.
It’s impossible to say what we love most about our issue release parties, especially the most recent one at Tokyo Joe’s located at 27981 Greenfield Drive in Laguna Niguel.
Always made fresh-to-order, using the best ingredients possible, guests enjoyed sampling an array of delicious appetizers, including potstickers, sushi rolls, poke bowls and grilled chicken/brown rice bowls with a choice of specialty sauces. For info, visit www.tokyojoes.com.
We know we’re lucky to have such great relationships with our amazing advertisers and that getting together is always a celebration each month! We feel lucky to do what we love, and hope that you enjoy our publications as much as we do!
There are artists who write melodies for songs, artists who write lyrics and artists who perform. Rare are those who write and perform their own songs. Leiber and Stoller never sang a note, at least not well.
Doc Pomus and Mort Shulman did not perform their songs but that did not stop Pomus from shuffling on stage with his crutches, grabbing a microphone and trying. The Brill Building in New York City contained songwriters, lyricists and artists but only Neil Sedaka, Neil Diamond and Carole King were creative enough to step into the limelight and perform their own songs.
Many of the vocalists in the 1950’s and early 60’s wrote songs so they did not have to pay someone else for the rights to their song of choice. Others knew what style of music their voice range and talents could perform and felt compelled to prepare something they were vocally comfortable with. Still others had that song in their head, like Gary Troxel of the Fleetwoods, who could not stop until the melody was on paper or recorded as was the case in “Come Softly to Me.”
Life’s circumstances can motivate someone with a musical talent to document their feelings or just burst out in song. Bobby Vinton was serving his country in the U.S. Army when he penned “Mr. Lonely,” as was Buddy Knox (“Party Doll”). Other artists would record their song and find it covered by someone else who would produce the big hit. The song “Little Darlin” was written by Maurice Williams who recorded it with his group the Gladiolas in the back of a record shop. The song was released and picked up by a Canadian group, The Diamonds, who eclipsed the small record label distribution limitation and propelled “Little Darlin” to the top of the charts.
Paul Anka wrote over 500 songs, many of which he recorded and performed in personal appearances. It would be Frank Sinatra who would ‘borrow’ his work and make “My Way” a classic standard. He also turned out songs for such notables as Buddy Holly, Connie Francis, and Michael Jackson.
For over fifty years, Neil Sedaka has written, performed and produced a number of songs that he sang, and provided to other talent to sing. “Where the Boys Are,” was a hit for Connie Francis but “Oh, Carol,” “Calendar Girl,” “Breaking Up is Hard to Do,” “Love Will Keep Us Together,” and Solitaire, ” are all his words, lyrics, music and voice.
The writing of songs and the proper legal procedures to follow to ensure the artist is credited for its creation is a complicated and many times convoluted process. Lyricists must copyright their creation but can also be the musical arranger or composer. Each component of a song must recognize the creator. Lyricists, composers, arrangers, managers and publishers all are a part of this process of musical production that must be translated into a studio environment with instrumentation, engineering and an overall production effort to include distribution. It requires a collaborative effort where each individual entity plays a role. All participants must ensure they have documented their role for the potential remuneration that may follow.
Sadly, there were artists at every level, from song writing, performing, to publishing that were taken advantage of and never saw the financial reward for their efforts. Conversely, there were artists that followed the appropriate protocol and legally protected their rights to their creations. Even today, artists benefit from making one of the many memorable songs of the 50’s into a continual flow of financial reward. Many books and professional journal or newspaper articles have been written of those who were taken advantage of. Efforts have been made by people such as T. J. Labinsky, Jon Bauman (Sha Na Na), Rob and Laura Albanese of LAR Enterprises and Brian Beirne of Legendary Shows, to compensate many for their loss of earnings. It is not our intent to dwell on this ugly part of the industry of music, merely to point it out as a part of the history.
Since 1914 the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) has protected and enforced copyright laws and the collection of royalties from its members. Artists who understood the business side of the music industry registered their songs and recordings, as ASCAP would battle with radio stations over fees to be paid for playing the recorded music. Not to be outdone, the broadcast industry started its own licensing organization, Broadcast Music Incorporated (BMI). The influence of listeners and the public was now captured by BMI efforts to take on all performers and writers, including rhythm and blues and country music as opposed to ASCAP’s domination of the New York artists. Covering from Brooklyn to Beverly Hills, BMI treated live and recorded performances equally and used national sampling to track performances and popularity (Altschuler, 2003).
