When the ancient Polynesians invented surfing, they often used a paddle to help them navigate. Fast-forward a few millennia, and Stand-Up Paddleboarding, or SUP, finds itself trendy again. Part of its increasing popularity is that standing upright allows surfers to spot waves more easily and thus catch more of them, multiplying the fun factor. Paddling back to the wave becomes less of a strain as well. The ability to cruise along on flat inland water, surveying the sights, is another advantage. Finally, its a good core workout. If youre sold on the idea, schedule an intro SUP lesson, free with board and paddle rental, and you may find yourself riding the waves like a Polynesian king.More
In the past 30 years, light artists have reimagined an art form that has always had the ability to turn the night sky, or a simple window, into luminescence. Last fall, the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts turned its southern glass wall into a parade of sound-sensing lights, Lightswarm, that changes with the movements of nearby people and things. Future Cities Lab, the San Francisco design company behind Lightswarm, has originated another notable light sculpture. Located by the YBCA's steps at 701 Mission, Murmur Wall will light up in arresting ways as it incorporates local trending search engine results and social media postings. Onlookers can offer their own contributions, which will feed into the Murmur Wall's data stream and light up the sculpture. What's trending in San Francisco? If you're walking by the YBCA, you can see firsthand — at least through light patterns that reflect the city's volatile internet habits.
Murmur Wall debuts Thursday at 6 p.m. and continues through May 31, 2017, at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, 701 Mission St., S.F. Free; 415-978-2700 or ybca.org. More
Okay, so none of these songs -- with the possible exception of one -- are technically about our transit system here in San Francisco. But this post on Muni Diaries got us thinking: What music would we play if we could be a Muni DJ for a day? And even better, what songs capture the essence of our favorite and most-used Muni lines? So we got to thinking and listening, and came up with this list of the top six songs we'd love to play on Muni, along with which lines they'd make a perfect soundtrack for.
6. N-Judah: Jimi Hendrix, "Hear My Train A Comin'" Key lyric: "Well, I'm waiting down the train station, waiting for that train/ Waiting for the train to take me from this lonesome place." Why it works for Muni: In addition to being one of our favorite songs of all time (we're partial to one particular live electric version), Hendrix here perfectly captures one of the major blues of life in San Francisco: Waiting for the N-Judah. And waiting. And waiting some more. When he sings, "I'm gonna come back and by this town," we hope Jimi means he might just buy Muni and fix it, too.
5. 71-Haight: Lynyrd Skynyrd, "That Smell"
Key lyric: "So take another toke, have a blow for your nose/ One more drink, fool, would drown you."
Why it works for Muni: Anyone who rides the 71-Haight regularly knows that the bus can have some pretty funky smells -- smells which often seem to emanate from the kinds of people the song describes. (Don't be offended -- we've been part of the freak show at times, too.) But really, we dig this
song's '70s vibe and think it works pretty well for a line serving a
neighborhood that will always in some ways be stuck in the past.
4. F-Market: Billie Holiday, "I Cover the Waterfront" Key lyric: "Away from the city that hurts and knocks/ I'm standing alone by the desolate docks/ In the still and the chill of the night/ I see the horizon, the great unknown."
Why it works for Muni: A line so unabashedly retro as the F-Market streetcar deserves an old-timey soundtrack. And not only does the line literally "cover the waterfront" -- from Market Street to Fisherman's Wharf, at least -- but this Billie Holiday tune embodies the way we feel late at night, leaning back in an old vintage vinyl seat on one of the F-Market's 1930s streetcars, staring out at the lights on San Francisco Bay.
3. 22-Fillmore: Charles Leonard, "Funky Driver on a Funky Bus" (Sample on iTunes) Key Lyric: "I asked the driver where we go/ He say, 'Read the signs, man, and then you'll know'/ I was so mad, I wanted to cuss/ The funky driver on the funky bus." Why it works for Muni: A standout on the incredible Bay Area Funk compilation (seriously, go buy this record right now), this Charles Leonard tune is a local product -- so it very well could be about the 22-Fillmore. Even if it's not, the song's lyrics, about a bus driver who doesn't take late transfers, doesn't give directions, and is all but impervious to his passengers' complaints, jibes with a few experiences we've had on this cross-town route. But we love the 22-Fillmore. As this bus rolls from the Marina through the Western Addition and the Mission to Potrero Hill, it embodies the diverse funkiness of San Francisco.
Key lyric: "Mental wounds not healing/ Who and what's to blame/ I'm going off the rails on a crazy train." Why it works for Muni: Here's what we want to know: who and what's to blame for giving this line two different names and letters that apply at different places along its route? That's driving us crazy. Off the rails, even.
1. J-Church; Neil Young, "Come on Baby, Let's Go Downtown"
Key lyric: "Snake eyes, French fries, and I got lots of gas/ Full moon and a jumpin' tune, now you don't have to ask." Why it works for Muni: We're situated in the city such that the J-Church, for us, is always a ride heading to fun -- either out to the Mission or straight downtown. (Feel free to replace the J-Church with whatever line that is for you.) And few things get us feeling like a party more than this rockin' Neil Young tune (the best version is on the essential solo album Tonight's the Night). We'll take "gas" here to mean "energy" -- or maybe a Clipper card -- and forget about the "full moon" concern. It's worth going downtown to party in San Francisco even when the fog hides it.
Sub Pop recording artists 'clipping.' brought their brand of noise-driven experimental hip hop to the closing night of 2016's San Francisco Electronic Music Fest this past Sunday. The packed Brava Theater hosted an initially seated crowd that ended the night jumping and dancing against the front of the stage. The trio performed a set focused on their recently released Sci-Fi Horror concept album, 'Splendor & Misery', then delved into their dancier and more aggressive back catalogue, and recent single 'Wriggle'.
Opening performances included local experimental electronic duo 'Tujurikkuja' and computer music artist 'Madalyn Merkey.'"