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Rightnowish digs into life in the Bay Area right now… ish. Journalist Pendarvis Harshaw takes us to galleries painted on the sides of liquor stores in West Oakland. We'll dance in warehouses in the Bayview, make smoothies with kids in South Berkeley, and listen to classical music in a 1984 Cutlass Supreme in Richmond. Every week, Pen talks to movers and shakers about how the Bay Area shapes what they create, and how they shape the place we call home.

Rightnowish digs into life in the Bay Area right now… ish. Journalist Pendarvis Harshaw takes us to galleries painted on the sides of liquor stores in West Oakland. We'll dance in warehouses in the Bayview, make smoothies with kids in South Berkeley, and listen to classical music in a 1984 Cutlass Supreme in Richmond. Every week, Pen talks to movers and shakers about how the Bay Area shapes what they create, and how they shape the place we call home.

Location:

United States

Networks:

KQED

Description:

Rightnowish digs into life in the Bay Area right now… ish. Journalist Pendarvis Harshaw takes us to galleries painted on the sides of liquor stores in West Oakland. We'll dance in warehouses in the Bayview, make smoothies with kids in South Berkeley, and listen to classical music in a 1984 Cutlass Supreme in Richmond. Every week, Pen talks to movers and shakers about how the Bay Area shapes what they create, and how they shape the place we call home.

Language:

English


Episodes

Maya Cueva's Films on Reproductive Rights and Immigration

3/5/2021
Maya Cueva makes documentary films that cover the heavy topics: immigration, reproductive justice and xenophobia. Cueva says her journey into professional storytelling began after covering current events at Youth Radio (now YR Media) as a teen. While attending Ithaca College in New York, she began work on her first film, The Provider, which follows Dr. Shannon Carr as she performs abortions in Texas in the midst of a heated battle for reproductive rights. That film led to another, On The...

Duration:00:16:31

Tongo Eisen-Martin on a Poet's Role in a Protest

2/26/2021
Tongo Eisen-Martin, San Francisco's eighth poet laureate, says it's not enough to simply be a poet. "The poet needs to just come on down to the trenches," he says. His suggestion for writers out there is to get involved in your community, whether that's passing out flyers or organizing a mutual aid program. "That experience is what you synthesize good revolutionary poetry from." This week on Righnowish, Eisen-Martin joins us for a brief but powerful interview that includes a performance of...

Duration:00:07:18

How Hip-Hop Led To Studying the Bay Area’s AIDS Epidemic

2/19/2021
Antoine Johnson stands at the intersection of hip-hop culture, HIV/ AIDS history, and the great institutions of higher learning in Northern California. A graduate of Oakland's Castlemont High School and Sacramento State University, Johnson is now a PhD candidate at UCSF where he's researching the HIV/AIDS epidemic, and how the community-- including a group of Black women in Oakland-- responded.

Duration:00:12:06

Rapper Champ Green Isn’t Stingy with the Rhythm or the Wisdom

2/12/2021
Lyricist Champ Green is probably your favorite Bay Area rapper's favorite rapper. He's been putting in work for some time, and over the past calendar year he's been on a music-making mission. And he's not showing any signs of slowing. His clever wordplay and wisdom-filled rhymes can be found on a project with DJ Basta, a recent single and video with Mistah FAB, and multiple tracks with the Grand Nationxl collective. And next week he's scheduled to release Pleasantly Plump 2 with DJ Twelvz.

Duration:00:12:11

Jada Imani on Vibing with Hawaiian Frogs and Riffing Off Mac Dre

2/5/2021
Neo-soul and hip-hop artist Jada Imani gets her inspiration from a range of lived experiences: parking tickets, lessons from her parents, and Mac Dre lyrics. Despite the pandemic, Jada has been dropping three-track EPs every first Friday since October, and plans to continue to do so until March. It's a legacy of the collaborations and vibe she cultivated while organizing and hosting First Friday events at the Alan Blueford Center in Oakland for over 3 years. While honoring her origins, she's...

Duration:00:14:12

Soul Work and That ‘Bay Area Bounce’ with Artist YMTK

1/29/2021
For the next month, Rightnowish will be featuring artists with local roots who are taking the sounds of the Bay to a national stage. YMTK is an R&B and hip-hop artist who grew up in Oakland and currently resides in Los Angeles. In his music catalog, you'll find his collaborations with P-Lo, IamSu!, Rexx Life Raj, and many more. YMTK has also written lyrics for emerging artists like the East Bay's Marteen and Compton's Gemaine. But while sheltering-in-place over this past year, YMTK says he's...

Duration:00:11:40

Nappy Nina on Becoming the Rap Bill Nye and Missing Oakland

1/22/2021
Nappy Nina is a lyricist with a smooth-sultry delivery that's almost jazz-like, especially when coupled with some signature Boom-Bap production. In her songs, she raps about breakups, missing Oakland, the disappointing produce in Brooklyn, and navigating rough financial waters. She's gotten mentions from the Grammys and Bandcamp. And she's been working on a streak of exciting projects. For an organization called Flocabulary, Nina was commissioned to pen a rhyme that tells the story of Toni...

Duration:00:14:50

Dale and Sunny: An East Oaklander and His Horse

1/15/2021
Dale Johnson grew up in East Oakland with stories of his grandfather riding horses on a Texas ranch. For years horses were just part of a family story. But one day, a pair of polo boots caught Dale's eye and he was brought back into the world of equestrians. Now Dale and his horse, Sunny, are deep in the horseback community. Last fall, they joined other riders, like Brianna Noble, to ride through San Francisco's Sunnydale Projects on Halloween dressed up like Wakandans . They were also part...

