Real Estate

Bernal blows up


When Herb Felsenfeld and his wife, Gail Newman, look out the window of the Bernal Heights home they’ve lived in for more than 30 years, they see a vacant hilly lot grown in with tall grass, stretching up in the direction of nearby Bernal Heights Park.

The surrounding area has become quite popular. Earlier this year, real estate firm Redfin crowned Bernal Heights the nation’s No. 1 “hottest neighborhood,” its desirability ranked using “a combination of big-data analysis and real-life human experience,” according to the company blog.

There are plans to build two new single-family homes on the slope directly above them, causing a bit of a neighborhood stir. But one detail about this particular site — perched high atop Folsom Street on the eastern slope of Bernal Hill — has neighbors on edge.

Below the surface, extending up a 35 percent grade, is a natural gas pipeline owned and operated by Pacific Gas and Electric Co.

Property records designate it as Line 109, and it traverses the Bernal Heights neighborhood from farther south, running up Folsom Street. Two orange-and-white striped markers stake out its trajectory uphill, with an orange sticker on the back proclaiming, “Warning: Gas Pipeline.”

It’s serviced the area for at least 30 years, perhaps much longer, qualifying it as an aging piece of infrastructure. Felsenfeld, Newman, and neighbor Deborah Gerson say they’re worried that performing excavation on the slope for a road and new home foundations poses a safety threat.

Newman said she was especially perplexed by the San Francisco Planning Department’s issuance of a waiver of an environmental impact review, which is routine for a project of this size, citing no unusual circumstances. “I’m like, wait a minute,” she said. “There’s a pipeline here.”

One would think that any sort of risk would be eliminated by routine safety protocols. But it gets complicated when one considers that PG&E is under federal indictment for criminal negligence for its alleged failure to keep up with pipeline maintenance, due in part to sloppy recordkeeping. There may indeed be little risk involved with the new construction at this site — but then again, the neighbors’ concerns raise questions about whether adequate measures are in place to guarantee safety in this and other situations.

The criminal charges facing PG&E that were filed March 31 stem from an investigation launched in the wake of a fatal 2010 explosion in San Bruno caused by a pipeline rupture, which killed eight people and destroyed an entire neighborhood. The utility is fighting the charges in court and has reportedly invested $2.7 billion in shareholder dollars toward safety improvements since.

But according to the results of a regulatory audit on PG&E’s assessment of its own pipeline records that was undertaken to set things straight after the tragic explosion, crucial pipeline information is still missing or flawed, as the San Francisco Chronicle recently reported.

“Given the San Bruno disaster and the recent media revelations about PG&E’s pipes, we are wondering what information you have gathered on this subject,” Felsenfeld wrote in a letter to one of the housing developers, Fabien Lannoye. “Where exactly is Pipeline No. 109? How deeply is No. 109 buried? What is Pipeline No. 109 composed of? How big in diameter is Pipeline 109? How/with what are the pipe seams welded?”

He sent the same set of questions to PG&E. So far, Felsenfeld hasn’t received any answers. PG&E has also been stonewalling the developer’s information requests.

Lannoye, who is building one of the two new houses, described the project as a two-story, single-family home where he hopes to live with his wife and two children. He said he understands the neighbors’ concerns about safety, but also believes they are organizing in an effort to prevent him from moving forward.

When it comes to his communications with the utility company, however, Lannoye is a bit more baffled. “It’s kind of a little bizarre that we’re not getting clear information,” he said. “I’ve contacted like 15 different people from PG&E, and every time, they send me to someone else. Either they don’t want to give me the information, or they don’t know what it is.”

PG&E did not respond to the Bay Guardian‘s request for comment.

In general, the only parties who seem to be directly involved when there is construction near natural gas pipelines are the utility company and the project developer. An association called the Common Ground Alliance maintains the 811 phone line — a service known as Call Before You Dig — to ensure the location of underground lines are marked prior to any excavation.

When the Guardian phoned San Francisco’s Department of Public Works to ask if the agency has a pipeline risk assessment procedure in place when new construction is planned, we were told that such a thing might fall under the scope of the Department of Building Inspection.

But in a voicemail, DBI spokesperson Bill Strawn responded that such a thing might be up to the Department of Public Works, adding, “There’s no restriction about somebody building a project or a house somewhere in the vicinity of a natural gas pipeline.”

All of which means it falls to PG&E to ensure that high-pressure underground lines are safe, with no chance of rupture when new foundations are being installed close by. But PG&E doesn’t always know what it’s got. According to charges in the federal indictment, the utility created a GIS database in the late 1990s based on pipeline survey sheets that contained erroneous or incomplete information. PG&E then relied on that database to make integrity management decisions.

The indictment noted that prior to the San Bruno disaster, PG&E had been intentionally elevating pressure levels on Line 132, the one that ruptured, as well as Line 109, to maintain peak pressure levels in accordance with federal regulations. But experts have noted that this spiking practice could erode the integrity of a line if there are vulnerable welds.

“Our plan,” Lannoye explained, “is not to dig where the gas line is.” Line 109 would run beneath a sidewalk, he added.

Marilyn Waterman, another neighbor, outlined the situation in an email to University of California Berkeley professor Robert Bea, a nationally renowned civil engineer. She asked Bea if concern is warranted.

“Given the background you provided in your email, yes — you should be concerned,” he responded. It’s an old line, Bea pointed out, in an area with highly variable topography, with no available records detailing its operation and maintenance.

“This list is identical to the list of concerns that summarized causation of the San Bruno Line 132 gas pipeline disaster,” Bea wrote. “The fundamental ‘challenge’ associated with your concern is tied to the word ‘safe.'”

His rule of thumb? “If the potential consequences associated with a failure are low, then the likelihood of the failure can be high. If the potential consequences are very high, then the probability of failure must be very low.”

Opening up


DANCE “Location, location, location” is real estate’s mantra, as those of us who keep running up against it know only too well. But location has also become essential to dance, especially for artists who want to forego the theater and make the outside world their stage.

For the last six years, Dancers’ Group, the Bay Area’s dance service organization, has sponsored the ONSITE series, weaving free dance performances into the urban fabric. Recent events have showcased Amara Tabor-Smith’s He Moved Swiftly (various locations), Jo Kreiter’s Niagara Falling (Seventh and Market streets), and Erika Chong Shuch’s Love Everywhere (City Hall Rotunda). Sara Shelton Mann’s The Eye of Horus, performed in Jessie Square, is the latest addition. She could not have chosen a better location.

Gently terraced and surrounded on three sides by glass and steel — but also the warmth of the old bricks of St. Patrick Church and the newer ones of the Contemporary Jewish Museum — Jessie Square opens itself to the greenery of Yerba Buena Gardens. The totality suggests an urban environment in which disparate perspectives (nature and culture, the past and the present, private and public spaces) harmoniously bump against each other.

In other words, Jessie Square was a perfect stage for Mann to send her dancer-disciples into a 40-minute performance in which they revealed different aspects of themselves, inspired by the way the Egyptian god Horus embodied multiple identities.

Each of the four — Christine Bonansea, Jorge de Hoyos, Jesse Hewit, and Sara Yassky — had developed a multi-sectional solo that, according to the preperformance information, was based on archetypes as derived from Caroline Myss’ book Sacred Contracts. Whatever the generating forces for these solos were, in performance they emerged and receded into the much larger activities at Jessie Square, the whole becoming a kind of moving tableau vivant. The dancers transformed lunchtime crowd actions — eating, talking, strolling, and waiting — into something beyond the commonplace. They injected poetry into daily life.

Generous and welcoming as these types of performances are, I personally miss the more intimate and more focused encounters that inside spaces offer. Mann and production designer David Szlasa stepped in with props or directions as needed. In a favorite moment, Szlasa’s breadcrumbs coaxed a flock of pigeons into a procession across the square. Mann pulled Bonansea up to her full height to send her off on an imaginary tightrope; she also shushed (or at least I think she did) Hewit’s screaming tantrum. Later on, when he sat immobile in a beggar’s pose, she brought him what I first saw as a fishing rod. It was a whip.

Eye is full of small incidents — some touching, some hilarious, some nonsensical — controlled by planning and a lot of serendipity. Hewit tried a shoulder stand, holding a carnation. De Hoyos raced along a diagonal as if shot from a bow. Yassick played what looked like a solitary game of bocce ball. Interspersing these lighter incidents were moments of anguish, lack of stability, and a sense of mortality. At one point or another, just about everyone looked dead as the plank that de Hoyos dragged around.

Bonansea bitterly wept as she put her clown makeup on; her mad laughter while racing the square became monstrous. Yassky, apparently in severe pain, rubbed a balloon against her belly and approached a passerby who politely put his phone away to acknowledge her.

Sometimes, the dancers disappeared in the crowd. I had lost sight of de Hoyos when someone pointed him out leaping and gesticulating on top of the parking garage. If there were any narrative suggestions, it was the ongoing give and take between de Hoyos and Mann. Or perhaps it was Bonansea marching up to de Hoyos, who had dropped to the ground after his lovely ballad fragment. In her best French rhetorical manner, the petite performer started a discourse (on, among other things, mortality) and the corpse in front of her. She finally decided that theory had run into reality and proceeded with mouth-to-mouth resuscitation.

If Bonansea was something of clown figure, the powerful Yassky seemed imprisoned inside her own body. She is a slender, gamine performer, and I don’t think I ever saw her relax. When she held her limbs tight to her body, they looked like they were enchaining her. When she crouched on a tiny stool on one leg, she repeatedly spilled water and salt offered to her. Whispering into a mike, she asked for help. Clawing her throat while lying on her back, she looked about ready to expire.

For all the portentous self-examination in Eye, the work was free-spirited, unpretentious, and yet quite serious. The boom box sound score, however, needs rethinking; much of it was too blatantly obvious. While Eye greatly benefited from its gorgeous location, at times it looked too thin, dissipating some of its energy. It probably will benefit from the additional performers — Sherwood Chen and a group of community volunteers — who will join the final show Sat/3. *


Wed/30 and Sat/3, 12:30pm, free

Jessie Square

736 Mission, SF


Two views of the waterfront


The Golden State Warriors’ announcement that its planned 18,000-seat basketball arena would be moved off the San Francisco waterfront was fresh in everyone’s mind when former San Francisco Mayor Art Agnos visited the Bay Guardian office on April 23, and he was electrified by the win.

“I resent anyone suggesting that this is not a genuine people-powered victory — again,” Agnos said. “Because that’s what it was, bottom line.”

The former mayor has traveled up and down the city in recent months promoting Proposition B, an initiative on the June 3 ballot that may well have cleared the Warriors Arena from its proposed waterfront perch at Piers 30-32 had the team not announced that it would be taking that step independently.

If it passes, Prop. B will require voter approval for any development project along city-owned waterfront property that exceeds height limits set by the Waterfront Land Use Plan approved in 1997. Such a rule would have squarely targeted the Warriors’ proposal.

The sports arena had been slated for a 13-acre parcel a stone’s throw from the Bay Bridge that is now a parking lot, where it would have hovered above the water like a floating spacecraft. Across the street, at a site known as Seawall Lot 330, the Warriors had proposed installing shops, parking, a condo tower, and a hotel.

Agnos and the backers of Prop. B hadn’t anticipated the Warriors’ announcement that its waterfront venue would be moved to private property, a 12-acre lot in Mission Bay purchased from tech giant

“We thought, because people at the top of this city’s government told us so, they would prevail,” Agnos said of Mayor Ed Lee and others championing the waterfront arena. “They didn’t.”

Agnos and his allies say it was the prospect of voters having to sign off on a proposal that was hatched behind closed doors that caused the Warriors to choose a more appropriate location.

“We helped them go to a different place where we now support what they’re doing — because it makes more sense for this city, and for our bay, as well as our waterfront. That’s what the issue is,” Agnos told us. “The spin doctors had their ass handed to ’em … had their ass handed to ’em, by a low-income group of allies, over their $20,000–$30,000, gold-plated contracts per month. And so now, they understand.”

They understand that the waterfront of San Francisco is a battleground and the people are willing to fight to ensure the public interest trumps private profits.


A rendering of proposed development at Pier 70, envisioning tech offices and housing.


A historic map hanging in a corridor at the Port of San Francisco building, in a rehabbed terminal at Pier 1 along The Embarcadero, traces the original curve of a coastline that once separated the city from San Francisco Bay.

The existing waterfront juts out considerably from where its natural edge once fell, and today’s urban landscape features a mix of entire neighborhoods, tall buildings, parks, restaurants, merchant corridors, and transport terminals, all perched atop fill covered by layers of concrete.

Its shipping days long gone, much of San Francisco’s human-constructed waterfront now serves as a draw for visitors, the iconic subject of countless tourist photographs. But at other locations along the shoreline, vacant waterfront parcels are hotly contested land-use battlefronts.

“We’re clearly in a period of significant controversy,” the Port’s Special Project Manager Brad Benson told us. The Warriors Arena, Benson said, had been an opportunity for the Port to rehabilitate and generate revenue from Piers 30-32, which originated as two finger piers constructed in 1912, joined by a concrete slab in the 1950s.

Despite being in control of some of the most valuable real estate along the West Coast, the Port of San Francisco remains in a perpetual financial pinch, due to its need to fix up crumbling piers and aging infrastructure. The Port is governed by a Waterfront Land Use Plan, outlining possible uses for each parcel, and it also conducted a survey to identify properties that could be developed to help generate revenue.

“The Port has a big capital need,” Benson said, noting that many of the “piers and buildings were beyond their useful life when they were transferred to the city” from the state in 1968. Facing nearly $2 billion in capital needs, the Port’s modus operandi is to seek out private developers to partner with on development projects for parcels under its ownership, in order to secure funding that would go toward backlogged improvements.

That didn’t happen with the Warriors, however — the sports team approached the city out of the blue, and the project quickly won the fervent backing of Mayor Lee, who has appointment power over the five-member commission that governs the Port. At one point, Lee even claimed that this flashy sports arena would be his “legacy project.”

To longtime grassroots activists who are deeply involved in how land-use decisions are made on valuable waterfront parcels, it looked to be yet another example of what Prop. B supporter Jennifer Clary called “kneejerk development” — out of sync with carefully thought out shoreline planning efforts.

“The Port gets jerked around by every mayor,” said Clary, president of San Francisco Tomorrow, part of the coalition backing Prop. B. “Every mayor comes up with some stupid project.” She ticked off a list of failed waterfront developments (such as Mills Mall, proposed for Piers 27-31; and a 50-story U.S. Steel Building that would have towered over the Ferry Building), only to have them voted down or halted by grassroots neighborhood activists who viewed them as inappropriate designs fueled by greed and greased by political connections.

Behind the objection to Prop. B, Clary added, “is that the mayor will have to think a little more” before backing projects of this nature.

Whether opponents of the Warriors Arena plan looked at it and saw a traffic nightmare, an inappropriate use of public land, or a bad financial deal for a city needing to contend with ever-growing pressures on its critical infrastructure, members of the coalition that’s backing Prop. B feared the public would have little sway when it came to the final decision-making. A bid to restore that balance, by arming voters with veto power under the law, was the impetus behind Prop. B.

City Hall has ignored the will of regular folks who collectively own Port land along the shoreline, said Agnos, campaign consultant Jon Golinger, and Prop. B proponent and Sierra Club volunteer Becky Evans — listening only to the Mayor’s Office and deep-pocketed developers who stand to make millions by building on extremely valuable land that’s held in the public trust under California law.

“The people are putting the developers in touch with the values of this city, and what we want in this city,” Agnos said, thumping his index finger on the table to emphasize the point. “Prop. B puts people in the room who have not been there, and now [developers] have to pay attention.”

The task of developing Piers 30-32 would have required expensive substructure modification, requiring the involvement of bureaucratic agencies such as the US Army Corps of Engineers, the Bay Conservation Development Commission, and the State Lands Commission. The Warriors estimated that it would invest $120 million in improvements such as seismic upgrades and an elevation grade to deal with the looming problem of sea-level rise, but the threat of having to win voter approval represented yet another hoop to jump through. So when a new option opened up offering greater certainty, the Warriors pulled the plug on Piers 30-32.

Even though Lee’s “legacy project,” the main physical target of Prop. B, is no longer a factor in the June election, backers of the initiative say the measure is still important to restore democratic balance in a development process that freezes out ordinary citizens. Opponents, meanwhile, say the initiative threatens to undermine a complex planning process that engages the public and needn’t be tampered with.



Prop. B would prohibit city officials from approving taller buildings than are currently allowed under zoning for Port-owned waterfront parcels, unless voters give those height increases a green light at the ballot box.

Since many of the properties in question are already built out, or preserved by historic landmark designation, Prop. B would impact only a handful of waterfront lots that remain in play as potential sites for new development. Among them are Piers 30-32 and Seawall Lot 351, the site of the 8 Washington luxury condo tower that the electorate flushed down the tubes in a decisive ballot referendum vote last fall, despite Board of Supervisors’ approval.

The same group that opposed 8 Washington launched Prop. B. Last year’s ballot referendum — also named Prop. B, and buoyed by the campaign slogan No Wall on the Waterfront — asked voters whether they favored increasing building heights above the zoning limit at the waterfront site where the luxury condo project would have gone.

San Francisco voters, in no mood to support a high rise for the superrich at a time when anger over skyrocketing rents was bubbling over and droves of low-income residents were being edged out by eviction, shot it down. Many political observers took the outcome as a signal that City Hall politicians are out of touch with voters.

Simon Snellgrove, the developer of the failed 8 Washington project, is reportedly working on a new building design. But since any new plans for 8 Washington are embryonic at best, and the fate of Piers 30-32 is anyone’s guess, the Prop. B ballot measure has immediate implications for two waterfront developments in particular.

One, on and around Pier 48, is being pushed by the San Francisco Giants. The other lies farther south, at Pier 70, a sprawling strip of waterfront that runs behind Illinois Street, from The Ramp restaurant at Mariposa to the old Potrero Power Plant.


