Steven Short


Steven has been with KALW News since it’s beginnings in 2004. His history, art and public interest stories have won awards for Breaking News, Feature Writing and Explanatory Journalism. Some of his reports have aired nationally on NPR.

He is responsible for The Source, a recurring feature on the origins of Bay Area place names. He also researches most of the listings for the Crosscurrents local music calendar and compiles the weekly online Cannabis News Round-up.

Ways to Connect

Under CC license from Flickr user: the Vaporizers

Cannabis bill shelved due to cost… Harborside: good news and bad news… Pesticides in concentrates… and more.


California’s statewide medical cannabis bill put on hold // EastBayExpress   The widely supported bill was tabled because of it’s $20 million estimated implementation cost.

The San Francisco Lyric Chorus is celebrating two important San Francisco centennial anniversaries.  First is the Panama Pacific Expo of 1915, and second is the hundredth anniversary of the Mission Dolores Basilica.  The San Francisco Lyric Chorus will be performing in the Basilica on Saturday and Sunday. And it’s worth noting that all of the music in their program would have been familiar to audiences in 1915.

Today’s local music is by La Mixta Criolla, from Marin County. They play their own mix of original songs and traditional tunes. 

Under CC license from Flickr user: Sara

Oakland considers official pot farms, again… Oakland union official is a suspect in kickback scheme… Slimmer waists for smokers… Shakespeare’s garden… and more.


GOP looks to cannabis for possible revenue //   “No new taxes” doesn’t extend to medical marijuana, and the proposal has the support of Humboldt  growers group.

Andrew Wong

This music is by roots/rock/reggae band Native Elements from San Francisco. They’ve been playing feel-good music for close to 20 years now. 

Native Elements will be part of an all-reggae night at the Club Fox in Redwood City, this Saturday.

The music you’re hearing now is by Karina Denike. She was born in England, but has lived most of her life in Oakland. You might know her from the duo, Dance Hall Crashers.

Courtesy of Cash Pony

The Oakland outfit Cash Pony's influences are many, and it’s clear from this song that Frank Zappa is on that list.

Cash Pony plays Thursday, August 13th at Leo’s in Oakland. Doors open at 8 pm.

Under CC license from Flickr user: j.Irvin1

Justice Dept. can prosecute patients…  What to do with canna-cash? … Dispensaries now OK in Vallejo… Events… Opinion… “Willie’s Reserve”… and more.


photo by Mollie DeCoudreaux

The music you’re hearing now is by a group named Heartwatch. You may have heard this San Francisco band when they were called The Tropics.

The musicians currently known as Heartwatch are performing Saturday (08.08). They're part of this year’s Outside Lands Music Festival in Golden Gate Park. Yes, it’s sold out -- but the sounds definitely spill beyond the confines of the fenced-off festival, so you might still be able to hear them.

Don Fogg

This music? It’s Harvey Wainapel on soprano saxophone – although he also plays alto and tenor sax. Harvey Wainapel is joining forces with the Danny Green Trio this Friday for a show at the Red Poppy Arthouse in San Francisco. The music starts at 7:30pm.

Tamarind Free Jones



We Became Owls is an alternative Americana band from Oakland. Songwriter Andrew Blair and multi-instrumentalist Ross Warner began creating, writing and composing music together in middle school. Now they're joined by upright bassist Doug Keen, vocalist and banjo picker Kelly McFarling and either Andrew Laubacher or Kyle Caprista on drums.


Under CC license from Flickr user: Big Buds magazine

Attorney Haig resigns… “pot probably safer than heroin”… CBD “appears safe”…  Nevada gets first dispensary… Opinions…  and more.


Federal agencies cannot use Oakland police for cannabis raids //   The action directly relates to the 2012 raid on Oaksterdam University and related businesses.


This music? It’s by Dakila,  a Latin rock band with roots tracing back to the 1970s.  Dakila is one of several bands taking part in this weekend’s Nihommachi Street Fair in San Francisco’s Japantown. They’ll be playing on Saturday. Check the Nihonmachi Street Fair website for specifics.

Nadja von Massow /

That’s Kenny Washington who you’re hearing right now – the man the San Francisco Chronicle calls “the Superman of the Bay Area jazz scene.”   Kenny Washington will be at the Golden Gate branch of the Oakland Library on Sunday (08.02), along with guitarist Jeff Massanari. That program starts at 3pm. It’s part of the library’s  summer Sunday jazz series.    