Many artists who wrote and sang their own music benefitted if they understood the parameters of the legal requirements. Fats Domino, Lloyd Price, Chuck Berry, Dick Dale, Lou Christie, Bobby Vinton and Little Richard, for instance, all benefitted regardless of who performed their music, and still do today. Others, such as Clyde McPhatter, Johnny Cash, Buddy Holly, Bobby Darin, Rick Nelson, Sam Cooke and Brook Benton all ensured their estates continue to receive payment for sales and air play on a compensatory basis. Still, others have sold their rights to their songs and music of their own volition.
Whether by manipulation, marketing or just basically understanding that music was changing in the 1950’s, the industry was finding it more complicated. Congress, to include then Senators John Kennedy and Barry Goldwater would team up to proclaim that “the airways of this country have been flooded with bad music since BMI was formed.” Classical and traditional music was under attack because the public’s taste had been ‘artificially stimulated’ by the conspiracy of radio station owners. The complications would continue unabated, even today.
Making Your Memories is a commentary on the music of the 1950’s and early 60’s. “Joe D” is an on-air talent for Los Angeles and Orange County based KSBR FM 88.5 HD-2 and is host of “MAKING YOUR MEMORIES” Sunday nights at 10PM. He is also author of “Making Your Memories with Rock & Roll and Doo Wop - -The Music and Artists of the 1950’s and early 60’s.” website: www.making-your-memories.com
Based on the screenplay by Marc Norman and Tom Stoppard adapted for the stage by Lee Hall
Music by Paddy Cunneen
Directed by Marc Masterson
Now through February 10, 2018
Young Will Shakespeare is desperate. He has writer’s block and owes two demanding producers a new comedy—a half-baked mess titled Romeo and Ethel, the Pirate’s Daughter. Enter his inspiration: Viola. Smart, beautiful and Will’s greatest admirer, she will stop at nothing—including breaking the law—to be in his play. As their love blossoms, so does his greatest masterpiece. Mistaken identities, ruthless scheming, and backstage theatrics make this romantic feast “a joyous celebration of theatre” (Daily Telegraph). For info, visit www.scr.org
February 27 – March 11, 2018 Segerstrom Hall
T he national tour of the Lincoln Center Theater Production of Rodgers & Hammerstein’s THE KING AND I will make its way to Segerstrom Center for the Arts February 27 – March 11, 2018. Laura Michelle Kelly stars as Anna Leonowens and Jose Llana as the King of Siam. Joan Almedilla will play Lady Thiang, with Brian Rivera as Kralahome, Q Lim as Tuptim, Kavin Panmeechao as Lun Tha, Anthony Chan as Prince Chulalongkorn, Rhyees Stump as Louis Leonowens and Patrick Boll as Captain Orton/Sir Edward Ramsey.
Director Bartlett Sher had this to say about the leads in THE KING AND I: “Jose was so superb on Broadway in The King and I that I begged him to join us on the tour, and l feel we are incredibly lucky to have him. He brings such joy and virility and strength to the King. And he is one of Broadway’s great talents.
“Laura Michelle has one of the best voices on Broadway matched with an extraordinary heart. Her work on Finding Neverland and Mary Poppins distinguished both of those shows with her natural grace and joy. She will be an exquisite Anna Leonowens.”
Tickets for THE KING AND I start at $29 and may be purchased online at SCFTA.org, the Box Office at 600 Town Center Drive in Costa Mesa or by calling (714) 556-2787. For inquiries about group ticket savings for 10 or more, call the Group Services office at (714) 755-0236. The 2 p.m. performance on Saturday, March 10, 2018 will include audio description, open captioning and sign-language interpretation.
February 21 - March 25, 2018 under the white-and-gold Big Top at the OC Fair & Event Center
A WAKING DREAM OF MEXICO
LUZIA takes you to an imaginary Mexico, like in a waking dream, where light (“luz” in Spanish) quenches the spirit and rain (“lluvia”) soothes the soul. Through a series of grand visual surprises and breathtaking acrobatic performances, LUZIA invites audiences to escape on a surrealistic journey through a sumptuous and vibrant world suspended somewhere between dreams and reality. Smoothly passing from an old movie set to the ocean to a smoky dance hall or an arid desert, LUZIA cleverly brings to the stage multiple places, faces and sounds of Mexico taken from both tradition and modernity. Rich in awe-inspiring moments, LUZIA enchants by incorporating rain into acrobatic and artistic scenes – a first for a Cirque du Soleil touring production.
