Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Ben Black: California's King of Rhythm

Ben Black with his banjo (image source: San Francisco Historical Photograph Collection)

Ben Black was a San Francisco musician who achieved national fame during the early twentieth century. Black made his mark as a bandleader, banjo player, pianist and as a songwriter. He was born Bernard Black on December 11, 1889 in Dudley, in the Western Midlands of England. His family were Polish Jews who later emigrated to Johannesburg, South Africa before arriving in San Francisco. His mother's obituary noted that she and her children had crossed "from Capetown to Johannesburg in a prairie schooner" in the 1890s.

According to his 1918 petition for naturalization, he first arrived in the United States in 1907 aboard a vessel named the Carmonia. His first appearance in the Crocker-Langley San Francisco Directory in 1917 lists him as a musician under his birth name, Bernard. It's not clear how Black learned to become a musician, but from around this time he was working as a banjoist and dancer for the Orpheum and Pantages circuits in a "brother act" with his brother "Zizz" (Isadore Black).

 In 1918 they were providing entertainment at dance parties in the City's Richmond district. The San Francisco Chronicle's society pages mentioned "formal dansant" at 5527 California Street in May featured the brothers, noting that “Ben Black and “Ziss” Black entertained the dancers with some of their original sketches and songs.”  His 1918 draft card stated that he then worked as a musician at Tait's Restaurant, and that he sought a deferment because he needed to help his sister and her five children. (He also back-dated his birth date one year to 1888).  Ben Black's Band continued to play at Tait's Dancing Palace above Tait's Coffee Shop on the 100 block of O'Farrell Street on and off throughout the 1920s.

Sign for Ben Black's Band - Photo from the Jack Tillmany collection, published on the San Francisco Theatres blog

Some time in 1919, Ben Black took a job as the banjo player in Art Hickman's Jazz Orchestra at the Saint Francis Hotel's Rose Room.  He was part of the ensemble that departed in August to record for Columbia Records and perform at New York's Biltmore Hotel.  From September 15 to 26 they recorded 28 compositions, 22 of which were released by Columbia Records.  Five of these recordings went to the "top of the charts," at least those compiled in Joel Whitburn's Pop Memories 1890-1954.

Art Hickman and Ben Black were co-songwriters on three of these tracks - "You and I," "Come Back to Georgia," and "Hold Me."  According to Joel Whitburn's book the latter charted on June 19, 1920 and was America's number 1 song for three weeks. That song brought him a $42,000 in royalties in one year (that's equivalent to around $1,000,000 today).

Sherman, Clay & Co. advertisement of "Hold Me" on a player piano roll in the San Francisco Chronicle December 14, 1919

Throughout his career he collaborated (often as the lyricist) with well-known songwriters like Art Hickman, Neil Moret, Harry Owens and Joe Meyer.  Around the same time, Black was also the manager of Sherman, Clay & Company, who published a dozen of his songs that he either wrote or co-wrote between 1918 and 1922.  He later was vice-president and professional manager of the Neil Moret music publishing company who published more than a dozen songs he co-wrote between 1919 and 1927.

His best-known work was "Moonlight and Roses (Bring Mem'ries of You)," which he and Neil Moret adapted from Edwin H. Lemare's classical organ work, Andantino in D flat, opus 83, no. 2 originally composed in 1888.  This song was first made popular by Irish tenor John McCormack as well as by Frank Wright and Frank Bessinger singing with Ray Miller's orchestra in 1925.  The Three Suns made a recording of it in 1954 which rose to 24 on the record charts.  "Moonlight and Roses" has been performed by well-known singers and orchestras like the Ames Brothers, Eddie Arnold, Bert Kaempfert, Guy Lombardo, Dean Martin, Vaughan Monroe, Sons of Pioneers, Jim Reeves, Lawrence Welk and the Mills Brothers.  It was also famously sung by Betty Grable in the 1940 film Tin Pan Alley and by Gloria Jean in the 1943 film Mister Big.

San Francisco Chronicle (December 9, 1922)

During the silent movie era it, many larger movie theaters hired orchestras to entertain between screenings of films. From December 1922 Ben Black led the band at the California Theater at 787 Market Street.  The band made an immediate sensation with its "joyous melodies" that were "irresistible." Their music must have been very lively and jazz-tinged.  An unhappy reviewer in the San Francisco News Letter and California Advertiser hoped for a calm, refined sort of music and remarked that "Ben Black's band has a lexicon which contains no such restraint." Another unappreciative member of the audience had to acknowledge the band's popularity:
Ben Black's alliterative orchestra continues to be a popular feature of the California's entertainment, having now reached the stage of excessive popularity where everything they do is greeted with shouts of delight. This will last for a certain length of time and then it will fade away away, and those of us who are not so hilariously enthusiastic about this harmless form of amusement, will do well to sit and polite [sic] bide our time.
from the cover to the sheet music of "Day By Day in Every Way"

During this time Ben Black's Band of "fourteen jazz wizards" was also engaged at Graumann's Metropolitan Theater in Los Angeles. A Los Angeles Times article showed him to already be a master of ceremonies, noting that Black "[had] the distinction of being the first man to speak to an audience across the orchestra pit there." 

In November 1923, he was hired to lead the band that inaugurated the Alexandria Theater at 5400 Geary Boulevard.  He even wrote a piece entitled "Alexandria" for the occasion.  The ensemble made an immediate sensation with an article in the Chronicle describing the band as "very popular with Park-Presidio people."  Jazz trombonist Herb Taylor early in his career performed with this group. On November 8, 1924 his band moved to another theater also owned by George A. Oppenheimer and Alex E. Levin -- the 2400 seat Coliseum Theater, also in the Richmond District at the corner of Clement Street and 9th Avenue.

Ben Black is first mentioned in connection with radio when he appeared on the election night program in 1924 where he played his composition "Nancy" on the banjo on KPO (which changed its call letters to KNBR in the 1960s).  In radio's earliest days all programming had to be performed live.  His band appeared on a program on November 24, 1925 that was sponsored by the Villa Moret music publishing company.  Many of the works performed were Villa Moret releases.

This notice very helpfully lists the names of several band members - Black, himself, on banjo, Saul Seiff on piano, Clyde Baker and Harry Gulman on saxophone, Bob McQuesten on violin, George Douglas on cornet, Chin Moore on trombone and Roy Bancroft on drums. From the summer of 1925 his dance orchestra from Tait's Dancing Palace had a 10 PM to 1 AM program on KGO radio.

