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Crosscurrents is the award-winning daily news magazine from KALW Public Radio. We make joyful, informative stories that engage people across the divides in our community - economic, social, and cultural.

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Photo courtesy of

Oakland-based singer/songwriter Quinn DeVeaux is one part city, one part country. When he plays with his band, the Blue Beat Review, he taps into Ray Charles and plays the savvy bandleader, burning his way through tune after tune and keeping his audience dancing late into the night.

By Pixabay user StayRegular. Licensed under Creative Commons CC0/cropped.

Justice Dept. blocks DEA research ... Brave bank serves cannabis industry ... Tiger Woods, Teen Vogue, music and more

Photo by Julie Caine


We played you this sound and asked you to guess what exactly it is and where exactly in the Bay Area we recorded it.

8/17: Inside the Museum of Capitalism

Aug 17, 2017


Today on Crosscurrents:

  • A peek inside the Museum of Capitalism in Oakland.
  • Getting across the Bay the old fashioned way — by ferry. 
  • A Bay Area Beats with Quinn Deveaux. 

Bay Area Beats: The Sons Of Soul Revivers

Aug 16, 2017
Courtesy of The Sons of Soul Revivers


The Sons Of Soul Revivers are a San Francisco-based quartet who come from a family of gospel singers; their songs are grounded in the gospel tradition.

Gareth Gooch, resized and recropped


Oakland-based Cherríe Moraga is a Chicana poet, essayist, playwright and feminist activist.

"Commencement 2014" by CC Flickr user CSU Monterey Bay, resized and recropped


Earlier this month, the Cal State University Chancellor announced something huge.  He issued an executive order that will radically change what’s known as “remedial” education.

8/16: Reinventing remedial education

Aug 16, 2017


Today on Crosscurrents:

  • A big change in the Cal State University system that’s going to affect twenty five thousand first-time students each fall.
  • Long-time writer and activist Cherrie Moraga on the need for optimism in the face of history.
  • A Bay Area Beats with The Sons Of Soul Revivers.

How to prepare for next week's eclipse

Aug 15, 2017
"annular solar eclipse" from CC Flickr User Takeshi Kuboki, resized and recropped

People all across the country are getting ready for next week’s solar eclipse, seeking out the best spots to see it, buying their safe viewing glasses, and learning up on what exactly an eclipse is.

8/15: Readying for the eclipse

Aug 15, 2017


Today on Crosscurrents

  • All the information you need to know to enjoy the upcoming solar eclipse here in the Bay.
  • A story from our friends at 99 Percent Invisible about the Salton Sea.

Mapping West Oakand pollution, block by block

Aug 14, 2017
Laura Wenus / KALW

West Oakland has had an air pollution problem for years, and it’s taken a toll on residents. Emergency room visits for asthma are highly concentrated in West Oakland and Emeryville, but they drop off dramatically when you get to other parts of Oakland.

The Desi Comedy Festival is the only South Asian comedy festival in the country.

Bay Area Beats: Bang Data

Aug 14, 2017
Odell Hussey / cropped and resized

When Deuce Eclipse and Juan Manuel Caipo joined forces in 2008, they wanted to make music that could do two things: provide information, and make beats that bang.

8/14: Studying air pollution, block by block

Aug 14, 2017

Today on Crosscurrents:

The Blue Diamond Gallery, Used under license from Google Images (noncommercial reuse with modification / cropped from original)

Legalization no cure for black market ... Berkeley leads in quality control ... Toxic waste at grow sites more worrisome than first thought ... opinion, health, and more. 

Lola M. Chavez, resized and recropped

In the world of street art, painting over somebody else’s work — especially one connected to the local community — is sacrilegious.



A psychology team at Stanford studied whether self-affirmations actually work to improve academic performance for students of color.

courtesy of Kinetic Steam Works


This auditory guessing game is part of Audiograph, a crowd-sourced collaborative radio project mapping the Bay Area’s sonic signature.


8/10: The survival of street art in the Mission

Aug 10, 2017


Today on Crosscurrents:

  • A desecrated mural reveals the role street art plays in the survival of the Mission District’s culture
  • A Stanford researcher explores the effects that affirmations can have on young students of color
  • The answer to this week’s Audiograph mystery sound

StoryCorps: Finding hope after war

Aug 8, 2017
Courtesy of San Francisco StoryCorps

William Lehnhart joined the military when he was 20 years old, during a time of peace. 

Latino communities remember Alex Nieto through art and activism

Aug 8, 2017
Josiah Luis Alderte


Alex Nieto was a young Latino from San Francisco who was shot at 59 times by four San Francisco police officers on the night of March 21, 2014 in Bernal Heights Park. All four officers were later acquitted of all charges.  

Photo by Judy Dater, resized and recropped

Elizabeth Rosner’s parents both survived the Holocaust. Growing up she felt traumatized, even though she personally didn’t experience the camps. And when she talked to other children of survivors — not just of the Holocaust, but also of the Cambodian killing fields and the Armenian genocide — she realized she wasn't alone.

8/8: Remembering Alex Nieto

Aug 8, 2017


Today on Crosscurrents:

  • How a San Francisco man killed by police is being remembered
  • A daughter of Holocaust survivors explains how trauma can be inherited
  • A veteran discusses his struggle to return to civilian life after fighting in Iraq

Cari Spivack


In early June, I was walking a trail in Land’s End in the Golden Gate National Recreation Area, when I came upon a children’s book called The Fox Wish, by Kimiko Aman. Each page was a mounted panel, installed just a few feet away from the next, like storytime breadcrumbs.


It was a delightful book about a fox who steals a little girl’s jump rope, but it got me wondering: What’s a children’s book doing in this National Park?


From CC Flickr user Freedom II Andres, resized and recropped.


August 6th marked the 72nd anniversary of when the United States dropped an atomic bomb on the Japanese city of Hiroshima. Wednesday is the anniversary of the bombing of Nagasaki. Altogether, nearly 200,000 people died in the attacks.


Considering California's cap-and-trade program's local effects

Aug 7, 2017


Not everyone is happy about the state’s new climate change laws.


Today on Crosscurrents: 

  • How California’s commitment to cap-and-trade pollution policy will affect local communities.

  • The story of a great summer romance between the National Parks Service and the San Francisco Public Library.

  • Remembering the lives impacted by two atomic bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

Used by permission from CC Flickr account humboldthead

You might expect that a Jerry Garcia-themed event in San Francisco would be founded by a Deadhead. You know, a stereotypical Grateful Dead mega-fan who followed the band around the country for years, dropping acid, wearing tie dye, and talking about world peace.

That’s not Tom Murphy.

He’s got a crew cut, drives a Nissan Altima, and is usually dressed business casual. He’s a loan consultant.


Shootout at California grow site ... Cannabis literally takes over town ... Police sniffer dogs invalidated ... NFL will consider cannabis ... and more.

Dani is twenty-two years old. She was born in Mexico and moved to Richmond when she was three. About a year ago, she started working at a cannabis dispensary. It’s more than just a job. She identifies as a “first generation bud tender” - one of the first people to openly sell cannabis now that it’s becoming legal in California. She's proud of her role, but it hasn’t been easy. Cannabis is still not federally legal so as an immigrant, she's working in a legal grey area. Plus, her family wasn’t too happy with her work.