The Giants’ planned development would be a short distance from AT&T Park. 

During World War II, some 18,500 workers built ships at Pier 70 for the war effort, in brick and metal warehouses that still stand vacant and dilapidated. The site also housed a coal-fired power plant that was later converted to natural gas, leaving behind toxic residue that is up to Pacific Gas and Electric Co. to remediate. Farther north along Pier 70, BAE Systems conducts ship repair, a task that has been performed at the site since 1868.

Today, a 28-acre parcel of Pier 70 that is proposed for development by Forest City is home to nothing more than pigeons, feral cats, and the occasional hawk that swoops into a cavernous metal-roofed structure that stands near the waterfront and dates back to 1941, barely visible from the street. Someday in the not-so-distant future, developers imagine it will be populated with tech office workers (Google is used as an example of an anchor tenant in slides presented to the city), makers and small vendors, and thousands of residents who would call the place home.

The site is zoned with a 40-foot height limit, but developers are considering plans with a range of building heights that would be on a similar scale to Mission Bay. Part of the improvements to the property will require raising the elevation grade to deal with sea-level rise. Forest City has planned for a minimum of around 1,000 residential units — the majority market-rate, but with a mix of affordable housing as well.

Representatives from Forest City said that if Prop. B passes, “We’ll be prepared to seek voter approval with a dynamic project guided by … a community-based master plan,” and had not taken an official stance on the ballot measure. If voters were to reject an increase of the 40-foot height limit at the site, which is zoned for heavy industry, the project would no longer be financially feasible.



At Seawall Lot 337, a parcel near the Giants’ stadium which is primarily used as a parking lot during baseball games, the team is backing a project that would include 3.5 million square feet of new residential, office, and retail development, possibly including a 380-foot tower. Across the way at Pier 48 would be a new Anchor Steam brewery, and about five acres of open space.

The Giants plan resulted from the Port’s request for potential development partners to submit bids for that property, which went out in 2007.

“They very quietly have been pushing a plan that Prop. B made public,” Golinger said of the Giants’ plans. “They screamed at everyone involved in our coalition during the signature drive to get us to drop it. They funded a lawsuit … to get it kicked off the ballot.”

The Guardian independently confirmed that the team is part of the group that has challenged Prop. B in court. That legal challenge was unsuccessful in getting the initiative struck from the June ballot, but a judge could take up the question again if Prop. B is approved.

The parcel where the Giants have pitched a rental housing, office, and retail complex with a maximum height limit of 380 feet is zoned with a height limit of zero, zoned for open space in city plans. Nevertheless, “The [Port’s request for qualifications] called for developing up to 300 feet,” Benson explained, calling the current zoning “a remnant of the old Mission Bay plan,” which envisioned a park with wetlands and open space. The Port’s request for proposals went out after a subcommittee was formed, and public hearings were held on the design plans.

Asked why the Port would bake such a tall height limit into its RFQ, Benson responded, “There was a desire to avoid replicating the heights at Mission Bay,” the nearby redevelopment area characterized by lower, boxy buildings that seem to be universally regarded as ugly and lacking charm.

Few people are as intimately familiar with Mission Bay as Corinne Woods, whose houseboat is enveloped on either side by the sprawling development. When Woods first claimed a berth at Mission Creek for her floating home in 1985, “it was surrounded by open empty fields, abandoned warehouses, and lots of fennel,” she said. “We had wonderful parties.”

Outside her dock just off Channel Street is a community garden, a strip of green space shaded by willow and eucalyptus trees where night herons take refuge. Just beyond that is the Mission Bay South redevelopment area, a sprawling construction site that’s ushered in building cranes, swirling dust, pile drivers, and more recently, a five-alarm blaze that required the entire Fire Department to extinguish.

The fledgling neighborhood that now occupies the already-built part of Mission Bay might as well have dropped out of the sky, and the building profiles are wide and flat. “I would rather see slim, articulated towers, with more open space,” Woods admitted.

In the years between 1985 and today, Woods has fought the Port on behalf of her live-aboard community to be allowed to remain floating in place, becoming an unlikely expert on the byzantine process of waterfront planning along the way.

As a key member of half-dozen or so community advisory groups formed to weigh in on major waterfront developments, Woods has ardent faith in the civic engagement aspect of the planning process. She fears Prop. B could upset years of careful neighborhood negotiations by limiting the discussion to nothing more than a conversation about height limits.


Corinne Woods opposes Prop. B.

Woods is a plaintiff in the lawsuit the Giants are funding to challenge Prop. B, aligned with developer-friendly housing activist Tim Colen and building trades head Michael Theriault on the side that opposes Prop. B. But despite the millions of dollars that are on the line, Woods insists she has no dog in this fight. “I can’t even get free tickets to Giants games,” she said.

She does hope for the five-acre park that the Giants plan would install as part of the Seawall 337 / Pier 48 plan, a short walk from her houseboat. But she says her opposition to Prop. B is rooted in her experience of a traditional planning process that rewards neighbors who have the patience to sit through hours of grueling advisory group meetings with negotiating power vis-à-vis developers. Asked directly what the problem is with letting voters weigh in, Woods responded, “Because they don’t know what the fuck they’re talking about!”

But that leave-it-to-the-experts attitude is just the thing that Prop. B’s backers say is dangerous for waterfront planning, since it places final decision-making in the hands of profit-seeking real estate interests, a public agency in dire need of funding, and a mayor with political ties to developers.



Given that the thrust of Prop. B is to democratize the planning process, few are in a hurry to align themselves with the formal No on B campaign — most of the opposition money seems to have been funneled into the Giants’ lawsuit, even though the Giants have officially taken a neutral stance on Prop. B. However, the message from opponents of Prop. B is that the initiative would kill sorely needed housing.

The Port of San Francisco, which is legally barred from taking a position on the initiative, reported in a February analysis to the Department of Elections that it could have the effect of leaving between 1,990 and 3,690 new housing units “delayed, reduced, or abandoned,” including between 268 and 596 affordable units. Those figures are based on early project proposals brought by the Warriors, the Giants, and Forest City, assuming those planning proposals would be “delayed by a need for a vote, or rejected by the voters” under a Prop. B regime.

A nonbinding Giants term sheet notes that the team would build rental housing, 15-20 percent of those units affordable, while Forest City’s Pier 70 proposal includes 1,000 new housing units with on-site affordable that would exceed the 12 percent required under city law.

Targeting housing “is a scary message,” campaign consultant Golinger said, charging the opposition with preying on voters’ fears to encourage people to vote down a measure that would democratize waterfront planning.

“This myth that we’re trying to stop housing is just that,” Agnos chimed in. “It’s just a political ploy by those who want to build high-end, high-rise, luxury condos — a la 8 Washington, a la Giants — on public property.”

The housing question is key. At a time when so many people are facing eviction or being priced out, the refrain that building more housing is the only solution to relieve pressure is oft-repeated, particularly by developers. However, these projects would introduce far more market-rate units than affordable projects, plopping down well-to-do neighborhoods in spaces that have sat on the margins in recent history, further changing the social character of the city. And proponents of Prop. B question whether the waterfront is really the right place to add new affordable units.

Meanwhile, the affordable housing community seems to be aligned in its support of Prop. B. The San Francisco Tenants Union, the Affordable Housing Alliance, the AIDS Housing Alliance of San Francisco, and other organizations that have aligned to push for stronger tenants’ rights and promote affordable housing have all endorsed the measure.


Given the popularity of a measure that fundamentally seeks to democratize the planning process, all development teams with skin in the game have declined to take a position on the measure. So have Mayor Lee and Board of Supervisors President David Chiu, who each played significant roles in recent waterfront battles, with Lee championing the Warriors Arena and Chiu opposing 8 Washington and assisting with the signature-gathering effort to stop it.

Sup. David Campos, in contrast with Chiu and Lee, has taken a stance on Prop. B. In a recent interview, he outlined his reasons for supporting it.

“I think that something has happened in City Hall, where I think the approval process is such that it has led to certain projects being approved that don’t really reflect the reality of what this city needs, and that have truly left the public out of the process in a meaningful way,” Campos told us. “And 8 Washington passed 8-3 at the Board of Supervisors, with a supermajority. The fact that the voters overwhelmingly rejected that project tells you that there has been a disconnect between what the board and folks in City Hall are doing, and where the public actually is.” To correct that imbalance and allow more San Franciscans to shape the city’s waterfront, Campos said, “I think it’s appropriate for us to go to the ballot and let the voters decide.”

Guardian endorsements




Editor’s Note: Election endorsements have been a long and proud part of the Guardian’s 48-year history of covering politics in San Francisco, the greater Bay Area, and at the state level. In low-turnout elections like the one we’re expecting in June, your vote counts more than usual, and we hope our endorsements and explanations help you make the best decisions.



There is much for progressives to criticize in Jerry Brown’s latest stint as governor of California. He has stubbornly resisted complying with federal court orders to substantially reduce the state’s prison population, as well as shielding the system from needed journalistic scrutiny and reforms of solitary confinement policies that amount to torture. Brown has also refused to ban or limit fracking in California, despite the danger it poses to groundwater and climate change, irritating environmentalists and fellow Democrats. Even Brown’s great accomplishment of winning passage for the Prop. 30 tax package, which eased the state back from financial collapse, sunsets too early and shouldn’t have included a regressive sales tax increase. Much more needs to be done to address growing wealth disparities and restore economic and educational opportunity for all Californians.

For these reasons and others, it’s tempting to endorse one of Brown’s progressive challenges: Green Party candidate Luis Rodriguez or Peace and Freedom Party candidate Cindy Sheehan (see “Left out,” April 23). We were particularly impressed by Rodriguez, an inspiring leader who is seeking to bring more Latinos and other marginalized constituencies into the progressive fold, a goal we share and want to support however we can.

But on balance, we decided to give Brown our endorsement in recognition of his role in quickly turning around this troubled state after the disastrous administration of Arnold Schwarzenegger — and in the hope that his strong leadership will lead to even greater improvement over his next term. While we don’t agree with all of his stands, we admire the courage, independence, and vision that Brown brings to this important office. Whether he is supporting the California High-Speed Rail Project against various attacks, calling for state residents to live in greater harmony with the natural world during the current drought, or refusing to shrink from the challenges posed by global warming, Jerry Brown is the leader that California needs at this critical time.



Gavin Newsom was mayor of San Francisco before he ascended to the position of Lieutenant Governor, and we at the Bay Guardian had a strained relationship with his administration, to put it mildly. We disagreed with his fiscally conservative policies and tendency to align himself with corporate power brokers over neighborhood coalitions. As lieutenant governor, Newsom is tasked with little — besides stepping into the role of governor, should he be called upon to do so — but has nevertheless made some worthwhile contributions.

Consider his stance on drug policy reform: “Once and for all, it’s time we realize that the war on drugs is nothing more than a war on communities of color and on the poor,” he recently told a crowd at the Democratic Party convention in Los Angeles. “It is fundamentally time for drug policies that recognize and respect the full dignity of human beings. We can’t wait.” In his capacity as a member of the UC Board of Regents, Newsom recently voted against a higher executive compensation package for a top-level administrator, breaking from the pack to align with financially pinched university students. In Sacramento, Newsom seems to come off as more “San Francisco” than in his mayoral days, and we’re endorsing him against a weak field of challengers.



Although the latest Field Poll shows that he has only single-digit support and is unlikely to make the November runoff, we’re endorsing Derek Cressman for Secretary of State. As a longtime advocate for removing the corrupting influence of money from politics through his work with Common Cause, Cressman has identified campaign finance reform as the important first step toward making the political system more responsive to people’s needs. As Secretary of State, Cressman would be in a position to ensure greater transparency in our political system.

We also like Alex Padilla, a liberal Democrat who has been an effective member of the California Senate. We’ll be happy to endorse Padilla in November if he ends up in a runoff with Republican Pete Peterson, as the current polling seems to indicate is likely. But for now, we’re endorsing Cressman — and the idea that campaign finance reform needs to be a top issue in a state and country that are letting wealthy individuals and corporations have disproportionate influence over what is supposed to be a democracy.



The pay-to-play politics of Leland Yee and two other California Democrats has smeared the Assembly. Amid the growls of impropriety, a report by the Center for Investigative Reporting has painted Speaker of the Assembly John Perez, a leading candidate for Controller, with a similar brush. CIR revealed Perez raised money from special interest groups to charities his lover favored, a lover later sued for racketeering and fraud.

Betty Yee represents an opportunity for a fresh start. On the state’s Board of Equalization she turned down campaign donations from tobacco interests, a possible conflict of interest. She also fought for tax equity between same-sex couples. The Controller is tasked with keeping watch on and disbursing state funds, a position we trust much more to Yee’s careful approach than Perez’s questionable history. Vote for Yee.



While serving as California’s elected Controller, John Chiang displayed his courage and independence by refusing to sign off on budgetary tricks used by then-Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and some legislative leaders, insisting on a level of honesty that protected current and future Californians. During those difficult years — as California teetered on the brink of bankruptcy, paralyzed by partisan brinksmanship each budget season, written off as a failed state by the national media — Chiang and retiring Treasurer Bill Lockyer were somehow able to keep the state functioning and paying its bills.

While many politicians claim they’ll help balance the budget by identifying waste and corruption, Chiang actually did so, identifying $6 billion by his estimate that was made available for more productive purposes. Now, Chiang wants to continue bringing fiscal stability to this volatile state and he has our support.



Kamala Harris has kept the promise she made four years ago to bring San Francisco values into the Attorney General’s Office, focusing on the interests of everyday Californians over powerful vested interests. That includes strengthening consumer and privacy protections, pushing social programs to reduce criminal recidivism rather than the tough-on-crime approach that has ballooned our prison population, reaching an $18 billion settlement with the big banks and mortgage lenders to help keep people in their homes, and helping to implement the Affordable Care Act and the legalization of same-sex marriage in the state.

Harris has maintained her opposition to the death penalty even though that has hurt her in the statewide race, and she brings to the office an important perspective as the first woman and first African American ever to serve as the state’s top law enforcement officer. While there is much more work to be done in countering the power of wealthy individuals and corporations and giving the average Californian a stronger voice in our legal system, Harris has our support.



We’ve been following Dave Jones’s legislative career since his days on the Sacramento City Council and through his terms in the California Legislature, and we’ve always appreciated his autonomy and progressive values. He launched into his role as Insurance Commissioner four years ago with an emergency regulation requiring health insurance companies to use no more than 20 percent of premiums on profits and administrative costs, and he has continued to do what he can to hold down health insurance rates, including implementing the various components of the Affordable Care Act.

More recently, Jones held hearings looking at whether Uber, Lyft, and other transportation network companies are adequately insured to protect both their drivers and the general public, concluding that these companies need to self-insure or otherwise expand the coverage over their business. It was a bold and important move to regulate a wealthy and prosperous new industry. Jones deserves credit for taking on the issue and he has earned our endorsement.



This race is a critical one, as incumbent Tom Torlakson faces a strong challenge from the charter school cheerleader Marshall Tuck. An investment banker and Harvard alum, Tuck is backed by well-heeled business and technology interests pushing for the privatization of our schools. Tech and entertainment companies are pushing charter schools heavily as they wait in the wings for lucrative education supply contracts, for which charter schools may open the doors. And don’t let Waiting for Superman fool you, charter schools’ successful test score numbers are often achieved by pushing out underperforming special needs and economically disadvantaged students.

As national education advocate Diane Ravitch wrote in her blog, “If Tuck wins, the privatization movement will gain a major stronghold.” California ranks 48th in the nation in education spending, a situation we can thank Prop. 13 for. We’d like to see Torlakson advocate for more K-12 school dollars, but for now, he’s the best choice.



Fiona Ma was never our favorite member of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, and in the California Legislature, she has seemed more interested in party politics and leadership than moving legislation that is important to San Francisco. There are a few exceptions, such as her attempts last year to require more employers to offer paid sick days and to limit prescription drug co-payments. But she also notoriously tried to ban raves at public venues in 2010, a reactionary bill that was rejected as overly broad.

But the California Board of Equalization might just be a better fit for Ma than the Legislature. She’s a certified public accountant and would bring that financial expertise to the state’s main taxing body, and we hope she continues in the tradition of her BOE predecessor Betty Yee in ensuring the state remains fair but tough in how it collects taxes.



The race to replace progressive hero Tom Ammiano in the California Assembly is helping to define this important political moment in San Francisco. It’s a contest between the pragmatic neoliberal politics of Board of Supervisors President David Chiu and the populist progressive politics of Sup. David Campos, whom Ammiano endorsed to succeed him.

It’s a fight for the soul of San Francisco, a struggle to define the values we want to project into the world, and, for us at the Bay Guardian, the choice is clear. David Campos is the candidate that we trust to uphold San Francisco’s progressive values in a state that desperately needs that principled influence.

Chiu emphasizes how the two candidates have agreed on about 98 percent of their votes, and he argues that his effectiveness at moving big legislation and forging compromises makes him the most qualified to represent us in Sacramento. Indeed, Chiu is a skilled legislator with a sharp mind, and if “getting things done” — the prime directive espoused by both Chiu and Mayor Ed Lee — was our main criterion, he would probably get our endorsement.

But when you look at the agenda that Chiu and his allies at City Hall have pursued since he came to power — elected as a progressive before pivoting to become a pro-business moderate — we wish that he had been a little less effective. The landlords, tech titans, Realtors, and Chamber of Commerce have been calling the shots in this city, overheating the local economy in a way that has caused rapid displacement and gentrification.

“Effective for whom? That’s what’s important,” Campos told us during his endorsement interview, noting that, “Most people in San Francisco have been left behind and out of that prosperity.”

Campos has been a clear and consistent supporter of tenants, workers, immigrants, small businesses, environmentalists — the vast majority of San Franciscans, despite their lack of power in City Hall. Chiu will sometimes do right by these groups, but usually only after being pushed to do so by grassroots organizing and lobbying efforts.