In 1926 his band came to the Granada Theater where he worked with producer and stage manager Jack (John Allan) Partington. Partington was a pioneer of stagecraft having having invented the moving pit band.  In 1919 he also introduced the "prologue"  -- stage acts that precede the screening of the film -- when he was the manager of the Imperial Theater at 1077 Market Street.

Paramount Theatre advertisement, New York Times (August 7, 1927)

In April 1927, Black appeared as guest conductor of the Paramount Stage Band at New York City's Paramount Theatre, and was advertised to audiences as "California's King of Rhythm." The Paramount Theatre located in Times Square the flagship of the Paramount-Publix cinema chain.  He shared the bill with "the poet of the organ," the renowned Victor recording artist Jesse Crawford. 

In September he was given a six month contract to be the guest conductor at the theater.  Jack Partington later joined Black at the Paramount.  Among Partington's papers at the New York Public Library is a manuscript written by Black entitled "The Art or Business of Personality Leadership and Master of Ceremonies."  It's easy to imagine his exotic British or South African accent would be part of his charm.

Ben Black and his Orchestra also recorded for Victor records from 1925 to 1927.  Victor 20690 features them performing "Moonlit Waters" backed with "Sailin' On" (with a melody copied from Dvorak's New World Symphony).

Their recording of "Here Comes Emmaline" made at Victor's studios in Oakland April 28, 1926 gives a very clear idea of the band's appeal.  The very lively and danceable music is propelled along by some pretty fancy banjo work by Mr. Black himself.

Six tracks by Ben Black and his Orchestra are available to listen to and download at

The year 1928 found Black working as a master of ceremonies for the New Ideas Publix Revue on the vaudeville curcuit, presenting variety acts before movie screenings for the Paramount-Publix chain of theaters.  He delighted audiences at the New Saenger Theatre in New Orleans in the spring of 1928  A reviewer for the Exhibitors Herald-World wrote in February 1929
Speaking of Ben Black, as a personality leader, the advertising department has struck a happy chord when they term him "Everybody's Buddy," a title which he lives up to.
Famous jazz clarinetist Tony Parenti who played in the band at the Saenger Theatre described getting a big break from Black:
I left New Orleans in the latter part of 1928 accompanied by Ben Black, chief master of ceremonies of the Paramount-Publix Theatres, which whom I had just finished working at the Saenger Theatre. Ben felt that I could do very well in New York and said that he would help me make the right connections.

Ben Black's star shone very brightly throughout the 1920s.  The Great Depression starting with the Stock Market crash in 1929 brought hard times to Black along with everyone else.  Quoted years later, he described his bad fortune: "Just a few weeks before I bought a ton of Paramount Pictures stock." The blow to the economy and sound in moving pictures brought an end to the era of theater bands and floor shows, drying up Black's main livelihood. 

He continued to organize the occasional vaudeville road show for Fanchon and Marco, Inc. and even worked for the Great American Circus. During World War II he organized U.S.O. theatrical production.  When he passed away on December 26, 1950, his in the entertainment world was high enough to have obituaries in Variety, The New York Times, the Los Angeles Times and the local papers. His funeral services were held at Sinai Memorial Chapel.  He is buried in Salem Memorial Park and Garden in Colma.


"Alexandria Opens Doors Tonight With 'Go Up'," San Francisco Chronicle (November 26, 1923).

Baily, Thomas W., "Motion Picture Heads Take Interest in Programming Staged at San Francisco Staged at San Francisco Photoplay Houses," San Francisco Chronicle (January 5, 1920).

"Ben Black's Band Back At The Coliseum," San Francisco Chronicle (August 28, 1926).

“Ben Black’s Mother Dead of Paralysis,” San Francisco Chronicle (Jan. 1, 1929)

"Ben Black's Year's Publix Contract," Variety (September 7, 1927).

"Black's Jazz Band for Metropolitan," Los Angeles Times (May 24, 1923).

Bostick, Nan, “The House of 'Moonlight and Roses': San Francisco's Villa Moret, Inc.” Music Library Association Northern California Chapter Newsletter Vol. 17, no. 2 (Spring 2003)“

"California and Imperial Have New Orchestras," San Francisco Chronicle (December 9, 1922).

"Chat Among the Publishers," Music Trades (February 1, 1919), p. 41.

Crocker-Langley San Francisco Directory (H.S. Crocker Co., 1917).
"Crowds Cheer at Opening of Fine Theater," San Francisco Chronicle (November 27, 1923).

"Famous Dog Filmed at New Alexandria," San Francisco Chronicle (December 2, 1923).

“Ferguson Films Draws Crowds to California” San Francisco Chronicle (January 4, 1923.

“Formal Dansant” San Francisco Chronicle (May 18, 1918).

Gillis, Frank and Roy Morser, “Tony Parenti’s Story: The Years in New York,” Record Research (May/June 1960).

Hickman, Art and Ben Black, "Day by Day in Every Way (I Love You More and More)" (Florentine Publishing Co., 1923).

"Key City Reports," Motion Picture News (January 21, 1928).

"KGO Actors to Present Crook Play," San Francisco Chronicle (November 2, 1924).

Landon, John W., Jesse Crawford: Poet of the Organ; Wizard of the Mighty Wurlitzer (The Vestal Press, 1974).

Lyon, Douglas, "History and Reflections of The Great American Circus 1939," Bandwagon, Vol. 11, No. 6 (Nov-Dec 1967).

"'Mr. and Mrs. T's" Well Seasoned Jazz History," Jazz Lives [blog] (January 8, 2015).

"New Orleans Saenger," Exhibitors Herald World (February 5, 1929).

"New Portola To Throw Open Doors Today," San Francisco Chronicle (December 16, 1922).

"Pleasure's Wand," San Francisco News Letter and California Advertiser (January 26, 1923; January 27, 1923; March 17, 1923).

Popular Music, 1920-1979: A Revised Cumulation / Nat Shapiro and Bruce Pollock, editors (Gale Research Co., 1985).

"Portrait of a Band Leader-Composer," San Francisco News (August 23, 1949).

Radio Doings: The San Francisco Radio Show Edition (August 23-29, 1925).

Rust, Brian, The American Dance Band Discography 1917-1942 (Arlington House Publishers, 1975).

Sies, Luther F., Encyclopedia of American Radio, 1920-1960 (McFarland & Company, 2000).

