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Snarky Puppy brings sweet fusion to the SF Jazz Center

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By Paul Kenyon Krantz

While hordes of people were packed into Golden Gate Park for Outside Lands Aug. 9, the all-American quasi-collective known as Snarky Puppy made the walls of the SF Jazz Center made ring with their particular frequencies of jazzy, instrumental fusion.Read more »

Listen: The trainwreck pop parodies of the Westboro Baptist Church

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In case you don't stay tuned to the comings and goings of the fearful, hate-filled, how-is-this-a-real-thing-and-not-a-caricature-of-extreme-right-wing-lunacy shitshow that is the Westboro Baptist Church, your favorite homophobic nut jobs are in the Bay Area today to protest outside several tech companies, including Facebook, Google, Twitter, and more. 

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Outside Lands 2014: It's Yeezy season

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Were you there? Were you among the approximately 200,000 human bodies smashed together for warmth at Golden Gate Park this past weekend, because you somehow couldn't stand the idea of wearing anything but your midriff-baring tube top with your whimsical animal hat and/or flower crown?

Whether you're recuperating today from 72 hours of partying at Outside Lands or patting yourself on the back from steering clear of the whole thing — here's our critic's take on the weekend's best five sets...and the rest. Check this week's paper (on stands Wednesday) for more live shots. Read more »

Locals Only: Tom Rhodes

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There are artists who are known for being shy and reclusive — for producing their best work while holed up in their room, or in a cabin in the woods, or on a solo bender.

And then there are those who feed off the energy of an audience. The magic of a live performance is in the interaction, right? In the knowing that, though you're just a face in a crowd at a venue like thousands of others across the country, the experience you're having with a musician live on stage is unique to that evening; whether it's a drum coming in a millisecond later than it did the previous night or banter that changes based on what the band drank backstage. Read more »

Here are some shows that have nothing to do with Outside Lands

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What's that you say? VIP wristbands for $600, special-issue high-end ice cream, and tiny cups of organic sulfite-free wine aren't exactly your thing? 

We're headed to the park momentarily to support some of our favorite local bands who are doing their thing at OSL this year, but if you have a strong desire to stay far, far away from it all — well, let's just say we understand that too.

For you live music lovers looking for something a little more low-key this weekend, here are your best bets. Most of them pair well with Tecate in a can. Read more »

Capitalism, performance art, and a whole lot of ass-shaking: Notes from a Beyoncé and Jay Z show

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First off: To review a Beyoncé and Jay Z show, in the traditional way that music writers generally review live music — assessing and critiquing the sonic experience, the songs performed, the technical skill and effort put into reimagining and translating studio albums into an engaging performer-audience interaction — is totally missing the point.Read more »

Marc E. Bassy on breaking down musical boxes

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As a member of 2AM Club and a songwriter for artists like Chris Brown and Sean Kingston, San Francisco-raised Marc Griffin is an experienced pop music craftsman. But as Marc E. Bassy, solo artist, he's a forward-thinking R&B auteur with more of an ear towards the genre's growing experimental fringe. Only The Poets, Vol. Read more »

Happy Hour: The week in music

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Happy Friday, friends, and welcome to August. We're only about a month away from summer weather!

As happy hour draws closer, here's a look back at the best music and music news we heard and saw this past week:

-- Sharon Van Etten shone in a free, intimate (though packed-to-the-gills), Pandora-presented evening at The Chapel on Tuesday night [July 29]. Read more »

Watch: Lil B's "No Black Person Is Ugly"

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Because we've all been proving in this space lately that we're intelligent, forward-thinking adults who can talk about ethnicity with nuance, sensitivity, and a deep understanding of the history of class issues and race relations in the U.S. and elsewhere, I'm just going to go ahead and post this new video from the 24-year-old East Bay rapper Lil B, aka Brandon McCartney, aka the Based God — who I am morally and perhaps legally obligated to mention is a product of the fine, tiny Albany public schools that (years before him) nurtured yours truly, among others — without too much commentary. Read more »

Tears, beers, and bruises at Slim's with Andrew Jackson Jihad

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Andrew Jackson Jihad may be the most important punk band in America, but they sure don't look like it. They're cheerful and (relatively) clean-cut. They don't want you to crowd-surf. They don't move around a lot, and when they do they're self-conscious about it. They don't use any distortion beyond a pretty, almost psychedelic phaser. They're technically proficient enough that they could probably back up Dolly Parton if they wanted to. Read more »