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Bread & Roses Blog

News and information from Bread & Roses, a non-profit organization that presents live music to bring hope, healing and joy to the community.

Rockin' The Roses Spring Benefit Concert: An Exceptional Night of Music

Rockin’ the Roses Spring Benefit Concert on May 18, brought to us by Jeff & Laurie Ubben, was an exceptional night of music in a spectacular venue. From our earliest benefit concert in 1977 at the legendary Greek Theatre in Berkeley to our latest sold-out success at San Francisco’s grandly elegant Great American Music Hall, Bread & Roses Presents knows how to throw an incredible fundraiser in a special setting. 

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Innovative Partnership Between Bank of Marin, Fantasy Studios & Graham Nash Helps Support Our Program

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Bank of Marin sponsored a private event at Fantasy Studios in Berkeley on Tues. March 21 to benefit Bread & Roses Presents. This innovative partnership helps support our ongoing program of live music for isolated audiences in over 600 annual Bay Area shows. Rock icon Graham Nash with guitarist Shane Fontayne performed a retrospective of his amazing songs beginning with his days in The Hollies, through Crosby Stills Nash & Young and including a song from his recent CD This Path Tonight.” After the concert, he shared anecdotes from his recent memoir Wild Tales. Journalist and rock historian Paul Liberatore moderated a Q & A with Graham followed by an encore of Teach Your Children that he dedicated to Bread & Roses volunteer host Lynn Colombo

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An Inspiring Night at “Thanks & Giving” Fall Benefit Concert at Delancey Street

There’s no question people have been pre-occupied for a long time by the presidential campaign and recent election. A big cheer to all those who came out to join us for our “Thanks & Giving” Fall benefit concert on Fri. Nov. 18 at Delancey Street Foundation in SF, an isolated audience served by Bread & Roses Presents since 1995.

There’s nothing quite like the magic of live music in a beautiful venue like Delancey Street’s Town Hall with its cathedral-like wooden-beamed ceiling and cozy ambiance with white lamps and tall candles. Rental income from various venues at their San Francisco facility, including Town Hall, helps support the friendly and professional Delancey Street servers and event staff who work hard while in their recovery program.

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Thanks & Giving: Bread & Roses Benefit Concert on Nov. 18 at Delancey Street in SF

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Corte Madera, CA -- November 4, 2016 -- A festive fall concert will benefit Bread & Roses Presents on Fri. Nov. 18 at the Delancey Street Foundation at 600 Embarcadero in San Francisco with Hot Buttered Rum, Jeffrey Halford and Ben Fong-Torres. Proceeds benefit Bread & Roses programs that bring hope and healing through live music in over 600 yearly concerts for isolated Bay Area audiences. Funds raised will support many annual holiday concerts for children, adults and seniors who need music most. The event includes a VIP Reception at 7 pm, General Admission at 8 pm, and the Concert at 8:30 pm. Cash bar available. All concert attendees will receive a special limited edition poster by Alexandra Fischer contributed by Moonalice Posters.  Get your tickets online here or call 415-945-7120.

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Collaboration With Salesforce & "Pass the Music" Bring Our Mission To Their Creative Team

At their impressive headquarters in downtown San Francisco, Bread & Roses Presents was invited to “pass the music” at Salesforce on September 22 to educate their creative team about our mission. J.D. Swartz from Salesforce shared that it was a welcome break from intensive planning for their Dreamforce conference held every year in early October.

He introduced Bread & Roses Executive Director Dave Perron who gave an update about our organization and noted that today’s performer Megan Slankard is one of over 1,000 volunteers who help bring music in over 600 annual concerts around the Bay Area to audiences of children, adults and seniors who are isolated.

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“Pass the Music” Events Help Launch New Backstage 365 Club

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Bread & Roses board member Alex Wellins recently sponsored the first "Pass the Music" lunchtime event at The Blueshirt Group in San Francisco. The idea was born while brainstorming at a January board planning session as a way of cultivating the younger high tech workforce to learn about our mission and to become involved in supporting our organization. We are grateful that Alex came up with the concept and offered to host the first event at his impressive office in downtown San Francisco.

