Archive for the ‘SoFA District’ Category

SubZERO lets it all hang out

I had a fantastic time at the annual SubZERO art festival last night. The festival has been getting a lot of press in the Mercury, Metro, etc., calling it the best thing going in San Jose, the highlight of the year, San Jose’s best street festival, and so on, and it did not disappoint.

What seemed to attract the most attention were artists who made art of themselves:

Lots more photos after the break!

ArtHouse opens museums to kids in downtown San Jose

Five South First Area museums and galleries hosed a fun event this afternoon, called ArtHouse. MACLA held a poetry slam (pictured) and painting workshop by a local artist. The Stage Theatre hosted Notre Dame High School’s improv comedy players. The ICA gallery held a filmmaking workshop. Numerous artists had prints available for sale. The San Jose Museum of Quilts and Textiles had free entry to their exhibit of tapestries designed by Bay Area artist Mark Adams.

It was a pretty quiet event, on a warm, still day; but I’d love to see it grow in future years.

Zombie-O-Rama II Infects San Jose

Feeling sluggish from this incredible heat? Maybe school just started or the work week is killing you. Have friends been saying you just don’t look like yourself lately? Come join the rest of us tomorrow night in downtown San Jose for an all-out Zombie-fest.

Zombie walks have been occurring for at least a decade in cities across the world, but come join San Jose in it’s second annual Zombie-O-Rama this Wednesday, August 25th. Bring the whole family out to SLG Art Boutiki in the SoFA district of downtown as early as noon and get decked out in almost-too-creepy-that-kinda-looks-real makeup (artists charging $5 with prices increasing with oozy-gooziness) or get your pre-Halloween juices flowing and arrive already infected from head to toe. I hear you will also be able to purchase awesome Zombie-O-Rama ’10 tshirts at SLG, so make sure you check the place out regardless!

The crawl will make it’s way across the street to Gore Park and officially begins at 5pm. This is when the fun really starts. Hundreds (to thousands – the Facebook event currently has 785 attending with tons more unanswered, and apparently some zombies still don’t use Facebook) of ‘zombies’ will hit the streets. The undead will make a giant loop around downtown (see the super informative map), which to unsuspecting, will be some sight to see. There is also said to be various events set up around the route designed just for the most zealous zombie.

I know a lot of people are excited about this night as a Zombie-Bar-Crawl. Many local bars and businesses will be offering deals such as happy hour prices or special creepy drinks to Zombies; and it’s a lot of fun to see/be a zombie moan and groan into a bar, make it onto their seat and throw back a drink before returning to the masses.

The terrible tour of downtown will meet up again at Gore Park at First/William for a frightful fashion show and then a free outdoor showing of Zombieland thanks to Starlight Cinemas. The film is rated R so parents should use discretion with the kiddies, but it is a creepy-comedy that shouldn’t be missed for the adults.

But wait, there’s more! Zombie-O-Rama has once again teamed up with Second Harvest Food Bank to promote the undead donating their canned foods to the living. Last year nearly 2,000 pounds of food was donated so let’s try to out-donate and out-zombie the past making San Jose’s Zombie Crawl a positive sign of the times. Cans will be accepted at both Gore Park and SLG, which by the way is located at 577 S. Market Street.

I recommend getting together; carpooling, making a little ‘bike party’ of your own into town, or crawl onto VTA and zombify the rest of San Jose!

Saturday at Left Coast Live

Overall, Left Coast Live‘s Saturday schedule featured a lot more “urban” bands and DJ’s than Friday, which aren’t really my thing. I can’t deny those acts do draw a bigger crowd in San Jose than the pop, folk, rock, blues, jazz, and punk bands I’m more interested in. Still, the festival gave me plenty to keep me interested, including a line-up of pop acts on the main stage, and a good variety of styles on the “mini-main” stage. One highlight was the chance for local bands to play on the main stage. The line-up featured Dr. Nurse (below, left), Lisa Dewey & The Lotus Life (right), and The Mumlers.

Dr. Nurse Lisa Dewey


More from Left Coast Live

Free Energy and Crash Kings played the main stage:

Free Energy Crash Kings

Ok Go were the headliners, and they drew the crowds:



Left Coast Live is live

Silicon Valley Roller Girls are demo’ing roller derby to the musical backdrop of Back Pocket Memory:

Roller Derby & Rock and Roll

Whiskey Avengers are heating up the stage at the Ramada with banjo-punk action:

Whiskey Avengers

The music goes on, on 14 stages around the SoFA, ’til after 11 tonight, and tomorrow from about 5 until the wee hours.

Rock the Block at Left Coast Live

A panel discussion followed the film.

The Left Coast Live music festival and conference kicked off tonight with a premiere screening of “Rock the Block: The Story of the Cactus Club” at the Theater on San Pedro Square in downtown San Jose. The film chronicles the 14-year history of The Cactus Club, the rock & roll club that was a major part of the revitalization of the South of First Area and downtown San Jose.

The film chronicles how the Cactus Club was brought to South First Street as part of a city redevelopment effort to push out the strip clubs, peepshows, and adult theaters (and prostitutes and drug dealers) who dominated the area in the ’80’s; how the club provided a venue for young local musicians, up-and-coming bands, and national touring acts to play in San Jose; and how, as downtown developed the club no longer fit the high-roller, yuppie vision the city had for SoFA, leading to the clubs eventual demise when a rival club-owner bought the building housing the club and raised the rent beyond what a live rock club could support. There’s more to it than those brief highlights, of course, and if you get a chance to see this documentary, I highly recommend it.

After the film, moderator and LCL organizer Chris Esparza brought filmmaker Lon Lopez on stage along with Cactus Club co-owner Stikmon, musician Lex Van Den Berghe, and Metro news columnist and San Jose nightcrawler Gary Singh for a brief, but entertaining, panel discussion. The highlight being the observation by one panelist that after using the Cactus Club to push out a red light district, the club was eventually pushed out itself in favor of higher-dollar-drawing clubs, including one that featured barely-clad women dancing around brass poles.

Live Music Tonight!

While everyone else is crowding the beaches and roughing it in campsites, you can have some fun right here in San Jose this Memorial Day weekend! As the sun sets on a gorgeous day, head on over to the SLG Art Boutiki for great live local music by Mike Bacon, Troubadour, Lakes, and the Hurricane Roses. Admission is $6 and the show starts at 7:30. Enjoy the artsy SoFA District; you’ll always see something new!

South First Friday for May


Just a few photos from last night’s South First Fridays gallery crawl. The turnout seemed lower than other times I’ve been to the event, but there was still a good vibe. New (in the couple of months since I last went) exhibits were up at the Quilt & Textile Museum, MACLA, and Works/San Jose. Also, live music at MACLA and SLG Comics.

Music at MACLA Music at SLG

It’s ‘Play Time’ in San Jose


I am passionate about my film collection. I love them all, from ‘Bad Day at Black Rock‘ to ‘Harold and Maude‘, from ‘The Vanishing‘ to ‘The Last of Shelia‘, from ‘Tampopo‘ to ‘A Certain Smile’, and even my precious copy of the 1950 TV cartoon, ‘Crusader Rabbit‘.

‘Play Time’ (1967) is not yet in my collection, though I have been advised that the 70 mm version is best viewed big screen in the cinema. Thanks to Team San Jose and the Stanford Theater Foundation, ‘Play Time’, is showing in San Jose tonight.

See you there!
The California Theatre
345 South First Street, downtown San Jose.
Saturday, July 18, 2009
7:00 PM
Tickets: $5 (at the door only)

Rotten Tomatoes

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