“Soldier Made Guest of Honor At Party That Gathers Large Group of Friends” San Francisco Chronicle (March 31, 1918).

"South-Enders to Honor A. Hickman," San Francisco Chronicle (August 17, 1919).

"Tait to Revive S.F. Night Life," San Francisco Chronicle (April 28, 1925).

Variety Obituaries (Garland Pub., 1988).

Vermazen, Bruce. The San Francisco Sound, Volume 1 (Archeophone Records, 2004).

"Yes, Ben Black's Back," Los Angeles Times (December 2, 1926).

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

Sheet Music of World War I

"Over There," words and music by George M. Cohan, 
cover illustration by Norman Rockwell

World War I has recently returned as the subject of books and news reports largely owing to the commemoration of the centennial of the war's end (the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month).  One hundred years ago, sentiment about the war was documented in popular culture, in particular through popular song.  Sheet music later collected by librarians of the San Francisco Public Library's Music Department were bound into volumes that present a vast range of these songs.

World War I began without American involvement in 1914.  The earliest songs about the war in our bound sheet music collections came from England.  The famous tune "Pack Up Your Troubles In Your Old Kit Bag And Smile, Smile, Smile!" dates from 1915.  But most of the earliest songs are directed to the home front (where the majority of sheet music consumers would reside).  Representative titles include "Sister Susie's Sewing Shirts for Soldiers," "Keep the Home-fires Burning: ('Till the Boys Come Home)," "Laddie In Khaki: (The Girl Who Waits At Home) ," and "God Be With Our Boys To-night."

At the war's outset, many Americans saw the conflict as solely a European affair.  This is represented in the 1915 song "I Didn't Raise My Boy To Be A Soldier."  Ambivalence to fighting the war is seen even in 19118 with the comic song "Uncle Sam, Don't Take My Man Away."  But more bellicose sentiments ultimately prevailed in the song market with the new "war edition" (1915) of "Yankee Doodle Boy" (1915) and "Over There" (1917) by George Cohan.  Some songs appealed to the romance of a foreign land like "Come Across, Yankee Boy, Come Across," "Joan of Arc They Are Calling You" and "When Yankee Doodle Learns To Parlez Vous Francais."  This could even turn to romance in songs like "Jerry Mon Cheri," "And He'd Say Oo-la la! Wee-wee," and "Wee wee Marie: Will You Do Zis For Me."

"You Keep Sending 'Em Over And We'll Keep Knocking Them Down," 
words by Sidney D. Mitchell, music by Harry Ruby

Many songs were recruiting posters in sound.  Some songs present American pep and braggadocio like "You Keep Sending 'Em Over And We'll Keep Knocking 'Em Down," "Tell That To The Marines," "We'll Lick The Kaiser If It Takes Us Twenty Years," "We Don't Want The Bacon: What We Want Is A Piece Of The Rhine," "Just Like Washington Crossed The Delaware (General Pershing Will Cross The Rhine)," "The Ragtime Volunteers Are Off to War" and "When Alexander Takes His Ragtime Band To France."

There were also plenty of American songs written for families and loved ones of soldiers far from home and in harm's way.  Some reflected domestic support like "Ev'ry Girl Is Doing Her Bit To-day," "We'll Do Our Share: (While You're Over There)," and "Women Of The Homeland: (God Bless You, Every One!)."  Other songs expressed worry and concern for the young soldiers across the ocean, for instance "The Little Grey Mother: Who Waits All Alone," "Just A Baby's Prayer At Twilight: (For Her Daddy Over There)," "Hello Central, Give Me No Man's Land" (the latter being a child's wish for a telephone operator to connect to their father at the front line).

Other songs acknowledged the loss of life of warfare. "If I'm Not At The Roll Call: Kiss Mother Good-bye For Me" expresses this from the soldier's perspective.  But at the war's end many songs acknowledge the loss of life like "A Star Of Gold: A Hero's Gift," "In Flanders' Fields" and "Miserere: In Memory Of The American Soldiers Who Fell On The Battlefields Of The Great Way."

War's end was also a source of joy in songs like "Oh! What A Time For The Girlies When The Boys Come Marching Home." "How 'Ya Gonna Keep 'Em Down On The Farm?: (After They've Seen Paree)" reflects the awakening that many young men from the country had after experiencing the big city, a foreign country, and the wider world.

For those interested in listening to some of these songs, we offer the album The Great War: An American Musical Fantasy (Archeophone, 2006) through the Alexander Street Press American Music streaming audio database.

"Hello Central! Give Me No Man's Land," 
words by Sam M. Lewis & Joe Young, music by Jean Schwartz

Sunday, November 4, 2018

Björk's 34 Scores

Copies of Björk's 34 Scores for Piano, Organ, Harpsichord and Celeste have just arrived at the San Francisco Public Library.  Properly speaking these are not arrangements of her songs for solo instruments, but for voice accompanied by one of these instruments.  (In one case there is an arrangement for voice and two pianos).

The Biography In Context database entry on Björk describes her as "an Icelandic singer and musician known for her experimental sound and unusual look."  She is difficult to pin down by genre, having performed in diverse styles like pop, rock, electronica and classical music.  34 Scores spans 22 years of her career, including songs from the Debut, Post, Homogenic, Selmasongs, Vespertine, Medúlla, Drawing Restraint 9, Volta and Vulnicura albums.

Björk has always performed her songs with in a variety of settings and with a variety of ensembles, so the some of the unconventionality of this collection is not surprising.  How often do you hear music for the celeste (also called celesta)?

from Music and Musicians by Albert Lavignac (Henry Holt and Company, 1907).

This keyboard instrument is best known from Tchaikovsky's use of it in the "Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy" from the Nutcracker

Already, there are online celeste versions of Björk's "All Is Full Of Love."

She has written that this collection came about through a self-examination of the meaning of "music documentation."

When cds were slowly becoming obsolete, i was curious about the difference of midi (digital notation) and classical notation and enthusiastic in blurring the lines and at which occasions and how one would share music in these new times.
Popular music songbooks and sheet music long preceded recorded sound.  They have always only provided an incomplete representation of songs.  They especially miss a singers' unique style and inflection.  Naturally Björk's florid vocalizing cannot be adequately captured in musical notation.  Nevertheless these arrangements give us the essential elements of the songs and capture her music in a novel way.

34 Scores for Piano, Organ, Harpsichord and Celeste by Björk (Wise Publications, 2017).

Further reading on Björk and her music:

Björk: There's More to Life Than This: The Stories Behind Every Song by Ian Gittins (Thunder's Mouth Press, 2002).

