When I was 18, Wendy Yao was the shit. She was only 17, and she was the drummer in all-girl indie punk trio Emily's Sassy Lime, who had a record out (Desperate, Scared but Social) on Kill Rock Stars. Nearly 10 years later, Wendy is still the shit. After graduating from Stanford, she set up shop in L.A.'s Chinatown, where she can be found DJing at Mountain Bar, hanging out at China Art Objects (a gallery her older sister, clothing designer and former ESL bandmate Amy, helped found), or behind the counter at her boutique, Ooga Booga (943 N. Broadway, #203, Los Angeles; (213) 617-1105). The store stocks Mended Veil, Dogg and Pony, and PAM along with posters, zines, and ephemera from artist friends like Chris Johanson, Becca Albee, and Cory Arcangel. Despite being busy throwing a record release party for the band Holy Shit, Wendy found the time to tell us about her favorite items in the store.
1. Keep "Benten" shoe ($89)
These cute and comfortable canvas deck shoes are from Keep's debut Spring 2006 collection. Keep is the raddest new L.A.-based women's shoe & clothing company by Una Kim and Margot Jacobs. They make smart, unpatronizing designs in brilliant colorways that guys covet (like, they want their own pairs). These are perfect summer shoes–for the beach, roadtripping, hot summer barbeques, and late-night dance parties.
2. Lift Boys "Lift Boyz" 12" vinyl ($10)
Lift Boys is one of many solo projects by Yamataka Eye of The Boredoms. This 12", pressed by Brown Sounds in conjunction with his solo art show at Gavin Brown's Passerby Gallery in NYC last year, is Eye's second release under this name, and falls sonically along the lines of his DJ Pica Pica Pica mixtape. Here he re-edits different disco/house tracks, adding his own saturated bursts and layers of sound to create four intoxicatingly fun dance tracks with crazy rooster crows, whistles, and call-and-response parts.
3. Mark Leckey 7 Windmill Street W1 ($35)
This book by British artist/musician Mark Leckey (published by Switzerland's JRP Ringier) covers his diverse body of work and creative interests, including dancehall/club culture, urban history, and 19th-century aesthetes. What results are stunning sculptural soundsystems through which he blasts his own dubplates; one such installation musically traces a walk along the perimeter of London's Soho. Also check his 1999 film Fiorucci Made Me Hardcore.