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Bowled Over: A Look Back

Bowled Over: A Look Back

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Dear Friends,

It was Friday, the day after Bowling with Grace. I was texting with Vinny Eng from Tartine Manufactory thanking them for the astounding cakes they contributed to the night and for the Tartine Bread and Portuguese wine as well. I was trying to describe what it meant to us, their love and support across the years, the sweetness and generosity of their contributions. “We are all friends walking each other home,” Vinny texted me. Nikki and I were in the middle of an edit with our NPR editor on the third story for our upcoming series, The KeepersArchive Fever: Henri Langlois and The Cinémathéque Française. I read Vinny’s quote to Nikki and Jacob, we all stopped and just took it in.

That’s exactly what it felt like in the Alley, in that magic space that is Mission Bowling Club, in the spell of Amazing Grace Mulloy and all who came to support her and The Kitchen Sisters. We were all friends, bowling each other home.

From the bottom of our bowling ball, thanks to everyone who came and everyone who contributed. Thank you to all the businesses in this community who helped support The Kitchen Sisters Amazing Auction and who provided food, drink and chocolate-covered bacon for the event. Thank you Cowgirl Creamery for stepping out and becoming Lead Sponsor. “Bowling with Cheese” was our code name for the night.

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With Grace turning 95 this year our other code name for the night was “Summon the Elders.” The Elders must have heard us because they showed up in the form of two queens, legendary blues, jazz and folk singer Barbara Dane, 91 years old now, opening at Joe’s Pub next week. Barbara belted a verse of Ain’t Gonna Let Nobody Turn Me Around that tore up the Bowling Alley. And the extraordinary Betty Reid Soskin, at 96, the oldest park ranger in the National Park Service, stationed at the Rosie the Riveter Museum in Richmond, a Civil Rights pioneer and social activist in the first circle.

Speaking of extraordinary, we were also graced by Bowlin’ Bonnie Raitt. Need we say more?

If we had been able to keep our wits about us during all this magic we would have introduced and congratulated Eleni Kounalakis who came to support The Sisters, who just ran a stunning primary campaign for California Lt. Governor and now goes into the November election the frontrunner. CONGRATULATIONS, Eleni. Don’t slow your roll.

And another thing — somehow the list of “Bowling Celebrities” got separated from the Cocktails created in their honor. Time to right that wrong.

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Those of you who couldn’t join us this year, next year Grace will be 95. We thought this year was the last, but the night was such a blast Grace wants to do it one more time. See you Thursday night, June 6, 2019, Mission Bowling Club. Bowling with Grace: The Legend Continues.

One last thing. Don’t put your checkbooks away just yet. The Amazing Auction is going back online in a few days with a few treasured, surprise items. Trust us, you won’t want to miss it.

In the meantime, to fill the boredom between now and the Auction, SUBSCRIBE to our Webby Award-winning podcast, The Kitchen Sisters Present…

All of you who took photos and videos of the night, we’re starving to see them. Upload, please. Remember how Michael Pollan called us Keepers? We’re creating an Archive for god’s sake.

All you Amazing Auction winners, you’ll be hearing from us shortly. Congratulations and thank you for bidding up The Kitchen Sisters.

Keep it rolling,

Davia & Nikki, Brandi & Nathan

—-

We leave you with this. Lawrence Ferlinghetti, who was on our minds daily as we summoned the elders, was unable to attend the fête, videotaped this poem to be shared that night. We share it with you and let Lawrence have the last word.

P.S. It’s not too late to contribute to our Bowling with Grace Fundraising Campaign. It’s your support that makes our stories possible. Thank you. You can donate here.

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All non-vintage photos by Roman Cho.

The Amazing Auction is Live!

The Amazing Auction is Live!

 

 

Dear Friends,

Two exciting additions to The Bowling with Grace Experience — Roman Mars is joining our roster of Celebrity Bowlers and today our Amazing Auction is live online!  From now til next Wednesday, June 6, the bidding is open to all, whether you are joining us at Mission Bowling Club on Thursday or not. 

Check out these incredible items from our incredibly generous community. Many of the Bay Area’s wonderful restaurants, cheesemongers, kimchi makers and saltsmiths are offering a dazzling array of one-of-a-kind delicious experiences and unforgettable meals.   And many of the Bay Area’s cultural icons have donated their time, talent and tickets as well. Read on and see these exceptional offerings.

Deep thanks to all the businesses, individuals and icons who have contributed. Your story is told below.

And deep thanks to you, dear friends, for your spirit and support across the years.

Don’t slow your roll,
Davia & Nikki

All proceeds from this Amazing Auction go to support The Kitchen Sisters’ mission and work, our intern and mentoring program, and our efforts to bring seldom heard voices and perspectives to the air, to keep the airwaves vibrant, imaginative and public, to build community through the storytelling.

P.S. Tickets for Bowling with Grace are rolling out the door. Get yours!