Campos correctly points out that such lobbying is more difficult in Sacramento, with its higher stakes and wider range of competing interests, than it is on the local level. Chiu’s focus on always trying to find a compromise often plays into the hands of wealthy interests, who sometimes just need to be fought and stopped.

We have faith in Campos and his progressive values, and we believe he will skillfully carry on the work of Ammiano — who is both an uncompromising progressive and an effective legislator — in representing San Francisco’s values in Sacramento.



Incumbent Phil Ting doesn’t have any challengers in this election, but he probably would have won our support anyway. After proving himself as San Francisco’s Assessor, taking a strong stance against corporate landowners and even the Catholic Church on property assessments, Ting won a tough race against conservative businessman Michael Breyer to win his Assembly seat.

Since then, he’s been a reliable vote for legislation supported by most San Franciscans, and he’s sponsoring some good bills that break new ground, including his current AB 1193, which would make it easier to build cycletracks, or bike lanes physically separated from cars, all over the state. He also called a much-needed Assembly committee hearing in November calling out BART for its lax safety culture, and we hope he continues to push for reforms at that agency.



Over a decade ago, Californians voted to use hundreds of millions of our dollars to create the CalVet Home and Farm Loan Program to help veterans purchase housing. But a reduction in federal home loan dollars, the housing crisis, and a plummeting economy hurt the program.

Prop. 41 would repurpose $600 million of those bond funds and raise new money to create affordable housing rental units for some of California’s 15,000 homeless veterans. This would cost Californians $50 million a year, which, as proponents remind us, is one-tenth of 1 percent of the state budget. Why let hundreds of millions of dollars languish unused? We need to reprioritize this money to make good on our unfulfilled promises to homeless veterans.



This one’s important. Last year, Gov. Jerry Brown sought to gut the California Public Records Act by making it optional for government agencies to comply with many of the requirements built into this important transparency law. The CPRA and the Ralph M. Brown Act require government agencies to make records of their activities available for public scrutiny, and to provide for adequate notice of public meetings. Had the bill weakening these laws not been defeated, it would have removed an important defense against shadowy government dealings, leaving ordinary citizens and journalists in the dark.

Prop. 42 is a bid to eliminate any future threats against California’s important government transparency laws, by expressly requiring local government agencies — including cities, counties, and school districts — to comply with all aspects of the CPRA and the Brown Act. It also seeks to prevent local agencies from denying public records requests based on cost, by eliminating the state’s responsibility to reimburse local agencies for cost compliance (the state has repeatedly failed to do so, and local bureaucracies have used this as an excuse not to comply).



Prop. A is a $400 million general obligation bond measure that would cover seismic retrofits and improvements to the city’s emergency infrastructure, including upgrades to the city’s Emergency Firefighting Water System, neighborhood police and fire stations, a new facility for the Medical Examiner, and seismically secure new structures to house the police crime lab and motorcycle unit.

The Board of Supervisors voted unanimously to place Prop. A on the ballot, and a two-thirds majority vote is needed for it to pass. Given that San Franciscans can expect to be hit by a major earthquake in the years to come, upgrading emergency infrastructure, especially the high-pressure water system that will aid the Fire Department in the event of a major blaze, is a high priority.



As we report in this issue (see “Two views of the waterfront”), San Francisco’s waterfront is a valuable place targeted by some ambitious development schemes. That’s a good thing, particularly given the need that the Port of San Francisco has for money to renovate or remove crumbling piers, but it needs to be carefully regulated to maximize public benefits and minimize private profit-taking.

Unfortunately, the Mayor’s Office and its appointees at the Port of San Francisco have proven themselves unwilling to be tough negotiators on behalf of the people. That has caused deep-pocketed, politically connected developers to ignore the Waterfront Land Use Plan and propose projects that are out-of-scale for the waterfront, property that San Francisco is entrusted to manage for the benefit of all Californians.

All Prop. B does is require voter approval when projects exceed existing height limits. It doesn’t kill those projects, it just forces developers to justify new towers on the waterfront by providing ample public benefits, restoring a balance that has been lost. San Francisco’s waterfront is prime real estate, and there are only a few big parcels left that can be leveraged to meet the needs of the Port and the city. Requiring the biggest ones to be approved by voters is the best way to ensure the city — all its residents, not just the politicians and power brokers — is getting the best deals possible.



Daniel Flores has an impressive list of endorsers, including the Democratic, Republican, and Green parties of San Francisco — a rare trifecta of political party support. But don’t hold the GOP nod against Flores, who was raised in the Excelsior by parents who immigrated from El Salvador and who interned with La Raza Centro Legal while going to McGeorge School of Law. And he did serve in the Marines for six years, which could explain the broad range of support for him.

Flores is a courtroom litigator with experience in big firms and his own practice, representing clients ranging from business people to tenants fighting against their landlords. Flores told us that he wants to ensure those without much money are treated fairly in court, an important goal we support. We also liked Kimberly Williams and hope she ends up on the bench someday, but in this race, Flores is the clear choice.



This was a hard decision for us this year. Everyone knows that Pelosi will win this race handily, but in past races we’ve endorsed third party challengers or even refused to endorse anyone more often than we’ve given Pelosi our support. While Pelosi gets vilified by conservatives as the quintessential San Francisco liberal, she’s actually way too moderate for our tastes.

Over her 21 years in Congress, she has presided over economic policies that have consolidated wealth in ever fewer hands and dismantled the social safety net, environmental policies that have ignored global warming and fed our over-reliance on the private automobile, and military policies that expanded the war machine and overreaching surveillance state, despite her insider’s role on the House Intelligence Committee.

Three of her opponents — Democrat David Peterson, Green Barry Hermanson, and fiery local progressive activist Frank Lara of the Peace and Freedom Party — are all much better on the issues that we care about, and we urge our readers to consider voting for one of them if they just can’t stomach casting a ballot for Pelosi. In particular, Hermanson has raised important criticisms of just how out of whack our federal budget priorities are. We also respect the work Lara has done on antiwar and transit justice issues in San Francisco, and we think he could have a bright political future.

But we’ve decided to endorse Pelosi in this election for one main reason: We want the Democrats to retake the House of Representatives this year and for Pelosi to once again become Speaker of the House. The Republican Party in this country, particularly the Tea Party loyalists in the House, is practicing a dangerous and disgusting brand of political extremism that needs to be stopped and repudiated. They would rather shut the government down or keep it hopelessly hobbled by low tax rates than help it become an effective tool for helping us address the urgent problems that our country faces. Pelosi and the Democrats aren’t perfect, but at least they’re reasonable grown-ups and we’d love to see what they’d do if they were returned to power. So Nancy Pelosi has our support in 2014.



Barbara Lee has been one of our heroes since 2001, when she was the only member of Congress to vote against the Authorization for the Use of Military Force Against Terrorists, braving the flag-waving nationalism that followed the 9/11 attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon to warn that such an overly broad declaration of war was dangerous to our national interests. She endured death threats and harsh condemnation for that principled stand, but she was both courageous and correct, with our military overreach still causing problems for this country, both practical and moral.

Lee has been a clear and consistent voice for progressive values in the Congress for 16 years, chairing both the Congressional Black Caucus and Congressional Progressive Caucus, taking stands against capital punishment and the Iraq War, supporting access to abortions and tougher regulation of Wall Street, and generally representing Oakland and the greater Bay Area well in Washington DC. She has our enthusiastic support.



Jackie Speier has given her life to public service — almost literally in 1978 when she was an aide to then-Rep. Leo Ryan and survived the airstrip shootings that triggered the massacre at Jonestown — and she has earned our ongoing support. Speier has continued the consumer protection work she started in the California Legislature, sponsoring bills in Congress aimed at protecting online privacy. She has also been a strong advocate for increasing federal funding to public transit in the Bay Area, particularly to Muni and for the electricification of Caltrain, an important prelude to the California High-Speed Rail Project. In the wake of the deadly natural gas explosion in San Bruno, Speier has pushed for tough penalties on Pacific Gas & Electric and expanded pipeline safety programs. She has been a strong advocate of women’s issues, including highlighting the epidemic of sexual assault on college campuses and in the military, seeking greater protections, institutional accountability, and recourse for victims. More recently, Speier has become a key ally in the fight to save City College of San Francisco, taking on the federal accreditation process and seeking reforms. Speier is a courageous public servant who deserves your vote.

Stop the eviction of Benito Santiago



I attended a rally in support of eviction fighter Benito Santiago as he battles to keep his home of more than 30 years from the clutches of real estate investment company Vanguard Properties. Vanguard and its co-owner Michael Harrison, who also goes by the alias “Pineapple Boy LLC,” notified Benito of their intention of evicting him and two other tenants by invoking the state’s Ellis Act. We know the scenario — building gets sold, tenants get evicted, and the speculator/investor pimps ride off into the sunset, latte in hand, behind the wheel of a sports car (or utility vehicle).

But what about Benito?

Benito is a teacher with the San Francisco Unified School District. He is a senior with a disability resulting from a car accident more than a decade ago. Benito is a musician — a percussionist — and he teaches music to developmentally disabled children. Despite the effects of the car accident on his mobility, he has dedicated his life to sharing music with children who have benefitted greatly from his love and patience. He is an excellent teacher with a love for life and music is contagious.

Benito lives in his rent-controlled Duboce Triangle unit, but to investors and speculators, there is no room for him. To them, rent control is a cancer, a disease, a rape of the holy mother. Yet it is the evictions that have spread across the city — a 178 percent increase in Ellis Act evictions alone in the last three years — that are the true cancer.

It is not without irony that Benito moved into his unit in 1977, the same year of the eviction of elders of the I-Hotel on Kearny Street. As a Filipino, Benito remembers that event vividly, an event that garnered worldwide attention and support from wide segments of the community in San Francisco for the elder tenants who refused to leave the I-Hotel, the last building standing that was part of a Filipino neighborhood called Manilatown.

There was no room for Manilatown, no room for those brown elders walking around on property that had so much value. Manilatown was systematically removed by speculation and real estate interests. The I-Hotel eventually fell in 1977 with the forcible eviction of its elderly tenants, with baton-wielding police ramming though a human barricade of more than 3,000 supporters who chanted “We Won’t Move!”

The year Benito moved into his unit, 1977, was the year that the fight to rebuild the I-hotel began. After a 30-year struggle, it was finally rebuilt — 102 units of affordable senior housing. Many tenant protections arose from the ashes of the I-Hotel struggle. Another irony is that Mayor Ed Lee began his career defending the tenants of the I-Hotel.

Now, 37 years later, we see the desecration of the I-Hotel struggle by the same greedy speculators who do not care for the city. They have been the stewards — not of community, or sharing, or culture — but of eviction, misery, and even death to elders. They disrespect the I-hotel struggle and the elders of the community and the legacy of the I-Hotel. They are a blight to San Francisco.

Benito is fighting his eviction. He is refusing the buyout. The sound of resistance is the sound of Benito’s drum, which calls for all of us to rise in defense of our homes. Benito is a part of the Manilatown/I-Hotel Family, and we support his fight, along with Eviction Free SF, his lawyers at the Tenderloin Housing Clinic, and others in the community. The Manilatown Heritage Foundation/I-Hotel calls for an end to out of control evictions and reparations for elders who have been displaced through eviction via the Ellis Act.

What speculators have done is criminal, nothing less than elder abuse. Their presence is the true blight. Tony Robles works for Senior and Disability Action and is president of Manilatown Heritage Foundation, which will hold an event honoring eviction struggles April 25 in the I-Hotel Manilatown Center, 868 Kearny St.

Crowdfunding real-estate: A tool to combat displacement or another nail in the coffin?

A key provision in the JOBS Act, a legislative package signed into law by President Obama in April of 2012, was hailed as a huge victory for the ever-growing real estate industry, removing many of the bothersome impediments that keep it exclusively in the realm of the upper echelon.

The vast majority of real-estate deals are controlled by private equity firms and “accredited” investors whose individual net worth is $1 million or more. But the JOBS Act opens up new territory by allowing for “crowdsourcing” investment funds, introducing the option of pooling financial resources with up to 500 other “non-accredited” investors, meaning anyone making $100,000 or less a year for an individual, or $300,000 for couples.

This potentially opens the floodgates to a much larger portion of the population — but it could have positive or disastrous implications for San Francisco’s housing affordability crisis, depending on how it’s used.

Walk down nearly any street in San Francisco, and you can virtually watch the city change by the moment. With reports of mass displacement and staggering income inequality, the city is desperate for a way to stem the tide of evictions and curb the loss of affordable housing.

This idea of using crowdfunding has drawn some interest as a possible tool for restoring balance. At the same time, at least one company has seized on it to do just the opposite, making it easier for real-estate investors to flip properties and escalate displacement, the only difference being that one need not be a member of the exclusive upper crust to get in the game.

The recent campaign to save the historic black owned bookstore, Marcus Books, led by the San Francisco Community Land Trust, sought to take advantage of crowdfunding as a way to preserve an iconic cultural location and housing for long-term residents.

Fundrise, a D.C. based real-estate startup, helped the Land Trust set up a fundraising campaign in an effort to raise $1 million. Although it failed to hit the target, the organization “was able to raise $750,000,” according to Tracy Parent, SFCLT’s Organizational Director. (Marcus Books is hosting a town hall meeting on Sat/12 at 1pm to discuss plans for the future.)

The campaign inspired hope that even the non-rich could band together with crowdfunding campaigns to preserve rent-controlled housing, by moving historic properties under Land Trust ownership with perpetual tenancies for long-term occupants. Fundrise, meanwhile, held several meetings with representatives of San Francisco’s Office of Economic and Workforce Development to explore ways of working together to respond to the affordability crisis.

Yet a different picture emerged when we talked to Aaron McDaniel, CEO of San Francisco real estate startup Tycoon Real Estate.

McDaniel says the JOBS Act provision “can be used as a tool to get into the industry” for those who want to break into the business of flipping houses, a sentiment echoed in a Business Insider article by Nicholas Carlson earlier this year that asked the question: “How can I get into San Francisco’s house-flipping, rent-gouging market?” To wit:

“It used to be that if an investor wanted in the San Francisco real estate market, that investor would have to have at least a few hundred thousand dollars around for a down payment. Not anymore. Thanks to the JOBS Act and a new Kickstarter-like website called Tycoon Real Estate, people with a few thousand dollars in savings can now invest in flipping houses the way only millionaires used to be able to.”

In other words, anyone looking for a get-rich-quick scheme can cash in on the city’s red-hot real-estate market. As the Business Insider observed:

“If [Tycoon Real-Estate] gets big and starts funneling even more capital into the San Francisco real estate market, all those people throwing rocks at Google buses and whining about rents are certainly going to come after the startup, accusing it of fueling an already dangerous bubble.”

Therein lies the danger that could actually speed up displacement in the city. And with San Francisco housing prices at an all-time high, there’s strong incentive for any random person with a thousand dollars or so lying around to give it a go.

As Parent noted, to her knowledge, no other organizations looking to combat displacement have sought to create crowdfunding campaigns of their own for the purpose of preserving rent-controlled housing, rather than flipping it. But Parent is holding out some hope. Even though “we were not successful” in raising the $1 million needed to save Marcus Books, she said, “we will use Fundrise again.” 

Leno’s Ellis Act reform bill clears first legislative hurdle


Sen. Mark Leno’s Senate Bill 1439 — which would protect rent-controlled housing in San Francisco by amending the Ellis Act, including making property owners wait at least five years after buying a property to evict tenants under the act — cleared its first legislative hurdle today.

The Senate Transportation and Housing Committee passed the measure on a 6-4 vote, and it heads to the Senate Judiciary Committee next. The bill has strong support in San Francisco, from progressive constituencies through Mayor Ed Lee to support by leaders in the business community and tech world.

Yet the measure faces a tough road in Sacramento, where the landlord lobby and other conservative interests oppose it. “A bill that could strip San Francisco landlords of their freedom to leave the rental housing business heads to a key Senate committee next month,” the California Apartment Association wrote last month in an alert to its members.

But as Tenants Together demonstrated in a recent study of how the Ellis Act has been used in San Francisco since its passage in 1985, a legislative reaction to a California Supreme Court case upholding rent control laws, the legislation has larger been a tool used by real estate speculators to clear rent-controlled buildings of tenants. The study found that 51 percent of Ellis Act evictions took place within a year of the property being purchased, 68 percent within the first five years, and 30 percent of Ellis Act evictions were from serial evictors, often by businesses specializing in flipping properties for profit.

“California’s Ellis Act was specifically designed to allow legitimate landlords a way out of the rental business, but in San Francisco this state law is being abused by speculators who never intend to be landlords,” Leno said today in a prepared statement. “As a result, longtime tenants, many of them seniors, disabled people, and low-income families, are being uprooted from their homes and communities. The five-year holding period in my bill would prevent these devastating evictions from forever changing the face of our diverse city.” 

Privatization of public housing


Like so many San Franciscans, Sabrina Carter is getting evicted.

The mother of three says that if she loses her home in the Western Addition, she’ll have nowhere to go. It’s been a tough, four-year battle against her landlord — a St. Louis-based development company called McCormack Baron — and its law firm, Bornstein & Bornstein. That’s the same law firm that gained notoriety for holding an “eviction boot camp” last November to teach landlords how to do Ellis Act evictions and sweep tenants out of rent-controlled housing.

But Carter’s story isn’t your typical Ellis eviction. Plaza East, where she lives, is a public housing project. Public housing residents throughout the country are subject to the “one-strike and you’re out” rule. If residents get one strike — any misdemeanor or felony arrest — they get an eviction notice. In Carter’s case, her 16-year-old was arrested. He was cleared of all charges — but Carter says McCormack Baron still wouldn’t accept her rent payment and wouldn’t respond to her questions.

“I was never informed of my status,” she said.

That is, until her son was arrested again, and Carter found herself going up against Bornstein & Bornstein. She agreed to sign a document stipulating that her eviction would be called off unless her son entered Plaza East property (he did). It was that or homelessness, said Carter, who also has two younger sons.

