SK Kakraba, Ghanaian Xylophonist

Photo of SK Kakraba at his home in Highland Park, Los Angeles. Photo by Jim Newberry.

I recently discovered (via this LA Weekly article), that there’s a world class Ghanaian xylophonist (gyil player to be precise) living in my neighborhood, so naturally I contacted him to see if I could arrange a photo session. His name is SK Kakraba, and he kindly invited me over to his house, where I shot these photos today. Angeleno’s can catch him this Friday performing at the beautiful Getty Museum.

Photo of SK Kakraba at his home in Highland Park, Los Angeles. Photo by Jim Newberry.

Typewriter Repair Shop in Highland Park, L.A.

Walking around Highland Park recently, I saw an old sign that said “Typewriter Repair Shop.” Yet another business made obsolete in the digital age…or so I thought. But I looked under the sign, through the glass door, and noticed activity inside. I got closer, took a peek, and sure enough there were stacks of beautiful old typewriters, and a man working on one.

It turns out business is booming at U.S. Office Machines, where Ruben and his brother Danny spend their days bringing new life to old typewriters. They both learned the trade from their father, Luis Flores, who started the Highland Park shop in 1962 (it’s been at three different locations in the neighborhood, all on Figeuroa). Danny (2nd from top) and Ruben (3rd from top) kindly allowed me to take pictures.

 

U.S. Office Machines, typewriter repair shop in Los Angeles. Photo by Jim Newberry.
U.S. Office Machines, typewriter repair shop in Los Angeles. Photo by Jim Newberry.
U.S. Office Machines, typewriter repair shop in Los Angeles. Photo by Jim Newberry.
U.S. Office Machines, typewriter repair shop in Los Angeles. Photo by Jim Newberry.
U.S. Office Machines, typewriter repair shop in Los Angeles. Photo by Jim Newberry.

Photos by Jim Newberry