Get Tickets Now

Dinner for 4 at Cala 

Gabriela Cámara, the restaurateur behind Mexico City’s groundbreaking long lunch seafood restaurant, Contramar, opened Cala in San Francisco just three years ago.  Mexican food so fresh and bright and unusual, handmade tortillas, beautiful tequilas, mezcals, and staffed in large measure by people who have been through the criminal justice system and are re-entering society and the workforce working in this stunning place.    Along with its food, drink, and commitment to social justice, we are inspired by the sound system  Meyer Sound created for Cala that let’s conversation, music and the music of making food all be well- heard together.  Bid now.

Dinner For Two at the Secret Kitchen Table in the Kitchen of Chez Panisse Restaurant 

This is a one-of-a-kind, dream meal for you and that special someone.  Tuck away inside the downstairs kitchen of this legendary restaurant that changed the course of food history in America.  Sit inches away from where the desserts are being crafted and the wood burning oven and small battery of chefs who are creating that night’s meals at Chez are working their magic.  An inside, in-the-thick-of-the-kitchen perch with the most of divine of dinners awaits.  Bid now.

Cowgirl Creamery Tour and Cheese Tasting for 4 at Tomales Bay Creamery & Shop in Pt. Reyes Station

A cheese-making demo at the original cheese works. of the ultimate kitchen sisters, Sue Conley and Peggy Smith in Pt Reyes Station with an extravagant cheese tasting for 4 to follow. Chase all that cheese down with a beautiful hike in the Point Reyes National Seashore.  One of the most delicious, environmental, community, and civic-minded of businesses in the Bay Area, and the nation, we thank The Cowgirls & Co for their years of support of stories of The Kitchen Sisters, MALT, The Edible Schoolyard and so many others.  Bid now.

Lunch for Four at 54 Mint

Treasure in San Francisco, 54 Mint.  Delicious flavorful food in a stylish room in historic Mint Plaza.  After a long morning at SFMOMA, The African Diaspora Museum, The Jewish Museum… how about Italian lunch for four… with wine.  A menu especially made for you, oh gentle bidder.  A joyous, elegant lunch to share with your people.  With thanks to our new friends at 54 Mint!  Bid now.

Lunch for 2 in Angelo Garro’s Forge    

A mythic lunch it will be.  Artisan blacksmith and saltsmith, Angelo Garro lives in his Forge, where for decades he has forged bronze staircases and gates and all manner of metal wonders, and where he now masterminds Omnivore Salt.  Angelo lives and cooks with the seasons, hunting and gathering, foraging, pickling, curing prosciutto, salumi, and olives. (His new, soon-to-be launched Caponata is an eggplant masterpiece)   Lunch at Angelo’s is a journey to another time and country.   You’ll be fighting The Kitchen Sisters for this one. Bid now.

Gnocchi-Making Lesson/ Dinner for Ten at Heirloom Cafe

Matt Straus is a Keeper — of wine and a way of eating and drinking.   Owner of Heirloom Cafe in SF and publisher of kitchen work, a quarterly journal about what and how we eat and drink,  Matt is a collector of wine and wine knowledge .  Matt will lead a private gnocchi-making class for ten people on a Sunday evening over the summer at his intimate kitchen at Heirloom Cafe.  The ‘class’ which lasts an hour will be followed by a private dinner with wine.  Sounds like a perfect summer Sunday. Bid now.

An Oral History of your choice done for you by The Kitchen Sisters

Davia & Nikki go Full-On Kitchen Sister recording and producing an oral history for you. Bid now.

A $200 Gift Certificate to Outerlands

One of our favorite Hidden Kitchens.  Ok, so it’s not exactly hidden, but it’s out there in the avenues and the fog and the surfers and the magic.  Breathtaking bread, one-of-kind-cooking, mostly biodynamic wines, and inspired cocktails, and a staff that rocks, a trip to Outerlands (45th & Judah) is a journey worth making.  Bid now.

Wendy MacNaughton Portrait

Wendy MacNaughton is an exceptional artist and activist amongst us.  She is a New York Times bestselling illustrator and graphic journalist and collaborator.  A short list of her credits include Meanwhile in San FranciscoSalt Fat Acid Heat, The Life, Art & Cookbook of Cipe Pineles: Leave Me Alone with the Recipes and other books.  In a great act of generosity to The Kitchen Sisters Wendy has offered to draw a portrait of your choice.   Bid now.

Bowling for Six at Mission Bowling Club

Our dear friends at Mission Bowling Club have generously donated an hour of Bowling for Six (with shoes) in their wonderful, soulful Alley.  Black leather couches, a wonderful bar with great cocktails, delicious food including the legendary Mission Burger.   You and your posse will have a time!!!  Bid now.

Two Tickets in the Front Row of the Conductor’s Box for a Michael Tilson Thomas Concert at the San Francisco Symphony

Jump on this one, music lovers.  MTT is moving into his last season with the San Francisco Symphony soon. Watch the Maestro conduct from his own private box in Louise Davies Symphony Hall.  Michael is in his prime and so is the Symphony. Seeing him from this view as he conducts some of the most classic and the most daring works is not to be missed. The only thing MTT and his husband, Joshua Robison like more than music is stories — stories, food, dogs, gardens, social justice… We thank them for for their spirit and support of our stories and our community.  Bid now.

