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Date: Jan 16, 2020


Oregon State researchers are digging into the long-term effects of legalization, with some surprising results.

College kids smoke more cannabis in states where it’s legal, a new study from Oregon State University shows—pretty intuitive, right?

More interesting is that they binge-drink less.

According to the study, in states where pot is legal, including Oregon, Washington and California, students were 18 percent more likely to have inhaled than those in states where pot is still classified as an illegal substance (looking at you, Idaho).

Using data from the National College Health Assessment Survey, OSU researchers found that after legalization, students ages 21 and older showed a greater drop in binge drinking than their peers in states where marijuana was not legal. (Binge drinking=five or more drinks in one sitting.)

Note that binge drinking is on the decline on the whole in US colleges, though more sharply in states that legalized cannabis. There is, however, evidence that legal pot use may reduce drinking rates. Forty-five percent of Canadians interviewed in a 2018 Ipsos poll said they would drink less post-legalization. Beer sales in Canada also dipped 3 percent in the first year of legalization.  (Click “web” or “pdf” view to continue reading.)

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Date: Nov 28, 2018

Publication: 48 Hills

Wolfgang Voigt’s storied ambient project debuts in SF with ethereal Königsforst vibes and earthy visions of erlkings.

Wolfgang Voigt’s music as Gas is inexorably tied to the forest. The project was inspired by Voigt’s youthful acid trips in Germany’s Königsforst, and appropriately the sleeves for the project’s six albums (with the exception of its apocryphal self-titled debut) are adorned with psychedelically blurred trees and shrubs, all bathed in unnatural colors coordinated to the mood of the music and stamped with the name Gas in a formidable serif font. How this specifically sylvan music would translate to the spartan constraints of the live electronic show intrigued me. It seemed inappropriate to have a Gas show anywhere but the most remote and tangled stretches of the Black Forest, maybe with a trail of breadcrumbs leading to the stage.

Gas’s first-ever San Francisco show was part of the first night of the Recombinant Festival, an ongoing multimedia and experimental music event at Mission Street’s Gray Area. While most of the artists aren’t well-known outside deep avant-music nerd-dom, Gas was undoubtedly the popular headliner. His music enjoys the same critical acclaim and rare crossover appeal outside ambient music as Brian Eno or Tim Hecker, and 2016’s sumptuous Box set of his 90s albums was enough to bring him out of a decade-and-a-half hiatus to drop 2017’s Narkopop and this year’s Rausch. By popular demand he’d added a second early show after I’d bought my tickets for the late show at 9 pm.  (Click “web” or “pdf” view to continue reading.)

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Date: Jul 17, 2018


Prince stepped into the mouth of evil when he recorded The Black Album in 1987. A divine vision yanked him back out and the forbidden masterpiece has been shelved since

Ah, yes: the Dark Funk. It’s one of the great lost albums, and though it’s on Tidal and was briefly available in 1994, it’s, for the most part, still pretty lost. Even with Prince’s death opening up a trove of archival goodies, the reissue campaign has so far amounted to an expanded Purple Rain and a bunch of his Piano & A Microphone shit. Maybe that’s because all the really hardcore fans already have The Black Album. I got mine on Mediafire, that treasure trove of sketchy rarities whose loss was a crushing blow to everyone outside the music industry. But who wouldn’t want to hear “Bob George” on vinyl? Have three decades dulled the mystique of this forbidden masterpiece? Or is this thing just too damn evil to safely unleash on mere mortals? Would a vinyl pressing lead to a Ghostbusters-style plague, with little green things swooping around and stealing our hot dogs?

