Thursday, June 30, 2016

Celebrate Beejus' Album Release at a Water Fight at DeFremery Park

by Nastia Voynovskaya
Thu, Jun 30, 2016 at 9:04 AM


Rapper Beejus knows how to have fun. In our Summer Guide issue last month, I wrote about the weekly dodgeball games he's hosting all summer long on Sunday nights at Athol Park Plaza in Oakland. Hot off the release of his last album, BeeSmoove 2, the artist is already back with another project called No Time But to Mob, which drops this Friday. Instead of throwing a typical album release party, Beejus decided to celebrate with a water fight in DeFremery Park (1269 18th St., Oakland) on Saturday at 1 p.m. Bring your water balloons and squirt guns, and get ready to bump NTBTM tomorrow. 

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Wednesday, June 29, 2016

First Listen: YMTK's Funky, New R&B Jam, "Muse"

by Nastia Voynovskaya
Wed, Jun 29, 2016 at 10:41 AM

  • Roxanne Pasibe
  • YMTK.
Oakland-raised, LA-based R&B singer YMTK is featured in our music section this week, where he shared some insights on his upcoming album, All the Right Places, writing songs for some big-name artists, and his evolution from singing in church choirs to sharing stages with the likes of Keak Da Sneak. 

See more:
YMTK's 'All the Right Places' Is the Perfect Summer Soundtrack

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Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Burger Boogaloo Was Rad. Here Are Some Pics.

by Nick Miller
Tue, Jun 28, 2016 at 5:39 PM

First, a loud siren seared my ears. When I turned, I saw four men draped in bandages standing atop a white hearse. Hmm. It was legendary weirdo rock troupe the Mummies, poised atop their ride as it cruised through Mosswood Park, dodging trees and revelers on their way to perform Saturday night’s headlining set for the sixth annual Burger Boogaloo. The two-day festival was thick with fans of bizarre guitar rock. I'd tell you more, but frankly I'm exhausted from all the fun. So ... here are some photos by Deario “Chose” Austin.

Quick Check-In Interview with Oakland's G-Eazy as The Rapper Embarks on Biggest U.S. Tour Yet

He'll stop in the Bay on July 8 at Shoreline.

by Nick Miller
Tue, Jun 28, 2016 at 2:52 PM

Oakland native G-Eazy is living a pretty sweet life these days. He's filming music videos with Britney Spears. He's chilling courtside at the NBA Finals. And the rapper recently embarked on a headlining jaunt, The Endless Summer Tour, the largest road trip of his career. He'll be playing all over the states and Europe through late September, along with Logic, YG, and Yo Gotti.

And, of course, he will make a requisite Bay Area stop in a couple weeks, Friday night, July 8, at Shoreline Amphitheater.

G-Eazy chatted with the Express real quick via email in advance of his local gig.

Express: What moves should the Warriors make this off-season?
G-Eazy: To be honest, I don't think they need to make any moves. They should just focus on keeping their core intact. They were eighteen seconds away from having a perfect season. ... If Kyrie's shot woulda bounced off the rim, history would have been written completely differently. It's no time to panic. That's just the nature of the game: You win some, you lose some. The great ones become great by getting knocked down and coming back stronger. They're gonna be contenders for a long-ass time if they just keep that core intact.

Share something about your live set that would surprise people.
I don't think people understand how much preparation goes into it, or how many people it really takes to put on the show every night, to set up the stage and break it down and then pack it into a semi to drive off to the next city. I got almost 50 people out on the road with me that help make it happen, from setting up and running the sound, to hanging the LED walls, to the lights, to the band, etc..

Lots of national news about the Oakland Police Department recently. Any thoughts on this?
It's fucked up. We all know there's hella crooked cops out there, but having this come to light and draw national attention can hopefully turn the conversation to it in a real way and make for forward progress. The culture of the Oakland police department is all fucked up. These are the people that are put in place to "protect and serve" and they're out here doing some of the most terrible shit.

You get to collaborate with any musician or artist, living or dead: Who and why?
Mac Dre. He's the king.

Where do you absolutely have to eat when you’re back in town?
Gordo's in Berkeley for lunch then Mua in downtown Oakland for dinner.

G-Eazy plays with Logic, YG, and Yo Gotti as part of the Endless Summer Tour on Friday, July 8, at Shoreline Amphitheater (One Amphitheater Parkway in Mountain View),

Friday, June 24, 2016

This Weekend's Top Seven Events

June 24, 25 & 26

by Sarah Burke
Fri, Jun 24, 2016 at 7:00 AM

It's been another wild week of scandal in the national press for the city of Oakland. We even made it onto a Comedy Central skit. Yikes. Maybe get out this weekend, and try to take your mind off things? We've got some ideas:

Katey Red.
  • Katey Red.
House of Babes 
Happy LGBTQ Pride, everyone! While the main parade in downtown San Francisco draws out mostly tourists and straight people and is overrun with corporate sponsors, there are plenty of cooler queer events going on in San Francisco throughout the last weekend of June. House of Babes is one of the best and biggest, and this year the party returns to Public Works with performances by New York rapper Dai Burger and Katey Red, a transgender MC from New Orleans who is known as the Mother of Sissy Bounce. Bounce music started in New Orleans’ LGBTQ community, and artists such as Red and Big Freedia made its sound and dance moves popular to the masses (twerking, hello). Katey Red is a cult hero in Louisiana but rarely performs on the West Coast, so this House of Babes will be a special one. Don’t forget your hot pants and do your stretches beforehand. A portion of the party’s proceeds go to Black Lives Matter, also. — Nastia Voynovskaya
Sat., June 25, 7 p.m. Public Works (161 Erie St., San Francisco). $15-$50.