Björk by Nicola Dibben (Indiana University Press,|2009).

Tuesday, October 23, 2018

The Queen of Boogie Woogie: Wendy DeWitt Sings at SFPL

Born in San Francisco, Wendy DeWitt is a Santa Rosa High School graduate. She was only 10 when she caught the attention of Western Swing Hall of Famer, Tommy Thomsen’s attention. Since then she has gone on to win regional competitions and been a finalist at the International Blues Challenge. Her album, Gateway, made the top of the charts in Italy. She has had the distinction of playing with Hank Ballard and the Midnighters, Charlie Musselwhite, Otis Rush and Jimmy Thackery. She produces the annual Queens of Boogie Woogie and San Francisco International Boogie Woogie Festival. Chris Spector of Midwest Record once said about her, “All the cool kids already know DeWitt is one smoking boogie woogie piano/organ gal and it’s time the word to spread beyond her regional awards.”

San Francisco Public Library’s Art and Music and Recreation Department is delighted to have her come back and conduct an interactive presentation on boogie woogie and blues as she takes us on a journey through America’s most grooving roots music, how it all started, and how it went to influence the world. DeWitt sprinkles her performance with stories, fascinating information, photos, and examples.

San Francisco Public Library has a wonderful collection of musical scores, CDs, DVDs, and books about boogie woogie music. Curious patrons can do a Subject Searches (Piano music (Boogie woogie)) or a Keyword Search (boogie woogie).

Here’s a list of suggested titles:

Beginning Boogie & Rags for Piano (Boston Music Co., 2006) 

The Story of Boogie-Woogie: A Left Hand like God by Peter J. Silvester (Scarecrow Press, 2009.)

Boogie Woogie Piano [DVD] / featuring Mitch Woods (Hal Leonard, 2006)

Boogie Woogie Rareties, 1927-1932 [33 rpm LP record]. (Milestone, 1969)

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Designing San Francisco

 (from the Art, Music and Recreation Center's Newspaper Clipping file)

Since the book's arrival a year ago, all of our copies of Designing San Francisco: Art, Land, and Urban Renewal in the City by the Bay have been checked out nearly continuously.  Alison Isenberg's account of how our City was shaped by new visions of landscape, architecture and urban planning resonates in current San Francisco because of the massive changes taking place today.

For the most part Designing San Francisco does not discuss actual architectural and landscape features at length and instead focuses on creative, political and financial forces that shaped each project.  The book looks at specific projects like Ghirardelli Square, Sea Ranch, the Golden Gateway, the Embarcadero Center and the un-built San Francisco International Market Center.  Isenberg also explores issues like historic preservation, adaptive reuse and renovation, public versus private space and ownership, urban renewal, and height limits within the collective effort to design the City.

(from the San Francisco Historical Photograph Collection)

Isenberg also hones in on particular figures who helped to guide and shape the City's built landscape like Karl and Jean Kortum, Lawrence Halprin, Ruth Asawa, Stuart and Caree Rose, Marion Conrad, Barbara Stauffacher and Virginia Green.

Those who have read and enjoyed this book can delve further into that time and place by using the Newspaper Clipping files in the Art, Music and Recreation Center.  We have contemporaneous files of newspaper clippings, flyers, and brochures for the following topics:

Bank of America
Buildings - Highrises
Embarcadero Center
Embarcadero Plaza
Ghirardelli Square
Golden Gate
Maritime Museum
Hyatt Regency
San Francisco Maritime National Historical ParkSan Francisco Urban Design Plan
Transamerica Spire

We also files for the following people on our Artists File:

Asawa, Ruth (artist)
Esherick, Joseph (architect)Halprin, Lawrence
Temko, Allan
Wurster, William Wilson (architect)

Designing San Francisco: Art, Land, and Urban Renewal in the City by the Bay by Alison Isenberg (Princeton University Press, 2017).

 (from the Art, Music and Recreation Center's Newspaper Clipping file)

Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Gee but ...

A fun game to play while using the Dorothy Starr Collection database is to enter the first couple words of a title and see the alphabetized list of completed song titles.  The opening "Gee! but" (or "Gee, but") is a nice example.  The word "gee" is not as common an exclamation as it once was.  The Oxford English Dictionary defines it as "An exclamation of surprise or enthusiasm; also used simply for emphasis."  It's a milder, less irreverent way of exclaiming of "Jesus!" 

In "Gee! But there's class to a girl like you" (1908), the "gee" is almost an expression of wonder. There are song titles of opposing sentiments - "Gee! but I'm blue" (1927) and "Gee! but I'm happy" (1936 - lyrics by the famous "Ukulele Lady" May Singhi Breen).  "Gee, but it's good to be here" (1922) contrasts strongly with "Gee! but I hate to go home alone" (1922).  There are also two lovelorn country songs -- "Gee, but it's lonely" (1958) by Phil Everly of the Everly Brothers and "Gee, but it's lonesome out tonight" (1950) by Fred Rose.

The OED dates the earliest usage of "gee" from 1895.  In our older collection of HP "hit parade" sheet music collection there are three early "Gee, but" songs: "Gee! But this is a lonesome town" (1906), "Gee, but it's great meet a friend from your home town" (1910), and "Gee, but I'd like to furnish a flat for you, dear" (1910).  The latter song was from the show The Summer Widowers is an indirect marriage proposal (change your "Miss to Missus" and I'll let you wear my name), and the syllable "Gee" adds a little emphasis.

The latest songs of this batch date from 1958, indicating that "gee" as an exclamation was on the wane.  "Gee, Officer Krupke" (1957) from West Side Story signals this with the mock innocence of the Jets sang.  But a cross section of songs gives a sense of the popular language of the first half of the twentieth century.

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Chagall, Modigliani and Delaunay: 3 Artists of Uncommon Beauty

A Slide Show and Discussion with Marlene Aron

Enjoy a fascinating slide lecture on three artists who created work that was bold, beautiful and deeply personal. Chagall, Modigliani, and Delaunay worked in paint, stained glass, stone, and clay. They designed sets for ballet and theatre, collaborated with poets, and were part of the new avant-garde sweeping Europe and America at the turn of the 20th Century. Marlene Aron will discuss the lives and art of these three dynamic artists who created work that was diverse and powerful and who paved the way for the modern art movement that was to come. 