“They criminalized my son so they could evict my family,” Carter said.

McCormack Baron and Bornstein & Bornstein both declined to comment.

On March 12, Carter and a band of supporters were singing as they ascended City Hall’s grand staircase to Mayor Ed Lee’s office.

“We’re asking the mayor to call this eviction off. Another black family cannot be forced out of this city,” Lisa “Tiny” Gray-Garcia, co-founder of Poor Magazine, said at the protest.

Nearly half of San Francisco’s public housing residents are African American, according to a 2009 census from the city’s African American Out-Migration Task Force. These public housing residents represent a significant portion of San Francisco’s remaining African American population, roughly 65 percent.

Carter’s eviction was postponed, but it raises an important question: Why is a public housing resident facing off with private real estate developers and lawyers in the first place?



Plaza East is one of five San Francisco public housing properties that was privatized under HOPE VI, a federal program that administers grants to demolish and rebuild physically distressed public housing.

The modernized buildings often have fewer public housing units than the ones they replaced, with private developers becoming their managers. San Francisco’s take on HOPE VI, called HOPE SF, is demolishing, rebuilding, and privatizing eight public housing sites with a similar process.

US Department Housing and Urban Development is rolling out a new program to privatize public housing. The San Francisco Housing Authority is one of 340 housing projects in the nation to be chosen for the competitive program. The city is now starting to implement the Rental Assistance Demonstration program. When it’s done, 75 percent of the city’s public housing properties will be privatized.

Under RAD, developers will team up with nonprofits and architectural firms to take over managing public housing from the Housing Authority. RAD is a federal program meant to address a nationwide crisis in public housing funding. Locally, the effort to implement the program has been spurred by the Mayor’s Office of Housing and Community Development.

MOHCD Director Olson Lee has described RAD in a report as “a game-changer for San Francisco’s public-housing residents and for [Mayor] Lee’s re-envisioning plan for public housing.” Later, Lee told us, “We have 10,000 residents in these buildings and they deserve better housing. It’s putting nearly $200 million in repairs into these buildings, which the housing authority doesn’t have. They have $5 million a year to make repairs.”

Funding is sorely needed, and this won’t be enough to address problems like the perpetually broken elevators at the 13-story Clementina Towers senior housing high-rises or SFHA’s $270 million backlog in deferred maintenance costs.

But RAD is more than a new source of cash. It will “transform public housing properties into financially sustainable real estate assets,” as SFHA literature puts it.

RAD changes the type of funding that supports public housing. Nationally, federal dollars for public housing have been drying up since the late ’70s. But a different federal subsidy, the housing choice voucher program that includes Section 8 rent subsidies, has been better funded by Congress.

Under RAD, the majority of the city’s public housing will be sustained through these voucher funds. In the process, the Housing Authority will also hand over responsibility for managing, maintaining, and effectively owning public housing to teams of developers and nonprofits. Technically, the Housing Authority will still own the public housing. But it will transfer the property through 99-year ground leases to limited partnerships established by the developers.

The RAD plan comes on the heels of an era marked by turmoil and mismanagement at the Housing Authority. The agency’s last director, Henry Alvarez, was at the center of a scandal involving alleged racial discrimination. He was fired in April 2013.

In December 2012, HUD declared SFHA “troubled,” the lowest possible classification before being placed under federal receivership. A performance audit of the agency, first submitted in April 2013 by the city’s Budget and Legislative Analyst, determined that “SFHA is expecting to have no remaining cash to pay its bills sometime between May and July of 2013.”

Six of the seven members of the Housing Authority Commission were asked to resign in February 2013, and were replaced with mayoral appointees.

Joyce Armstrong is not a member of this commission, but she sits on the dais with them at meetings, and gives official statements and comments alongside the commissioners. Armstrong is the president of the citywide Public Housing Tenants Association, and she talked about RAD at a March 27 meeting, conveying tenants’ apprehension toward the expansion of private managers in public housing.

“Staff in HOPE VI developments are very condescending,” Armstrong said. “We’re not pleased. We’re being demeaned, beat up on, and talked to in a way I don’t feel is appropriate.”



When RAD is implemented, it won’t just be development companies interacting with public housing residents. San Francisco’s approach to RAD is unique in that it will rely heavily on nonprofit involvement. Each “development team” that is taking over at public housing projects includes a nonprofit organization. Contracts haven’t been signed yet, but the Housing Authority has announced the teams they’re negotiating with.

“We call it the nonprofitization of public housing,” said Sara Shortt, executive director of the Housing Rights Committee.

The developers are a list of the usual players in San Francisco’s affordable housing market, including the John Stewart Company, Bridge Housing Corporation, and Tenderloin Neighborhood Development Corporation.

Community-based organizations that are involved include the Mission Economic Development Agency, the Japanese American Religious Federation, Ridgepoint Nonprofit Corporation, Glide Community Housing, Bernal Heights Housing Corporation, and the Chinatown Community Development Center.

On March 13, when the Housing Authority Commission announced who would be on these teams, the meeting was packed with concerned members of the public. Two overflow rooms were set up. One group with a strong turnout was SEIU Local 1021, which represents public housing staff.

Alysabeth Alexander, vice president of politics for SEIU 1021, said that 120 workers represented by the union could be laid off as management transfers to development teams, and 80 other unionized jobs are also on the line.

“They’re talking about eliminating 200 middle-class jobs,” Alexander said.

She also noted that SEIU 1021 wasn’t made aware of the possible layoffs — it only found out because of public records requests. (Another downside of privatization is that certain information may no longer be publicly accessible.)

“We’re concerned about these jobs,” Alexander said. “But we’re also concerned about the residents.”



HUD protects some residents’ rights in its 200-page RAD notice. These include the right to return for residents displaced by renovations and other key protections, but rights not covered in the document — some of which were secured under the current system only after lengthy campaigns — are less clear. In particular, rights relating to house rules or screening criteria for new tenants aren’t included.

Negotiations with development teams are just beginning. Lee said tenants’ rights not included in the RAD language would be discussed as part of that process.

“It will be a function of what is best practice,” Lee said.

But developers have already expressed some ideas about public housing policies they want to tweak when they take over. At one point, the city was considering developers’ requests to divide the citywide public housing wait-list into a series of site-specific lists. Lee says that this option is no longer on the table.

But as developers’ interests interact with local, state, and federal tenant regulations, things could get messy. James Grow, deputy director of the National Housing Law Project, says that whatever standard is the most protective of residents’ rights should apply.

Still, Grow said, “There’s going to be inconsistencies and gray areas.”

Grow said that inevitably some residents’ rights will be decided “on a case-by-case basis, in litigations between the tenant and the landlord…They’ll be duking it out in court.”

This will be true nationwide, as each RAD rollout will be different. But at least in San Francisco, “Most of the tenant protections in public housing will remain,” said Shortt. “We are trying to tie up any holes locally to make sure that there is no weakening of rights.”

Grow’s and Shortt’s organizations are also involved in San Francisco’s RAD plan. The National Housing Law Project, along with the Housing Rights Committee and Enterprise Community Partners, have contracts to perform education and outreach to public housing residents and development teams.



Just how much money will go to RAD is still under negotiation. The RAD funding itself, derived from the voucher program, will surpass the $32 million the city collected last year in HUD operating subsidies. But its big bucks promise is the $180 million in tax credit equity that the privatization model is expected to bring in.

The city will also be contributing money to the program, but how much is unclear.

“The only budget I have right now is the $8 million,” Lee said, money that is going to the development teams for “pre-development.”

Lee added that funding requests would also be considered; those requests could total $30-50 million per year from the city’s housing trust fund, according to Shortt.

To access that $180 million in low-income housing tax credits, development teams will need to create limited partnerships and work with private investors. The city wants to set up an “investor pool,” a central source which would loan to every development team.

It’s a complicated patchwork of money involving many private interests, some of whom don’t have the best reputations.

Jackson Consultancy was named as a potential partner in the application for the development team that will take over management at Westbrook Apartments and Hunters Point East-West. That firm is headed by Keith Jackson, the consultant arrested in a FBI string in late March on charges of murder-for-hire in connection with the scandal that ensnared Sen. Leland Yee and Chinatown crime figure Raymond “Shrimp Boy” Chow.

Presumably, Jackson is no longer in the running, although the entire transformation is rife with uncertainties.

Residents often feel blindsided when management or rules change at public housing properties. And RAD will be one of the biggest changes in San Francisco’s public housing in at least a decade.

“People are concerned about their homes. When they take over the Housing Authority property, what’s going to happen? They keep telling us that it’s going to stay the same, nothing is going to change,” said Martha Hollins, president of the Plaza East Tenants Association.

Hollins has been part of Carter’s support network in her eviction case.

“They’re always talking about self-sufficient, be self-sufficient,” Hollins said. “How can we be self-sufficient when our children are growing up and being criminalized?”

Public housing has many complex problems that need radical solutions. But some say RAD isn’t the right one. After seeing developers gain from public housing while generational poverty persists within them, Gray-Garcia says that her organization is working with public housing residents to look into ways to give people power over their homes. They are considering suing for equity for public housing residents.

“‘These people can’t manage their own stuff and we need to do it for them.’ It’s that lie, that narrative, that is the excuse to eradicate communities of color,” Gray-Garcia said. “We want to change the conversation.”

Rising tide of plutocracy


EDITORIAL The pace of life under late capitalism seems to be speeding up these days, and so too have the bad news developments and warnings of impending doom come at a more rapid clip, at least according to the headlines over the last couple weeks.

First it was a report from the US Commerce Department showing that corporate profits are at the highest level in 85 years while employee compensation is at its lower level in 65 years. After-tax corporate profits are now 10 percent of gross domestic product (a record high) as a result of the effective corporate tax rate (figuring in loopholes) of 20.5 percent, the lowest tax rates since 1929, not coincidentally when the Great Depression began.

Then came the latest report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, striking a more urgent tone than the four preceding reports as it documents the threats already unfolding and the major social upheaval to come. And then we were hit with the US Supreme Court’s 5-4 McCutcheon vs FEC decision, which “eviscerates our nation’s campaign finance laws,” as Justice Stephen Breyer wrote in his dissent, striking down aggregate contribution caps and giving even more political power to those with the most economic power.

So wealthy individuals and corporations are hoarding more of the nation’s resources than ever before, and now they’ll be able to spend even more of it to influence and corrupt our already broken political system, weakening its ability to take on big challenges such as addressing global warming because the solutions — including slowing down economic activity (we’ll have more on that in next week’s issue) and helping poor countries deal with rising seas and social instability — require resources from the greedy rich. Call it self-perpetuating plutocracy, with life as we know it on planet Earth at stake.

Meanwhile, on the local front, a Tenants Together study of the economic displacement now underway in San Francisco found it is mostly real estate speculators who are evicting renters using the Ellis Act, a state law ostensibly designed for letting property owners eventually get out of the rental business. Instead, the report’s analysis of eviction data since the Ellis Act was adopted in 1985 showed that 51 percent of Ellis evictions occurred within a year of the property changing hands, 68 percent within five years of new ownership, and 30 percent of Ellis evictions came from serial evictors — all told, displacing 10,000 San Francisco tenants, mostly from rent-controlled housing.

Prohibiting Ellis evictions for the first five years — which is part of Sen. Mark Leno’s SB 1439, which had its first hearing this week — is a good idea that will help. But it also feels a bit like sticking a finger in the hole of a crumbling dike, when what we really need is a strong, new, progressive seawall to protect us against the rising tide of plutocracy, or rule by the rich, and its myriad ravages.

Port of Oakland rejects deceptive contract bid by Black Muslim security firm


Editor’s Note: This report, which appears in today’s Oakland Tribune, is part of the continuing efforts of the Chauncey Bailey Project, a joint investigation by various media outlets (including the Bay Guardian) into the 2007 murder of Oakland journalist Chauncey Bailey by members of Your Black Muslim Bakery.

By Thomas Peele and Matt O’Brien, Bay Area News Group

OAKLAND — Admitting they nearly entered into a deal with a questionable security company now under investigation, Port of Oakland commissioners on yesterday [Thu/27] Thursday vowed to revamp their contracting process.

“We came very close to approving a bad contract,” Commissioner Michael Colbruno said. “The whole procurement process” should be reviewed.

The commissioners voted 6-0 to back out of a contract with BMT International Security Services, which had submitted bogus references and credentials to win a $450,000 deal to patrol two shoreline parks.

The port has extended its existing contract with ABC Security to guard a 42-acre shoreline through the end of the year. Colbruno added that the port needs to have a better screening process.

Commission President Cestra Butner agreed.

“This commission will take our lumps if we did anything wrong,” he said. “We want to make sure we get things right. … I don’t want anything slipped under the rug.”

BMT, which is linked to Oakland’s defunct Your Black Muslim Bakery, had been in final negotiations with the port when this newspaper reported that its proposal contained references to work at other government agencies that had no record of ever doing business with it. The firm also appears to have inflated the credentials of its managers.

The company is now being investigated by the Alameda County District Attorney’s Office and the state Department of Consumer Affairs. A former Oakland police officer also said in court papers that he believes the company stole a security company license number from him that he let lapse in 2008 when he retired.

BMT told the port that it had worked for BART, the San Joaquin County Housing Authority and the Riverside Transit Agency, but those agencies had no record of hiring the company. The firm also lost contracts with Alameda County and the Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles when staff at those agencies discovered the Oakland company submitted apparently false insurance certification.

At least one Bay Area government noticed before awarding a contract that something appeared wrong with BMT’s credentials.

In 2011, the Vallejo City Council rejected a BMT proposal after city staff reported that the listed references were not calling back and one claimed to not know the company. BMT unsuccessfully appealed and some of its employees spoke out at a public meeting.

BMT sought another Vallejo contract in 2012 but again failed to win it. BMT owner Rory Parker sued the North Bay city in December, claiming she and her company experienced disparate treatment “because of their race, which is Black, and because of their religion, which is of the Islamic faith.”

The firm is run out of a Black Muslim temple in West Oakland whose minister, Dahood Sharieff Bey, was an associate of Your Black Muslim Bakery and a disciple of its founder, Yusuf Bey. Yusuf Bey touted his business enterprise as empowering African Americans, but prosecutors have described it as a wide-ranging criminal organization involved in violent crimes, real estate fraud and identity theft.

The bakery collapsed in 2007 when its members, led by Yusuf Bey IV, killed three men, including Oakland journalist Chauncey Bailey. Bey IV is now serving a life prison term without parole. Prosecutors and police have linked five unsolved homicides to the bakery.

Dahood Bey, the minister who identified himself at a recent Oakland council meeting as “Mr. Pasha,” was tried for torture in 2010 but pleaded guilty to lesser charges when the jury could not reach a verdict. His co-defendant in that case, Basheer Fard Muhammad, has been the public face of BMT at port and other government meetings, urging officials to give it contracts.

BMT owner Rory Parker is Dahood Bey’s mother. The company also claimed in its port proposal to have a retired, Harvard-educated FBI agent serving as its chief financial officer and that its guards include former Secret Service agents.

Law enforcement records show San Francisco police officers arrested Muhammad in Oakland on Feb. 25 on suspicion of receiving stolen property, which was described as a “refrigerated sandwich table.” He was jailed for two days and released after the Alameda County District Attorney’s Office declined to prosecute him. San Francisco police spokesman Sgt. Eric O’Neal has refused to release details about the case despite repeated requests.

BMT is also seeking a contract to work for the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority, but transit officials there would not disclose any information about the bid until they finish evaluating all the proposals in May.

– See more at:




On the Rise



Have you heard the news? Bohemia is dying. All the musicians are leaving San Francisco. Our favorite venues and dingy little clubs are all closing up shop, and being replaced by artisan cocktail bars filled with Google Glasses and reclaimed wood toilet seats.

OK, so some of that is true. The music scene is changing, to be sure; how could it not, with the influx of wealth over the past few years? Yes, we’re sad about Cafe du Nord. Yes, we’re worried about the Elbo Room.

What’s also true: We still have one of the richest musical histories anywhere in the world, and artists aren’t going to stop flocking here anytime soon. One glance at our listings section will tell you there’s live music to be found every single night of the week, and San Francisco’s small size relative to its population — a major factor in the current wave of gentrification and the state of the real estate market — also means that the vast array of genres here, and the communities that exist around different music scenes, all hum along pretty much on top of each other.

In one night, you could take in a jazz jam session in the Haight, a hardcore band in the outer Mission, an Irish folk quartet in North Beach, a synthwave producer in SoMa, a hip-hop show in the Western Addition, and, um, Macaulay Culkin’s pizza-themed Velvet Underground tribute band in the Richmond. (I’ve done all of these recently, and I only regret that last one.) That’s not even touching on the East Bay, which — despite being pronounced almost like an epithet in the city lately, as in “Everyone’s having to move to the East Bay” — is arguably fostering some of the most interesting, nascent micro-scenes in music right now.

With that in mind, we at the Guardian set out to pick 10 artists that we thought deserved our attention in the coming year. We couldn’t narrow it past 11. (Click that first photo up there for a slideshow.) This year’s On the Rise acts come from so many different worlds, have been inspired by so many different artists — Freddie Mercury, MC Lyte, and the 19th century composer Hector Berlioz all make appearances, to give you a taste — and, unsurprisingly, they all make incredibly different kinds of music. Some of these artists are Bay Area natives; some were born on other continents. What they have in common (aside from talent) is a love of this place, its people, its weirdness, and yes, its challenges.

We love them back. And we don’t plan on letting them go anywhere else anytime soon.

The unanswered question: How do we bridge SF’s affordable housing gap?


Nobody has a good answer to San Francisco’s most basic housing problem: How do we build the housing that existing city residents need? It was a question the Guardian has been posing for many years, and one that I again asked a panel of journalists and housing advocates on Friday, again getting no good answers.

The question is an important one given Mayor Ed Lee’s so-called “affordability agenda” and pledge to build 30,000 new housing units, a third of them somehow affordable, by 2020. And it’s a question that led to the founding 30 years ago of Bridge Housing, the builder of affordable and supportive housing that assembled Friday’s media roundtable.

