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Singer-songwriters bloom as Outside Lands unfolds

Intimacy, immediacy, personal takes on today's headlines, and unpredictably fresh new twists — it's all there when it comes to surfing the current, almost-overwhelming wave of singer-songwriters. On the occasion of the first Outside Lands Music and Arts Festival — and what better way to scope out the gentle folk with guitars than amid the leafy fields and glades of Golden Gate Park — we take look at some of the singer-songwriters shining through at this historic gathering, scope out the current state of the woman songwriter, and contemplate a few of our favorites.

For more information and a complete schedule of artists and events at Outside Lands, go to

>>The circle game
Parsing the return of the singer-songwriter in a superficial age
By Kimberly Chun

>>No borders!
Rupa Marya leads the charge toward boundary-busting pop
By Todd Lavoie

>>From Silicon Valley to "City Hall"
Vienna Teng finds inspiration in unexpected places
By Kimberly Chun

>>Great Northern
Serena Southam conjures that old-timey magic
By Kandia Crazy Horse

>>Into the wild
Kaki King dreams in guitar and goes from there
By Laura Mojonnier

>>Singing softly, carrying big ideas
Regina Spektor, Beck, Devendra Banhart: More folks to look out for at Outside Lands
Our picks

>>Love songs
A gaggle of local singer-songwriters come in praise of their faves
Lists and tops