Dinner for 6 at Nikki’s gorgeous Commune in Santa Cruz

One Kitchen Sister lives in San Francisco.  The other lives on a ten-acre 30 year-old commune in Santa Cruz County overlooking Monterey Bay and strawberry fields forever.  Three families have lived together there for decades.  What’s their secret?  THE KITCHEN.  Come explore their commune where artists, activists, stockbrokers, painters, golfers, builders and their brood all co-exist and COOK.  Enjoy the outdoor fireplace, the pizza oven, the grill, but most of all THE VISION of these friends and co-housers who have made a remarkable communal life together.  Bid now.

Kimchi Bonanza from Sinto Gourmet

“There is an old saying in Korea: Sinto buri. It is written ‘신토불이’ in Korean and literally translates to ‘body and soil can not be separated.’ Sinto buri means our bodies and spirits are at their best when eating foods that grow on the soil we step on. In Korea it is used to emphasize the importance of local food and where food comes from. At Sinto Gourmet we integrate sinto buri into all the food we prepare and everything we do.””Chef HyunJoo, Sinto Gourmet, SF

We met HyunJoo Albrecht, the creator of a wondrous world of kimchi products when we interviewed her for our Hidden Kitchens NPR story “Kimchi Diplomacy.”  Hyun Joo told us stories of the tradition of kimchi making and kimchi season in Korea. She also gave us a taste of her bounty. Now she’s sharing it with you. her kimchi’s are made with non-gmo products. with  a selection of her 4 kimchis — Spicy Red Napa Cabbage, Spicy Radish, Mild White Napa Cabbage, and ‘Plenty Roots’ Kimchi —  along with her new Gochu Jang, the fermented hot pepper paste that has a history over 1000 years.  All her kimchi’s are made with non-gmo products, HyunJoo wants to make sure you know that.

Bid now.

Red Sauce Dinner for Four at Tosca Cafe

The legendary Tosca Cafe, one of San Francisco’s most legendary bars, turns 100 this coming year.  Now a restaurant, Thursday night at Tosca is The Red Sauce Dinner — Caesar Salad of heirloom chicories, house-baked garlic knots, braised pork shank, sausage and meatballs in tomato sauce, and bucatini.  An Italian soul food dinner in one of the most historic and beautiful bars/restaurants. Think of Sam Shepherd when you’re there.  He loved Tosca and it’s owner, Jeannette Etheredge, who basically hosted a 30-year salon there that brought actors, cops, ice hockey players, artists, musicians, Russians, ballet dancers, beat reporters and the town together at its long bar and time capsule of a juke box.  Bid now.

Dinner for 8 in the Chandelier Room at Zuni Cafe

The jewel in the crown of San Francisco restaurants and this year’s recipient of the James Beard Best Service Award so you know you’re going to be treated ultra-well.  The Chandelier Room, a hidden gem upstairs at Zuni where you and your people can eat, drink, and make merry.  Zuni and Gilbert Pilgram have been stalwart supporters of The Kitchen Sisters for decades  and The Kitchen Sisters have been stalwart supporters of Zuni.  Bring your scene to Zuni for dinner and you’ll know why.  The food, the people, the staff, the politics, the compassion, the cocktails… Zuni supports artists, immigrants, civil liberties, farmers, musicians… They stand for the right things.  And then there’s the chicken…

Includes margaritas and Zuni wine.  Gratuity is NOT included.  Tuesday–Thursday 6:00 or 9:00pm  Bid now.

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Notes from The Kitchen Sisterhood / Spring 2018

Notes from The Kitchen Sisterhood / Spring 2018

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Dear Friends,

These Notes spring from a recording session we did last week in the basement studio of American Zoetrope where The Kitchen Sisters SF HQ is located. We were rehearsing the story we’re presenting on the Radiotopia Live 6-city East Coast tour that starts on Monday.

Lawrence Ferlinghetti, the legendary poet and proprietor of City Lights Bookstore, was in the studio when we arrived. For over a decade now, Lawrence, who just turned 99, has come into the studio almost every week with our sound engineer, Jim McKee, to record hundreds of his poems. They thought their work was complete, but about a week ago Lawrence realized there was one poem from his book A Coney Island of the Mind that he had missed. “I Am Waiting.” Lawrence stayed for our rehearsal, gave us his seal of approval and asked if he could jump on the bus as we roll from Atlanta to Boston.

There’s a lot of people’s projects in these Notes and a lot of news from The Kitchen Sisters. But at this moment, the most important item to us, is Lawrence’s poem. Lawrence wrote it some 60 years ago, but you’d swear it was yesterday. We hope you will take a moment and read it, maybe even aloud.

We hope to see lots of you at Mission Bowling Club in San Francisco on June 7th! And hope to see the rest of you on the road on the Radiotopia Live Tour, May 7-13.

Keep it rolling…

Davia & Nikki
The Kitchen Sisters

Radiotopia Live East Coast Tour

The Kitchen Sisters Present… and 6 more of your favorite Radiotopia shows go live on the road for a night of podcast magic. Host, Roman Mars. Come find us. Atlanta + Durham + DC + Brooklyn + New York + Boston. May 7-13. Get tickets here: radiotopia.fm/live

What We’re Watching

Movies

Hale County, This Morning, This Evening, a quiet, moving documentary from the Black Belt of Alabama. The first film by RaMell Ross. Lyrical, evocative, intimate moments of people in a struggling community.

