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The Flaming Lips save Valentine's Day

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It doesn't matter if you're single, dating, or attached at the hip to your spouse/live-in partner(s)/[insert questionable pet name here] — Valentine's Day has always presented a veritable Hallmark-sponsored landmine field of ways to screw up, disappoint your loved ones, and/or generally feel terrible about yourself. Until now.Read more »

Live Shots: Yuck finds its voice at The Independent

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“I remember the last time I was here the room was filled with the smell of weed,” said Yuck’s lead vocalist Max Bloom with his charming British accent, facing yet another thick fog looming over the audience. “I feel like I’m getting high out of proximity.” The herb-filled air wasn't new to The Independent, and this wasn’t Yuck’s first time in San Francisco. But the band that showed up there Wednesday night [1/30] was a very different band than Yuck has been in the past.Read more »

An ally and a union brother: Pete Seeger's legacy in the labor movement

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Pete Seeger's sweet voice was, among other things, a clear, articulate, consistently outspoken one for workers' rights. In honor of Seeger's legacy of activism, we reached out to longtime community activist and LaborFest co-founder Steve Zeltzer to hear about what he meant to the labor movement in the Bay Area and beyond. Read more »

Locals Only: The American Professionals

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Locals Only is our shout-out to the musicians who call the Bay Area home — a chance to spotlight an artist/band/music-maker with an upcoming show, album release, or general good news to share.To be considered, email esilvers@sfbg.com.

With all the CDs that come across my desk, the American Professionals' latest, We Make It Our Business, caught my attention for a rather weird reason — it looked incredibly boring. At first glance, it seemed like a software or PR company had accidentally sent me some sort of business portfolio in disc form. Upon further review (i.e., actually reading the accompanying materials and listening to the music...this is why they pay me the big bucks) I realized it was anything but. Read more »

Live Shots: !!! lead a sweaty Saturday at the Chapel

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"San Francisco, San Francisco, San Francisco," chants !!!'s Nic Offer as he struts onto the Chapel's glowing red stage, facing a screaming sold-out crowd.  The practicality of Offer’s typical performance outfit — tonight he is wearing beat-up, bone-white monk strap loafers, short white shorts emblazoned with the Rolling Stones’ Some Girls cover art, and a black crewneck tee — quickly becomes apparent as he races back and forth across the stage, light brown curls flying, wrapping the mic cord around his neck.  Before the first song is over he leaps on the center monitor, thrusts his pelvis forward, and generously pulls his very short pant leg open so a fan can get his money shot.  Now that’s showmanship. 

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The worst music beats the best bomb: A conversation with legendary composer Van Dyke Parks

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“Yours falsely!” Van Dyke Parks chimes, as he picks up the phone at home in Pasadena, where the weather is “room temperature.” He adds, “all we have is the attorneys. Get rid of them, and we can have another perfect day.” Read more »

POW!'s Byron Blum on staying put

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When John Dwyer announced that he was leaving San Francisco for LA a few weeks ago, he caused a bit of blogosphere melodrama, to say the least. One thing that wasn't controversial: His vocal support of the young'uns in POW!, whose album is out on Dwyer's own Castle Face Records. With the record out this week, we caught up with Blum to hear about the passing of the baton. Read more »

Gimme 5: Must-see shows this week

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We hear a certain sporting team lost a football match of sorts over the weekend — at least, this is what we understand to be the reason for the even-more-morose-than-usual drinking our friends seem to have been doing for the last 48 hours. If you want to try switching things up, may we suggest going to a venue where people are playing live music and drinking there instead, with other people, possibly while moving your feet? A handful of options:

Wed/22Read more »

Of course Beyoncé is a feminist: On gender equality and women in entertainment

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A specific corner of the Internet was abuzz this week with the news that Beyoncé, fresh off inciting think-piece warfare about whether or not her new visual album amounted to a feminist manifesto of sorts ("The record both drips with sexuality and samples the Nigerian writer Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's TED talk about women's rights -- are you Read more »

Gimme 5: Must-see shows this week

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Happy Monday, kids! If you're feeling the comedown from a solid week of shows celebrating the Rickshaw Stop's 10th anniversary (read our feature on it here), quit yer whining. Here are a handful of rad upcoming shows to get you out of the house. It's winter, you're pale, you need to. 

Tues/14
Black Cobra Vipers
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