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Performer Collaborations Support Bread & Roses

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Steve Meckfessel Leads the Way with Freight & Salvage Benefit Sunday March 13

Singer-songwriter/guitarist and urban folk artist Steve Meckfessel shared a double bill with modern day troubadour Beth Wood at the Freight & Salvage Coffeehouse on Sunday March 13 at 7 pm. In round robin style, he played a selection of his well-crafted and wise original songs from his second album Under Beautiful Skies. Multi-instrumentalist and soulful songstress Beth Wood also shared some of her most recent songs from her latest album Sometimes Love.

The concert was a benefit for Bread & Roses as well as three other local music nonprofits. Fifty-two attendees placed their tickets in a jar, resulting in an upcoming gift of $5200 to our organization from several anonymous donors. 

“I am blown away by the work that Bread & Roses does bringing more than one show every day to people in the Bay Area who need live music most. As a performer, I get to be a first-hand witness to the connection that happens from the power of music and I am happy to support the organization,” said Steve Meckfessel.

A volunteer performer for Bread & Roses since 2010, Steve Meckfessel knows what it means to perform his “jazz-infected urban folk” for those who are isolated. He has performed for mental health patients, brought healing songs to adults in homeless shelters and shared his music in drug and alcohol recovery centers playing songs such as “On the Road” (about what to do on the road of life when the going gets tough.)

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The Shows: Our Reason For Being

Every day of the year isolated audiences in the Bay Area enjoy the superb, live entertainment that our volunteer performers provide. Our small, dedicated staff expertly matches performers with the right audiences and brings in new artists to enhance our roster. The facilities we serve have only praise for the shows we bring.

As the needs of the community grow, we continue to explore new audiences who thrive on the joy and connection we bring. Recently we added several new facilities to stretch our demographic reach: the Boys & Girls Club of Oakland, Homeless Prenatal Program in San Francisco, St. Vincent’s Dining Room in San Rafael and the Hanna Boys Center in Glen Ellen. From time to time we help our facility partners with music for special events such as the “National Salute to Our Veterans” day at the San Francisco Veterans Hospital and the annual “Day of Peace” at San Quentin.

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The Bay Area is fertile ground for artists, and part of our work is cultivating them to volunteer, to share their gifts with our neighbors in need. We get to be talent scouts for performers who have the kind of repertoire that is uplifting and appropriate for diverse audiences, particularly for youth audiences. New to our roster: Mexican songstress Marisa Nordstrom, clown Bri Tree and hip-hop group Diverse Dialect have been big hits. Young adult and teen performers burgeoning with talent are getting involved, too: Caroline Sky, Emma Botti and Shelby Lanterman are musicians who we are sure to hear more about as their careers develop.

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The volume of shows we produce is possible because of the help of our volunteer hosts. These cheerful folks bring and set up PA systems, see to the comfort of the performers and report about each show so that we can maintain the integrity of our programs. Last year they hosted 388 (or 63 percent) of our 617 shows. The benefits of hosting are many. Volunteer Katrina Strack from Marin Academy wrote that hosting taught her “the importance of empathy and gratitude.”

Volunteer and facility inquiries come through the application process on our website regularly. The need is there on both sides. Word-of-mouth is often how we get the high quality people who understand what Bread & Roses is all about. We appreciate referrals to those who want to spread the joy. To apply, click here.

 

Captions:
1) Marisa Nordstom at Marin Learning Center in San Rafael Feb. 12, 2016. Photo by Peter Merts

2) Bri Tree Entertainment

Post by Carolyn Gauthier, Vice President of Programs

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Welcome Reception for Dave Perron at Seager Gray Gallery - February 5, 2015

 

Thanks to Donna Seager and Suzanne Gray of the Seager Gray Gallery in Mill Valley for providing a beautiful space to welcome Bread & Roses Presents Executive Director Dave Perron.