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Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Premiere: Bay Legends The Mekanix Drop Video for "I'm So Oakland"

by Nastia Voynovskaya
Wed, Jun 22, 2016 at 4:46 PM


If there's anyone who can claim to be "So Oakland," it's definitely production duo The Mekanix, who have been making beats for the Bay Area's greats for the past fifteen-plus years. Composed of 4rAx and Kenny Tweed, the team has collabed with just about every local legend —  including Mistah F.A.B., The Jacka, and Keak Da Sneak.

Over the years, The Mekanix have been key architects of the bass-heavy knock that's regarded as the quintessential mob music sound, positioning them at the center of the Bay Area's DIY street rap culture.

The production all stars recently dropped their latest album, Under The Hood, which features the above-mentioned rappers and pretty much all the Bay Area greats you can think of — including E-40, Too $hort, Richie Rich, San Quinn, J. Stalin, and many more.

The Mekanix gave the Express the exclusive on their video for "I'm So Oakland," featuring The Delinquents. It's a veritable insider's guide to Oakland, with shots that make the viewer feel like they're cruising through The Town — which is exactly what this track is great for. 

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Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Otherwheres is a Lit Mag for True-ish Stories

The fourth issue is out this Friday.

by Sarah Burke
Tue, Jun 21, 2016 at 3:23 PM

Otherwheres is a young-ish Oakland-based literary magazine that publishes true-ish stories by Bay Area authors with striking imagery and design. Its fourth issue is about to be born —on June 24, to be exact — and the theme is "disaster." I asked co-editor Joseph Bien-Kahn some questions to get a taste of what the mag is all about and what the new issue has in store. 

What’s with the name Otherwheres?
The word Otherwheres is actually the brainchild of my co-editor, Aaron Kingon. We opened our first issue with an explanation of the term, which he takes to mean the spaces between everywhere and nowhere: a “place where there is nothing yet.” I love the name because it fits what we’re doing so well — we’re small, which means we can try things, make mistakes, and hopefully build a magazine that is a spot where talented writers and artists want to share their personal, mostly true stories.

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Friday, June 17, 2016

This Weekend's Top Seven Events

June 17, 18 & 19

by Sarah Burke
Fri, Jun 17, 2016 at 9:11 AM

Oakland mayor Libby Schaaf has had a very busy week — firing police chiefs left and right then turning around and naming an official Tupac day. Impressive. Now its your turn. Here are the top seven events to keep you busy this weekend:

  • Tupac.
The Life Celebration for Tupac Shakur 
Pull up any Tupac interview on YouTube, and you’ll be guaranteed to hear truths that resonate with the struggles of racial and economic inequality in today’s United States. The rapper’s mother, Afeni Shakur, was an activist and member of the Black Panthers. Tupac and his family moved to the Bay Area when he was in his late teens, and in interviews, he pays homage to Oakland (where the Panther Party was founded) as a place where he expanded his political consciousness. In light of Afeni Shakur’s recent passing, The New Parish is hosting a life celebration of the late mother and son on June 18 with sets from DJ Fuze and Money B of Digital Underground, an early rap group that helped Tupac start his music career. — Nastia Voynovskaya 
Sat., June 18, 3 p.m. The New Parish (1743 San Pablo Ave., Oakland). $10, $15.

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Thursday, June 16, 2016

Forthcoming Documentary Fights Cultural Erasure in Oakland

This week, the trailer and crowdfunding campaign was released for 'Alice Street,' a movie about a mural and much more.

by Arielle Swedback
Thu, Jun 16, 2016 at 6:02 PM

Earlier this week, the Community Rejuvenation Project (CRP), a local arts nonprofit, released a trailer and crowdfunding campaign for its anticipated documentary, Alice Street. The film recounts the genesis of a mural that has thrust public art into the forefront of its neighborhood’s gentrification debate.

Nestled at the crossroads of Oakland’s Chinatown district and the Afro-diasporic community based at the adjacent Malonga Casquelourd Center for the Performing Arts, the CRP mural aimed to capture the neighborhood’s historic intersectionality. The art, which celebrates artists and folk traditions from both cultural enclaves, has been hailed as a beacon of resilience in the face of heightening community displacement due to gentrification.

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Rad Show Alert: Male Gaze, Drug Apts Tonight at Night Light's 'Influx' Party

by Nick Miller
Thu, Jun 16, 2016 at 1:35 PM

If you're in the mood for some strange rock bands tonight — and of course you are — then tonight's free party at The Night Light is your destination. (Hopefully it will double as a Warriors victory party, too.)

Anyway, beginning at 9 p.m., the bar/club will host its fifth incarnation of "Influx," a gratis gathering that this week features some pretty rad if weird rock bands.

Headlining is Male Gaze, a four-piece from NorCal with former members of the Mall, Blasted Canyons and Mayyors, whose sounds inform this latest troupe. The band's first full length, King Leer, recently dropped and is a must for fans of fuzz-forward tunes with strong doses of crushing guitar and doses of softer moments for good measure.

Also playing is Drug Apts, a Sacramento-based five piece that will soon drop a record on Tyler Pope of LCD Soundsystem's new label. That album was produced by Death Grips' Zach Hill and Andy Morin. Drug Apts frontwoman Whittney Kebschull is a force; do not miss this set!

So Stressed, another killer rock troupe from the 916, and Straight Crimes also on the bill. See you there.

"Influx" at The Night Life, 311 Broadway, Oakland (9 p.m., no cover, 21-and-up).

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