Garry Winogrand: All Things Are Photographable. The legendary street photographer Garry Winogrand left 10,000 rolls of undeveloped film when he died suddenly at age 56. Director Sasha Waters Freyer dives deep into the life and art of this visionary.

Wild Wild Country, directed by Chapman and Maclain Way on Netflix

Plays

The Gangster of Love, a new play by Jessica Hagedorn now at the Magic Theater

Three Tall Women, written by Edward Albee at John Golden Theatre. Glenda Jackson, Laurie Metcalf & Alison Pill, need we say more?

Father Comes Home From the Wars, Parts I, II, III: A new American Odyssey by Suzan-Lori Parks at ACT, SF


Books on our Shelf

“It was late October 2012 and Hurricane Sandy was coming up from the south. It began as a tropical wave in the western Caribbean and quickly morphed into the biggest Atlantic hurricane on record. I had rushed back to the city to be with Lou when it made landfall. We watched the storm as it blew in across the Hudson River. Then the black water rose up over the banks, crossed the highway and turned our street into a dark silky river. 

Two days later I went down to the basement to have a look at the equipment and materials I had assumed were soaked but still salvageable. Nothing was left. The seawater had shredded and pulped everything. Even the electronic equipment was now a lumpy gray sludge. At first I was devastated. The next day I realized I would never have to clean the basement again…”

From All the Things I Lost in the Flood by Laurie Anderson

A Reckoning by Linda Spalding

How to Change Your Mind: The New Science of Psychedelics by Michael Pollan

Nomadland: Surviving America in the Twenty-First Century by Jessica Bruder

You Are Mighty: A Guide to Changing the World by Caroline Paul illustrated by Lauren Tamaki

The Historian As Detective: Essays on Evidence, Robin W. Winks, Editor

This Immeasurable Place: Food and Farming from the Edge of Wilderness, Recipe’s from Hell’s Backbone Grill by Blake Spaulding & Jennifer Castle with Lavinia Spalding

Fly Ranch, Nevada: In 2016, Larry Harvey and The Burning Man Project purchased 3,800 acres some 30 miles from where the annual Burning Man Festival takes place. Part of the vision behind the purchase is to expand the ten principles at the heart of Burning Man — civic responsibility, communal effort, gifting, immediacy, radical self-expression…  On Saturday, Larry Harvey went to The Big Playa in the Sky. What a vision of ritual and community he inspired.

“Larry Harvey, the guru-like driving force behind Burning Man, the globally celebrated anti-establishment, anti-consumerist festival that he and a friend began 32 years ago on a San Francisco beach, died on Saturday at a hospital in San Francisco. He was 70.” Read the New York Times obituary of this Nebraska born visionary.

How One Museum Curator Is Bringing Burning Man Out of the Desert
The outré scene of unrestrained revelry and cutting-edge art in Nevada’s Black Rock Desert comes to the Smithsonian.

Keepers We’re Following

The National Memorial for Peace and Justice in Montgomery, Alabama

Events and Exhibitions We’re Attending (or Wish We Were)

New Strands Festival, A New Thao Nguyen Musical Project, ACT, May 19

Glen Canyon: A River Guide Remembers. Legendary river man, Ken Sleight is at the center of this homage to Glen Canyon. Opening night at John Wesley Powell River History Museum in Green River, Utah, Friday, May 4

Hiroshi Sugimoto, B.C. at Fraenkel Gallery, SF. Just closed. Dang. But Janet Cardiff & George Bures Miller’s The Poetry Machine and Other Works opens Thursday, May 3. And you know we would walk on hot coals to hear/see their installations. 40 Motets was one powerful, exhilarating, haunting experience.

Bowling Parties We’re Throwing

Bowling with GraceThe Kitchen Sisters 3rd Annual Bowling Party and Fundraiser, Thursday, June 7, Mission Bowling Club, San Francisco.

Come bowl or come hang with a whole new array of Celebrity BowlersAlice Waters, Cecilia Chiang, Rebecca Solnit, Michael Pollan, Judith Belzer, Wendy MacNaughton, Armistead Maupin, Ayelet Waldman, Amy Tan and more. Come for the shoes or come for the schmooze.  

All funds support our new series, The Keepers — stories of activist archivists, rogue librarians, collectors, curators, and historians — keepers of the culture and the cultures and collections they keep. The Keepers premieres on NPR’s Morning Edition this June.