A lively mix of long-time supporters and new friends came together to meet and mingle amid contemporary pieces of world-class art in the latest exhibition "Material Matters." Volunteer performer Teja Gerken played entrancing acoustic finger-style guitar, adding the perfect ambience to the event.

Board Chair Elect Stacy Nelson welcomed everyone and introduced Dave who was there with wife Hilary Black. Stacy contributed over 350 hours of pro bono time to manage our executive transition in late 2014.

Dave said "I am honored to lead the dedicated team at Bread & Roses Presents and hope everyone has a chance to experience first-hand the healing power of an institutional show for those who are isolated and need music most. "

While enjoying delicious hors d'oeuvres provided by Robin Scott Catering, former financial manager Martha Fleischman & husband Roger got to meet newcomers like Marcus & Cecily Stock.

Volunteer performers Michael Hatfield and Barbara Kessel chatted with Vice President of Programs Carolyn Gauthier. Board member Suzanne Badenhoop and husband Guy Lampard brought Elizabeth and Howard Jaffe, parents of volunteer performer Matt Jaffe, a contemporary songwriter and band-leader.

Development Director Susan Gordon traded notes with communications ace Jay Silverberg. Board members Paul Kirincic, Cathy Less, Philip Pillsbury (with wife Cynthia), Michael McElligott and Raj Gopal of Bank of the West greeted old friends and welcomed new supporters. New volunteer show host Larry Seidman was there with wife Patti DiVella

Joe O'Hehir of Whistlestop extended appreciation for the music Bread & Roses Presents brings to its monthly lunch programs for low-income seniors in San Rafael. Long-time Ambassador Michael Pritchard made everyone smile with his heartfelt stories of motivational programs he has given for some of our youth audiences.

The evening was the perfect kick-off for our fifth decade of bringing hope and healing through live music to isolated people around the Bay Area – over 600 shows annually. Here's to a dynamic year of finding new and innovative ways to raise funds, cultivate younger volunteers and spread the word about the good work of "Bread & Roses Presents." It takes a tribe to uplift spirits and we are grateful to all our supporters.

 

Post by Marian Hubler

Slide show by Carrie Sownie

Photos by Peter Merts, Courtesy of Bread & Roses Presents 

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Hard Rock Blues Brunch for Bread & Roses and Everybody Is A Star

Bread & Roses hosted a fun Blues Brunch at the Hard Rock Cafe (SF) on Sunday October 27th with Everybody Is A Star. All who were there enjoyed a delicious breakfast buffet and soul-satisfying, live music. With world-class harmonica player Mark Hummel's Blues Blowout, special guests Nick Gravenites and Ron Thompson thrilled all with their spirited blues playing.  Performances were also given by  Loren Moale, Eva Sapper and Jeannette Denny from Everybody is a Star.
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Thanks so much to Bob Boemer at the Hard Rock Cafe on Pier 39 for donating the use of his stylish venue dedicated to the celebration of Rock & Roll to support two extraordinary organizations that share a belief in the power of music to transform lives and lift the human spirit.

We also appreciated the support of Howard Sapper and his volunteers who helped organize a raffle. Hats off to former board member Mary Doan who helped Bread & Roses kickoff the concept of this special collaboration.

Bread & Roses board members attending included Jim Callahan and Tom Silk, and former board member Toby Nady.   All guests and supporters had a great time at this special kind of Sunday service.   Photo courtesy of Kevin Comora, 2013. Pictured: Loren and Eva from Everybody Is A Star.

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Hats Off To Our Friends At the Kate Wolf Festival

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The Kate Wolf Festival continues its annual tradition of presenting top notch acoustic music. Held the last weekend in June at Wavy Gravy's Black Oak Ranch in Mendocino, the festival honors Kate Wolf, the singer-songwriter who re-popularized folk music in Northern CA in the 70’s.  She died in 1986 of leukemia.  Her music lives on not only with the festival, and also at Bread & Roses institutional shows where her song “Give Yourself To Love” remains a favorite.

