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Locomotive Sunflower

A beautiful ride at Bird & Beckett between Xmas & NYE!

Seven events in the six consecutive days leading into 2020…

Saxophonist Dan Blake

Thursday, the 26th, saxophonist Dan Blake from Brooklyn with his East Coast collaborators Jarrett Cherner on piano (a transplanted San Franciscan) and the Israeli bassist Haggai Cohen-Milo, plus local hero Hamir Atwal on drums.  Esperanza Spalding has praised Blake for “un-packaging the avant-garde gracefully and soulfully.” Visit his website at http://danielblake.net/. 7:30-9:30pm, $20 cover, BYOB.

Next, the 230 Jones Street Band closes out the year’s Friday-after-work “jazz in the bookshop” parties. They’re our sweet and swingin’ legacy band with roots in the Chuck Peterson Trio, which got the ball rolling 17 years ago, in the fall of 2002! We’ve never missed a Friday in all those years, and don’t intend to miss any going forward. Come hear what it’s all about. By donation, contribute what you can! 5:30-8pm.

Then, Saturday night, when lights are low, we proudly present pianist Grant Levin’s quintet with Downtown Danny Brown on saxophone! Two of the most amazing talents we’ve encountered in our twenty years on the San Francisco jazz scene — we kid you not. With bassist Aaron Cohn, percussionist Pepe Jacobo and drummer Mark Lee, this is one superfine group, well worth your $20 cover. BYOB and a few bucks extra to tip the band. No musician in this town is paid a fraction of their worth, though our audiences always do them right, as best they can! The big ears and hearts of the folks who turn out for these shows are a key reason the Bay Area’s best musicians are always happy to play in our little bookshop, and we thank you for that!

Earlier that self-same Saturday, come down to the shop at 4:30 to contemplate Glen Park’s special legacy, as Elina Ansary’s Ghost Tour: San Francisco makes a stop at Bird & Beckett! Her project aims to memorialize collective memories of the City’s neighborhoods in response to its rapid gentrification, rallying local communities around remembrance and in this way keep “the old San Francisco” alive. She’s created two sections so far: one for Dolores Park and one for Bernal Hill. Each section consists of a small sculpture and an accompanying zine, an illustrated anthology of memories about the place on which it centers. We suspect her proud parents Tamim and Debbie will be on hand. Hope you will be as well! Free.

Sunday afternoon, the hippest guitarist we know, Duncan James, brings along his stalwart collaborator, the vibes player Jon Eriksen for two sets of happy jazz — featuring our favorite bassist, John Wiitala. (Haven’t heard Duncan? You can back up two days to Friday and hear him with the 230 Jones Street band, subbing for that band’s regular guitarist, Glen Deardorff.) An embarrassment of riches! By donation / BYOB / 4:30-6:30pm

Then, Monday night (the year’s not over just yet!), writer Jonathan Tel, an erstwhile San Franciscan, blows through to present his forthcoming book, Scratching the Head of Chairman Mao. China is the center of the world, and the center of China is Beijing, and at the center of Beijing is a billionaire financier named Qin. At the opening of this novel-in-stories, Qin is lying in state at his funeral, victim of a sudden and premature death. But it is not until the end of Jonathan Tel’s biting, virtuosic, post-post-modern feat of cultural observation that the manner of Qin’s death is revealed.  “How can a man live in Beijing?” thinks the shoe thief, as he walks away from Qin’s funeral in another man’s solid black brogues. Tel has published stories in the New Yorker and Granta, and stories from this book have already received the Sunday Times EFG Story Prize, the Commonwealth Short Story Prize, and the V.S. Pritchett Short Story Prize. Free.

And voilá, we’re at Tuesday, New Year’s Eve!

And what better way to celebrate New Year’s Eve than to spend it at Bird & Beckett in the company of your friends and neighbors and Locomotive Sunflower, the mighty little trio of trumpeter Darren Johnston, organist Wil Blades and drummer Jon Arkin! Anyone who turned out last year will tell you it’s a fabulous way to ring out the old year and ring in the new, and grand company to do it in! 7:30 to 10pm. $30 cover. Don’t miss out! We’ll start taking reservations for half the seats on December 26th, and will keep half the seats available for folks turning out for the show.

 

Our events are put on under the umbrella of the nonprofit Bird & Beckett Cultural Legacy Project (the "BBCLP"). That's how we fund our ambitious schedule of 300 or so concerts and literary events every year.

The BBCLP is a 501(c)(3) non-profit...
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