Wednesday, August 1, 2018
6:00pm - 7:30pm
Main Library, Latino/Hispanic Room, lower level

Further readings from our collection:

Chagall : love, war, and exile / Susan Tumarkin Goodman (709.2 C346g)

Chagall : modern master / Simonetta Fraquelli (759.7 C346fr)

Modigliani : a life / Meryle Secrest (759.5 M72s)

Modigliani / Amedeo Modigliani (709.2 M721fr)

Modigliani unmasked / Mason Klein (709.2 M721kl)

My life / Marc Chagall (759.7 C346a 2011)

Sonia Delaunay / Sonia Delaunay (709.2 D375k)

Sonia Delaunay : art, design, fashion / Sonia Delaunay (709.2 D375a)

Sonia Delaunay : the life of an artist / Stanley Baron (709.2 D375b)

Monday, July 9, 2018

Index to Art Periodicals

The reference set Index to Art Periodicals is a reprinting of a card catalog from the Ryerson Library at The Art Institute of Chicago. The cards, reproduced over 9,635 pages across eleven volumes each 14 inches tall, index nearly 300 periodicals from the early twentieth century through 1960.

This publication is strictly a subject index. There are subject cards for people, artistic subjects, names of artworks, countries, cultures, cities and institutions.  The index includes both fine arts and crafts.

I enjoy consulting indexes to see what kind of coverage they bring to our city, San Francisco.  The image above shows three entries.  The first two entries are from non-art publications -- Harper's and Life -- which would not surface in an art database search.  The third publication is kept in storage at the Library.  Photo-Era magazine of November 1923 has an article by Charlotte H. Mackintosh entitled "San Francisco, My City Beautiful" that shows photographs City scenes taken by members of the California Camera Club.

The top entry above indexes a photograph in Scribner's Magazine of February 1910.  Searching the caption text in Google books brings a scan of the magazine and places the photograph within the context of an article by Henry T. Finck entitled "The Progressive Pacific Coast."

We can access the second publication -- Brush and Pencil -- through the JStor database.  JStor is a fantastic resource, but this article would be very far down the lists of results in a search of this database. A search for the terms art earthquake san francisco 1906 in JStor pulls in over 1400 results, but "Details of the Art Loss in San Francisco" appears very far down in the search results.

The article from Horizon by Allan Temko, the long-time the long-time architecture critic for the San Francisco Chronicle.  This article is a beautifully illustrated nearly 20 page color spread on the arts scene in San Francisco in the late 1950s in a general periodical.

When researching there is a danger of assuming that everything can be found on the internet or in databases.  The information may be there, but it may not be readily accessed.  Do not searching in older print indexes and bibliographis that provide other access points that can pull in fruitful results.

Friday, June 22, 2018

The Band Name Book

In the preface to The Band Name Book, author Noel Hudson states that one of his hopes for the book is to motivate readers to search out new bands they’ve found through browsing. He continues to explain, "there are plenty of lists out there with hilarious band name whose existence cannot be proven...I decided to insist on hearing some music by each artist in the book."

The organizing feature of the book is  the category – some are straight forward - The Animals, e.g., and others mimic the zany humor of band names themselves:  “Enough About Me, let’s Talk About My Hair.”  Within this theme there are two subcategories, “On the Outs with the In Crowd” and “Dyed and Coiffed Up.” One of the entries in the former section is from a group from Denver who play with grammar: “Drop Dead, Gorgeous,” riffing on “drop-dead gorgeous.”

Neither the list of categories or subcategories are alphabetical, presumably to encourage browsing, or confound librarians. The page(s) of contents are visually oriented, with a picture of an album from the category placed in a left hand column. The category name in bold san serif type is easy to read; the subcategories are listed in much lighter type underneath. The column on the right holds the page numbers in large light type.

Categories within the book have their own title page using an illustrative photo; subcategories are listed here also. The author uses sidebars for comic effect and visual interest, including names that are still available in a particular subcategory, ("Sockmonkey’s Uncle,"Fleetwood Macaque"…) The entries for the band name themselves vary in length from one sentence to several paragraphs. On the shorter side is the entry for Savage Garden:

The name comes from a line in Anne Rice’s novel, The Vampire Chronicles: ‘The mind of each man is a savage garden.'

The larger entries may also include details about where the band is from, names of first records, titles of hits, etc. Unfortunately, it is rare that dates of activity are listed  (though this would be a daunting task.) Back matter includes image credits, a bibliography and an index with minuscule print.

It should be noted that the book was published in 2008. To date the book another way, the author listed myspace as one of his sources.  There are some conspicuous absences, also – the author apologizes to initial and number bands such as U2, UB-40, INXS, and royal themed bands such as Queen and Kings of Leon. "You're in the sequel, I promise."

The band name book / Noel Hudson.
Erin, Ont.: Boston Mills Press, 2008.

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Potrero: 1980s - Jo Babcock Photography

19 Pennsylvania - Jo Babcock

The Art, Music and Recreation Center and the San Francisco History Center are thrilled to announce a new exhibit on the 4th floor of the Main Library featuring local photographer Jo Babcock. On view are close to 60 photographs of the Potrero Hill / Mission Bay neighborhoods of San Francisco taken in the late 1970's and early 1980's.  Babcock has augmented the exhibit with historical research into the buildings, lots and businesses of the time.       

The exhibit will be up from May 26, 2018 - August 23, 2018 on the 4th floor of the Main Library / 100 Larkin Street, SF 94102               

Artist's Statement:

"Between 1979 and 1983, I photographed extensively around San Francisco’s Potrero Hill and Mission Bay neighborhoods. Shooting over 200 color negatives with a high quality 4"x 5" view camera, I documented major features of the area including its local architecture.

During the 1970s & 80s, Mission Bay and lower Potrero were still active, maritime and industrial neighborhoods. Noise, pollution and flammable gas tanks were tolerated in close proximity to Victorian houses and residents of low to modest incomes. Artists lived in raw, asbestos-ridden warehouses with cheap rent and tremendous views. In 1977, while still a graduate student, I moved to the area and built a loft inside a massive warehouse located two blocks from the bay. My windows overlooked Third Street, Bethlehem Shipyards and Mission Rock Resort.  

For four years, on weekends and early mornings when the streets were mostly deserted, I went out with my camera, documenting the cottages, lunch counters, warehouses and railroad yards. Many of the buildings and businesses I captured on film 35 years ago are now gone or changed beyond recognition. They remain only as a photographic memory."