Under CC license from Flickr user: Akash Mathotra

Banking for dispensaries moves ahead… Blue Ribbon panel presents… There’s an app, but not on Google… Canadian cannabis heading our way?  And more.


Today's Local Music: Panic is Perfect

Jul 23, 2015

This music is by a San Francisco band called “Panic Is Perfect.” Their music, however, produces more of a desire for dancing than for panicking.

 You can hear Panic is Perfect at Bottom of the Hill in San Francisco tomorrow. Doors open at 8:30pm.

Today's local music is by the Chamber Music Society of San Francisco. The group formed in 2013 to perform great chamber music repertoire in intimate settings, the way they believe it was meant to be heard.  The Chamber Music Society of San Francisco can be heard this Friday, July 24th, at the Presidio Officers’ Club starting at 6 pm. Admission is free.

Claude Shade


The T Sisters are a contemporary folk band from Oakland, California. Songwriters Erika, Rachel and Chloe Tietjen are joined on stage by upright bassist Steve Height and Andrew Allen Fahlander on mandolin and guitar. The vocally-driven five piece will perform at the Sixth Annual “Backyard Concert” taking place Saturday afternoon, July 25th, in Santa Rosa. Doors open at 4pm.


Under CC license from Flickr user [Don Goofy.

Another recreational ballot iniative announced… Drought becomes a campaign issue… Group calls on RICO Act to stop marijuana sales… Terry Gross hears about medical marijuana… and more.


Today’s local music is by blues and jazz vocalist Kim Nalley. A review of one of her shows in Moscow called her “The Pearl of San Francisco.”

 Kim Nalley will be the SFJazz Center tomorrow (07.17). She plans a tribute concert honoring Billie Holiday. That show starts at 7:30pm.

This band?  It's The Coup. Critics call front man, rapper Boots Riley, "a national treasure" and "some kind of genius." Check out their upcoming concert here.

Under CC license from Flickr user Entheogens

Republicans kill federal research… Two California bills move ahead… Three more raids… “Farm to table” cuts out dispensaries… Don’t look at women that way… K-High Radio... and more.


Photo courtesy

Oakland art-rock band Everyone Is Dirty performs as part of the Phono Del Sol Music & Food Festival in San Francisco on Saturday July 11th at San Francisco’s Potrero del Sol Park. Everyone is Dirty features Christopher Daddio on guitar, Tony Sales on drums, Tyler English on bass, and singer and violinist Sivan Lioncub on electric violin.

Under CC license from Flickr user Shubh Singh

Marijuana “sucking rivers dry”… Oregon’s recreational law: it’s complicated… Are delivery services legal?  Kosher cannabis… and more.


Petaluma band One Armed Joey will be at Slim’s in San Francisco this Thursday, July 2nd. They're the featured band at a benefit for the San Francisco Firefighters Cancer Prevention Foundation. Music starts at 8pm.


“Huge step forward” by White House… Major raids in Emerald Triangle… Is “medical marijuana” real?...   Cannabis Cup winners… and more.


David Yu

San Francisco revels in its uniqueness. Last month it added another unique aspect: it just might be the only city on earth with officially designated cheerleaders, as voted by the Board of Supervisors.

Cheer San Francisco has been performing gymnastic feats since 1980.  It didn’t begin in San Francisco, but down the Peninsula in Hayward, as an all-male gay organization. After performing just for fun at LGBT sporting events, the group realized its potential as a money generator for worthy groups. Now, 35 years later, they’ve doled out over $300,000, according to the group’s communications director, Nguyen Pham of San Francisco.


The music you’re hearing now is by The Hot Club of San Francisco.

The Hot Club of San Francisco will be opening for Randy Newman on Sunday (06.28) at San Francisco’s Stern Grove Festival. It’s the festival’s 78th year, and it’s free, as always. But get there early for good seats. Music starts at 2pm.

Under CC license from Flickr user

Hopes run high for statewide regulations… Teen use does not increase in legal states… How many hours a week do Americans get high? … and more.


Statewide cannabis rules could become a reality //   Assembly passage of AB 266 “is an unprecedented compromise.”


Today’s local music is by The Bernal Hill Players. They have created a sister-city musical project, featuring two new works – one by a Bay Area composer, and one by a Mexico City composer.

 The Bernal Hill Players appear at the Presidio Officers Club tomorrow (06/19), starting at 6 pm. It’s a free show, but advance registration is required, due to space limitations.