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Friday, February 27, 2015

Tourism for Locals: San Francisco Surround Sound at Audium

Posted By on Fri, Feb 27, 2015 at 2:04 PM

Surround yourself with acid for the ears. - JUAN DE ANDA
  • Juan De Anda
  • Surround yourself with acid for the ears.


San Franciscans are truly a lucky bunch. We  live in a city chalk-full of sensory overload — from bright  architecture to eclectic individuals to drastically diverse terrains — hence diminishing any hope of ever being bored.

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Monday, October 27, 2014

Breaking Point: Q&A with "Whiplash" Director Damien Chazelle

Posted By on Mon, Oct 27, 2014 at 2:58 PM

click image Left to right: J.K. Simmons and Director Damien Chazelle - PHOTO BY DANIEL MCFADDEN, COURTESY OF SONY PICTURES CLASSICS
  • Photo by Daniel McFadden, Courtesy of Sony Pictures Classics
  • Left to right: J.K. Simmons and Director Damien Chazelle
Mix red with yellow and you get orange. Mix vinegar with olive oil and you get balsamic dressing. Mix blood, sweat and tears and you get Whiplash  one of the year's most intense films and the underdog indie to keep an eye on come awards season. 

To call Whiplash an edge-of-your-seat thriller is an understatement because it implies that you'll still be in your seat by the time the end credits roll. If word of mouth is any indication, you'll either leap to your feet in admiration or run to the nearest exit for a much-needed gasp of fresh air after the 106-minute fever dream that is writer/director Damien Chazelle's film. 

However, the brief synopsis of the plot may not seem worthy of all the hype. A collegiate drummer (Miles Teller) at a top-notch music conservatory joins a competitive jazz ensemble and is pushed to the edge by his pitbull of an instructor (a sensational J.K. Simmons). Sounds like Dead Poets Society meets Chicago at best and yet Whiplash pulsates with its own beat so relentless you'd find it hard to believe that it's loosely based on Chazelle's own experience as a high school drummer. 

SF Weekly caught up with Damien Chazelle to disucss the pangs of art, the joys of film and all that jazz. 

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Thursday, September 25, 2014

Tourism For Locals: Wally Heider Recording Plaque Marks Birth of San Francisco Sound

Posted By on Thu, Sep 25, 2014 at 10:00 AM

A small plaque in the corner marks the spot where San Francisco became the center of music recording in the United States during the '60s, '70s and '80s. - JUAN DE ANDA/ SF WEEKLY
  • Juan De Anda/ SF Weekly
  • A small plaque in the corner marks the spot where San Francisco became the center of music recording in the United States during the '60s, '70s and '80s.

When we are asked to describe San Francisco, practically all of us will focus on the sights of our City. But as locals, we know full well that the sounds of San Francisco are equally as important. And by sounds, we mean more than just the clanging of cable cars and blaring fog horns. Our music scene is constantly shifting and with all this evolution, it can be difficult to pinpoint when and who was responsible in the fostering the earlier days of the musical mecca.

Fortunately there is a small plaque in the Tenderloin commemorating the spot where San Francisco Sound was born. It's time to visit the site where Wally Heider created his San Francisco recording studio that forever altered the history of American music. 

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Friday, August 22, 2014

Burning Man in the Bay, Idea One: Stern Grove Festival Closes 77th Season With Psych-pop Legends, The Zombies

Posted By on Fri, Aug 22, 2014 at 12:14 PM

The Zombies
  • The Zombies
While some of us cheer that the burners are gone, others feel left out by not making it to the playa. Either way, throughout the duration of Burning Man we'll be sharing events and places in S.F. that would normally be overrun with burners that you should check out sans BM crowds. 

While “Burners” flee the Bay this weekend to build a city at Nevada’s Black Rock Desert for the week-long event centered around art, community and self-expression, known as Burning Man, it’s time to take advantage of the many offerings that our city has to present.

The Stern Grove Festival, a San Francisco staple in its 77th year, packs a massive psych pop-rock lineup for its closing show of the season this Sunday, Aug. 24: the local shoegaze indie folk act, Vetiver, as well as the legendary ‘60s psych-pop forefathers, The Zombies.

“This year we have a great mix of local and truly internationally recognized musicians,” Steven Haines, executive director of the festival, says of The Zombies and Vetiver. 