“There really isn’t one thing, there needs to be a lot of changes in a lot of areas to make it happen,” was the closest that Bridge CEO Cynthia Parker came to answering the question.

One of those things is a general obligation bond measure this fall to fund affordable housing and transportation projects around the Bay Area, which Bridge and a large coalition of other partners are pushing. That would help channel some of the booming Bay Area’s wealth into its severely underfunded affordable housing and transit needs.

When I brought up other ideas from last week’s Guardian editorial for capturing more of the city’s wealth — such as new taxes on tech companies, a congestion pricing charge, and downtown transit assessment districts — Parker replied, “We’d be in favor of a lot of that.”

Yet it’s going to take far more proactive, aggressive, and creative actions to really bridge the gap between the San Francisco Housing Element’s analysis that 60 percent of new housing should be below-market-rate and affordable to those earning 120 percent or less of the area median income, and the less than 20 percent that San Francisco is actually building and promoting through its policies.

Stated another way, about 80 percent of housing we’re building is for a small minority of city residents, or the wealthy people that these developers hope to attract to the city. And we’re not building housing for the vast majority of city residents. That is a recipe for gentrification, displacement, and destruction of San Francisco as a progressive-minded city.

Parker parroted Lee and other pro-development boosters, including SPUR, in arguing that city needs to make it easier and faster for developers to build new housing of all types. “In San Francisco, we do need to expedite the [housing] entitlement process,” Parker said.

But when asked whether meeting or exceeded Lee’s housing production goals would ever bring the price of market-rate housing down to the level where someone more 120 percent of AMI — which HUD recently set at $81,550 for single San Franciscans, or $116,500 for a family of four — Parker conceded that it wouldn’t.

The bottom line for San Francisco and its overheated real estate market is we can never built our way to affordability. The only way to build housing that most people can afford is with public subsidies, and San Francisco just isn’t asking enough from its wealthy individuals, corporations, and developers to create an Affordable Housign Trust Fund that is anywhere near big enough to meet the real demand.

That kind of assertion seems radical by the standards of today’s skewed political (and online) discourse. But when I raised it to a panel that included Bridge Housing officials, members of SPUR and HOPE SF, and a panel of journalists from such pro-development outlets as San Francisco Business Times, San Francisco Magazine, SocketSite, The Registry SF, KQED, and TechCrunch (as well as the more Guardian-aligned Mother Jones), nobody had any good answers or remedies to that basic question that we’ve raised again and again.

Instead, some of the business journalists offered a more sober assessment of what’s to come than most of this city’s pro-development boosters, noting a few signs of irrational exhuberance in the local economy.

The Registry’s Vladimir Bosanac said he’s observed a recent trend of developers buying up unentitled land, indicating more optimism in the sustainability of this development boom than market conditions might warrant. Adam Koval of SocketSite, an early predicter of the last dom-com crash, also voiced sketicism in the pervasive “this time is different” faith in the tech sector, noting how realms such as gaming and online coupons are losing steam and predicting that commercial rents are plateauing.

“I think there are some real gut checks coming up,” Koval said of the tech sector and the sustainability of its growth and valuations.

Perhaps it’s also time for a gut check by Mayor Lee and others who argue that we can build our way to housing affordability without any major new efforts to capture more of the wealth now being generated in San Francisco, wealth that might not be here later if we continue avoiding the question of how to provide the housing that San Francisco needs. 

Clean Up The Plaza run by political consultant with ties to developers


Neighborhood and progressive political activists have long been suspicious of the shadowy Clean Up The Plaza campaign and its possible connections to a massive housing development proposed for 16th and Mission streets — and the Guardian has now confirmed that developer-connected political consultant Jack Davis is playing a key role in that campaign.

Asked by the Guardian whether he is being paid by the developers — Maximus Real Estate Partners, which has submitted plans to build a 10-story, 351-unit housing complex overlooking the 16th Street BART plaza — Davis told the Guardian, “That’s between me and the IRS.”

Our exchange with Davis and Gil Chavez, a Davis roommate who runs the Clean Up The Plaza campaign, occurred yesterday outside the LGBT Center where they and three other campaign workers (who refused to speak to us) were promoting their cause and collecting signatures on petitions calling for crackdowns on the plaza before the debate inside between Assembly District 17 candidates David Chiu and David Campos.

Clean Up The Plaza has been refusing to return calls from the Guardian or other local journalists for months, and the group hasn’t filed any paperwork with the San Francisco Ethics Commission in association with its political fundraising or lobbying efforts.

Asked about the group’s relationship with the project developers, Chavez told us, “They’re in communication with us and we’re in communication with them, but they haven’t funded us.” Asked who paid for the group’s website, mailers, window signs, and other expenses, Chavez said it was him and other donors that he wouldn’t identify.

Davis has been the go-to political consultant on big campaigns backed by real estate interests in San Francisco, working on the successful mayoral campaigns of Frank Jordan, Willie Brown, and Gavin Newsom, as well as a number of high-profile development projects, including the 1996 ballot measure approving construction of AT&T Park.

He and Chavez say they live together in the neighborhood and their only motivation in running the group is improving public safety. “I’m happy to to talk about what Clean Up The Plaza is,” Davis told us. “I live at 17th and Mission and I’ve been mugged.”

But housing activist Sara Shortt of the Housing Rights Committee isn’t buying it, calling the group “a fake grassroots campaign that is misleading this community.”

“If you didn’t know Jack Davis’ history in politics in San Francisco, you might be able to take that at face value,” Shortt said of Davis’ claims to be simply a concerned citizen. “Given his ties to big developers, it’s not very believable.”

Willie Brown even heralded Davis’ return to political work two years ago in his San Francisco Chronicle column, entitled “Political consultant Jack Davis back on S.F. scene,” writing that he has returned to local political circles following a hiatus in Wales the previous few years.

“You political types, be warned. Jack Davis is back in town,” the column began, ending with, “I think that after watching from the sidelines for a while, he’s ready to return. Can’t wait to see whom he decides to work for. Stay tuned.”

Is Davis working on fake grassroots campaign designed to smooth the way for a massive gentrifying housing projects in one of the city’s last remaining neighborhoods that still welcomes poor people? Stay tuned.

San Francisco Ethics Commission Director John St. Croix told the Guardian that the group should be registered if it has raised more than $1,000 or if it is lobbying at City Hall — indeed, the group has boasted on its website of efforts to influence Campos and other city officials to increase police patrols and cleansing of the plaza — particularly if it is being paid by a third party to do so.

“If they’re lobbying, obviously we want to know,” St. Croix told us, saying that he planned to personally follow-up with the group on its activities.

Davis denies that the group is in violation of any disclosure laws, claiming it is simply a small neighborhood group, and he referred our inquiries to the group’s attorney, James Perrinello, a partner at the high-powered and politically connected law firm of Nielson Merksamer Parrinello Gross & Leoni, who hasn’t yet returned our calls.

For more on Clean Up The Plaza and other campaigns to “clean up” poor neighborhoods as a precursor to gentrification and market rate housing development — including the ongoing efforts to do so in the Tenderloin and Mid-Market areas — read next week’s Bay Guardian. 

[UPDATE 3/18: Former Guardian Editor/Publisher Tim Redmond’s 48 Hills site just posted a long report by reporter Julia Carrie Wong that includes an admission by Davis that he is indeed a paid consultant for Maximus, as well as interesting conflicting statements from Maximus and Chavez about a meeting they held. Check it out.] 

All of the fucks that we should be giving: An evening with Ani DiFranco


By Kelly McFarling

When I was 13, I was a late-blooming tomboy, watching, confused, as everyone around me grew up and started acting different.

In school, we were writing “conflict stories.” Mine was about losing all my friends to puberty (theirs, not mine). My teacher sat me down on a particularly rough day and said, “Here. This is for you. Don’t tell your parents.” She handed me a copy of Ani Difranco’s Dilate, complete with the parental advisory label shining through the jewel case.

In hindsight, this may have been one of the more amazing gifts I’ve ever received, if not for its origin (what teacher does that?), then for the seismic brain/heart shattering that can only happen to a 13-year-old girl listening to Ani Difranco for the first time. I was floored. My emotions were obviously in desperate need of translation, and DiFranco’s poetry and emotional delivery was something I had never experienced. It’s alright, everything is uncomfortable, everything is changing. It’s cool, this woman is talking about things, and she’s angry and she’s sad, and she’s happy, and she has dreadlocks and boots and says “Fuck you.” Maybe you can be whatever you want/are?! I was a fan from that moment on, and although a lot has changed since then, the feeling that happens when I see her play her songs live is pretty similar to that first listen back in 1996.

Although thus far I’ve discovered that writing a review of an Ani DiFranco show is apparently like writing in your diary, I will attempt to review the things that actually happened on Friday [3/7] at the Fillmore.

Opening the show was Jenny Scheinman, an artist on DiFranco’s own Righteous Babe label. Scheinman, a prolific artist, composer and arranger in her own right, started the night off with a haunting fiddle tune that resulted in a well-deserved hush from the crowd. Plucking her fiddle, she sang a set of lyrically lovely Appalachian-style songs based on reflections of her Northern California hailing grounds. The Fillmore was full and quiet, with only the occasional anxious shoves from folks trying to claim precious real estate.

Jenny Scheinman

When DiFranco walked out there was wave of both excitement and relief. The power, charisma, and authenticity DiFranco delivers at her live shows has earned her incredibly loyal fans who line up, city after city, to be shaken back into something, or shaken out of something else. They show up to be moved, and Friday night, they sensed that motion was about to occur. Necks craned, squeals of excitement were released, and the beam of light that radiates from DiFranco’s wide grin took the stage. DiFranco was accompanied by Todd Sickafoose, her longtime upright bass player, and New Orleans’s Terence Higgens on drums, who, turns out, can also rip surprise kazoo solos. These two provide a pocket deep enough for DiFranco to roam through each sonic peak and valley. The trio is a well-oiled machine, and Sickafooose and Higgens add a lot to these songs, a testament to their sensitivity and chops. They support and compliment DiFranco’s distinctive guitar playing — which is is wild and lucid, both careful and careening. She rips, righteously, and they are right there with her.  

Now, I know that DiFranco probably cannot actually see into my soul and choose her setlist according to what’s happening in my life, but I can’t be completely sure. She pulled from many different parts of her rich catalog, including five new songs that hit me in all the places that needed hitting. (How does she know? Why so magic?) I know I’m not alone in this, but her confessional lyrics and clever poetry are so personal, it’s difficult not to feel a sense of ownership over these songs, to remember who you were when you first heard them. Somehow her relevance feels both intimate and universal.

Todd Sickafoos, DiFranco, Terence Higgens

She played some newer ecological crisis songs (“Some call it conservation, some call it common sense”), touching on environmental awareness and self-awareness (shouldn’t these be connected?) and the dangerous complacency we have lulled ourselves into. Revelations continued throughout the night as she delved into older songs dealing with love, the problem of monogamy, the trauma of history, the irreversible damage that words can do, and even perspectives from a Caribbean church. Somehow, all things felt covered. Lines stood out that needed to stand out. DiFranco delivered a beautifully open window into a human being who is steadfastly paying attention to the world, her place in it, and calling them both out. It’s good to know that DiFranco is still fighting the good fight, and reminding us to do the same.

I have heard it said that the reason DiFranco is so powerful is because she doesn’t give a fuck. But on Friday night, it occurred to me that it’s not that she doesn’t give a fuck, but that the rest of us sometimes lose touch with all the fucks that we should be giving. For me, DiFranco is a refreshing and necessary voice of realness. Honesty without agenda, from so many different angles. So there you have it. I go forth into the world shaken, stirred, and reminded.

Set List

“Dilate” – Dilate (1996)
“Splinter” – Which Side are You On? (2012)
“Not a Pretty Girl” – Not a Pretty Girl (1995)
“J” – Which Side are you On? (2012)
“Happy All the Time” (New)
“Napoleon” – Dilate (1996)
“School Night” – Educated Guess (2004)
“Welcome To” – Evolve (2003)
“Allergic” (New)
“Careless Words” (New)
“Harder Than It Needs to Be” (New)
“Genie” (New)
“The Whole Night” – Not So Soft (1991)
“Everest “- Up Up Up Up Up Up Up (1999)
“Fuel” – Little Plastic Castle – (1998)
“Joyful Girl” – Dilate (1996)
“Shameless” – Dilate (1996)
“Both Hands” – Ani DiFranco (1990)
“Overlap” – Out of Range (1994)

Three upcoming events on housing in San Francisco

There are a few upcoming opportunities to have your say in the ongoing dialogue about the San Francisco tenants’ struggle as long-term renters grapple with rising rents and the threat of displacement.

Amid the housing pressure, a thriving tenants’ rights movement has unfolded in the city to spur multiple legislative pushes for reform. These conversations (and the art exhibit to piece these issues together on a deeper level) are timely.

Wed/12: San Francisco Neighborhoods on the Brink: A Panel Discussion on Displacement, Gentrification, Rising Rents & the Loss of Affordable Housing

Hosted by San Francisco Poet Laureate Alejandro Murguia, this panel discussion will feature comments by District 11 Sup. John Avalos, Public Policy Director of the Chinatown Community Development Center Gen Fujioka, and SFUSD teacher and Ellis Act target Sarah Brant.

An announcement description says the discussion will focus on the “dilemma facing long-time residents and renters of modest means — and the gutting and gentrification of San Francisco — as real estate speculation and a quickly widening income gap drive rents to dizzying heights while the rental supply dwindles.”

Details here.

“There’s a difference between a neighborhood changing—which is natural and organic—versus the destruction of a neighborhood, its history and legacy, which is what is happening right now in the Mission District.” Alejandro Murguía

Wed/12: “Sólo Mujeres: HOME / inside out” – An interdisciplinary exhibit at the Mission Cultural Center for Latino Arts

Curated by Susana Aragón and Indira Urrutia, this exhibition features 24 women artists in exploring the symbolic space of home through a variety of mediums, including installation, painting, photography, sculpture, poetry, video and mixed media. Artists include Yolanda Lopez, Xuchi Eggleton, Ximena Sosa, Windsong, Susana Aragón, Sofía Elías, Tina Escaja, Tanya Marie Vlach, Rebeca García Gonzales, Solange Bonilla Leahy, Natalia Anciso, Melanie Lacy Kusters, Marta R, Zabaleta, Mariella Zevallos, Indira Urrutia, Gabriela Luz Sierra, Flor Khan, Fan Warren, Cristina Ibarra, Clara Cheeves, Carmen Lang, Camila Perez-Goddard, Anna Simson, Alejandra Rassvetaieff, Adriana Camarena.

From the announcement: “A home is a place that is close to our heart, it triggers self-reflection, thoughts about who someone is or used to be or who they might become. Each room or space is connected to memories, feelings, ideas, dreams, etc. As part of the exhibit, the gallery will be transformed into a house which rooms will be delimited by see through fabric to show the fragility of housing in The San Francisco’s Mission District.

It opens at 7pm with a live performance by María José Montijo and Diana Gameros. Details here.

Wed/19: Affordable housing from multiple perspectives

The Noe Valley Democratic Club is hosting what it calls “a distinguished and authoritative panel of experts” who will speak about affordable housing in the Bay Area. What’s interesting about this event is that it will bring together folks who are leading a citywide push at the grassroots level to strengthen tenants’ rights, as well as people from more developer-friendly entities such as SPUR (San Francisco Bay Area Planning and   Research Association) and the San Francisco Housing Action Committee.

The panelists will include:

Sarah Karlinsky, (panel moderator), Deputy Director of SPUR (San Francisco Bay Area Planning and   Research Association)

Douglas Shoemaker, President of Mercy Housing California, a non-profit dedicated to affordable      housing development, fundraising and services.

Teresa Yanga, Deputy Director of the Mayor’s Office of Housing

Tim Colen , Executive Director of San Francisco Housing Action Committee

Fernando Martí, Co-Director of the Council of Community Housing Organizations (CCHO)

Sara Shortt, Executive Director of the San Francisco Housing Rights Committee 

Details here.

One final tidbit, tangentially related at best. Salon has a great article, Gentrifying the dharma” How the 1 percent is hijacking mindfulness, which thoughtfully examines a trend that has led Buddhists to fear that their religion is turning into a designer drug for the elite.”

(A few weeks ago activists with Eviction Free San Francisco disrupted a Google panel about mindfulness, triggering a decidedly unenlightened onstage tug-of-war over a banner.)

Best quote is from the Dalai Lama, who sees things this way: “Capitalism only takes the money. Then, exploitation.”

Real Estate indulges the fans — in a good way — at the Independent


So this New Jersey-based band called Real Estate came to San Francisco this weekend to play two sold-out shows for Noise Pop at the Independent. The lighting and stage design was spectacular. The opening bands were superb. The venue was excellent.

Though all of these factors came together for a great experience, the one thing I will take away is that one drunk girl who screamed at Real Estate to play it’s song “All The Same” for the entirety of its set, and how she unintentionally fostered a sense of community.

But that will all be explained later.

Opening was Dominant Legs, a trio  out of San Francisco. The band had three easily defined traits: strong, jazz-like basslines, a pre-recorded, kicky synth beat and a vocalist who sounded strikingly like Andy Bell (of Erasure fame) to match. At times, the drum machine on the recording synced up with the actual drummer’s beat, making for a full sound that bands such as the Melvins and the Feelies (for a spell) have achieved with two drummers.

dominant legs
Dominant Legs

Next were The Shilohs, a Vancouver-based band that draws from influences such as Big Star and Neil Young, maintaining a ‘60s rock spin. Off of New Images, a record label run by Matt Mondanile of Real Estate and Ducktails, the band released its full-length, So Wild, last year.

Though The Shilohs try to maintain an allegiance to the ‘60s, there’s no question that both the band and Real Estate sound incredibly similar. This was probably why the band was booked for the show, and how they landed on Mondanile’s label. And the audience ate it up, as many more people gathered close to the stage to watch the band play.