                                                                                   Jo Babcock, 2018

Related Reading:

Artists File on Jo Babcock held at the Art, Music and Recreation Center desk.  Contains resume, CV, magazine articles. exhibition listings and other ephemera. 

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Black Cedar Trio in concert, Sunday, June 3, 2018

The Black Cedar Trio is returning to the San Francisco for the 3rd consecutive year.  This ensemble employing the unusual instrumentation of wooden flute, cello and guitar has actively created its own repertoire by commission many works and arrangements.  Last years performance even featured a few world premieres.

The Blakc Cedar Trio will perform at 3:00 PM on Sunday, June 3, 2018 in the Koret Auditorium in the Lower Level of the Main Library.

All San Francisco Public Library events are free and open to the public.

Here is a video of the Black Cedar Trio performing John Dowland's Fortune My Foe at their 2016 program at the Library.  Here is a link to the other works they have performed.

Fortune My Foe by John Dowland

Thursday, May 17, 2018

The Most Popular Art, Music and Recreation Center books, May 2018

Because this list reflects the cumulation of an entire years circulation it does not include 2018 titles that have not had enough time to circulate as highly.  Unsurprisingly, the top three titles on the list were among the books with the largest number of holds placed in November 2017.

Given the excitement over the Golden State Warriors, it's no surprise that Golden: The Miraculous Rise of Steph Curry is ending up the hands of a lot of our readers.  Memoirs by entertainers and comedians continue to be circulate well represented here with books by Tiffany Hadish, Kevin Hart, Gucci Mane, John Hodgman and Eddie Izzard.

The musical Hamilton appears twice -- both the accompanying book with the libretto and a score of the songs arranged for easy piano.  Along the lines of easy piano, the piano instruction manual Adult Piano Adventures.  This interest in musical self-learning in our community is also evident in the popularity of Music Theory for Dummies and Jake Shimabukuro Teaches Ukulele Lessons.

There are a few older titles on the list.  Molly's Game: From Hollywood's Elite to Wall Street's Billionaire Boys Club, My High-stakes Adventure In the World of Underground Poker became a successful movie.  Understanding Comics: The Invisible Art by Scott McCloud has become a classic on the subject.

Happy reading!

Born a Crime: Stories From a South African Childhood by Trevor Noah (Spiegel & Grau, 2016).

Leonardo da Vinci by Walter Isaacson (Simon & Schuster, 2017).

Reckless Daughter: A Portrait of Joni Mitchell by David Yaffe (Sarah Crichton Books, Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2017).

Golden: The Miraculous Rise of Steph Curry by Marcus Thompson II (Touchstone, 2017).

The Last Black Unicorn by Tiffany Haddish (Gallery Books, 2017).

I Can't Make This Up: Life Lessons by Kevin Hart with Neil Strauss (37 Ink; Atria, 2017).

Hamilton: The Revolution: Being the Complete Libretto Of the Broadway Musical, With a True Account of Its Creation, and Concise Remarks on Hip-hop, the Power Of Stories, And the New America by Lin-Manuel Miranda and Jeremy McCarter (Grand Central Publishing, 2016).

The Autobiography of Gucci Mane (Simon & Schuster, 2017).

Music Theory For Dummies by Michael Pilhofer, MM and Holly Day (John Wiley & Sons, 2015).

Understanding Comics: The Invisible Art by Scott McCloud (Paradox Press, 1999).

The Disaster Artist: My Life Inside The Room, The Greatest Bad Movie Ever Made by Greg Sestero & Tom Bissell (Simon & Schuster, 2013).

Molly's Game: From Hollywood's Elite to Wall Street's Billionaire Boys Club, My High-stakes Adventure In the World of Underground Poker by Molly Bloom (It Books, 2014).

A Pattern Language: Towns, Buildings, Construction by Christopher Alexander, Sara Ishikawa, Murray Silverstein, with Max Jacobson, Ingrid Fiksdahl-King, Shlomo Angel (Oxford University Press, 1977).

Rock Climbing: Mastering Basic Skills by Craig Luebben (Mountaineer Books, 2014).

Jake Shimabukuro teaches ukulele lessons (Hal Leonard, 2017).

Vacationland: True Stories From Painful Beaches by John Hodgman (Viking, 2017).

Believe Me: A Memoir of Love, Death, and Jazz Chickens by Eddie Izzard (Blue Rider Press, 2017).

Film Stars Don't Die in Liverpool: A True Love Story by Peter Turner (Picador, 2017).

Adult Piano Adventures: A Comprehensive Piano Course: All-in-one Lesson Book: Solos, Technique, Theory. 1 by Nancy and Randall Faber (Faber Piano Adventures, 2010).

Hamilton: An American musical; Easy Piano Selections / book, music and lyrics by Lin-Manuel Miranda (Hal Leonard, 2015).

Monday, April 30, 2018

Dances for Camera - 2018

Thursday, May 3rd, 5:30-7:45
Koret Auditorium - Main Library
100 Larkin Street

In celebration of Bay Area National Dance Week, SFDFF and San Francisco Public Library will continue the tradition of presenting SFDFF's popular highlight reels – this year from their 2017 festival, which includes award-winning international screendance shorts plus a collection of screendance shorts made by local Bay Area filmmakers.


5:30pm: SFDFF 2017 International Screendance Shorts

6:30pm: 2017 Bay Area Screendance Shorts

Thursday, April 12, 2018

The Literature of Rock - Hoffmann & Cooper

The researcher today has the internet and databases at hand to search for articles and information on all subjects.  For the subject of rock music, the library subscribes to three very good databases.

The Music Index - article citations and full text for more recent coverage

Rock's Backpages - full text of articles by well-known rock critics and scholars, not thorough coverage

JStor - full text of articles in selective scholarly periodicals

Between these three resources and a good web search, a large amount of information can be found.  But at times the amount of information is too great and it becomes difficult to choose and evaluate sources.  This is where a good print bibliography can help out.

The Literature of Rock, compiled first by Frank Hoffmann and later together with B. Lee Cooper (with assistance from Lee Ann Cooper), was published between 1981 and 1995.  The three volumes cover articles written respectively between 1954 to 1978, 1979 to 1983, and 1984 to 1990.  The final volume also includes "additional material for the period 1954-1983".

Each volume has an index that lists the artists, bands, films, and subjects covered.  This book is organized in a unique way that progresses chronologically and stylistically through the genre, thus grouping together music scenes and related artists.