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Thursday, August 21, 2014

Tourism For Locals: Discolandia Store Facade a Reminder of the Golden Years of SF Music

Posted By on Thu, Aug 21, 2014 at 1:21 PM

Only the store front remains of this iconic San Francisco music store. - JUAN DE ANDA/SF WEEKLY
  • Juan De Anda/SF Weekly
  • Only the store front remains of this iconic San Francisco music store.
Is the San Francisco music scene dying? 

While we may be debating the future of music in the Bay Area, we should still celebrate the glorious days of our song-filled past with a dosage of nostalgia. In this week's Tourism for Locals, we won't only be taking a stroll down musical memory lane, but  acknowledge the local importance of a community gathering spot that was synonymous with the "Golden Age" of San Francisco music. Let's put our records on and explore the world of a music store and institution that closed after a 40 year legacy.

Welcome to Discolandia!

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Friday, April 5, 2013

New World Order: The Symphony Does Dvorak

Posted By on Fri, Apr 5, 2013 at 1:49 AM

sat_sfsymphony.JPG

By Jessica Hilo

San Francisco Symphony musicians return to a more palatable world of symphonic performance with a family-friendly concert featuring Dvořák's "New World" Symphony. The composer wrote "New World," his ninth symphony, during a visit to America in the 1890s; and, indeed, the piece captures the chaos and creation of the Gilded Age. "New World" is a collage of multinational voices including those from the composer's Bohemian background, African-American spirituals, and Native American music.

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Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Video of the Day: Jaron Lanier, Author and Maestro of Rare and Eclectic Instruments

Posted By on Wed, Feb 27, 2013 at 9:30 AM

lanier.jpg

Re: our integration with machines, Jaron Lanier is one of the Big Idea Guys. He was talking virtual reality back when it was more like virtual virtual reality. Fascinated by how the Internet affects everything from business to consciousness to business-consciousness, Lanier is also known around the way as a maestro of rare and eclectic instruments; according to an SF Weekly story from February 2012, he has maybe hundreds in his house -- more than he can count, anyway.

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Friday, February 22, 2013

Video of the Day: Kronos Quartet and the Melodic Shape-Shifting of Pamela Z

Posted By on Fri, Feb 22, 2013 at 8:30 AM

Kronos Quartet - JAY BLAKESBERG
  • Jay Blakesberg
  • Kronos Quartet

By Sam Prestianni

One-of-a-kind string ensemble Kronos Quartet celebrates the global infusion of San Francisco culture in Listen Local, a program of dynamic new works by the city's top composers, including Nathaniel Stookey, Dan Becker, Stephen Prutsman, and notably, Pamela Z, a fearless vocalist and electronics explorer whose piece "And the Movement of the Tongue" promises to be a highlight of this extraordinary homegrown show.

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Thursday, January 24, 2013

Video of the Day: Silent Film Organist Performs in Spooky, Lovely Grace Cathedral

Posted By on Thu, Jan 24, 2013 at 8:30 AM

Dorothy Papadakos, in Charlie Chaplin attire
  • Dorothy Papadakos, in Charlie Chaplin attire

For a portion of the population, "church and organ" are synonymous with "church and God." The Lord didn't compose His entrance on the kazoo, did He? Now consider, for a moment, what powerhouse emotions might be summoned if the instrument and the space were devoted to another purpose. We've entered the province of Dorothy Papadakos, the altogether remarkable organist who performs two feats of virtuoso accompaniment of silent masterworks Saturday night.

See Also: Video of the Day: Revolutionary Sex

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Monday, January 14, 2013

Video of the Day: Laurie Rubin, the Blind, Gay Soprano

Posted By on Mon, Jan 14, 2013 at 8:30 AM

JONATHAN BARKAT
  • Jonathan Barkat

Laurie Rubin is an internationally celebrated mezzo-soprano who took her perfect pitch on the road at just 12 years old, but for many years, she couldn't get an opera director to cast her; they all feared a mid-performance tumble off the stage. Born blind, the singer-turned-author learned to ski and make jewelry, attended Yale, came out, and co-founded a performing arts school.

See also:

Six Must-See Under-the-Radar Events at SF Sketchfest

Is the Tumblr Fighting Comics Sexism Backfiring?

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    Vau de Vire presents The Soiled Dove, a Barbary Coast themed dinner-theater complete with the Emperor himself stumbling around in a drunken stupor. Photographs by Beth LaBerge.
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    Mike Thomas was announced Mr. Marina 2015 on Wednesday, March 18th. Chubbies, spray tans and unitards hit the stage for the 4th Annual Mr. Marina competition raising $195k. Highlights included a great rendition of Sia's Chandelier and a marina inspired "Fancy" performance. Photographs by Calibree Photography.