The Shilohs

After The Shilohs finished up, Real Estate appeared on stage in due time. In the interest of promoting new material, the band opened up with “Had to Hear” off of its latest album, Atlas.

Then it started soon after that song. Off in the distance I heard someone yell “PLAY ‘ALL THE SAME!’”

Initially I thought nothing of it — I mean, it’s a good song. It’s the perfect, psych-rock infused closer to the Real Estate’s well-recieved 2011 album, Days. Skip 15 minutes or so ahead to the third song of the set: three others have joined the plight for Real Estate to play “All The Same.” Song after song, (that wasn’t ‘All the Same’) more and more joined in the chorus for that damn song to play.

And you know what? Eventually Real Estate did play “All the Same” during its encore, along with “It’s Real.”

real estate
Real Estate obliges.

But instances such as this, when the demand of one inebriated audience member becomes the demand of many, remind me of how much I enjoy attending shows. Seldom do you enter a room to find that (nearly) each and every person in it all enjoy the same thing. And this was the case for the Real Estate show at the Independent.

And there’s definitely something to say about that.

Music Listings Feb. 26-Mar 4, 2014


50 Mason Social House: 50 Mason, San Francisco. The Ever After, The Proofs, 8pm, free.
Bender’s: 806 S. Van Ness, San Francisco. Noise Pop Happy Hour: CCR Headcleaner, Skate Laws, Bicycle Day, 5pm, free.
Bottom of the Hill: 1233 17th St., San Francisco. Noise Pop 2014: Strange Vine, French Cassettes, Dante Elephante, Irontom, 7pm, $10-$12.
Brick & Mortar Music Hall: 1710 Mission, San Francisco. Noise Pop 2014: The Fresh & Onlys, Cool Ghouls, Sandy’s, Luke Sweeney, 8pm, $12-$14.
The Chapel: 777 Valencia, San Francisco. Noise Pop 2014: Papercuts, Vetiver, The Donkeys, Eric D. Johnson, DJ Britt Govea, 8pm, $15-$18.
El Rio: 3158 Mission, San Francisco. Beast Fiend, Neurotrash, Twat, 8pm, $5.
Hemlock Tavern: 1131 Polk, San Francisco. Dancer, Gravys Drop, 8:30pm, free.
Hotel Utah: 500 Fourth St., San Francisco. Thieves of Malta, Great Highway, Future Us, 8pm, $8.
The Knockout: 3223 Mission, San Francisco. Little Person, April & The Paradigm, Harriot, The Tender Few, DJ Ryan Smith, 8pm, $5-$8.
Milk Bar: 1840 Haight, San Francisco. The Midnight Snackers, Spooky Flowers, Jet Trash, Friends W/O Benefits, 8pm, $5.
Rickshaw Stop: 155 Fell, San Francisco. Ty Segall, Burnt Ones, Endless Bummer, 8pm, sold out.
SFSU Campus, Cesar Chavez Student Center: 1650 Holloway, San Francisco. Midnight Sons, Adult Books, Wyatt Blair, Bicycle Day, 6pm, free.
Slim’s: 333 11th St., San Francisco. Cibo Matto, Salt Cathedral, 8pm, $26.
Beaux: 2344 Market, San Francisco. “BroMance: A Night Out for the Fellas,” 9pm, free.
The Cafe: 2369 Market, San Francisco. “Sticky Wednesdays,” w/ DJ Mark Andrus, 8pm, free.
Cat Club: 1190 Folsom, San Francisco. “Bondage A Go Go,” w/ DJs Damon, Tomas Diablo, & guests, 9:30pm, $5-$10.
Club X: 715 Harrison, San Francisco. “Electro Pop Rocks,” 18+ dance night with Borgeous, DJ Audio1, Non Sequitur, Self Dustrukt, Nano Sage, LegitSoda, more, 9pm, $10-$20.
Edinburgh Castle: 950 Geary, San Francisco. “1964,” w/ DJ Matt B & guests, Second and Fourth Wednesday of every month, 10pm, $2.
Elbo Room: 647 Valencia, San Francisco. “Bodyshock,” w/ Chrissy Murderbot, Blk Rainbow, DJ Crackwhore, Unit 77, 9pm, $8-$10.
F8: 1192 Folsom, San Francisco. “Housepitality,” w/ Acidman, Tyrel Williams, Bai-ee, Mrs. Blythe, 9pm, $5-$10.
Infusion Lounge: 124 Ellis, San Francisco. “Indulgence,” 10pm
Lookout: 3600 16th St., San Francisco. “What?,” w/ resident DJ Tisdale and guests, 7pm, free.
Madrone Art Bar: 500 Divisadero, San Francisco. “Rock the Spot,” 9pm, free.
MatrixFillmore: 3138 Fillmore, San Francisco. “Reload,” w/ DJ Big Bad Bruce, 10pm, free.
Q Bar: 456 Castro, San Francisco. “Booty Call,” w/ Juanita More, Joshua J, guests, 9pm, $3.
Neck of the Woods: 406 Clement, San Francisco. “Over the Hump,” w/ Children of the Funk, 10pm, free.
The NWBLK: 1999 Bryant, San Francisco. Noise Pop 2014: Our Vinyl Weighs a Ton, Stones Throw Records showcase featuring performances by Peanut Butter Wolf, J Rocc, Jonwayne, and Knxwledge at 8pm, preceded by a screening of the documentary Our Vinyl Weighs a Ton: This Is Stones Throw Records at 5pm, $20-$25.
Skylark Bar: 3089 16th St., San Francisco. “Mixtape Wednesday,” w/ resident DJs Strategy, Junot, Herb Digs, & guests, 9pm, $5.
Cafe Divine: 1600 Stockton, San Francisco. Craig Ventresco & Meredith Axelrod, 7pm, free.
Fiddler’s Green: 1333 Columbus, San Francisco. Terry Savastano, Every other Wednesday, 9:30pm, free/donation.
Plough & Stars: 116 Clement, San Francisco. The Toast Inspectors, Last Wednesday of every month, 9pm
Amnesia: 853 Valencia, San Francisco. Gaucho, Eric Garland’s Jazz Session, The Amnesiacs, 7pm, free.
Balancoire: 2565 Mission St., San Francisco. “Cat’s Corner,” 9pm, $10.
Boom Boom Room: 1601 Fillmore, San Francisco. Royal Jelly, 9:30pm, $5.
Burritt Room: 417 Stockton St., San Francisco. Terry Disley’s Rocking Jazz Trio, 6pm, free.
Club Deluxe: 1511 Haight, San Francisco. Patrick Wolff Quartet, 9pm, free.
Jazz Bistro at Les Joulins: 44 Ellis, San Francisco. Charles Unger Experience, 7:30pm, free.
Le Colonial: 20 Cosmo, San Francisco. The Cosmo Alleycats featuring Ms. Emily Wade Adams, 7pm, free.
Revolution Cafe: 3248 22nd St., San Francisco. Michael Parsons Trio, Every other Wednesday, 8:30pm, free/donation.
Sheba Piano Lounge: 1419 Fillmore, San Francisco. Sebastian Parker Trio, 8pm
Top of the Mark: One Nob Hill, 999 California, San Francisco. Ricardo Scales, Wednesdays, 6:30-11:30pm, $5.
Yoshi’s San Francisco: 1330 Fillmore, San Francisco. Thelonious Monk Institute All-Star Sextet with Ambrose Akinmusire & Lisa Henry, 8pm, $16-$20.
Zingari: 501 Post, San Francisco. Amanda King, 7:30pm, free.
Bissap Baobab: 3372 19th St., San Francisco. “Baobab!,” timba dance party with DJ WaltDigz, 10pm, $5.
Cafe Cocomo: 650 Indiana, San Francisco. “Bachatalicious,” w/ DJs Good Sho & Rodney, 7pm, $5-$10.
Cigar Bar & Grill: 850 Montgomery, San Francisco. Individúo, 8pm
Make-Out Room: 3225 22nd St., San Francisco. “International Freakout A Go-Go,” 10pm, free.
Pachamama Restaurant: 1630 Powell, San Francisco. Cafe Latino Americano, 8pm, $12.
The Rite Spot Cafe: 2099 Folsom, San Francisco. Redwood Tango Ensemble, 8pm, free.
Biscuits and Blues: 401 Mason, San Francisco. The Cash Box Kings, 7:30 & 9:30pm, $15.
The Royal Cuckoo: 3202 Mission, San Francisco. Big Bones & Chris Siebert, 7:30pm, free.
The Saloon: 1232 Grant, San Francisco. Takezo, 9:30pm
Center for New Music: 55 Taylor, San Francisco. Loop 2.4.3, Prism, 8pm, $5-$12.
Monarch: 101 Sixth St., San Francisco. “Color Me Badd,” coloring books and R&B jams with Matt Haze, DJ Alarm, Broke-Ass Stuart, guests, Wednesdays, 5:30-9:30pm, free.

Amnesia: 853 Valencia, San Francisco. “Mods v. Rockers,” w/ Little Wild, The M-Tet, DJ Dutch Crunch, 8:30pm, $5-$7.
Bender’s: 806 S. Van Ness, San Francisco. Noise Pop Happy Hour: Dude York, A Million Billion Dying Suns, A-1 & Rawdad, 5pm, free.
Boom Boom Room: 1601 Fillmore, San Francisco. Hibbity Dibbity, Big Baby Guru, Wag, 9:30pm, $5 advance.
Bottom of the Hill: 1233 17th St., San Francisco. Noise Pop 2014: Bottomless Pit, Kinski, Vir, Wild Moth, 8pm, $15.
Brick & Mortar Music Hall: 1710 Mission, San Francisco. Noise Pop 2014: Mark Mulcahy, Mark Eitzel, Vikesh Kapoor, Whiskerman, 8pm, $12-$14.
The Chapel: 777 Valencia, San Francisco. Noise Pop 2014: Mother Falcon, Foxtails Brigade, Kan Wakan, The Airplanes, 8pm, $15.
DNA Lounge: 375 11th St., San Francisco. Noise Pop 2014: The Limousines, Nova Albion, The Hundred Days, Taxes, DJ Immigre, 8pm, $15 advance.
El Rio: 3158 Mission, San Francisco. Bad Bad, Talk of Shamans, Pleasure Gallows, 8pm, $5.
Hemlock Tavern: 1131 Polk, San Francisco. Pleistocene, Lauren O’Connell, The Jerfs, 8:30pm, $6.
Rickshaw Stop: 155 Fell, San Francisco. Noise Pop 2014: Popscene with Broods, ASTR, DJ Aaron Axelsen, 9:30pm, $13 advance.
S.F. Eagle: 398 12th St., San Francisco. Ritchie White Orchestra, Deep Teens, Younger Lovers, Club Meds, 9pm, $8.
SFSU Campus, Cesar Chavez Student Center: 1650 Holloway, San Francisco. Cool Ghouls, Mystic Braves, Mr. Elevator & The Brain Hotel, Knits, 6pm, free.
1015 Folsom: 1015 Folsom, San Francisco. Noise Pop 2014: Digital Mystikz, DJ Rashad, Paradigm, Nebakaneza, Lud Dub, Johnny5, Mr. Kitt, 10pm, $17.50 advance.
Abbey Tavern: 4100 Geary, San Francisco. DJ Schrobi-Girl, 10pm, free.
Aunt Charlie’s Lounge: 133 Turk, San Francisco. “Tubesteak Connection,” w/ DJ Bus Station John, 9pm, $5-$7.
Beaux: 2344 Market, San Francisco. “Men at Twerk,” 9pm, free.
The Cafe: 2369 Market, San Francisco. “¡Pan Dulce!,” 9pm, $5.
Cat Club: 1190 Folsom, San Francisco. “Throwback Thursdays,” ‘80s night with DJs Damon, Steve Washington, Dangerous Dan, and guests, 9pm, $6 (free before 9:30pm).
The Cellar: 685 Sutter, San Francisco. “XO,” w/ DJs Astro & Rose, 10pm, $5.
Club X: 715 Harrison, San Francisco. “The Crib,” 9:30pm, $10, 18+.
Elbo Room: 647 Valencia, San Francisco. “Afrolicious,” w/ DJs Pleasuremaker, Señor Oz, and guests, 9:30pm, $5-$8.
Infusion Lounge: 124 Ellis, San Francisco. “I Love Thursdays,” 10pm, $10.
Madrone Art Bar: 500 Divisadero, San Francisco. “Night Fever,” 9pm, $5 after 10pm
Mezzanine: 444 Jessie, San Francisco. Noise Pop 2014: Com Truise, Phantoms, Kauf, DJ Dials, 9pm, $15-$17.
Milk Bar: 1840 Haight, San Francisco. Gen-Y, Witowmaker, Fever Witch, Dirty Coyote, Alice Cunt & Myst Connection, DJ Doggie Chow, 8pm, $5.
Q Bar: 456 Castro, San Francisco. “Throwback Thursday,” w/ DJ Jay-R, 9pm, free.
Raven: 1151 Folsom, San Francisco. “1999,” w/ VJ Mark Andrus, 8pm, free.
Ruby Skye: 420 Mason, San Francisco. “Mardi Gras,” w/ Jerome Isma-Ae, Riggi & Piros, 9pm, $15-$20 advance.
Underground SF: 424 Haight, San Francisco. “Bubble,” 10pm, free.
Vessel: 85 Campton, San Francisco. “Base,” w/ Nic Fanciulli, 10pm, $5-$10.
Eastside West: 3154 Fillmore, San Francisco. “Throwback Thursdays,” w/ DJ Madison, 9pm, free.
John Colins: 138 Minna, San Francisco. “#Quattro,” w/ DJ Dino, Fourth Thursday of every month, 9pm
Skylark Bar: 3089 16th St., San Francisco. “Peaches,” w/ lady DJs DeeAndroid, Lady Fingaz, That Girl, Umami, Inkfat, and Andre, 10pm, free.
Slim’s: 333 11th St., San Francisco. Noise Pop 2014: Shabazz Palaces, Cities Aviv, Extra Classic, Raw-G, 8pm, $20-$22.
SPARC: 1256 Mission, San Francisco. Jel, Maus Haus, Grown Kids Radio DJs, 7pm, free with RSVP.
Temple: 540 Howard, San Francisco. Thugg Chains Launch Party, w/ Indaskyes, VNDMG, Chains & Frames, Sayer, Groucho, Free Fall Crew, Intellitard, more, 10pm, $5.
Atlas Cafe: 3049 20th St., San Francisco. Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Jam Session, Last Thursday of every month, 8-10pm, free.
Bazaar Cafe: 5927 California, San Francisco. Acoustic Open Mic, 7pm
Hotel Utah: 500 Fourth St., San Francisco. Wendy Colonna, Kendra McKinley, 9pm, $10.
Plough & Stars: 116 Clement, San Francisco. Emperor Norton Céilí Band, 9pm
Blush! Wine Bar: 476 Castro, San Francisco. Doug Martin’s Avatar Ensemble, 7:30pm, free.
Cafe Claude: 7 Claude, San Francisco. Nova Jazz, 7:30pm, free.
Cafe Royale: 800 Post, San Francisco. The Hexaphonics, 9pm
Cigar Bar & Grill: 850 Montgomery, San Francisco. Charged Particles, 8pm
Feinstein’s at the Nikko: 222 Mason, San Francisco. Paula West, 8pm, $35-$50.
Le Colonial: 20 Cosmo, San Francisco. Swing Fever, 7:30pm
Pier 23 Cafe: Pier 23, San Francisco. Art Lewis Trio, 7pm, free.
The Royal Cuckoo: 3202 Mission, San Francisco. Charlie Siebert & Chris Siebert, 7:30pm, free.
SFJAZZ Center: 205 Franklin, San Francisco. Terrence Brewer Jazz Quartet, Mosaic CD release party (in the Joe Henderson Lab), 7 & 8:30pm, $20.
Top of the Mark: One Nob Hill, 999 California, San Francisco. Stompy Jones, 7:30pm, $10.
Yoshi’s San Francisco: 1330 Fillmore, San Francisco. Jackie Ryan, 8 & 10pm, $16-$25.
Zingari: 501 Post, San Francisco. Barbara Ochoa, 7:30pm, free.
Bissap Baobab: 3372 19th St., San Francisco. “Pa’Lante!,” w/ Juan G, El Kool Kyle, Mr. Lucky, 10pm, $5.
Cafe Cocomo: 650 Indiana, San Francisco. VibraSÓN, DJ Good Sho, 8pm, $12.
Pachamama Restaurant: 1630 Powell, San Francisco. “Jueves Flamencos,” 8pm, free.
Red Poppy Art House: 2698 Folsom, San Francisco. Therianthrope, Ian Faquini & Rebecca Kleinmann, 7:30pm, $10-$15.
Sheba Piano Lounge: 1419 Fillmore, San Francisco. Gary Flores & Descarga Caliente, 8pm
Verdi Club: 2424 Mariposa, San Francisco. The Verdi Club Milonga, w/ Christy Coté, DJ Emilio Flores, guests, 9pm, $10-$15.
Pissed Off Pete’s: 4528 Mission St., San Francisco. Reggae Thursdays, w/ resident DJ Jah Yzer, 9pm, free.
50 Mason Social House: 50 Mason, San Francisco. Bill Phillippe, 5:30pm, free.
Biscuits and Blues: 401 Mason, San Francisco. Alan Iglesias & Crossfire, 7:30 & 9:30pm, $20.
The Saloon: 1232 Grant, San Francisco. T-Wrex & The Primitive Rhythm, 4pm; Cathy Lemons, 9:30pm
Tupelo: 1337 Green, San Francisco. G.G. Amos, 9pm
The Parlor: 2801 Leavenworth, San Francisco. “Twang Honky Tonk & Country Jamboree,” w/ DJ Little Red Rodeo, 7pm, free.
The Luggage Store: 1007 Market, San Francisco. Collin McKelvey with Paul Clipson, HeadBoggle, Eric Sanchez, 8pm, $6-$10.