Where the book shines is in the annotations that accompany each citation.  This can give the researcher a sense of how useful an article will be for one's purposes.  In addition to indexing articles, the Literature of Rock also includes book chapters and encyclopedia entries.  The section for "Protest Songs" lists articles from mainstream publications like Life, Public Opinion Quarterly and Saturday Review, as well as sections from books.  Because each volume adds new entries it can be necessary to consult each of the three volumes.

Anyone researching rock music, both its genres and artists, will discover valuable information.  Of course, a bibliography like this is only the first step.  Researchers then need to search the Library's online catalog to see whether the Library has the publications (in print or online).  Sometimes knowing the citation information makes the article more easily found through an online search engine.  When we do not own a book or magazine title, we can usually obtain it for our patrons through Inter-Library Loan.

The Literature of Rock by Frank Hoffmann (and B. Lee Cooper) (Scarecrow Press, 1981-1995).

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Motel California: an author's talk

Event detail

Saturday, April 7th, 1 - 2 p.m.
Latino/Hispanic Community Room
Lower Level, Main Library

San Francisco Bay Area-based cultural historian and freelance writer Heather M. David discusses her latest book MOTEL CALIFORNIA. It is the story of the rapid rise and subsequent decline of the individually owned mom-and-pop motel in The Golden State. It is an exploration of theme-based marketing and a documentation of American culture at what may be the most prosperous time in United States history.

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Bob Marley: The Illustrated History - Presented by local music historian Richie Unterberger

Koret Auditorium, Main Library - 100 Larkin St, San Francisco, CA 94102

Thursday, March 29th 6:00pm-7:30pm

The Art, Music and Recreation Center of the San Francisco Public Library is pleased to host local music historian Richie Unterberger. Coinciding with the publication of his book, Bob Marley & the Wailers: The Ultimate Illustrated History, Richie Unterberger will show film clips, images from the book and host a presentation about Marley & the Wailers.

We would like to recommend the following titles from our book collection to learn more about Bob Marley & the Wailers.

Bob Marley: The Untold Story by Chris Salewicz (London: Harper Collins, c2009)

So Much Things to Say: The Oral history of Bob Marley by Roger Steffens (W.W. Norton & Company 2017)

Catch a Fire: The Life of Bob Marley by Timothy White (St. Martin's Griffin c2006)

Marley Legend: An Illustrated Life of Bob Marley by James Henke (Chronicle Books c2006) 

Soul Rebel: An Intimate  Portrait of Bob Marley by David Burnett (Insight Editions, c2009)

Bob Marley and the Golden Age of Reggae, 1975-1976 by Kim, Gottlieb-Walker (Titan Books, c2010)

Search the catalog for subject Reggae Music -- Jamaica to find CD's, LP's and streaming audio.


Thursday, March 1, 2018

Song and Dance Bollywood Style

The San Francisco Public Library is pleased to present Dhaval and Gunjan and friends who will rock the Koret Auditorium with their Bollywood singing, from the classics of Rafi, Lata, Kishore and Asha to great songs of the modern era, intermingled with a dance performance to get the groove going. Come sing along with the greatest melodies of all time at 3:00 PM, Saturday, March 3, 2018.

As such a recognizable word and global phenomenon, Bollywood is often incorrectly assumed to be synonymous with Indian cinema. The “Bolly” part of the term refers to Bombay film industry but only which is rooted in the Hindi/Urdu/Hindustani language, which is spoken and understood all across India and Pakistan, perhaps even some parts of Bangladesh. That’s a potential audience close to a billion and a half people, including generations of South Asians living in the global diaspora.

The actors and film playback singers of Bollywood are respected, loved, even revered by the masses. Due to language cross over between India and Pakistan, the Hindi cinema reminds both Indians and Pakistanis that there are things that bind them together culturally against the divisive rhetoric of the politicians. Even where linguistic and political tensions have threatened the unity of India, Hindi cinema, due to its language and magical, immortal songs, has acted as a glue that holds a nation together.

It's not clear who first coined the term Bollywood, but it came to prominence in the 1970s when Indian cinema over took Hollywood in terms of total movies produced each year. Today Bollywood movies are premiered in many western capitals due to the large South Asian populations living in those metropolitan centers. 

Those interested in checking out Indian films DVDs from our collection are welcome to browse our DVDs collection in the foreign language section or do an online catalog subject search  for:

Motion Pictures – Hindi; or
Feature Films – India.

We would like to recommend the following titles in our book collection for those who are interested in learning more about Hindi or Indian cinema.

Funky Bollywood: The Wild World of 1970s Indian Action Cinema: A Selective Guide by Todd Stadtman (FAB Press, 2015).

Encyclopaedia of Indian Cinema by Ashish Rajadhyaksha and Paul Willemen (British Film Institute, 1995).

Bollywood and Postmodernism: Popular Indian Cinema in the 21st Century by Neelam Sidhar Wright (Edinburgh University Press, 2017).

Indian Cinema: A Very Short Introduction by Ashish Rajadhyaksha (Oxford University Press, 2016).

King of Bollywood: Shah Rukh Khan and the Seductive World of Indian Cinema by Anupama Chopra (Warner Books, 2007). [also available as an ebook]
Fingerprinting Popular Culture: The Mythic and The Iconic in Indian Cinema, edited by Vinay Lal and Ashis Nandy (Oxford University Press, 2006).
The Kapoors: The First Family of Indian Cinema by Madhu Jain (Penguin Group, 2005).

Indian Popular Cinema: A Narrative of Cultural Change by K. Moti Gokulsing and Wimal Dissanayake (Sterling, 2004).

Sunday, February 18, 2018

Handkerchief Heroes: a slide show and discussion with Ann Mahony

Handkerchiefs have served us in life’s tender moments – catching a bride’s tears of joy, worn over a soldier’s heart as he marches into battle, fashioned into a newborn’s christening bonnet, as well as life’s large celebrations – waving bon voyage from an ocean liner, cheering “hooray” at the Super Bowl or royal coronation. Handkerchiefs were the Pinterest of their day, recording our progression from railroad to air travel, from the birth of television to women’s right to vote, from Shakespearean sonnets to children’s nursery rhymes. Come discover the stories hidden in their folds; let your eye delight, your mind engage and your heart connect with these survivors of history.

Join Ann Mahony, a historian of vintage artifacts and handkerchief collector, as she shares pieces from her private collection.