Get tickets here

I Am Waiting
by Lawrence Ferlinghetti

I am waiting for my case to come up
and I am waiting
for a rebirth of wonder
and I am waiting for someone
to really discover America
and wail
and I am waiting   
for the discovery
of a new symbolic western frontier   
and I am waiting   
for the American Eagle
to really spread its wings
and straighten up and fly right
and I am waiting
for the Age of Anxiety
to drop dead
and I am waiting
for the war to be fought
which will make the world safe
for anarchy
and I am waiting
for the final withering away
of all governments
and I am perpetually awaiting
a rebirth of wonder

I am waiting for the Second Coming   
and I am waiting
for a religious revival
to sweep thru the state of Arizona   
and I am waiting
for the Grapes of Wrath to be stored   
and I am waiting
for them to prove
that God is really American
and I am waiting
to see God on television
piped onto church altars
if only they can find   
the right channel   
to tune in on
and I am waiting
for the Last Supper to be served again
with a strange new appetizer
and I am perpetually awaiting
a rebirth of wonder

I am waiting for my number to be called
and I am waiting
for the Salvation Army to take over
and I am waiting
for the meek to be blessed
and inherit the earth   
without taxes
and I am waiting
for forests and animals
to reclaim the earth as theirs
and I am waiting
for a way to be devised
to destroy all nationalisms
without killing anybody
and I am waiting
for linnets and planets to fall like rain
and I am waiting for lovers and weepers
to lie down together again
in a new rebirth of wonder

I am waiting for the Great Divide to be crossed   
and I am anxiously waiting
for the secret of eternal life to be discovered   
by an obscure general practitioner
and I am waiting
for the storms of life
to be over
and I am waiting
to set sail for happiness
and I am waiting
for a reconstructed Mayflower
to reach America
with its picture story and tv rights
sold in advance to the natives
and I am waiting
for the lost music to sound again
in the Lost Continent
in a new rebirth of wonder

I am waiting for the day
that maketh all things clear
and I am awaiting retribution
for what America did   
to Tom Sawyer   
and I am waiting
for Alice in Wonderland
to retransmit to me
her total dream of innocence
and I am waiting
for Childe Roland to come
to the final darkest tower
and I am waiting   
for Aphrodite
to grow live arms
at a final disarmament conference
in a new rebirth of wonder

I am waiting
to get some intimations
of immortality
by recollecting my early childhood
and I am waiting
for the green mornings to come again   
youth’s dumb green fields come back again
and I am waiting
for some strains of unpremeditated art
to shake my typewriter
and I am waiting to write
the great indelible poem
and I am waiting
for the last long careless rapture
and I am perpetually waiting
for the fleeing lovers on the Grecian Urn   
to catch each other up at last
and embrace
and I am awaiting   
perpetually and forever
a renaissance of wonder

HELP SUPPORT OUR STORIES

A renaissance of wonder

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Bowling with Grace: The 3rd Annual Kitchen Sisters Bowling Party & Fundraiser

Bowling with Grace: The 3rd Annual Kitchen Sisters Bowling Party & Fundraiser

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Amazing Grace Mulloy returns to San Francisco for the Third Annual Kitchen Sisters Bowling Party, Fundraiser & Keepers NPR Launch Celebration.

As you know, Grace is one rough tough cream puff, who brings the wisdom of the ages to the alley to help up your game and ours. Grace, who turns 95 this year has won most every bowling trophy there is in Santa Maria, California. Legally blind, she’s a life-long bowler with a lot of tricks up her sleeve and is currently in two leagues. Last week she bowled twice and scored 199 in one of the games.

The only thing Grace likes more than bowling is her granddaughter, Brandi (who works with The Kitchen Sisters) and public radio.

This year’s Bowling Extravaganza is also a launch party for The Kitchen Sisters new NPR Morning Edition series, The Keepers — stories of activist archivists, rogue librarians, curators, collectors and historians — keepers of the culture and the cultures and collections they keep.  The series starts airing in June so we’ll do a sneak peak and celebrate.

Come bowl or just come hang. Drinks, music and food will flow. All lanes will be ours and all proceeds will go to supporting the stories in The Keepers, our internship & mentoring program and our Webby Award-winning Podcast, The Kitchen Sisters Present…

Come join a sparkling array of Bowling Celebrities—Alice Waters, Cecilia Chiang, Rebecca Solnit, Michael Pollan, Judith Belzer, Wendy MacNaughton, Armistead Maupin, Ayelet Waldman, Amy Tan—along with Nikki and Davia and a ton of your community for a night of bowling with Grace as she shares her methods and secrets.

Come for the schmooze or come for the shoes.

$175. Includes food, drinks and all the bowling you can stand.

Get your tickets now through Eventbrite.

If you can’t come bowl with Grace but still want to support the work of The Kitchen Sisters, you can: kitchensisters.org/support

We thank you all for your stories and support.

Thursday June 7, 6-10 pm
Mission Bowling Club
3176 17th Street
San Francisco, CA 94110

Buy Tickets Now

Ep #84: Levee Stream Live from New Orleans

Ep #84: Levee Stream Live from New Orleans

Subscribe to the podcast: iTunes | Stitcher | RSS

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Nikki, Davia, host Cole Williams, Jamal Cyrus from Otabenga Jones & Associates

 

Levee Stream— a live neighborhood pop-up, Cadillac, radio station installation in New Orleans. Presented by Otabenga Jones & Associates and The Kitchen Sisters in collaboration with Project& as part of Prospect.4 New Orleans, an international exhibit of 73 artists creating artworks and events throughout New Orleans.

