Arts & Culture

Arts and culture

The Hooks

Jan 2, 2012
courtesy of www.myspace.com/thehooks

The music you’re hearing is by The Hooks. They live in San Francisco now, having moved from Sligo, Ireland. You can hear their more melodic form of punk, along with their untraditional versions of Irish traditional music on Saturday (01.07) at Bottom of the Hill in The City. Music starts about 9pm.

Recently, KALW’s Jon Atkinson headed out to Dolores Park to ask the resident young adults there about marriage. He mostly heard the words “outdated,” and “unnecessary” (save for the words of one hopeful park-goer). And those who follow marriage trends wouldn’t be surprised. People like local author Ethan Watters says young people are consciously prolonging the time between graduating from college and starting a family. In the meantime, they form networks of support that sustain them: groups of friends, neighbors, acquaintances, co-workers, and classmates who form a kind of family.

Photo courtesy of the SF Arts Commission

Over the past few months, we’ve been taking you back to San Francisco’s Mid-Market – all the way back to when this busy stretch of street was a hub of activity and entertainment. We started in the ‘20s at the Warfield Theater, and then turned back the clock on Hibernia Bank to the late nineteenth century.

Awhile back, we took you deep into outer space:

CHRISTOPHER HEDGE: You’re always going to have a whoosh sound when you go through something in a planetarium, so I was thinking, “Well what if those whooshes were made with the real signatures of what you’re going through?”

Flickr photo by moonjazz. http://www.flickr.com/photos/moonjazz/122391/

If you go deep in the basement of the Oakland Museum of California you might hear something extraordinary. It’s the archives of the California Library of Natural Sounds. What started with some crickets and a couple of frogs has expanded into a sound collection that's hard to contain inside the gallery walls. Reporter Julie Caine takes us inside the Library for this report from the KALW News archives.

CARSON BELL: I listen to a lot of wild things in here.

Photo courtesy the Hayward Area Historical Society

Head to the East Bay city of Hayward, and you’ll find a museum with a little bit of class. There, the city’s historical society puts on exhibits about the way we used to live. But were Bay Area citizens of the past really so different than us?

KALW’s Hana Baba wanted to know more, so she stopped by the museum for a lesson in what many people consider a lost art: formal etiquette.

Photo by Jen Dessinger

Space exploration – it’s something we’ve made a national priority since NASA’s inception, over 50 years ago.

PRESIDENT JOHN F. KENNEDY: We choose to go to the moon. We choose to go to the moon. We choose to go to the moon in this decade and do the other things not because it’s easy but because it’s hard.

But last week, NASA launched its last space shuttle mission – officially retiring the almost 30-year-old spacecraft.

For many artists, creating works of art is a deeply personal process –not a lucrative one. But for others, it’s an opportunity to make money. A lot of money. Take today’s pop music artists – you can hear commercially promoted music by tuning into America’s Top 40. But if you want to find emerging artists and diverse sub-genres from the Bay Area and around the world, you should check out All Day Play from Oakland’s Youth Radio. The station DJs follow the latest trends from hip hop to soul to electronica, rock, and house.

Art can be extraordinary. It can convey beauty ... imagination  ... and wonder. For some artists, it can literally communicate what their words cannot.

In Oakland, artists with developmental disabilities find a place to express themselves at the Creative Growth Art Center. But budget cuts to county and state social service programs are making it harder for them to pursue their artistic visions.

KALW’s Nicole Jones reports.

TOM DI MARIA: That’s a big painting, Barry. What color are you painting right now?

BARRY REAGAN: Blue.

City Visions Turns 20!

Dec 19, 2011

Host: Joseph Pace

Producer: Joseph Pace 

City Visions first aired on December 16, 1991. Created by Rose Levinson, the show which she hosted for 17 of our 20 years has been a fixture on the KALW schedule.

http://www.readerscafe.org/

BAY AREA BOOK WORLD BREAKING NEWS

Local Music: Andre Thierry & Zydeco Magic

Dec 15, 2011
Photo courtesy of http://www.luckysun215.org/

Are you ready for a break from Christmas carols?  If so, you might want to know that Andre Thierry & Zydeco Magic is playing next Wednesday, December 21, at the Elbo Room on Valencia Street in San Francisco.

They open for another feel-good band: the California Honeydrops.  Both groups get you up on your feet, so be prepared to dance!

Music starts about 9pm.

Going somewhere?  If it’s through San Francisco Airport on a Wednesday or Friday, between now and December 23, you can hear some live local music while you’re there. The annual “Hear It Now” concerts take place between 11am and 2pm on those dates.

Speedway Meadow in Golden Gate Park is set to become Hellman Meadow if the Recreation & Park Department approves the plan unanimously passed last week by the San Francisco County Board of Supervisors. The name change would honor Warren Hellman, the financial and spiritual force behind the three-day free music fest known as Hardly Strictly Bluegrass. But festival neighbors see this motion as being out of tune with their concerns.

Local music: Misisipi Mike

Dec 13, 2011
Courtesy of Mike Wolf

In the clip above, you can listen to Misisipi Mike Wolf, a prolific San Francisco singer-songwriter, who plays in – as he says – “as many bands as it takes to rock your socks off.” If you missed his sold-out show at the Great American Music Hall back in the summer, you have a chance to hear him this Saturday (12.17), along with Paul Griffiths, at the very intimate Bazaar Café on California Street in San Francisco. Music starts about 7pm.