Prince might have suspected as much. The album, originally titled The Funk Bible, was recorded in 1987 but pulled and bulldozed a week before release, purportedly because Prince — while on Ecstasy pills that may have been provided by Anthony Kiedis — experienced a divine vision that informed him it was evil. He replaced it with Lovesexya solid album that’s just about the polar opposite of The Black Album. This event was the first of a series of blows for the Purple One that derailed his muse, with the ascent of hip-hop and his escalating woes with Warner Bros. being no less cataclysmic. The Black Album is arguably the last great album he recorded, coming after Sign O’ The Times and before the Graffiti Bridge and Batman soundtracks and his depressing descent into new jack swing.  (Click “web or pdf” view to continue reading.)

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Date: May 22, 2017

Publication: Pretty Much Amazing

This sweet, funny collection is probably the least offensive comedy rock album ever made.

At the heart of the Season 5 Bob’s Burgers episode “Li’l Hard Dad”, a great little exchange takes place between Bob, who’s on his way to demand a refund for his crashed model helicopter, and his son Gene. “Some people say you have to learn to let things go,” Bob rhapsodizes, not realizing how self-important he sounds. “Well, you know what happens when you learn to let things go? You drop the thing you’re holding!” Gene’s been recording the whole thing on his portable keyboard, and when Bob finishes his spiel, Gene plays it back. “I sound important,” Bob observes. Then Gene punctuates the speech with a sampled fart. “Maybe take out the fart noise?” Bob suggests. Gene refuses. “It makes you go, ‘good point.’ And also: ‘good fart!’” (Click “web or pdf” link to continue reading.)

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Date: Dec 02, 2016

Publication: Hoodline

Pauline Oliveros, one of the most radical and outspoken composers of the 1960s San Francisco avant-garde, passed away last Friday. She was 84.

Oliveros is best-known for her philosophy of “deep listening,”which she developed in the ‘80s and promoted through workshops, books, and records by her Deep Listening Band. “Hear with your ears, listen with your heart” was her credo. Under Deep Listening, anything can be music: the hum of a fridge, the din of cars, the chatter of crowds. If you want it to be music, it’s music. (Click “web or pdf” link to continue reading.)

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Date: Jan 28, 2016

Publication: Daily Emerald

(The article received a second place award for Best Feature Story by the Oregon Newspaper Publishers Association in the 2016 Collegiate Newspaper Contest.)

The Campbell Club’s dish drainer was “fucked.”

“I cut through the pipe and gallons of stagnant sink waste started spraying out,” said Waldo Przekop, the job and maintenance coordinator at the University of Oregon’s oldest co-op.

Drenched in foul-smelling fluid, Przekop ran to fellow co-opper Jimi Wood for help.

“He comes upstairs covered in straight poop water like, ‘Jimi help me!’ ” said Wood.

Wood toweled off Przekop’s face and the two of them rushed downstairs to fix the dish system. After much trial and error, they managed to get it running again.

“But people still throw food in the sink,” Przekop said, laughing.

They could have called a plumber, but the Campbell Club is already $17,000 in debt. If the clubbers can’t scrounge this amount together by March 20, the co-op will be shut down by the Student Cooperative Association, its overseeing body.

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Date: Jan 21, 2016

Publication: Daily Emerald

(This article, co-written with Alex Ruby, received a first place award for Best Review by the Oregon Newspaper Publishers Association in the 2016 Collegiate Newspaper Contest.)

David Bowie released Blackstar two days before his death at age 69. This was no coincidence: he’d been fighting cancer for 18 months, and we now know Blackstar was a carefully planned “farewell gift” for his fans. The record is replete with references to the singer’s fate, most portentously on “Lazarus” (“Look up here, I’m in heaven,” he cries). But instead of mourning the inevitable, Bowie clings stubbornly to life and puts out one last fight before he goes out. He isn’t staving off death so much as seizing what’s left of his life and milking it for all it’s worth.

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Date: Jul 09, 2015

Publication: San Francisco Magazine

It’s the final night for SUB-Mission. In the shadow of towering, psychedelic murals in the back courtyard, teens and older punks light smokes, laugh, yell, and get ready for the multi-band blowout that will be the last for the Mission’s beloved punk rock venue.