Bender’s: 806 S. Van Ness, San Francisco. Noise Pop Happy Hour: Future Twin, Cocktails, Blood Sister, 5pm, free.
Boom Boom Room: 1601 Fillmore, San Francisco. The Sofa Kings, 9:30pm, $10 advance.
Bottom of the Hill: 1233 17th St., San Francisco. Noise Pop 2014: No Age, Hindu Pirates, Dune Rats, Creative Adult, 9pm, $12-$14.
Brick & Mortar Music Hall: 1710 Mission, San Francisco. Stu Allen & Mars Hotel, 9pm, $15-$18.
The Chapel: 777 Valencia, San Francisco. Noise Pop 2014: The Soft White Sixties, No, The She’s, Cannons & Clouds, 8pm, $13-$15.
DNA Lounge: 375 11th St., San Francisco. The Moth & The Flame, The Trims, Ghost Town Jenny, Frozen Folk, 8pm, $10-$12.
El Rio: 3158 Mission, San Francisco. Friday Live: Tiburona, DJ Emotions, 10pm, free.
Hemlock Tavern: 1131 Polk, San Francisco. Noise Pop 2014: Sonny & The Sunsets, Penny Machine, 9pm, $12.
Hotel Utah: 500 Fourth St., San Francisco. Pebble Theory, Silver Griffin, Van Aragon, 9pm, $9.
The Independent: 628 Divisadero, San Francisco. Noise Pop 2014: Real Estate, The Shilohs, Dream Boys, 8pm, $20.
Jewish Community Center of San Francisco: 3200 California, San Francisco. Noise Pop 2014: Throwing Muses, Mark Eitzel, 8pm, sold out.
Milk Bar: 1840 Haight, San Francisco. Tournament of Hearts, Tall Fires, Midnight DJ set, 9pm, $5.
Rickshaw Stop: 155 Fell, San Francisco. Noise Pop 2014: Bleached, Terry Malts, Mystic Braves, Tropical Popsicle, 9pm, $13-$15.
Slim’s: 333 11th St., San Francisco. Noise Pop 2014: Cold Cave, Painted Palms, Dirty Ghosts, Happy Fangs, 8pm, $16-$18.
Thee Parkside: 1600 17th St., San Francisco. Dave Hause, Northcote, 9pm, $10.
Vacation: 651 Larkin, San Francisco. Breakarts, Murder Murder, Planes of Satori, 9pm, free.
1015 Folsom: 1015 Folsom, San Francisco. Noise Pop 2014: Scene Unseen III with Mr. Carmack, Kelela, Majical Cloudz, Supreme Cuts, Purple, plus DJs from Honey Soundsystem, Popscene, Push the Feeling, Trap City, Isis, and more, 9pm, free with RSVP.
Audio Discotech: 316 11th St., San Francisco. Prok & Fitch, Festiva, 9pm, $10 advance.
BeatBox: 314 11th St., San Francisco. “Eye Candy,” w/ VJ Bill Dupp, 9pm, $10.
Beaux: 2344 Market, San Francisco. “Manimal,” 9pm
The Cafe: 2369 Market, San Francisco. “Boy Bar,” w/ DJ Matt Consola, 9pm, $5.
Cat Club: 1190 Folsom, San Francisco. “Dark Shadows,” w/ DJs Daniel Skellington, Melting Girl, Panic, and Skarkrow, 9:30pm, $7 ($3 before 10pm).
The Cellar: 685 Sutter, San Francisco. “F.T.S.: For the Story,” 10pm
DNA Lounge: 375 11th St., San Francisco. “Trap & Bass,” w/ HeRobust, UltraViolet, Napsty, Harris Pilton, Smookie Illson, 9pm, $10-$20.
Elbo Room: 647 Valencia, San Francisco. “120 Minutes,” w/ Little Pain, Sad Andy, Santa Muerte, Chauncey CC, 10pm, $8-$10.
The EndUp: 401 Sixth St., San Francisco. “Trade,” 10pm, free before midnight.
F8: 1192 Folsom, San Francisco. “A Night of Rong Music,” w/ DJ Spun, Jeffrey Sfire, Corey Black, Ken Vulsion, 9pm, $10.
The Grand Nightclub: 520 Fourth St., San Francisco. “We Rock Fridays,” 9:30pm
Harlot: 46 Minna, San Francisco. Richie G, 9pm
Infusion Lounge: 124 Ellis, San Francisco. “Flight Fridays,” 10pm, $20.
Lookout: 3600 16th St., San Francisco. “HYSL: Handle Your Shit Lady,” 9pm, $3.
Madrone Art Bar: 500 Divisadero, San Francisco. “I ♥ the ‘90s,” w/ DJs Samala, Teo, Mr. Grant, & Sonny Phono, Fourth Friday of every month, 9pm, $5.
MatrixFillmore: 3138 Fillmore, San Francisco. “F-Style Fridays,” w/ DJ Jared-F, 9pm
Mercer: 255 Rhode Island, San Francisco. “SoulHouse,” w/ Le Charm, Lawrence Petty, Timoteo Gigante, 9pm
Mezzanine: 444 Jessie, San Francisco. Noise Pop 2014: Beardyman, The Genie, Matt Haze, 9pm, $19-$21.
Monarch: 101 Sixth St., San Francisco. “Night Moves: 2-Year Anniversary,” w/ John Tejada, Shiny Objects, J-Boogie, Deejay Theory, Papa Lu, 9pm, $10-$20.
Public Works: 161 Erie, San Francisco. “Resonate,” w/ Esgar, DJ Nobody, Ruff Draft, Mophono, Citizen Ten, Bdot, Mr. Muddbird, Tone, Joe Mousepad (in the OddJob Loft), 9pm, $5-$10; Danny Tenaglia, Nikita, John Kaberna, in the main room, 9pm, $20-$30.
Q Bar: 456 Castro, San Francisco. “Pump: Worq It Out Fridays,” w/ resident DJ Christopher B, 9pm, $3.
Ruby Skye: 420 Mason, San Francisco. “Mardi Gras,” w/ Manufactured Superstars, Niko Zografos, Daun Giventi, 9pm, $20 advance.
Supperclub San Francisco: 657 Harrison, San Francisco. “Spin,” w/ Eric Lee, WhiteNoize, DJ Taj, 10pm
Underground SF: 424 Haight, San Francisco. “Bionic,” 10pm, $5.
Vessel: 85 Campton, San Francisco. “Project X,” w/ Sebastian Concha, Clarisse & Josephine, Rose, 10pm, $10-$30.
Wish: 1539 Folsom, San Francisco. “Bridge the Gap,” w/ resident DJ Don Kainoa, Fridays, 6-10pm, free.
EZ5: 682 Commercial, San Francisco. “Decompression,” Fridays, 5-9pm
John Colins: 138 Minna, San Francisco. “#Flow,” w/ The Whooligan & Mikos Da Gawd, Fourth Friday of every month, 10pm, free befoe 11pm
Mighty: 119 Utah, San Francisco. “Back 2 the Basics,” w/ Andre Nickatina, J. Espinosa, J-Pro, Chuy Gomez, Fran Boogie, 10pm, $15-$25 advance.
Sloane: 1525 Mission, San Francisco. “Lift Off: The Darling Society Edition,” w/ DJ DC Is Chillin & DJ Amen, 9:30pm, $20.
Bazaar Cafe: 5927 California, San Francisco. Tommy P, M.J. Lee, Wesley Woo, 7pm, free.
Plough & Stars: 116 Clement, San Francisco. “Hillbilly Robot: An Urban Americana Music Event,” w/ The Harmed Brothers, Emily Bonn & The Vivants, 9pm, $10-$15.
The Sports Basement: 610 Old Mason, San Francisco. “Breakfast with Enzo,” w/ Enzo Garcia, 10 a.m., $5.
Atlas Cafe: 3049 20th St., San Francisco. Jazz at the Atlas, 7:30pm, free.
Beach Chalet Brewery & Restaurant: 1000 Great Highway, San Francisco. Johnny Smith, 8pm, free.
Bird & Beckett: 653 Chenery, San Francisco. Chuck Peterson Quintet, Fourth Friday of every month, 5:30pm
Cafe Claude: 7 Claude, San Francisco. Jinx Jones Jazz Trio, 7:30pm, free.
Feinstein’s at the Nikko: 222 Mason, San Francisco. Paula West, 8pm, $35-$50.
Jazz Bistro at Les Joulins: 44 Ellis, San Francisco. Charles Unger Experience, 7:30pm, free.
The Palace Hotel: 2 New Montgomery, San Francisco. The Klipptones, 8pm, free.
Pier 23 Cafe: Pier 23, San Francisco. Frank Tusa Band, 8pm, free.
Red Poppy Art House: 2698 Folsom, San Francisco. Broken Shadows Family Band, 7:30pm, $10-$15.
The Royal Cuckoo: 3202 Mission, San Francisco. Jules Broussard, Danny Armstrong, and Chris Siebert, 7:30pm, free.
Savanna Jazz Club: 2937 Mission, San Francisco. Savanna Jazz Trio, 7pm, $8.
SFJAZZ Center: 205 Franklin, San Francisco. Terrence Brewer Latin Jazz Quintet, Mi Historia CD release party (in the Joe Henderson Lab), 7 & 8:30pm, $20.
Top of the Mark: One Nob Hill, 999 California, San Francisco. Black Market Jazz Orchestra, 9pm, $10.
Zingari: 501 Post, San Francisco. Joyce Grant, 8pm, free.
Amnesia: 853 Valencia, San Francisco. Baxtalo Drom, International shimmying for lovers of Balkan music, bellydancers, and burlesque., Fourth Friday of every month, 9pm, $5-$10.
Bissap Baobab: 3372 19th St., San Francisco. “Paris-Dakar African Mix Coupe Decale,” 10pm, $5.
Cafe Cocomo: 650 Indiana, San Francisco. Taste Fridays, featuring local cuisine tastings, salsa bands, dance lessons, and more, 7:30pm, $15 (free entry to patio).
Cigar Bar & Grill: 850 Montgomery, San Francisco. Candela, 10pm
Pachamama Restaurant: 1630 Powell, San Francisco. Cuban Night with Fito Reinoso, 7:30 & 9:15pm, $15-$18.
Slate Bar: 2925 16th St., San Francisco. “Stereo,” w/ DJ Chico X & Monchis the DJ, 9:30pm, $5-$10.
Gestalt Haus: 3159 16th St., San Francisco. “Music Like Dirt,” 7:30pm, free.
Biscuits and Blues: 401 Mason, San Francisco. Alan Iglesias & Crossfire, 7:30 & 10pm, $22.
Cafe Royale: 800 Post, San Francisco. Allister’s Chicago Blues Jam, Last Friday of every month, 9pm
Lou’s Fish Shack: 300 Jefferson, San Francisco. Nat Bolden, 6pm
The Saloon: 1232 Grant, San Francisco. Jan Fanucchi, Last Friday of every month, 4pm; Ron Thompson, 9:30pm
Make-Out Room: 3225 22nd St., San Francisco. “Loose Joints,” w/ DJs Centipede, Damon Bell, and Tom Thump, 10pm, $5-$10.
Edinburgh Castle: 950 Geary, San Francisco. “Soul Crush,” w/ DJ Serious Leisure, 10pm, free.
Underground SF: 424 Haight, San Francisco. “Sissy Strut,” w/ The Handsome Young Men (DJs Ponyboy, Lil MC, Katie Duck, & Durt), Fourth Friday of every month, 10pm, $3-$5.
Yoshi’s San Francisco: 1330 Fillmore, San Francisco. Dave Hollister, 8 & 10pm, $34-$45.

Bender’s: 806 S. Van Ness, San Francisco. Noise Pop Happy Hour: Winter Teeth, Tiger Honey Pot, Disastroid, 5pm, free; Fatso Jetson, The Grannies, 10pm, $5.
Bottom of the Hill: 1233 17th St., San Francisco. Noise Pop 2014: Free Salamander Exhibit, Black Map, Lasher Keen, Happy Diving, 9pm, $15.
Brick & Mortar Music Hall: 1710 Mission, San Francisco. Noise Pop 2014: No Age, Cheatahs, GRMLN, Straight Crimes, 8pm, $12-$14.
The Chapel: 777 Valencia, San Francisco. Noise Pop 2014: Mikal Cronin, Blood Sister, Old Light, Vertical Scratchers, 8pm, $13-$15.
El Rio: 3158 Mission, San Francisco. Fang, Texas Thieves, Trouble Maker, 9pm, $10.
Hemlock Tavern: 1131 Polk, San Francisco. Buffalo Tooth, Creative Adult, The Vibrating Antennas, Culture Abuse, 9pm, $8.
The Independent: 628 Divisadero, San Francisco. Noise Pop 2014: Real Estate, The Shilohs, Dominant Legs, 8pm, $20.
The Knockout: 3223 Mission, San Francisco. Nomad, Permanent Ruin, Pig DNA, Apriori, 5pm, $7.
Milk Bar: 1840 Haight, San Francisco. Bedrücken, Hazzard’s Cure, Butt Problems, Szandora LaVey, benefit show for Miss Eva von Slüt, 8pm, $7.
The Riptide: 3639 Taraval, San Francisco. Jinx Jones & The KingTones, 9:30pm, free.
Slim’s: 333 11th St., San Francisco. Moistboyz, Qui, 9pm, $16.
Thee Parkside: 1600 17th St., San Francisco. Madball, Twitching Tongues, Born Low, Never Healed, 9pm, $15.
Audio Discotech: 316 11th St., San Francisco. Amtrac, Light Echo, Jayko, 9pm, $10 advance.
BeatBox: 314 11th St., San Francisco. “Industry,” w/ DJs Joe Gauthreaux & Jamie J. Sanchez, 10pm, $20 advance.
Cat Club: 1190 Folsom, San Francisco. “Leisure,” w/ DJs Aaron, Omar, & Jetset James, First Saturday of every month, 10pm, $7.
DNA Lounge: 375 11th St., San Francisco. “Bootie S.F.,” w/ DJs Adrian, Faroff, Tripp, Fox, Kool Karlo, Medic, Starr, Tannhäuser Gate, and more, 9pm, $10-$15.
The EndUp: 401 Sixth St., San Francisco. “Play,” First Saturday of every month, 10pm
Il Pirata: 2007 16th St., San Francisco. “Requiem,” w/ DJs Xiola, Calexica, and Noveli, 10pm, $5.
Lookout: 3600 16th St., San Francisco. “Bounce!,” 9pm, $3.
Madrone Art Bar: 500 Divisadero, San Francisco. “The Prince & Michael Experience,” w/ DJs Dave Paul & Jeff Harris, First Saturday of every month, 9pm, $5.
Mercer: 255 Rhode Island, San Francisco. “Surface Tension,” w/ Powell, Beau Wanzer, more, 10pm, $10-$15 advance.
Mighty: 119 Utah, San Francisco. Opel 12-Year Anniversary, w/ Elite Force, Meat Katie, Syd Gris, Melyss, Kimba, Alain Octavo, DJ Denise, Andy P, DJ Dane, A.M. Rebel, more, 10pm, $18 advance.
The NWBLK: 1999 Bryant, San Francisco. Noise Pop 2014: Ladytron (DJ set), Jimmy Tamborello, 9pm, $20.
Public Works: 161 Erie, San Francisco. Sixth Annual Eye Heart SF Mardi Gras, w/ Party Favor, Manics, The Schmidt, MyKill, R3y, more, 9pm, $15-$50.
Rickshaw Stop: 155 Fell, San Francisco. Trapeze XI: The Big-Bass Burlectro-Swing Affair, Smokey Joe & The Kid, The Klown, and DJ Delachaux provide the music for burlesque routines by Bunny Pistol, Reagan Riot, Double Dang Duo, and more., 9pm, $12-$15.
Ruby Skye: 420 Mason, San Francisco. “Mardi Gras,” w/ Super8 & Tab, Jaytech, Nick G, 9pm, $20 advance.
The Stud: 399 Ninth St., San Francisco. “Go Bang!,” w/ DJs Shawn Ryan, Glenn Rivera, Steve Fabus, and Sergio Fedasz, 9pm, $7 (free before 10pm).
Underground SF: 424 Haight, San Francisco. “Push the Feeling,” w/ Nitemoves, Al Lover, Yr Skull, Epicsauce DJs, 9pm, $6.
Vessel: 85 Campton, San Francisco. “Swank,” w/ Plastik Funk, Pheeko Dubfunk, 10pm, $10-$30.
John Colins: 138 Minna, San Francisco. “N.E.W.: Never Ending Weekend,” w/ DJ Jerry Ross, First Saturday of every month, 9pm, free before 11pm
Slate Bar: 2925 16th St., San Francisco. “Touchy Feely,” w/ The Wild N Krazy Kids, First Saturday of every month, 10pm, $5 (free before 11pm).
Yoshi’s San Francisco: 1330 Fillmore, San Francisco. Afrika Bambaataa (DJ set), DJ Jahi, 10:30pm, $24-$26.
Amnesia: 853 Valencia, San Francisco. The Wild Reeds, The Herbert Bail Orchestra, 9pm, $7-$10.
Atlas Cafe: 3049 20th St., San Francisco. Craig Ventresco and/or Meredith Axelrod, Saturdays, 4-6pm, free.
Bazaar Cafe: 5927 California, San Francisco. Migrant Pickers, Dinner with the Kids, Jonny Mac, 7pm
Hotel Utah: 500 Fourth St., San Francisco. Sugar Ponies, Andrew Levin Band, Tim Brochier Band, Thunderegg, 9pm, $10.
The Lucky Horseshoe: 453 Cortland, San Francisco. Slow Motion Cowboys, 9pm
Pa’ina: 1865 Post, San Francisco. Kapala, 6:30pm
Plough & Stars: 116 Clement, San Francisco. Paddy O’Brien with Richard Mandel, Opening night of the Crossroads Irish-American Festival., 9pm, $15-$20.
Revolution Cafe: 3248 22nd St., San Francisco. Seth Augustus, First Saturday of every month, 9pm, free/donation.
50 Mason Social House: 50 Mason, San Francisco. Oakland Byrds, 7pm, $8.
The Emerald Tablet: 80 Fresno, San Francisco. Faith Winthrop with Tammy Hall, Aaron Germain, and Carmen Cansino, 8pm, $15 suggested donation.
Feinstein’s at the Nikko: 222 Mason, San Francisco. Paula West, 7 & 9:30pm, $35-$50.
Jazz Bistro at Les Joulins: 44 Ellis, San Francisco. Bill “Doc” Webster & Jazz Nostalgia, 7:30pm, free.
Savanna Jazz Club: 2937 Mission, San Francisco. Savanna Jazz Trio, 7pm, $8.
SFJAZZ Center: 205 Franklin, San Francisco. Amina Figarova Sextet, in the Joe Henderson lab, 7 & 8:30pm, $25.
Sheba Piano Lounge: 1419 Fillmore, San Francisco. The Robert Stewart Experience, 9pm
Zingari: 501 Post, San Francisco. Barbara Ochoa, 8pm, free.
1015 Folsom: 1015 Folsom, San Francisco. “Pura,” 9pm, $20.
Bissap Baobab: 3372 19th St., San Francisco. “Paris-Dakar African Mix Coupe Decale,” 10pm, $5.
Make-Out Room: 3225 22nd St., San Francisco. “El SuperRitmo,” w/ DJs Roger Mas & El Kool Kyle, 10pm, $5 before 11pm
Pachamama Restaurant: 1630 Powell, San Francisco. Eddy Navia & Pachamama Band, 8pm, free.
Roccapulco Supper Club: 3140 Mission, San Francisco. 47th Friends of Brazil Carnaval Ball, w/ Sotaque Baiano, Fogo na Roupa, Aquarela, DJ Elle, DJ Kblo, more, 9pm, $30 advance.
Space 550: 550 Barneveld, San Francisco. “Club Fuego,” 9:30pm
Mezzanine: 444 Jessie, San Francisco. J Boog, Los Rakas, Bayonics, DJ Jah Yzer, 9pm, $30.
Biscuits and Blues: 401 Mason, San Francisco. Janiva Magness, 7:30 & 10pm, $22.
The Saloon: 1232 Grant, San Francisco. The Jukes, First Saturday of every month, 4pm; Daniel Castro, First Saturday of every month, 9:30pm
Thee Parkside: 1600 17th St., San Francisco. Bones to Breakers, Benefit for motorcycle accident victim Vanessa Bezerra featuring blues music by The Blue Swamis., 3pm, $5.
Center for New Music: 55 Taylor, San Francisco. Choreographies of Creation & Destruction: The Live Cinemas of John Davis & Greg Pope, Experimental film screenings with live soundtrack performances., 7:30pm, $5-$10.
Boom Boom Room: 1601 Fillmore, San Francisco. The Willie Waldman Project, 9:30pm, $15-$20.
El Rio: 3158 Mission, San Francisco. “Hard French,” w/ DJs Carnita & Brown Amy, First Saturday of every month, 2pm, $7.
Elbo Room: 647 Valencia, San Francisco. “Saturday Night Soul Party,” w/ DJs Lucky, Phengren Oswald, & Paul Paul, First Saturday of every month, 10pm, $10 ($5 in formal attire).
Yoshi’s San Francisco: 1330 Fillmore, San Francisco. Will Downing, 8pm, sold out.

