Community Notes

From The Folknik May/June 1999

Book Yourself

We occasionally see local and visiting folk performers advertised playing at Borders Books and Barnes and Noble. How do they get to do it? Borders lets people play but doesn't actually pay. Performers get a gift certificate to use at the store and may sell CDs/tapes at the gig. Stores are located in San Francisco, San Jose, and Walnut Creek. Phone each store individually and ask for the "Music Division." Barnes and Noble (400 Post, San Francisco, 94102; 415--399-0552) and in San Rafael (415-454-1472) have a sliding scale (maximum, $25) and a gift certificate worth $25-$50 for an individual; a bit more for groups. There is a sound system, but the stage is in the corner, and performers are definitely "background music." CDs and tapes can be sold, and the stores will take CDs on consignment. To apply, send a CD plus biographical and publicity material to Tom Moser about 2 months before you want to play.

New venue scheduled soon

A new venue, the Adelphian Center for the Arts , at 2167 Central Avenue, Alameda, is opening soon, with a wide variety of events planned-traditional music from all over the world, swing, jazz, Klezmer, early music, vocal music of all kinds, also plays and musicals. Information: Marla Fibish and Jamie Bell (510) 748-8181 E-mail Web site:

A number of Sing Out! magazines from the late 1980s and early 1990s have been donated to SFFMC. As we already have a complete set, these are available at 885 Clayton to anyone needing to fill out their sets or just to enjoy the great songs in each. They are wonderful resources.

According to Mike Cogan's Bay Records newsletter, the "Swing Renaissance" in the Bay Area is gaining momentum, being discovered by a younger generation. There is even a book on the subject-Swing! The New Retro Renaissance, by V. Vale. Same for jazz, which is alive and growing. The San Francisco Traditional Jazz Foundation is issuing CDs and promoting concerts of Traditional jazz bands. They have also reprinted the book, Jazz on the Barbary Coast.

Julie Bidou lost her Rise Up Singing at the January Pickin'and Potluck at Chet and Hali's. Her name is on the inside front cover. Please check your copies of Rise Up Singing if you were there in January, and phone Julie at (510) 526-4228 if you have her songbook. Many thanks!

Eliot Kenin reports from Philadelphia that folk music is alive and well there. There are two open mikes every night of the week within a radius of 50 miles and less.

Laurie Vela was one of 15 out of 50 in a "Pitch Contest" selected to present her idea for a new TV show before the National Association of Television Program Executives in New Orleans, and one of six shown on page 8 of the 2/8/99 issue of Newsweek. It was, she reports, a rowdy crowd of 1200 spurred by the open bar available before the "Gong" style show. She has a 30-minute pilot video which any of us can buy for $15. Laurie and Daniel hope to be back in California sometime this summer and definitely at Harmony 1999-2000.

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