It means so much to us that Kate Wolf’s family has been supportive of Bread & Roses. Terry Fowler, Kate’s husband, along with their son Max Wolf, has donated proceeds from festival merchandise to help bring live music to those who need it most.

We have had a presence at the Kate Wolf Festival since its earliest days at the Caswell Ranch in Sebastopol when our founder, the late Mimi Fariña, was invited to sing and to promote Bread & Roses.  Ever since then we have made the pilgrimage north almost every summer to have a presence at the festival which for the past decade or so has been north of Laytonville.

The good folks at the Kate Wolf Festival -- Wavy Gravy, Cloud Moss and Danny Scher – are part of the team of angels who have assisted us throughout the years in promoting our mission and cultivating upcoming artists.

Cloud Moss of Cumulus Productions oversees the music line-up at both the The Kate Wolf Music Festival and The Gaia Festival. He knows how to put a great show together, something we strive to do daily at Bread & Roses.

 

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With Bill Graham Presents, Danny Scher helped with production support for Bread & Roses legendary acoustic music benefit concerts at the Greek Theatre in Berkeley. Danny has also hosted benefit concerts for Bread & Roses and The Bill Graham Memorial Foundation continues to support Bread & Roses today.

At this summer’s Kate Wolf and Gaia Music Festivals in Mendocino, Bread & Roses staff and volunteers were able to meet and reach out to acoustic Americana, as well as ethnic and multi-ethnic performers and groups who are particularly needed for Bread & Roses youth audiences.

 

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Both The Kate Wolf Festival and Bread & Roses are committed to presenting emerging performing artists. Producer Francesca Lee and volunteer Elizabeth Irby attended the festival on behalf of Bread & Roses this year. They connected with many wonderful performers including Blame Sally, Ma Muse, Nicki & Tim Bluhm, Teresa Tudury, The Sam Chase Band, Justin Townes Earle, Ruthie Foster and the California Honeydrops, among others. We look forward to producing Bread & Roses institutional shows with some of these artists in the coming year.

 

Do you know any upcoming performers you think might be effective for Bread & Roses younger audiences? Let us know.

 

Calendar Note:
The next Kate Wolf Festival will be held June 28-30, 2013.  Mark your calendars and we look forward to seeing you there.

 

Post by Marian Hubler

Photos (Top to Bottom): Album cover photo "Kate Wolf and the Wildwood Flower: Back Roads",  Sunflower Puppet at the Gaia Festival August 2012 by Marian Hubler, Blame Sally at a Bread & Roses concert at Delancey Street 2008 by Ken Friedman

 

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Community Gathering for Good Cheer at the Tavern at Lark Creek

Bread & Roses hosted a community gathering at a special happy hour at The Tavern at Lark Creek on Thursday, September 8.  On the side patio of this beautiful, historic restaurant in Larkspur, many people from diverse parts of our ever-expanding community gathered to share good cheer.  With festive sangria, margaritas, wine and beer for sale to benefit Bread & Roses, we visited with each other under the redwood trees and enjoyed the lively folk-rock music of the talented Rant Brothers

Susan Gilardi, Bread & Roses Board Chair Emeritus,  first had the inspiration for the second annual event along with restaurant manager TJ Jacobberger and Bread & Roses Executive Director Cassandra Flipper.  While Susan was helping to greet people, her husband Dennis Gilardi parked his 1922 Model T Ford in the driveway to draw attention to the event.   

Performers Linda Kosut, Noah Griffin, Marianna August, Shana Morrison, Bob Gordon, Paul Geller and Dan Reich were among the guests who came along with former Bread & Roses board member Merl Saunders, Jr.  Peter Carpou and Debbie Neigher, who made the journey up to Marin from Larkin Street Youth Services, one of the facilities Bread & Roses serves in San Francisco.  Former Bread & Roses staffer Ellen Thomas was there along with other friends like Karen Laffey from Pacific Union.  

