I live in Echo Park, which is just north of downtown LA. It's really nice here: trees, hills, old houses, even a lake. I have been living with my wife in our house since maybe 2000. At the time, the neighborhood was kind of bad in an inner city way (packs of wild dogs, gangs, abandoned furniture on the street), but it was cool and cheap.
This is where we walk our dog. There isn't much open green space like this here in LA. You can understand why we chose to live here. The neighborhood was actually getting better too, coffee shops opening up, less gang activity, etc... But recently the economy has put an end to gentrification, and now we are left with high rents and people who have been pushed out. Couple of weeks ago, there was a shooting: 3 local gang members were hit, 2 died. That was like a block from our house.
So now it seems like the White people are afraid of the Hispanics, and the Hispanics are angry with the "white hipsters" who moved in. Lame. I really love the neighborhood, but at this point we just wish that we could move to a better neighborhood and not think about crap like gentrification, racial tension, and where in the hell we're going to send our kid for school.
"I Need Gasoline"
If you click the link, you can hear a song that I wrote about Echo Park. I don't know why I gave it that title, just kind of fit. I recorded this in Logic, with an MXL USB mic that I used for vocals and the acoustic guitar. Other than that, it's just my voice and some sounds I made with the Automat soft synth (freeware and really nice, go google it). I have no idea why someone made a guitar pedal called Echo Park, but kind of silly.