Upstar Records

My Mixtape: Handlebars

Oct 28, 2015
Ben Trefny

Eighteen-year-old Dexter Lotz shares a song by Flobots that speaks to his concern about how governments operate. He mixed this piece at the studios of Upstar Records at Sunset Youth Services.

In San Francisco’s Outer Sunset neighborhood, there’s a small building that’s a big part of some young people’s lives. Sunset Youth Services provides teenagers, transitional age young adults, and their families with support like violence prevention programs, parenting classes, and food assistance. And tucked away in a corner upstairs is the youth-run music studio, Upstar Records. That’s where teens learn to record their own songs, produce beats, and shoot music videos.

Twenty-four-year-old Clarissa Bryant has been recording there since she was sixteen, just one year after she came out at school. KALW’s Audrey Dilling brings you the story in this installment of Bay Area Beats.

Sunset Youth Services is an organization that supports transitional age youth and their families with things like parenting classes, food assistance, and job training. And it's home to the youth-run recording studio, Upstar Records, where young people learn audio production skills. That's where you’ll usually find 16-year-old Adriel Diaz. 

TraVaughn Hicks has been making music since he was a young boy and his rapper uncle would record him singing on his songs.