See update and correction at the end of this post.
The Underground warehouse space and music co-operative Rec Center Studios (1701 Martin Luther King Jr Way, Oakland) is getting evicted. Its final party will be tonight, Friday, November 2.
Venue to the long-running Sick, Sad World parties, Rec Center hosted hip-hop, indie, and DJ acts that included Kool A.D. (aka Victor Vasquez of Das Racist), Antwon, and Main Attrakionz. The venue's final party will feature female-led, Australian electro bands plus DJs.
San Francisco's Club Six (60 Sixth St., SF) has announced on Facebook that it will be closing immediately. Eater SF reported earlier today an email went out about the closure to the club's mailing list.
Open fourteen years, Club Six gained a reputation for hosting emerging hip-hop, dancehall, and electronic music at a time when other clubs considered those parties risky. Along with Club Six, the now-closed Anú and Arrow/Matador brought a thriving nightlife to downtown's seedy Sixth Street.
When Jason Perkins, managing partner at Parish Entertainment Group, which owns Brick & Mortar and The New Parish, concluded that the management of a San Francisco Travelodge refused a band whose rooms he had booked lodging booked because they were black, it was the band itself — namely, The Meters's founder and guitarist Leo Nocentelli — who consoled him. We spoke to Perkins on Friday night, still in a state of shock about what had happened.
Nocentelli (a 2013 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame nominee), Bill Dickens (Stevie Wonder's bass player), and session drummer Felix “D-Kat” Pollard were allegedly refused lodging at the Travelodge Central in the Mission District on Thursday, Oct. 18, after they tried to check in post-soundcheck at nearby Brick & Mortar.
"Leo called me and said 'they won't let me check in,'" said Perkins.
Add yet another charge to the whole litany of allegations lobbed at "revenge porn site" IsAnyoneUp, which trafficked in (mostly) unflattering nudes from (mostly) unwitting subjects, some of whom may have been victims of a hacking scam. According to Courthouse News Service, the site's new spinoff, IsAnyoneUp.net, is now facing a lawsuit for extorting the company that tried to kill off its antecedent. If the plaintiff prevails, IsAnyoneUp could lose three domain names, $300,000, and any chance to further exploit its now-infamous brand.
Sad news is spilling in as Berkeley bids goodbye to one of it's few dance clubs — the only one within walking distance of the university. Shattuck Down Low, which just celebrated its eleventh year in Berkeley's downtown retail corridor, was actually well in the green when club owner Daniel Cukierman received word of the venue's imminent demise.
We were saddened to learn about the death of Fessehaye Mebrahtu, owner of Oakland's African restaurant and world music club, Oasis. Known to his friends as "Fish," Mebrahtu was instrumental in generating a fecund reggae scene in downtown Oakland, long before the city's entertainment district began to really flower. He was laid to rest Wednesday afternoon at St. Mary's Cemetery, just a month before his fifty-fourth birthday. Mebrahtu will be mourned and missed by the East Bay's world music community, and he'll be remembered for more than a decade of popular DJ dance nights at Oasis.
High on Fire frontman Matt Pike is officially of out rehab and "healthy," according to the Oakland metal band's publicist, and, to celebrate, the band just released a video for "Fertile Green" off its new album De Vermis Mysteriis. In a statement, Pike, who was recently spotted at Oakland's Art & Soul Festival (which the Express co-produced) to watch friends/fellow Oaklanders Saviours perform, said in a statement: "As I acclimate back to society, I realize the beast within is even sharper and stronger!"
As we previously reported, Pike entered rehab back in June for a drinking problem, just after performing with his old band Sleep at the Fox Theater, which caused High on Fire to have to cancel its appearance on the Mayhem Festival tour.
The band announced it will perform a handful of dates in Australia in September.
By some measures we were too early announcing the death of Willows Theatre three years ago. The theater did, indeed, shutter briefly as a result of declining ticket sales and donor funding, but eventually found a deus ex machina in the form of managing and funding consultant David Faustina, who was anointed managing director when the theater reopened in 2011. Faustina enjoyed a year and-a-half tenure during which he attempted to resuscitate the ailing, then 36 year-old Concord venue via budget whittling and personnel cutbacks. Despite his efforts, Willows was ultimately unable to keep up with production costs. In a press release sent Tuesday and reprinted in the Contra Costa Times, the theater said it will close again. Its board also canceled the remaining performances of Henrik Ibsen's A Doll's House, which was supposed to run through Saturday.
Those of you who refresh the Outside Lands web page every ten seconds may have noticed that the last remaining ticket options — a small handful of single-day passes for Friday, and $495 weekend VIP packages — were no longer available this morning. According to a giddy press release from festival organizers, this year's event is entirely sold out, trumping last year's impressive-but-not-quite-capacity sales. "Please do not come to the festival unless you have a ticket," the press materials warned, adding that a significant portion of ticket sales will benefit San Francisco's Recreation and Park Department. Outside Lands is also a boon for the local economy, generating more than $67 million last year, according to a study by San Francisco State University Professor Patrick Tierney. This year's complete sell-out augurs an even greater windfall.
Yesterday, embattled KPFA board member Tracy Rosenberg tried a new tack to stave off the recall campaign against her — by seeking a court injunction against the organization that she helps oversee. Rosenberg, who currently serves as treasurer of the Pacifica National Board, has been under fire for defending the current leadership at Pacifica Foundation, which runs KPFA, and which made several controversial programming changes over the past two years. The most severe, of course, was its decision to eliminate KPFA's morning show, which had been a powerful fund-raising arm for the station. It's since been resurrected, albeit in a different form, in light of plummeting Arbitron ratings.