What's brewing in San Francisco

Dec 12, 2011
photo by Brian Pelletier

Brewing beer is a complete sensory experience. I can feel the heat on the stove top as the grains and water are boiled to make the wort, the smell of hops fills the kitchen. Later, I can hear yeast feasting on the freshly brewed wort and see the release of the gaseous bubbles that result.

Making beer is like learning a fine art – one that’s been nourished here in the Bay Area for more than 200 years. And as a San Francisco-based homebrewer, I wanted to find out more about our fermenting forebears.

San Francisco’s brewing history

Local music: Christmas Jug Band

Dec 12, 2011

What can you say about jug band music? If you’re “The Christmas Jug Band,” you can say you’re the “kings of 100 percent acoustic-folk-skiffle-swing holiday high jinks.” And, really, what more can be said after that? If you like your jug band music live, head over to the Freight and Salvage in Berkeley this Wednesday. The Christmas Jug Band will be there with a special guest: Country Joe McDonald. Music starts about 8pm.

The KALW news team and guests took the stage at the Polish Club SF on December 3rd for an evening of multimedia storytelling as part of the Mission Arts and Performance Project (MAPP). The theme of the night was “Beginnings and Endings.” Performers included Snap Judgment host Glynn Washington, John Reichmuth of the comedy troupe Kasper Hauser, StoryCorps, and New York Times and Pop-Up Magazine contributor Jon Mooallem. KALW’s own reporters told ghost stories, love stories and stories about the end of the world.

The Berkeley theater company Shotgun Players started performing twenty years ago in the basement of a Berkeley pizzeria. Now it’s got its own building, but the company has stuck with its founding principles: taking on little-known or brand new plays and working hard to create theater for the community.

To celebrate its 20th anniversary, the company is presenting an entire season of world premieres: five brand new plays.

Local music: Wild rumpus

Dec 6, 2011

The music you're hearing is by the Wild Rumpus New Music Collective. The eleven members of this ensemble will be playing world premieres of works composed especially for them on Saturday (12.10). Performance time is 8pm at San Francisco’s ODC Theater, in the Mission. NOTE: The music is more dissonant starting about 5:00.

Photo courtesy of Dave Wong

In San Francisco, you don’t have to go to a stuffy night club or a formal classroom to learn how to swing dance. If you want to learn the Lindy Hop, you can learn in the great outdoors.

KALW’s Carolina Hidalgo, who is originally from Chile, found the group called Lindy in the Park, dancing in full daylight on one of her walks in Golden Gate Park. She brings us this profile for the next installment of Meet Your Neighbors.

Join KALW for its final 70th anniversary event, in conjunction with the Mission Arts and Performance Project!

This special evening will feature oral storytellers, radio producers, and musicians performing on the theme of "Beginnings and Endings." We'll also be bringing you an episode of KALW's "Crosscurrents" LIVE, with audience participation! 

Cost: FREE!

Venue: The Polish Club (3040 22nd Street, San Francisco)

Date and Time: Saturday, December 3rd from 6-9pm

Performers include:

Marilyn Pittman is one of San Francisco's first openly gay comics, rising to fame during the AIDS crisis, and known for bringing hilarity through her blunt, "tell it like it is" comedy.

But in 1997, tragedy struck, when her father murdered her mother, and then committed suicide. After that, Pittman went through her mother's journals, and her father's love letters, seeking answers as to why it happened. She asked questions like "did they really love each other?” and "could we see this coming?”

Get inside the mind of an amateur comic

Nov 24, 2011

It makes sense why comedy flourishes in the Bay Area. To a lot of people, the region itself is a kind of joke. On the right, we’ve got  Bill O'Reilly calling us a modern day Gomorrah –

BILL O’REILLY: As we reported, the far left is emboldened now that Barack Obama has been elected president, and nowhere is the far left government more on display than in the city of San Francisco. Once a working class town blessed with natural beauty, San Francisco has embraced a secular liberal culture that is now dominant in city government.

Back in the ‘50s, Allen Ginsberg’s “Howl” challenged how people thought a poem should sound. Recently, e-books challenged how we think a book should feel. And now, the Twitter Novel is challenging how a novel should be written.

The true art of storytelling is in bringing stories to life, either as comedy, a compelling radio piece, or a movie. But what happens when what you want to bring to life is a piece of art in itself? Like making a movie about a poem?

San Francisco’s Central Market neighborhood is the focus of a lot of attention these days. The long rundown area has become a canvas of urban planning: local art and mural projects fill the sidewalks, and big businesses like Twitter have decided to locate there because of generous civic tax breaks.

If your kid comes up to you on Thanksgiving and asks you, "What should I be thankful for? I can't think of anything!" you should say to that child, "Boy (or girl), do I have the book for you!" (especially if you are a character in a commercial). In the book I See Kindness Everywhere, by Lafayette mom Shelley Frost, a little girl says, "When I put on my socks, I see the kindness of people who cut and sewed the material. Thank you, sock makers!" I don't want to ruin the ending, but there's a spiderweb. Hint: Webs of kindness.

If you grew up in the US, you’re probably well-acquainted with fairytales in which real animals behave like people; whether it’s pigs, wolves, rabbits or turtles. But in India, children grow up hearing about half-monkey gods and 10-headed demon kings.

Host: Joseph Pace

Producer: Susan Britton

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