The Chapel: 777 Valencia, San Francisco. Noise Pop 2014: Rogue Wave, Trails & Ways, 4pm, $20.
El Rio: 3158 Mission, San Francisco. Marbler, The Krypters, The Yes Go’s, 8pm, $5.
Hemlock Tavern: 1131 Polk, San Francisco. Big Tits, Warm Soda, Dimples, 8:30pm, $6.
Hotel Utah: 500 Fourth St., San Francisco. The Hodges, Shot in the Dark, 8pm, $7.
Slim’s: 333 11th St., San Francisco. Lydia (performing Illuminate), Saint Motel, Golden Sun, 7pm, $15.
Verdi Club: 2424 Mariposa, San Francisco. Rainbow Beast, 12:30 & 4:30pm, $10-$20.
Beaux: 2344 Market, San Francisco. “Full of Grace: A Weekly House Music Playground,” 9pm, free.
The Cellar: 685 Sutter, San Francisco. “Replay Sundays,” 9pm, free.
The Edge: 4149 18th St., San Francisco. “’80s at 8,” w/ DJ MC2, 8pm
Elbo Room: 647 Valencia, San Francisco. “Dub Mission,” w/ Alpha Steppa, DJ Sep, Maneesh the Twister, 9pm, $6 (free before 9:30pm).
The EndUp: 401 Sixth St., San Francisco. “T.Dance,” 6 a.m.-6pm; “BoomBox,” First Sunday of every month, 8pm
F8: 1192 Folsom, San Francisco. “Stamina,” w/ DJs Lukeino, Jamal, and guests, 10pm, free.
The Knockout: 3223 Mission, San Francisco. “Sweater Funk,” 10pm, free.
Lookout: 3600 16th St., San Francisco. “Jock,” Sundays, 3-8pm, $2.
MatrixFillmore: 3138 Fillmore, San Francisco. “Bounce,” w/ DJ Just, 10pm
Monarch: 101 Sixth St., San Francisco. “Reload,” w/ Tara Brooks, Lee Reynolds, Dmitry Purple, Jamie Schwabl, Zach Walker, 9pm, $5-$10.
The NWBLK: 1999 Bryant, San Francisco. Noise Pop 2014: Closing Night Party with Machinedrum, 6pm, $10.
Otis: 25 Maiden, San Francisco. “What’s the Werd?,” w/ resident DJs Nick Williams, Kevin Knapp, Maxwell Dub, and guests, 9pm, $5 (free before 11pm).
The Parlor: 2801 Leavenworth, San Francisco. “Sunday Sessions,” w/ DJ Marc deVasconcelos, 9pm, free.
Q Bar: 456 Castro, San Francisco. “Gigante,” 8pm, free.
Temple: 540 Howard, San Francisco. “Sunset Arcade,” 18+ dance party & game night, 9pm, $10.
Boom Boom Room: 1601 Fillmore, San Francisco. “Return of the Cypher,” 9:30pm, free.
El Rio: 3158 Mission, San Francisco. “Swagger Like Us,” First Sunday of every month, 3pm
Skylark Bar: 3089 16th St., San Francisco. “Shooz,” w/ DJ Raymundo & guests, First Sunday of every month, 10pm, free.
The Lucky Horseshoe: 453 Cortland, San Francisco. Bernal Mountain Bluegrass Jam, 4pm, free.
Madrone Art Bar: 500 Divisadero, San Francisco. “Spike’s Mic Night,” Sundays, 4-8pm, free.
St. Luke’s Episcopal Church: 1755 Clay, San Francisco. “Sunday Night Mic,” w/ Roem Baur, 5pm, free.
Tupelo: 1337 Green, San Francisco. “Twang Sundays,” w/ The Gravel Spreaders, 7pm, free.
Amnesia: 853 Valencia, San Francisco. Kally Price Old Blues & Jazz Band, First Sunday of every month, 9pm, $7-$10.
Bird & Beckett: 653 Chenery, San Francisco. Jinx Jones’ Jazzabilly All-Stars, 4:30pm
Jazz Bistro at Les Joulins: 44 Ellis, San Francisco. Bill “Doc” Webster & Jazz Nostalgia, 7:30pm, free.
Madrone Art Bar: 500 Divisadero, San Francisco. “Sunday Sessions,” 10pm, free.
Revolution Cafe: 3248 22nd St., San Francisco. Jazz Revolution, 4pm, free/donation.
The Royal Cuckoo: 3202 Mission, San Francisco. Lavay Smith & Chris Siebert, 7:30pm, free.
SFJAZZ Center: 205 Franklin, San Francisco. Amina Figarova Sextet, in the Joe Henderson lab, 5:30 & 7pm, $20.
Zingari: 501 Post, San Francisco. Chris Duggan, 7:30pm, free.
Atmosphere: 447 Broadway, San Francisco. “Hot Bachata Nights,” w/ DJ El Guapo, 5:30pm, $10 ($18-$25 with dance lessons).
Bissap Baobab: 3372 19th St., San Francisco. “Brazil & Beyond,” 6:30pm, free.
Thirsty Bear Brewing Company: 661 Howard, San Francisco. “The Flamenco Room,” 7:30 & 8:30pm
Mezzanine: 444 Jessie, San Francisco. J Boog, Los Rakas, Thrive, DJ Jah Yzer, 9pm, $30.
The Saloon: 1232 Grant, San Francisco. Blues Power, 4pm
Sheba Piano Lounge: 1419 Fillmore, San Francisco. Bohemian Knuckleboogie, 8pm, free.
Swig: 571 Geary, San Francisco. Sunday Blues Jam with Ed Ivey, 9pm
San Francisco Conservatory of Music: 50 Oak, San Francisco. Hot Air Music Festival, Fifth annual student-run showcase of avant-classical compositions featuring free performances by the Ignition Duo, Mobius Trio, Friction Quartet, New Keys, and more., 12:30-9pm, free.
The Riptide: 3639 Taraval, San Francisco. “The Hootenanny West Side Revue,” First Sunday of every month, 7:30pm, free.
Musicians Union Local 6: 116 Ninth St., San Francisco. Noertker’s Moxie, Ze Bib!, 7:30pm, $8-$10.
Delirium Cocktails: 3139 16th St., San Francisco. “Heart & Soul,” w/ DJ Lovely Lesage, 10pm, free.
Yoshi’s San Francisco: 1330 Fillmore, San Francisco. Will Downing, 7pm, $55-$75.

Brick & Mortar Music Hall: 1710 Mission, San Francisco. PigPen Theatre Co., The Tragic Thrills, 9pm, $7-$10.
DNA Lounge: 375 11th St., San Francisco. We Butter the Bread with Butter, King Loses Crown, Honour Crest, Lions Lions, 7:30pm, $10-$13.
The Independent: 628 Divisadero, San Francisco. The Wild Feathers, Saints of Valory, Jamestown Revival, 8pm, $13-$15.
DNA Lounge: 375 11th St., San Francisco. “Death Guild,” 18+ dance party with DJs Decay, Joe Radio, Melting Girl, & guests, 9:30pm, $3-$5.
Q Bar: 456 Castro, San Francisco. “Wanted,” w/ DJs Key&Kite and Richie Panic, 9pm, free.
Underground SF: 424 Haight, San Francisco. “Vienetta Discotheque,” w/ DJs Stanley Frank and Robert Jeffrey, 10pm, free.
Amnesia: 853 Valencia, San Francisco. Front Country, First Monday of every month, 9pm, free.
The Chieftain: 198 Fifth St., San Francisco. The Wrenboys, 7pm, free.
Fiddler’s Green: 1333 Columbus, San Francisco. Terry Savastano, 9:30pm, free/donation.
Hotel Utah: 500 Fourth St., San Francisco. Open Mic with Brendan Getzell, 8pm, free.
Osteria: 3277 Sacramento, San Francisco. “Acoustic Bistro,” 7pm, free.
The Saloon: 1232 Grant, San Francisco. Peter Lindman, 4pm
Slim’s: 333 11th St., San Francisco. Nicole Atkins, Arc Iris, Davey Horne, 8pm, $15.
Cafe Divine: 1600 Stockton, San Francisco. Rob Reich, First and Third Monday of every month, 7pm
Jazz Bistro at Les Joulins: 44 Ellis, San Francisco. Eugene Pliner Quartet with Tod Dickow, 7:30pm, free.
Le Colonial: 20 Cosmo, San Francisco. Le Jazz Hot, 7pm, free.
Make-Out Room: 3225 22nd St., San Francisco. “The Monday Make-Out,” w/ Talk More, Eli Wallace’s Platform, Timothy Orr Ensemble, 8pm, free.
Sheba Piano Lounge: 1419 Fillmore, San Francisco. City Jazz Instrumental Jam Session, 8pm
Zingari: 501 Post, San Francisco. Riley Bandy, 7:30pm, free.
Skylark Bar: 3089 16th St., San Francisco. “Skylarking,” w/ I&I Vibration, 10pm, free.
The Saloon: 1232 Grant, San Francisco. The Bachelors, 9:30pm
Center for New Music: 55 Taylor, San Francisco. Mchtnchts, John Shiurba’s 3-3 on 3/3, Crystal Moon Cone, 7:30pm, $8-$10.
Madrone Art Bar: 500 Divisadero, San Francisco. “M.O.M. (Motown on Mondays),” w/ DJ Gordo Cabeza & Timoteo Gigante, 8pm, free.

Amnesia: 853 Valencia, San Francisco. Cellar Doors, Cool Ghouls, 9:15pm Starts . continues through March 25, $7-$10.
Bottom of the Hill: 1233 17th St., San Francisco. The Casket Girls, The Stargazer Lilies, Dott, Dreamend, 8pm, $10.
Hemlock Tavern: 1131 Polk, San Francisco. Kevin Moan & The Reptiles, Vamos, 8:30pm, $5.
Hotel Utah: 500 Fourth St., San Francisco. Bend Sinister, Grand Tarantula, Ensemble Mik Nawooj, 8pm, $8.
The Knockout: 3223 Mission, San Francisco. Ava Luna, Chastity Belt, Dude York, Krill, 9:30pm, $7.
Aunt Charlie’s Lounge: 133 Turk, San Francisco. “High Fantasy,” w/ DJ Viv, Myles Cooper, & guests, 10pm, $2.
Laszlo: 2532 Mission, San Francisco. “Beards of a Feather,” Enjoy classy house records, obscuro disco, and laid-back late-’80s jams with DJ Ash Williams and guests, First Tuesday of every month, 9pm, free.
Monarch: 101 Sixth St., San Francisco. “Soundpieces,” 10pm, free-$10.
Q Bar: 456 Castro, San Francisco. “Switch,” w/ DJs Jenna Riot & Andre, 9pm, $3.
Underground SF: 424 Haight, San Francisco. “Shelter,” 10pm, free.
Wish: 1539 Folsom, San Francisco. “Tight,” w/ resident DJs Michael May & Lito, 8pm, free.
Bazaar Cafe: 5927 California, San Francisco. Songwriter in Residence: Lonnie Lazar, 7pm Starts . continues through March 25.
Rickshaw Stop: 155 Fell, San Francisco. Mariee Sioux, Yesway, Honey.Moon.Tree., 8pm, $10.
Beach Chalet Brewery & Restaurant: 1000 Great Highway, San Francisco. Gerry Grosz Jazz Jam, 7pm
Blush! Wine Bar: 476 Castro, San Francisco. Kally Price & Rob Reich, 7pm, free.
Brick & Mortar Music Hall: 1710 Mission, San Francisco. Mardi Gras with Wil Blades featuring the Jazz Mafia Horns, Stanford Marching Band, Brass Band Mission, 8pm, $12-$15.
Burritt Room: 417 Stockton St., San Francisco. Terry Disley’s Rocking Jazz Trio, 6pm, free.
Cafe Divine: 1600 Stockton, San Francisco. Chris Amberger, 7pm
Jazz Bistro at Les Joulins: 44 Ellis, San Francisco. Clifford Lamb, Mel Butts, and Friends, 7:30pm, free.
Le Colonial: 20 Cosmo, San Francisco. Lavay Smith & Her Red Hot Skillet Lickers, 7pm
Revolution Cafe: 3248 22nd St., San Francisco. West Side Jazz Club, 5pm, free; Conscious Contact, First Tuesday of every month, 8pm, free.
Tupelo: 1337 Green, San Francisco. Mal Sharpe’s Big Money in Jazz Band, 6pm
Verdi Club: 2424 Mariposa, San Francisco. “Tuesday Night Jump,” w/ Stompy Jones, 9pm, $10-$12.
Wine Kitchen: 507 Divisadero St., San Francisco. Hot Club Pacific, 7:30pm
Zingari: 501 Post, San Francisco. Emily Hayes, 7:30pm, free.
Cafe Cocomo: 650 Indiana, San Francisco. Salsa Tuesday, w/ DJs Good Sho & El de la Clave, 8:30pm, $10.
The Cosmo Bar & Lounge: 440 Broadway, San Francisco. Conga Tuesdays, 8pm, $7-$10.
Elbo Room: 647 Valencia, San Francisco. Carnaval Fat Tuesday with Fogo na Roupa, DJs Elan & Carioca, 9pm, $10.
F8: 1192 Folsom, San Francisco. “Underground Nomads,” w/ rotating resident DJs Amar, Sep, and Dulce Vita, plus guests, 9pm, $5 (free before 9:30pm).
Milk Bar: 1840 Haight, San Francisco. “Bless Up,” w/ Jah Warrior Shelter Hi-Fi, 10pm
Fillmore Center Plaza: Fillmore (at O’Farrell), San Francisco. Fat Tuesday in the Fillmore with Bobbie Webb, 5pm, free.
The Saloon: 1232 Grant, San Francisco. Lisa Kindred, First Tuesday of every month, 9:30pm, free.
Center for New Music: 55 Taylor, San Francisco. Joseph Van Hassel: New Music for Snare Drum, 7:30pm, $10-$15.
Biscuits and Blues: 401 Mason, San Francisco. Mardi Gras with the Fat Tuesday Band, 7:30 & 9:30pm, $15.
Boom Boom Room: 1601 Fillmore, San Francisco. The JRo Project, First Tuesday of every month, 9:30pm, $5.
Make-Out Room: 3225 22nd St., San Francisco. “Lost & Found,” w/ DJs Primo, Lucky, and guests, 9:30pm, free.
Yoshi’s San Francisco: 1330 Fillmore, San Francisco. Moonchild, 8pm, $12-$14. 2