Sunday, February 25th, 2018
2:00pm - 4:00pm
Main Library - Learning Studio, 5th Floor

Visit the Art, Music & Recreation Center on the 4th Floor to visit The Amazing Handkerchief Chronicler of Romance, Heroism, History, Fashion and Art through the Ages display and for your chance to win a vintage wedding handkerchief.

Thursday, February 8, 2018

NEW EXHIBIT (1/27/18 - 5/17/18)

The Amazing Handkerchief:
Chronicler of Romance, Heroism, History, Fashion and Art through the Ages

The ubiquitous handkerchief is with us in large and small moments of life–wrapping a child’s cut finger, catching a bride’s tears of joy, worn over a soldier’s heart into battle. Handkerchiefs date back to the Chou dynasty (1000 BCE) and possibly earlier. Once considered a sign of nobility, they later transitioned into a coveted accessory for both fashion and flirting.

Their size and versatility made handkerchiefs the perfect souvenir. From the Paris Exposition of 1900 to the 1939 New York World’s Fair, handkerchiefs carried images of architecture, amusements and adventures to share and remember. Many were saved and passed to future generations, along with the stories and memories they carried.

In times of sacrifice - the Great Depression, World War II - handkerchiefs were often the lone adornment a woman could afford, costing between five and fifty cents. Vogue magazine carried ads for “Handkerchief of the Month”. After the war, Balmain, Dior, Rochas, and others continued to feature handkerchiefs as a final touch to their haute couture.

These couriers of history carried images that recorded our progression from steamship to railway to flight, from women’s suffrage to the birth of television, and from children’s nursery rhymes to Shakespearean sonnets. “Hankies” chronicled adventure, travel, romance, history, politics, sports and more, with style, wit and enchanting graphics. Come discover the stories hidden in their evanescent folds. Your mind will engage and your heart will connect with these heroes of history. Also, you'll have a chance to win your very own vintage handkerchief in our "Hankie in a Hankie" drawing! (see the Art, Music & Recreation reference desk for details)

This private collection has been curated and shared by Ann Mahony, a historian of vintage artifacts and handkerchief collector (over 5,000+ pieces including several over a century old!). Her blogs include and She is a member of the Textile Arts Council, deYoung Museum, The Vintage Fashion Guild, The Costume Society of America and the National Speakers Association. Ann is a handwriting and forgery expert by trade ( and is thus habituated to searching for the obscure and interesting.

Related Program: Handkerchief Heroes
Slide show and discussion with Ann Mahony
Sunday, February 25, 2 PM
Learning Studio, Bridge at the Main, 5th Floor

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Ukulele for Absolute Beginners

On Jan. 27th the Art, Music, and Recreation Center launched its first ever ukulele workshop. This is an on-going workshop for those with no experience playing an instrument. Staff are there to help patrons with the basics, which include, tuning, holding, strumming and forming chords on the ukulele.

The workshop meets the last Saturday of the month in the 5th floor Learning Center from 2-3pm. It is open to all ages and ukulele's are provided (to use in class) for the first 10 patrons. You can also bring your own or borrow one from a friend.

Here's a link to the next workshop on February 24, 2018.

For those ready to dig into our collection of ukulele song and method books, here are a few suggestions:

Jake Shimabukuro Teaches Ukulele Lessons (Hal Leonard, 2017).

The 4 Chord Ukulele Songbook (Cherry Lane Music, 2013).

Play Ukulele Today!: A Complete Guide to the Basics. Level 1, by Barrett Tagliarino (Hal Leonard, 2015).

Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Resource Guide of Asian American Artists in the San Francisco Bay Area (1996)

Since the days of the Gold Rush, Asian-Americans have made significant contributions to the Bay Area's culture.  Yet for many years the arts and literature of Asian-Americans remained on the margins.  In the 1960s student movements on college campuses led to community activism that helped bring Asian American culture into the wider community.

One result of this activity was the founding of the Kearny Street Workshop in 1972.  Elsa S. Cameron described the Workshop arising "because of the initiative of ethnic artists who decided to go back and work in their communities."  She quotes founder Michael Chin who described the impetus as a "search for cultural identity."  Nancy Hom places the work of the Kearny Street Workshop as coming within an "exploration" that looked into questions of "identity, history and cultural pride."

In 1996 the San Francisco Art Commission Cultural Equity Endowment funded the Asian Art Museum and the Kearny Street Workshop to compile and publish the Resource Guide of Asian American Artists in the San Francisco Bay Area.  More than twenty years old now this work is no longer a timely guide to the Asian American arts and artists, but it does serve as an important time capsule documenting the activity of the time.

The Resource Guide is a directory of individuals and organizations active in the visual, performing and literary arts.  It provides contact information, a description of which ethnic community each person or organization represents, the number of years that they have been presenting programs and who their primary audience is.  Each entry also includes the artist's or organization's mission statement.  Occasionally an email address is given for a contact, but at this stage nobody had a webpage yet.  An index at the end of the volume is organized by artistic form.

A lot of changes can happen over a couple of decades. Many of the organizations have moved or ceased to be active. Many artists have moved out of the Bay Area or have passed away.  (But it is nice to see an entry for the late Ruth Asawa).

It was interesting to see our City's elected Public Defender Jeff Adachi (Jeffrey Adachi in the directory) listed as the contact for the apparently now longer extant Asian American Arts Foundation (AAAF).  This organization's mission was to "[provide] financial support and public recognition and acknowledgement for Asian American Art projects that present and true to life portrayals of Asian Americans."  This foundation had a web presence at that was last updated on June 12, 2000 and that disappeared by sometime in 2002.  (The "Wayback Machine" of has captured these webpages for the years 1998 to 2002).

Nowadays the information in this directory would be readily available on the web.  But as we have seen webpages come and go on the internet.  The Resource Guide of Asian American Artists in the San Francisco Bay Area gives us a picture of a vibrant scene for one moment.  It provides a way to find the roots of part of the Bay Area's rich cultural tapestry.

Asian American Arts Foundation [website archived on March 22, 2002]

Cameron, Elsa S., "The San Francisco Art Comission's Neighborhood Arts Program," in The Art Museum as Educator: A Collection of Studies as Guides to Practice and Policy by the Council on Museums and Education in the Visual Arts (University of California Press, 1978).

Hom, Nancy, "Kearny Street Workshop," Nancy Hom Arts (March 24, 2009).

Resource Guide of Asian and Asian American Artists in the San Francisco Bay Area (Asian Art Museum: Kearny Street Workshop, 1996).