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

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.

Benjamin Wallen

  Today’s local music is by Dirty Cello.  They say they play cello "like you've never heard before." This isn't classical cello, as you can hear now.  This Saturday, June 20, Dirty Cello is taking part in the 2015 San Francisco Free Folk Festival. The festival is only one day this year, and it has a new location: St. Cyprian’s Church on Turk Street in San Francisco. The event takes place from noon until 10pm. 

Fang 2014

Hardcore band Fang, which formed in Berkeley in 1980, plays THE punk venue 924 Gilman this Friday, June 19 at 7pm. Tickets are $14 at the door.


Hash oil explosions targeted by lawmaker… Cops behaving badly… Jimi Hendrix is now a brand… Giants hire a pot user… and more.


Today's local music is by Gypsy Jazz band Barrio Manouche

Barrio Manouche is performing Sunday (06.14) at this year’s Fairfax Festival, starting at 4:30pm.   

The music you’re hearing now is by Underwoman - also known as Carolyn B. Chen. Her melancholic songs, which draw from pop and classical influences, have been compared to merry-go-round music. They’ve also been described as “haunting.” 

Underwoman & the Believers will be performing at The Stork Club in her hometown of Oakland on Saturday (06.13). Music starts around 9:30pm, but don’t expect Carolyn until around 11pm. 

Bob Hakins 2014

This music is by HowellDevine (one word!). Perhaps you heard their Bay Area Beats segment on Crosscurrents a few weeks ago.  Howelldevine will be performing Saturday (06.13) at Club Deluxe on Haight Street in San Francisco. It’s an early show, from 5 to 8pm. 

[Under CC license from Flickr user Barbara]

Illegal grows on public lands targeted by Assembly…  Dispensary troubles… Native tribes warned about cultivation plans… Louis Armstrong's “marijuana tapes”… and more.



Today's local music is Bells Atlas, from Oakland. They call their sound "Kaleido-sconic Soul Punch." 

 What does that mean? Well, you can find out tomorrow night (06.05), when Bells Atlas plays at The Independent, in San Francisco.  Music starts about 9pm. 

Today’s local music is by Janam from Oakland, a band that was formed in 2008. They say their music brings together the foothills of Appalachia with the foothills of the Balkans.  Janam has an outdoor concert planned for Saturday (06.06) at Wisteria Way in Oakland’s Rockridge neighborhood. Music begins at 3pm. 

This band is called The View from Bernal Hill, so you can guess that they’re from San Francisco Bernal Heights neighborhood.


Federal law trumps state law, again… Triple murder over stash… What to do with 200 tons of pot?... Willie Nelson, The Who, Gavin Newsom and more.


Today's local musician is Bay Area vocalist Derek Lassiter. His sound has been called “dark soul – a kind of moody haunting soul.” 

Derek Lassiter and band will debut some new unrecorded songs at The Red Poppy Art House in San Francisco on Saturday (05.30). Doors open at 7:30pm.

Sometimes the things we write can cause controversy, and even end up being deadly. Early this year two gunmen opened fire in the office of the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo, killing 12 employees.


Feinstein evolves on CBD… Harris: War on drugs has failed… Oakland airport workers charged as smugglers… How to roll a joint…  and more.



McDonald’s to go to court over drugs?   Lobby Day in D.C.   Sidecar delivers cannabis in SF… Morgan Freeman says “Legalize it”… and more.


Sometimes we can lose track of the seasons here in the Bay Area, but this poppy tune by Peninsula band, The Corner Laughers, should remind you that it’s spring.  The Corner Laughers will be performing songs from their new album at the downtown branch of the Redwood City Library on Wednesday (05.13), starting at 7pm.


Another ballot measure to consider… Cannabis for chronic pain and autism?  Stevie Wonder & Snoop Dog, together at last… and more.


 The band you’re hearing now is called The Brothers Comatose. But anyone who saw them at last year’s Outside Lands Festival knows they put on a lively performance – honest! You can find out for yourself on Saturday (05.09) when they play at Terrapin Crossing in San Rafael, starting about 8pm. 

Spring is here! Time for the annual Berkeley Old Time Music Convention, which is taking place this Saturday May 9th, 2015 at the Freight & Salvage Coffee House in Berkeley. The Mt. Diablo String Band from Walnut Creek is scheduled to play at 2:30pm, and other shows, workshops, open jams, and family events are planned all afternoon, starting at noon. 

This music is by the Electric Squeezebox Orchestra, a 17 – piece combo that plays their own compositions and arrangements. 

You’ll be able to hear the Electric Squeezebox Orchestra on Saturday (05.09) as part of this year’s Yerba Buena Gardens Festival. That takes place – where else? -- at Yerba Buena Gardens, starting at 1:30 in the afternoon. It’s a free show, like all of the performances in this summer series. 


Farm-to-table comes to cannabis… Synthetic pot sends users to hospital… Should women smoke more marijuana?  And more.


Today’s local music is by the band Waterstrider, from Oakland. They were the guests recently on KALW’s new music program, “Liner Notes.” They say their songs are “filled with sincerity, sadness and joy – a style of rhythmic pop played with soul.”

Waterstrider has a record release party on Thursday (04.30) at the Rickshaw Stop in San Francisco. Music starts at 9pm.

Today’s local music is being played by Talley Up!, a band from Marin County, led by Jim Talley. Whether playing originals or covers, Talley Up! focuses on the funk, since their objective is to get you dancing.  Talley Up! appears at the “19 Broadway” nightclub in Fairfax on Thursday (04.30). They start about 9pm.  Oh, one more thing: Thursday is Jim Talley’s birthday. 

The peppy music you’re hearing now is by Alison Faith Levy. The pre-school crowd knows her as Sippy Alison, from her days with the kid-pleasing group, The Sippy Cups.  Her musical style has been described as “power pop meets bubblegum.” 

Under CC license from Flickr user Juli Campagna

Biggest Roundup EVER:  Legalization & Legislation… Cops & Courts…  Business, Health and more….


This is Bang Data, a side project of Bay Area MC, Deuce Eclipse. Maybe you’ve heard them on the cable TV hit, “Breaking Bad.” 

Bang Data will be on stage at Leo’s in Oakland on Saturday. Music starts about 9pm.


Today's local music is by The Lady Crooners. They're not all ladies -- despite the name -- but they do offer what they call “authentic, darn good, almost-country, music.” The Lady Crooners are on the bill Thursday April 23 at Brick & Mortar in San Francisco. Doors open at 9pm.

DEA head in hot water over sex parties… Marijuana still a Schedule 1 drug… Are eastern Europeans backing dispensaries?... Happy 4/20! … and more.


Judge denies reclassification of marijuana //   U.S. District judge says she was inclined to remove the Schedule 1 classification (the most dangerous) but says that decision belongs to Congress.