Well bless my Star Wars! All that tassel twirling and shimmy-shimmy of burlesque, at times it seems you can't turn around with a eyeful of curves hitting you at full speed in this town. Not that I'm complaining. But I must admit, I've always been concerned – when do the sci-fi aficionados get their very own night of burlesque beauties? One would think that more would follow in the steps of LA's Devil's Playground, which performed a mind-busting strip down of C3PO and even Jabba the Hutt this spring. Disturbing? Hot? Both? Maybe I'm worrying too much -- but when does SF get a piece of that action? Leave it to Bombshell Betty to heed my heart-felt cry for our darling and economically life-affirming nerds (you know we're a cradle for Tech 2.0 or whatever, right?). Strutting the stage on a very special night at the Elbo Room (Tues/14) will be any number of ladies loving the heroes, the bad guys, the technology, the far-fetched cleavage of the sci-fi genre that you would think just begs for a little more spec-ta-ta-tacular exploitation. Oh wait. Lara Croft. Never mind.
Eric Smith's passion is environmental justice. He's the director of Green Depot, a coalition of biodiesel organizations, and has helped lead the city to switch its buses and official vehicles to the cleaner fuel. He's working on ways to get the city to move its waste by train. And he talks about the important of green jobs (and not just green jobs for the top college graduates.)Read more »
American politics is a circus, no doubt of that. The trouble is, it’s a circus that never leaves town.
That’s bad for the country, but good for observers who are interested in becoming more intimately acquainted with the talent on display. Having watched several recent performances, I’d like to offer my opinion of some of the leading players in what is surely the greatest show on earth, Ringling Brothers, Barnum and Bailey, and Buffalo Bill Cody himself notwithstanding.
(One caveat: Because the show never stops, there’s a regular turnover in personnel. I can’t guarantee that the same performers will be on hand when you next visit the big tent. But don’t worry about being short-changed on entertainment. The supply of people who want to be in this circus is limitless.) Read more »
Those who know me well are aware of my love of the Negroni. The perfect aperitif and a favorite since my first visit to Italy 11 years ago, I crave Campari’s bitter crispness balanced with gin. I concur with Victoria Moore who says in her book, How to Drink: “The negroni is a beautiful thing, garnet in color, sweet-astringent to taste, and decisively highbrow. Read more »
The Guardian is interviewing candidates for the fall elections, and to give everyone the broadest possible understanding of the issues and our endorsement process, we're posting the sound files of all the interviews on the Politics blog. Our endorsements will be coming out Oct. 6th. Click here to listen -- page will be updated as we publish more interviews.
After defending Pet Food Express, a chain that worries local independent pet stores, the Chron's C.W. Nevius has the latest rumor in the who-will-be-the-next-mayor game. Here's how it goes: Newsom becomes lieutenant gov, the supes pick Dennis Herrera as mayor, Herrera appoints David Chiu city attorney, and David Campos becomes board prez.Read more »
If Luke Thomas didn't have the pictures to prove it, I might never have believed this story, but there they are -- the former supervisor and progressive candidate for SF mayor, Matt Gonzalez, hanging out with his old (odd) BFF Tony Hall -- and libertarian Republican Ron Paul and John Dennis, a Republican running against Nancy Pelosi, at an "anti war and anti-incumbent" rally Sept. 4.Read more »
Today we talk about a different approach to politics: Why voters should think like junkies. Johnny's got a good argument here -- your typical junkie is a lot more cynical about people trying to sell him something than the typical voter who listens to Glenn Beck. Oh, and why is that preacher in Florida going to burn a stack of Korans? Any junkie could figure out that it's all about making a fast buck. You can hear the discussion after the jump. Read more »
Don't ask synthesizer inventor and electronic instrument designer Don Buchla (appearing Thu/9 as part of the 11th Annual San Francisco Electronic Music Festival) for a CD of his music. He's more interested in following his curious muse — in this case, through the oft-uncharted territory of performance — than documenting his many experiments.Read more »