Part block party, part soap box—Levee Stream is a lively mix of music, DJs, and conversations with artists, activists, civil rights leaders, neighborhood entrepreneurs and visionaries taking place in the back seat of a cut-in-half 1959 pink Cadillac Coup de Ville with giant speakers in the trunk on Bayou Road, one of the oldest roads in the city.

Hosted by WWOZ DJ Cole Williams the show features interviews with Robert King and Albert Woodfox, members of the Angola 3 who were released from prison after decades of living in solitary confinement. Civil Rights pioneers Leona Tate and A.P. Tureaud Jr. Prospect.4 curator Trevor Schoonmaker and artists Hank Willis Thomas, Maria Berrio, and Jeff Whetstone. With music by legendary Hammond B3 organ player Joe Krown, contemporary jazz luminaries Kidd and Marlon Jordan,The Jones Sisters, DJ RQ Away and DJ Flash Gordon Parks.

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DJ RQ Away

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Davia with Jeff Whetstone

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Davia with Prospect.4 Artistic Director Trevor Schoonmaker

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The Jones Sisters

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Houston’s DJ Flash Gordon Parks

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Joe Krown

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Marlon Jordan

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Jamal Cyrus from Otabenga Jones & Associates with Hank Willis Thomas

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History of Conquest by Hank Willis Thomas

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Wildflowers by Maria Berrio

Giving Tuesday / Support the Stories

Giving Tuesday / Support the Stories

U.S. Marshals escort Leona Tate, Gail Etienne, and Tessie Prevost from McDonogh #19, Nov 1960.


It’s Giving Tuesday and, as in years past, we’d like to give you a story.

For the past several months we’ve been traveling to New Orleans, gathering stories and sound for “Levee Stream,” a pop-up radio station installation collaboration with Otabenga Jones & Associates and Project& for the citywide exhibit Prospect.4. We’ve woven these interviews and recordings into an epic Sonic Prayer Flag, full of New Orleans voices, shards of sound and archival audio. Today we’d like to share a strand of this prayer flag, the story of Leona Tate…

November 14, 1960 — Four six-year-old girls, flanked by Federal Marshals, walked through screaming crowds and policemen on horseback as they approached their new schools for the first time. Leona thought it must be Mardi Gras. Gail Etienne thought they were going to kill her.

We are committed, now more than ever, to creating documentaries that chronicle untold stories of American culture and tradition, to keeping the nation’s airwaves vibrant, imaginative and accessible, and to building community through storytelling. It is you, our community, that makes these stories possible.

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Kitchen Sister Nikki with Leona Tate, Prospect.4: Levee Stream, New Orleans, Nov 2017

Kitchen Sister Nikki with Leona Tate, Prospect.4: Levee Stream, New Orleans, Nov 2017

Levee Stream: A Pop-Up Radio Station Installation, Nov 19, Opening Weekend, Prospect 4

Levee Stream: A Pop-Up Radio Station Installation, Nov 19, Opening Weekend, Prospect 4

Otabenga-Cadillac

On Sunday afternoon, November 19th, opening weekend of Prospect.4, the legendary Houston arts collective, Otabenga Jones & Associates, Peabody Award winning NPR producers, The Kitchen Sisters and the acclaimed activist arts organization Project& come together on Bayou Road to present Levee Stream a day-long, street-corner, pop-up, Cadillac radio station-installation.

Part block party, part soapbox, Levee Stream is broadcasting live from noon til five from a 1959 Cadillac Coup de Ville — a lively mix of conversation and interviews with an array of international artists in town for Prospect.4, Bayou Road neighborhood regulars, entrepreneurs and visionaries, New Orleans artists and activists, live music, DJs, and a five hour “sonic prayer flag” that will unfurl across the afternoon and the neighborhood full of New Orleans voices, shards of sound and archival audio.

Come join this live five-hour afternoon event with NPR’s Kitchen Sisters and Otabenga Jones hosted by singer, bandleader, WWOZ DJ and arts activist, Cole Williams. Three DJs will be spinning across the day — New Orleans’ DJ RqAway (the people’s DJ), Matt Knowles of Domino Sound Record Shack, and Houston DJ, collector and ethnomusicologist, DJ Flash Gordon Parks. A few of the Prospect artists coming to be interviewed at the Cadillac include Hank Willis Thomas, John Akomfrah, Xaviera Simmons, Kiluanji Kia Henda, Monique Verdin, Donna Conlon & Jonathan Harker, Cauleen Smith, Jeff Whetstone, Penny Siopis, and Odili Donald Odita. Gia Hamilton and artists from The Joan Mitchell Center will also be heard “on air” at the Caddy.

A stunning array of New Orleans artists, activists, chefs, bakers, architects appearing live in conversation at Levee Stream include: social justice activists, Robert King and Albert Woodfox of the Angola 3, Keith Plessy and Phoebe Ferguson of the Plessy & Ferguson Foundation, the legendary DJ Soul Sister from WWOZ and beyond, Skylar Fein and skaters from Parisite Skate Park, Leona Tate of the McDonogh 3, Vera Warren-Williams from Community Book Center, Alon Shaya and many more.