Thanks to Marilyn LoRusso from the Larkspur/Corte Madera Patch for her article about the event.  We are grateful to all who helped and were a part of our special community gathering.

 

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Bay Vibes CD "Songwriters Unplugged Live @ Yoshi's" Benefits Bread & Roses


Bay Vibes Songwriters Unplugged, the first CD from nearly two years of Sunday night concerts featuring the Bay Area's best singer-songwriters at Yoshi's in San Francisco, is now available for purchase on CD Baby.  Co-sponsored by SF Bay Vibes and Sonic Zen Records, all proceeds benefit Bread & Roses' mission to bring live music to those who are isolated in Bay Area institutions. 

Of the artists on this recording, a half-dozen are either current or former Bread & Roses performers who are mainly acoustic guitar and keyboard-based and sometimes have a variety of other accompaniment.  Their not-to-be-missed songs include Megan Slankard's  "Planets"; Jeff Campbell's "Southern"; Garrin Benfield's "Unbound"; Heather Combs "Time and Time Again"; Francesca Lee's "Maybe Today" and Valerie Orth's "Beyond This Song."   

This recording represents the pinnacle performances of some of the hundreds of songwriters who have taken the stage in this weekly series. Founded in 2009 by Robin Applewood of SF Bay Vibes and Charlie Wilson of Sonic Zen Records, the two are a formidable duo in bringing performers and fans together in new combinations and in creating an evolving community to support songwriters and musicians playing original acoustic music.  

Bay Vibes is committed to providing the best of Bay Area music to like-minded people in a positive and conscious environment.  Sonic Zen helps dedicated musicians make great recordings.  Bread & Roses brings hope and healing through live music to those who need it most and every CD you buy helps us do just that. 

Listen to these songs and you will see why our facility audiences are blessed to have artists of this caliber performing every day for them in isolated circumstances.  We'd love to hear your response to this uniquely collaborative project...

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Bread & Roses @ Kate Wolf Festival June 24-26

Kate Wolf Music Festival Poster

All fans of contemporary acoustic music -- join us this weekend at The 2011 Kate Wolf Festival at Wavy Gravy's Black Oak Ranch in Laytonville, CA.  Kate Wolf helped to repopularize folk music in Northern CA in the 70's and was a nationally known singer-songwriter/guitarist who died in 1986.  

Bread & Roses will have a table next to the good folks at the SEVA Foundation on the right close to the main stage.   Bread & Roses performers, who are a part of the line-up include: Taj Mahal who headlines Friday night; Aaron Redner with Hot Buttered Rum; Corrine West and Kelly Joe Phelps; Americana finger-style guitarist Stevie Coyle along with many other wonderful  musicians who can be seen throughout the weekend.    

A special thanks to Festival producer Cloud Moss who has given us a place at the Festival for so many years, going back to the days when Mimi Fariña would make an appearance. Gratitude also to Terry Fowler of Owl Productions who has donated a percentage of proceeds from Kate Wolf merchandising  to Bread & Roses for many years.  Many Kate Wolf Festival-goers have also supported Bread & Roses through the years. Stop by to say hello and share your favorite Bread & Roses story with us.  

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Happy Hour Fundraiser at The Tavern at Lark Creek

Bread & Roses enjoyed yet another fantastic event, a special Happy Hour Fundraiser at The Tavern at Lark Creek in Larkspur.  We were thrilled with the number of people who turned out and are so grateful for this collaboration with The Tavern.

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The setting was ideal... a balmy, summer evening in a beautiful venue with seating and service indoors and out; live music played from an outdoor stage among the redwood grove by our very own Kurt Huget and Jesse Lee Kincaid; refreshing drinks - custom recipes designed especially for Bread & Roses - mixed and served by our board members and staff; and best of all, a huge turnout of happy hour revelers, including so many of our supporters and friends old and new!

We want to thank all of you who turned out and helped to make this such a festive, successful event!  We look forward to doing it all again... same time next year?

Tucky  Pogue, Susan Gilardi, Sudha Pennathurmusic  stage

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