When you think about a company having ‘investment experience,’ what image does that conjure up? Stodgy bankers wearing suits with mountains of paperwork? Or a streamlined company full of seasoned professionals ready to take care of your assets?
The team at American Mortgage Fund (AMF) is breaking the mold and putting it all back together in an entirely new fashion. With more than forty years of combined lending, finance and real estate acquisitions experience, the AMF team is quickly building their reputation as one of the best asset-backed funding groups in the business.
If you’re new to the area of personal investing, especially mortgage investing, you’ll want to work with someone who has the experience and expertise in structuring investments. David Crantz, principal member of the AMF team, states “the easiest way to get started is by putting money into a mortgage investment fund. Through that process, you can make connections with investment professionals who know how to find borrowers, choose profitable investments, and structure deals.”
Crantz adds, “real estate investments, either direct or derivative, have historically been among the safest forms of investing.” In addition to being safe, mortgage investing yields a substantially higher return than other fixed income instruments, such as bank deposits, CDs and bonds (to the tune of 11% vs. 1% - 3%). “In the long run, mortgage investing even outperforms the stock market,” he says. “This fact, coupled with the intrinsic safety of ‘brick and mortar’ assets make mortgage investing among the best options available in modern capital markets.”
Although many different types of investments relate to the same collateral, AMF deals with a diverse asset class. Returns may be higher with a direct investment, but so is the capital investment and investment horizon. Looking at factors like additional cash investments and tax rates can influence your investment decisions. So, you must ask the questions; Is it capital intensive? Are there capital gains to take advantage of when it comes to interest deduction? Are there lower taxes?
“Mortgage investments secures loans in real estate and generates returns from income - not from capital appreciation. Since mortgages usually mature in less than five years, the investment horizon is shorter and finite when compared to direct investment in real estate,” says Crantz. Single family homes, multifamily units, retail, office, and industrial are just some of the investments American Mortgage Fund structures.
Real estate borrowers often wish to take advantage of a purchase opportunity - a situation that requires cash liquidity or the ability to access immediate cash by utilizing the services of a private lender like AMF. Another scenario gives flexibility to borrowers that need it by allowing time to reorganize holdings and reestablish solid credit.
In some cases, borrowers do not fully meet the stringent credit and capacity requirements of an institutional lender, even though they may have sufficient collateral. For this situation, private loans can be a great win-win option for both parties. The borrower wins because he or she gets the loan they desire, and the private money lender, or investor, wins because they can create an opportunity to earn above-average returns.
“Our typical borrower is a self-employed individual with an immediate need for cash. They see an opportunity in hard money lending that allows for a quick close when banks are typically in a 3-4 month lead time.” With a maximum loan-to-value ratio of 55% on commercial and 65% on residential real estate, investors funds are conservatively structured to deliver an average portfolio yield, giving a typical 11% net on underlying property interests. All deals are sourced within the United States, using appraisal reports from nationally reputable third party companies.
HOW IT WORKS
American Mortgage Fund’s loans are asset-based with the real property as the basis for the lending decision. If a property is able to produce sufficient income, the note and the value of the property will fully secure the loan and provide adequate equity. In this program, the borrower’s credit is not an issue. Rather than focusing on the details of a borrower’s credit history, as institutional lenders would, the professionals at AMF concentrate their due diligence on the real estate collateral securing the loan.
“AMF only invests in mortgages secured by first deeds with a conservative loan-to-value ratio,” says Crantz. “For this reason, our investors have a substantial safety cushion in the event that the property value drops dramatically, thereby providing the best protection for the principal capital. Further, we diversify our investors’ capital across a broad range of geographic areas and assets.”
As private mortgage lenders, Crantz and his team provide the professional real estate investor and property owner with the ability to borrow on underwriting criteria not available through traditional institutional lenders. Among the other unique advantages of transacting with a company like AMF includes the speed of closing the transaction. American Mortgage Fund is able to close most loans within two weeks or less compared to the six week or longer timeframe required by an institutional lender.
The fund has a limited lifetime of three years, after which investments are liquidated and principal capital is returned to investors.
AMF’s collective industry experience instills confidence that they will be able to offer their investors consistent high yield returns and the highest level possible of investor services. “We’re passionate about giving you the returns you deserve after a lifetime of investing wisely,” adds Crantz.
If you’re looking for a wealth of experience in your investment strategy, American Mortgage Fund and trust deed investing is the perfect vehicle for you.
For more information, call (800) 359-1111 or visit www.earn11.com. American Mortgage Fund is located at 4 Hutton Centre Drive in Santa Ana.