Two in the crowd—Fabrizio Incerti, drummer/vocalist for psychedelic rock band Clumsy, and his friend Sam Velarde—suggest rallying slogans for the soon-to-be-scattered contingent of SUB-Mission regulars. “#Submissioninexile” is Incerti’s suggestion; Velarde’s is simply “Free SUB-Mission!”

SUB-Mission began as an art gallery known as Balazo 18, but it soon expanded to hosting local and small touring bands. Most shows are only $5, in line with the venue’s adamantly non-profit stance. But with rents in the Mission skyrocketing, non-profit began to mean non-viable. “The landlord was willing to negotiate, but he wanted to charge $40,000 just to sit and talk with him,” said the current space manager, who goes by Kay Two. (We asked for his real name and he told us “Lou Sypher,” so that’ll teach us.) “That wasn’t guaranteeing we had a lease when the meeting was over. So we decided not to burn that money.”



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Date: Aug 12, 2014

Publication: San Francisco Bay Guardian

While still a child in early­’80s San Francisco, Boots Riley witnessed something he didn’t quite understand but that would stick with him for the rest of his life. Walking into a theater performance at the venerable Mission District art space Project Artaud (http://www.projectartaud.org/) , Riley saw actors in body paint writhing around him in apparent agony on all sides. It was meant as a simulation of the AIDS epidemic, with the actors portraying the afflicted. But it didn’t enlighten him much as a kid.
“It just scared the hell out of me,” Riley recalls. “You walk into this place, and it’s like a whole city, with people all around you.”

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Date: Nov 20, 2011

Publication: SF Rebirth

It would be an understatement to call Nick Martin a perfectionist. During a pre-gig rehearsal in a crowded, dimly lit room at San Francisco’s Lennon Studios, Martin, leader of R&B ensemble Romance of Thieves, is dissatisfied, and he has the horn section squarely in his sights. “You guys don’t have your shit down!” shouts Martin, 16. “Paul’s only been in the band five days, and he knows his shit better than either of you guys!” He gestures towards newly recruited bassist Paul Mallari, who watches while noodling nervously on his bass.
The horn section, comprising brothers Jonah (trumpet) and Aaron (saxophone) Baker-McCann, seems a bit puzzled. They’re not getting things quite right, but neither can figure out what they’re doing wrong, and Martin doesn’t seem inclined to give much in the way of direction. The other band members choose not to intervene. They recognize Martin’s leadership and implicitly understand that he may be the only guy in the room who knows what the horn part is supposed to sound like.

The tension mounts, and within about ten seconds, Martin and Jonah Baker-McCann are in the midst of a shouting match, which mixes with the other band members’ noodling to create an unbearably awkward cacophony. Jonah threatens to quit; Martin ignores his threats. Finally, Jonah packs up his trumpet and walks right out the door.

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articles | videos

“Rojo the llama’s retirement party”

This video was created for Willamette Week. Rojo is Oregon’s first certified therapy llama and has made over 600 appearances at schools and hospitals from 2017 until his retirement in 2019; this video documents his retirement party. I shot the footage, edited the video and audio, conducted the interviews, and composed and recorded the music for this clip myself.

“Know Your Weed”

This video was created for my Comedy and Media Class for the University of Oregon School of Journalism, a class focusing on the role of comedy in society and political discourse. Our assignment was to highlight a social or political issue and make a five-minute comedy video relating to that issue; we chose the legalization of marijuana in Oregon. I conceived of the concept for this video and co-wrote the script with fellow student Blake Marancik in addition to acting in several roles, including the stoner in the car and the son at the beginning (in the wig).

“It’s A Protest: Keeping Whoville Alive”

This video was created for my Reporting II class for the University of Oregon School of Journalism. Again, we were assigned to highlight an issue. After meeting Ryan Stearns collecting cans outside my house, I decided to profile him and the Whoville homeless encampment in Eugene. I shot the footage, edited the video and audio, conducted the interviews, and composed and recorded the music for this clip myself.