It's impossible for me to think of Big Freedia without exploding into happy feathers. As the fierce national face of New Orleans' bounce music movement (along with her drag daughter, Sissy Nobby), Freedia's been shoehorned into several media narratives that don't necessarily do her justice — popular performer who bridges a supposed gap between flamboyant gayness and macho rap, evidence that original regional roots music is still being generated in our monocultural-seeming musical world, post-Katrina beat-healer of ravished communities, anthropological curiosity. Read more »
Multiple Mary and Invisible Jane Aerial dance company Flyaway Productions uses an 80-foot wall offered up by the UC Hastings College of the Law to perform its new, site-specific dance created for the Tenderloin. If you’ve never seen aerial dance before, get ready to hold your breath as you watch dancers careen, tumble, and pirouette some seven stories up into the stratosphere. But the social justice themes for this performance keep its spirit on the streets, while dancers soar through the air: Multiple Mary and Invisible Jane was choreographed by Jo Kreiter to narrate the experience of homeless women in San Francisco, in a neighborhood where extreme privilege and poverty collide. Today and Thu/18 at noon and 8pm; Fri/19-Sat/20 at 8 and 9pm; free. UC Hastings School of the Law, 333 Golden Gate, SF. www.flyawayproductions.com
Quaaludes - Some know quaaludes as a sedative that was popular in the disco era for its dizzying side effects. Others more hip to San Francisco's independent music scene know Quaaludes as an all-girl quartet from the city by the Bay. Combining elements of grunge, post-punk, and riot grrrl, the band is unapologetically fierce when it comes to its live shows and lyric matter. In the band's latest conquest to conquer a primarily male-dominated scene, Quaaludes is releasing its newest 7" EP, Nothing New, on Dollskin and Thrillhouse Records this week. With Generation Loss, Bad Daddies, Man Hands, 10pm, $7, Knockout, 3223 Mission, SF. www.theknockoutsf.com
The Sam Chase - "The Sam Chase has a voice like a nun on the lam with a mouthful of cigarettes and curse words," according to the unconventional folk band's bio. Singer Sam Chase and his cast of five to seven backup players (on vocals, guitars, strings, horns, percussion, you name it) have been starting dance parties all over the Bay Area for the past half-decade, alternating whiskey-drinkin' party songs with rough-around-the-edges lullabies. Equal parts sweet and salty (and just as addictive as that sounds), with fellow local fave Rin Tin Tiger as an opener, this lineup is a solid choice to kick off the Mission Creek Oakland Music & Arts Festival. 8pm, free. Uptown Nightclub, 1928 Telegraph, Oakl. www.mcofest.org
The Bruce Lee Band - Mike Park has been one of the most important figures in the Bay Area music scene since founding ska band Skankin' Pickle in 1989. Since then, he's been in countless other groups, organized the Ska Against Racism tour, and started one of America's most respected DIY labels, Asian Man Records. The Bruce Lee Band is an all-star outlet for Park's musical ambitions, featuring members of several of his former bands in addition to members of MU330 and Bomb the Music Industry! The band has only been active sporadically, so its Bottom of the Hill show is a can't-miss occasion. 9pm, $12. Bottom of the Hill, 1233 17th St, SF. www.bottomofthehill.com
Haight Street Music and Merchants Street Festival - Yep, it's another street fair on Haight — but this brand-new event has a highly local focus, since it's sponsored by neighborhood merchants. Expect three stages of music, kids' activities, a skate ramp, and more. Noon-6pm, free, Haight between Masonic and Stanyan, SF; email@example.com
The Rentals - Despite being best known as a Weezer side project (singer Matt Sharp was the early-era bassist for the indie titans), the Rentals have a quietly devoted — and large — fan base of their own, who've been eating up sweet melodies and goofy Moog-heavy tendencies since the band re-formed in 2005. After a slew of well-received EPs, this year's Lost in Alphaville marks the band's first full-length since 1999, and it basically overflows with guest stars — among them, Black Keys' drummer Patrick Carney and Lucius' Jess Wolfe and Holly Laessig. One should expect to see a slew of diehards at this show, for good reason. With openers Ozma. 8pm, $20. Slim's, 333 11th St, SF. www.slimspresents.com
Rapture, Blister, Burn Aurora Theatre Company opens its 23rd season with Gina Gionfriddo's drama about three generations of women "struggling with feminism's foibles." Tue and Sun, 7pm (also Sun, 2pm); Wed-Sat, 8pm. Through Sept 28. $32-50. Aurora Theatre, 2081 Addison, Berk. www.auroratheatre.org