Live music will fill the day from long-standing free jazz duo, Alvin Fielder & Kidd Jordan, The Jones Sisters with their deep gospel sound, Cole Williams, “Chicken Violins” from The Homer Plessy School led by Rebecca Crenshaw, Zion Trinity and Joe Krown on Hammond B3.

Levee Stream is a day of close listening, unusual encounters, neighborhood revelation and food. Of course food.

All kinds of cooking, food and drink will be part of the day from Pagoda Cafe, Coco Hut, The Half Shell, Alon Shaya & Pomegranate Hospitality, Graison Gill & Bellegarde Bakery, Cal Peternell formerly of Chez Panisse, Charlie Hallowell of Pizzaiolo and Boot & Shoe ServiceUncorked and the New Orleans Ice Cream Company.

Meet us on the corner. Hear the stories, voices, visions, issues and music live at the “station.” And record your own story in the tiny shotgun shack on wheels recording booth on the street next to Caddy (built by six high school students from unCommon Construction). Issues of culture, climate, arts, infrastructure, food, family, education and entertainment unfold across the day in an inventive, imaginative, collaborative way.

“Levee Stream” is made possible in part by The Ruth U. Fertel Foundation, Project& and McKenna Properties.

For more information and a complete list of participants visit kitchensisters.org/prospect

Prospect.4: The Lotus in Spite of the Swamp
November 18, 2017 – February 25, 2018
prospectneworleans.org

What: Prospect.4: Levee Stream — Part block party, part soapbox, a live, one-day, pop-up neighborhood Cadillac radio station-installation

Who: Produced by The Kitchen Sisters, Otabenga Jones & Associates, Project&

When: Sunday, November 19, 2017, Noon – 5:00pm

Where: 2500 Bayou Rd, New Orleans (the confluence of Bayou Road, Desoto & No. Dorgenois)

Episode #81 – Sonic Prayer Flags – New Orleans

Episode #81 – Sonic Prayer Flags – New Orleans

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Photo by Nikki Silva. Mural by Langston Allston, André Cailloux & Fr. Maistre: The Life, Death of a Black Patriot, 2017, on the former St. Rose De Lima Church, 2541 Bayou Road, produced in partnership with Broad Community Connections.

Photo by Nikki Silva. Mural by Langston Allston, André Cailloux & Fr. Maistre: The Life, Death of a Black Patriot, 2017, on the former St. Rose De Lima Church, 2541 Bayou Road, produced in partnership with Broad Community Connections.

A string of sonic prayer flags — voices and sounds from New Orleans and Bayou Road, the oldest street in the city. Local visionaries, neighborhood entrepreneurs, artists, skateboarders, civil rights activists, musicians, teachers, and more. Listening to the sounds and moods of the City.

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We’ve been recording in New Orleans lately for a project we’re doing as part of Prospect.4 – an exhibit of works by artists from around the world who’ve been invited to create events and artworks throughout the city. The first Prospect New Orleans was created in the aftermath of Katrina – exploring the role of art and artists in the rebuilding of the city. The theme of this fourth Prospect is “The Lotus in Spite of the Swamp.”

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Our project is called “Levee Stream” a five-hour live, street-corner pop-up Cadillac radio station installation on Bayou Road. We’re collaborating with the Houston based artists collective Otabenga Jones & Associates – Jamal Cyrus, Jabari Anderson – who have created a cut-in-half pink Cadillac, with giant speakers in the trunk, and a white plush leather upholstered back seat where guests can sit and converse and be interviewed live on the air. It’s a roving radio station that’s toured to neighborhoods in Houston and Brooklyn – and now New Orleans. The event will take place on Bayou Road and the stories, prayer flags, videos and images will be online at kitchensisters.org and prospectneworleans.org.

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Voices heard in this episode include: David Waggoner, Quintron, Skylar Fein, “Mama” Vera Warren Williams at the Community Book Center, Tootie Montana, Andaiye Alimayu of Zion Trinity and King & Queen Emporium, Carla Williams at Material Life, Keith Plessy, and Aaron Frumin from unCommon Construction.

Prospect New Orleans: Levee Stream

Prospect New Orleans: Levee Stream

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PROSPECT 4: “Levee Stream,” Prospect New Orleans. The legendary Houston arts collective, Otabenga Jones and Associates, and Peabody Award-winning NPR producers, The Kitchen Sisters, and the acclaimed international arts organization, Project& come together on Bayou Road in New Orleans on November 19th. “Levee Stream” is a day of close listening, unusual encounters, neighborhood revelation and food. Of course food.

On Sunday, November 19th, opening weekend of Prospect.4, the legendary Houston arts collective, Otabenga Jones and Associates, Peabody Award-winning NPR producers, The Kitchen Sisters, and the acclaimed arts organization, Project& come together on Bayou Road in New Orleans to present “Levee Stream,” a site specific-street corner-pop-up Cadillac radio station-installation.  

