Former Apple CEO Steve Jobs is currently facing strong criticism in Berkeley, much of it fomented by monologist Mike Daisey, whose new play The Agony and the Ecstasy of Steve Jobs opened Sunday to a sold-out crowd at Berkeley Repertory Theatre. In the play, Daisey chastens Jobs not only for ruling the Empire of Mac with an iron fist, and manipulating co-founder Steve Wozniak (who, it is safe to say, became a perfect accomplice in his own exploitation), but for shamelessly abusing workers in the Foxconn factories of southern China. Daisey even passed out paper hand-outs on Sunday, urging patrons to call Apple customer relations and complain about the company's unfair labor practices. Yet, in previous interviews, Jobs has defended the Foxconn factories, and soft-pedaled the issue of worker deaths, apparently resulting from unbearable conditions on the production line. At a June All Things Digital conference, he referred to Foxconn as "a difficult situation." Try telling that to lefty arts patrons in Berkeley.
As KUSF continues to fight for its life, supporters have planned a rally before tomorrow's San Francisco Board of Supervisor's Meeting. The rally's at 1 p.m. at City Hall, and supporters are encouraged to stay for the Board of Supes' meeting at 2 and public forum at 3:30. It's unclear, what, if anything, the Board can do, as the sale is now in the FCC's hands, but it looks like this is part of supporters' plan to start a grassroots campaign to save the station before the sale goes through.
Update: Apparently Supervisor Ross Mirkarimi, whose district includes USF, plans to introduce a resolution in support of the station at tomorrow's meeting.
Count another casualty in Oakland's War on Fun: after being found in violation of the city's cabaret law — and after a purgatorial few months, during which there seemed to be some glimmer of hope that the experiemental arts space might survive — 21 Grand finally shut its doors this weekend. As we've reported, this fall, the city's permiting office declared that manager Darren Jenkins would need a cabaret license in order to keep holding gallery openings and shows — and that he could only get a cabaret license by making about $120,000 worth of building upgrades. Jenkins masterminded a series of fundraisers, but alas, it was apparently not enough. OaklandLocal's got some great photos from the closing.
Just eighteen months after opening, San Francisco’s Coda will be closing on the first of the year, according to a press release that went out this afternoon. “After showcasing hundreds of bands, serving thousands of meals and mixing countless cocktails, Coda is sadly closing its doors on January 1st,” the release said.
When it opened last summer, the supper club — which featured live music six nights a week and until recently was the weekly home of the Jazz Mafia — was almost immediately heralded as a sign of an impending San Francisco jazz renaissance. But it appears that despite the club’s initial buzz and lineup of high-profile local musicians, the tough economic climate has gotten the best of Coda. “Despite our best efforts, the challenges of our economy proved too strong” the release said. “It breaks our hearts to close.”
In the release, owner Bruce Hanson promised that the Coda team will still be involved in the local music scene.
The club is currently not answering its phone.
Amoeba Berkeley will celebrate its twentieth anniversary this weekend, Saturday and Sunday, Nov. 13-14, with a special sale and events. Select titles will be on sale on Saturday, then on Sunday, there will be a store-wide 20-percent-off sale on its used CDs. Sunday will also feature in-house music courtesy of The Coup's Pam the Funkstress, DJ Platurn of the Oakland Faders, Foxtails Brigade (busking throughout the afternoon inside and outside the store), and Lyrics Born (free, all-ages set at 5 p.m., followed by CD signing). Pick up a gift bag if you spend more than $20, win a raffle prize, and chow on some birthday cake. Amoeba is also giving away a $250 gift certificate to the best testimonial about the store. For more info, go here.
Still waiting to get more details, but we've confirmed that a new restaurant/bar/live music venue will open in downtown Oakland sometime in the near future. The venue, located at 347 14th Street, will be called Vitus after the the "patron saint of entertainers and Bohemia," according to owner Damon Gallagher of local band Damon & the Heathens. "We are going have a full restaurant and bar, plus intimate venue. We will serve food late-night, which has been absent from Oakland for some time," wrote Gallagher in an e-mail. The decor will look like "an old art deco jazz club with new touches." As for the type of music booked, Gallagher said it will be "intimate and eclectic." More details as they become available.
All shows at 21 Grand this month have been moved or canceled due to issues with the City of Oakland, according to an e-mail from local promoter Club Sandwich. No further details about the cancellations were offered, and a message left at the venue was not returned.
Three of Club Sandwiches' shows originally scheduled for this month have relocated. The locations after the jump...
Supporters of a San Francisco restaurant/club that’s facing eviction in the wake of a July 11 shooting will hold a “protest rumba” in front of the Port of San Francisco on Pier 1 from 4 to 7 p.m. on Friday, August 13. In a press release, the owners of Jelly’s A Dance Cafe claim that their eviction is the result of gentrification. Meanwhile port officials say the eviction is due to public safety issues (the July incident was the second shooting in the club’s history) and the fact that the establishment does not serve food during its events, in violation of the terms of its lease. Food violations have also been the root of several citations against other San Francisco nightclubs by the California Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control. So far about 700 people have signed a petition to reverse the port’s decision.
One of our favorite Oakland restaurant/bars, Mua, has announced it's ending its weekend nightclub. For those unaware, the restaurant/bar would transform into a full-on packed hip-hop nightclub for dancing around midnight on the weekends. According to Mua's Twitter feed, the venue is returning to its focus on food, and will be a full-time restaurant with late-dinner seating.
Bay Area radio stations keep changing formats, and apparently it's all your fault. Well, sorta. So says Ben Fong Torres in an article in the Chronicle. Responding to ratings and market research, Kiss (98.1 FM) has turned strictly old-school Motown, KFOG (10.45 FM) is leaning more toward classic rock, and Alice (97.3 FM) is turning Top 40. That's not what you ordered? Well, Arbitron used to measure people's listening habits with journals, but have likely gotten more accurate with PPM, the rating firm's new Portable People Meter, which records what you actually listen to as opposed to what you like to think you listen to.