Part block party, part soapbox, “Levee Stream” is live from noon til five, broadcasting at the confluence of Bayou Road, Desoto and N.Dorgenois — a mix of live conversation and interviews with an array of international artists in town for Prospect.4, Bayou Road neighborhood regulars, entrepreneurs and visionaries, New Orleans artists and activists, DJs, live music, and a five hour “sonic prayer flag” that will unfurl across the afternoon and the neighborhood full of New Orleans voices, shards of sound and archival audio. Levee Stream is a day of close listening, unusual encounters, neighborhood revelation and food. Of course food. Meet us on the corner. Hear the stories, voices, visions, issues and music coming live at the “station.” Record your own story in the tiny shotgun shack on wheels (built by six high school students from UnCommon Construction) on the street next to Caddy.

A few of the people and performances appearing live on Sunday afternoon include: Chicken Violins — Rebecca Crenshaw came to New Orleans right after Katrina. A musician and music teacher she signed up with ArtistCorp who were bringing music teachers back in to New Orleans public school after the flood. Robert King and Albert Woodfox of the Angola Three — Robert King spent 29 years in solitary confinement in Angola Penitentiary. Since his release, after being found not guilty, he has worked ceaselessly, on behalf of prisoners rights and for justice and for political prisoners around the world.

A multitude of artists from Prospect.4 will talk of their new works at the corner cadillac station including Hank Willis Thomas, Monique Verdin, John Akomfrah, Xaviera Simmons and more. Gia Hamilton from the Joan Mitchell Center will also be part of the mix. DJ Flash Gordon Parks — Ethnomusicologist, collector, documentarian and DJ. Like Otabenga Jones & Associates, Flash comes from Houston with his crates and his big mind and mouth to spin some music and the stories behind it. Plessy & Ferguson — On June 7,1892 Homer Plessy, a shoemaker and light-skinned, free man of color bought a first class ticket, boarded a train and sat in the whites-only railway car of a New Orleans train in an effort to challenge the segregation laws of the era. Judge John H. Ferguson did the ruling that held in place the Jim Crow “separate but equal” laws that stood in the south, and went to the Supreme Court under the name Plessy vs Ferguson, til the Brown vs Board of Education decision upended it in 1954.

The Sonic Prayer Flag  Voices, stories and shards of sound and music from The Kitchen Sisters haunting and evocative New Orleans sound and storyscape will be part of the live mix of the day. The Jones Sisters — Four New Orleans sisters, age 12-18 who have been singing together for nine years and sing knock-out gospel and organ, and won the Rhythm of Gospel Award for Youth/ Young Adult Artist of the year, will power the station-installation on air at noon on Sunday. Solitary Gardens Artist and social activist, Jackie Sumell, who with Herman Wallace of the Angola Three created the powerful project, “Herman’s House” has ignited a new vision “Solitary Gardens” a project at the intersection of public art, alternative land-use and social sculpture, planting gardens designed after 6×9 solitary confinement cells throughout the city of New Orleans to make graphic the issues of justice, incarceration and solitary confinement and propel and provoke a dialogue with the community and with prisoners. Floating Cities David Waggoner, water visionary and architect with the firm Waggoner & Ball has been at the forefront of designing innovative, sustainable stormwater management plan systems in post-Katrina New Orleans. He speaks his vision, floating streets and water gardens. We’ll also hear from Julia Kumar Drapkin from ISeeChange and Rachel Bruenlin from the Neighborhood Story Project.

Voices and stories from the neighborhood including Dr. Dwight McKenna & Beverly Stanton McKenna, founders of the New Orleans Tribune; creators of Le Musée de Free People of Color; Mama Vera from the Community Book Center, one of the hubs of black culture on Bayou Road in the 7th Ward; and neighborhood stalwart, healer, soapmaker and singer, Sister Andaiye Alimaya of The King and Queen Emporium, whose corner will host the Cadillac. Domino Sound, the mighty vintage record store in the neighborhood will also DJ the day.

Skylar Fein & Skaters from the Parisite Skateboard Park — In the wake of Katrina, after their illegal, unofficial DIY skateboard park was torn down by the city, a group of skateboarders, spearheaded by P.1 artist Skylar Fein, created a nonprofit called Transitional Spaces. In partnership with a construction firm, the city, and Tulane they created Parisite Skate Park, an 18,000 square foot space under Interstate 610 Overpass in Gentilly, the first public skatepark in the New Orleans history

Food will come from the neighborhood and beyond — and will change with the day.  

For more information about Prospect.4: The Lotus in Spite of the Swamp visit prospectneworleans.org

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We won! A Webby and a James Beard Award

We won! A Webby and a James Beard Award

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Martha and The Sisters

 

Yesterday was a banner day at The Kitchen Sisters. In the morning, we learned that we won a Webby Award for our Radiotopia podcast The Kitchen Sisters Present. In the evening, we were honored with a James Beard Foundation Award (the Oscars of food) for our NPR series Hidden Kitchens: War and Peace and Food, heard on Morning Edition.

We want to thank everyone at Morning Edition, NPR’s The Salt, and Radiotopia for supporting our work. And all the people we collaborated with across the globe on these stories. None of these projects would be possible without support from the National Endowment for the Humanities and the National Endowment for the Arts. We thank the staff of these important American institutions for all they do.