Duration:00:12:01

Breena Nuñez on Zines and Feeling Seen as an Afro-Latinx Comic Artist

12/18/2020
Breena Nuñez is an Afro Guatemalan-Salvadoran cartoonist who grew up on the Bay Area's peninsula. Now she lives in the East Bay. Nuñez's illustrations cover everything from commentaries about electoral politics to autobiographical comics about gender, sexuality and race. African ancestry in Central America is a through-line in Nuñez's work. Sometimes she explicitly brings it up in the captions, other times she subtly alludes to it through hairstyles or a character's skin tone. Earlier this...

Duration:00:13:38

The Road to Reparations Through Black Genealogy

12/11/2020
Alex Trapps-Chabala is a young genealogist whose main focus is tracing the lineage of African American people. He grew up between Sacramento's Oak Park neighborhood and the Bay Area. But as preteen, his family sent him to live with with relatives in Alabama to get some discipline for an attitude problem. It was that time spent in the south that pushed Alex toward becoming a genealogist. Alex says that while in Alabama, his grandmother taught him about his family and showed him how to dig...

Duration:00:10:34

The Parallel Lives of One Community Organizer and the First Openly Gay Black MLB Player

12/4/2020
Vincent-Ray Williams III is the Operations Coordinator at Oakland's LGBTQ Community Center. Through this position Vincent has a hand in developing the Center's Glenn Burke Wellness Clinic. The clinic, which is named after the Oakland A's player who was discriminated against for being the first openly gay major league player, is set to open early next year. Vincent says the clinic will focus on HIV/ AIDS testing and prevention. Vincent, who was born HIV positive, says dispelling negative...

Duration:00:11:47

Family, Eritrea, and Berkeley at the Heart of “Everything”

11/20/2020
Abdulalim A’Omer grew up in a tight-knit Muslim Eritrean community in South Berkeley. He says that experience exposed him to a little bit of everything-- fashion, basketball, family, politics, religion, technology and more. It all proved to be a foundational part of Abdulalim's multifaceted Everything brand, which wants to ask its users, what's your everything? Abdulalim, or Abdul for short, is the oldest of four boys. His parents immigrated from Eritrea, allowing him to become a college...

Duration:00:12:44

Essential Work: Designing the End to Mass Incarceration

11/13/2020
Deanna Van Buren is an architect, but she goes far beyond just designing buildings. She uses her craft to demonstrate new structures for justice in our society. Van Buren is the co-founder and Executive Director of Designing Justice, an organization that she says focuses on "ending mass incarceration through innovations in the built environment, using both finance and design together." Designing Justice has launched projects across the country: They're behind a Peace Making project in...

Duration:00:11:20

Election Anxiety? Laughter Gets Us Through with Luna Malbroux

11/6/2020
Comic Luna Malbroux loves to stay informed, and she also loves to laugh. By prioritizing joy in her life, she has the energy to confront racism, sexism and the stress of this election season. Just this week, Malbroux-- who is also a musician and sex coach in training-- spent election night co-hosting a live event for the San Francisco AIDS foundation. She brought the laughs and she brought some deep political knowledge. In this week's episode of Rightnowish, Luna's got jokes and wisdom on...

Duration:00:14:53

Hunger Strikes, Prayer Dances and Protests: A Photographer in Community

10/30/2020
Denis Ivan Perez Bravo is an East Bay-based photographer and organizer who isn't shy about jumping right into the action. The images he captures on the front lines of protests in Northern California show the intense struggle of today's social movements. The risk of bodily harm can come from both sides of a scrimmage. While covering the news, Dennis has been hit by projectiles fired from police weapons and risks being trampled by crowds of protestors. On top of that, Denis is undocumented, so...

Duration:00:13:03

These Community Aunties Want Legendary Black Creative Spaces

10/23/2020
Two years ago Tayleur Crenshaw and Maud Alcorn started the arts collective, Gold Beams. It began as an open mic Crenshaw hosted in her living room -- called Second Mondays -- which eventually grew into a larger monthly event at Red Bay Coffee headquarters in East Oakland. "It’s like emotional stories that they kind of leave at the altar at Second Mondays. And us as community aunties, we are there to rub the backs and to listen and be an ear. We’re just here for people’s emotional journeys,"...

Duration:00:14:41

Cat Brooks on Refunding the Community

10/16/2020
In January of this year, Cat Brooks and the Anti Police-Terror Project launched a service where trained professionals respond to mental health crises; it's an alternative to people calling the police to handle the situation. The service, Mental Health First, or M.H. First, initially launched in Sacramento, and began serving Oakland this summer. Brooks says that M.H. First's work is just one part of the effort to refund the community and divest from overspending on police. This week on...

Duration:00:17:40

Yanni Will Eat You Up and Make You Love Yourself

10/9/2020
On 17th and Telegraph, on the backside of YR media's Oakland headquarters, there's a mural that stretches the length of the three story building. The colorful artwork was painted by Rachel Wolfe Goldsmith and shows two people: one with their fist raised to the sky wearing a shirt that says "they/them", and another person looking calmly at you, sort of inviting you in. The models for the mural are artist and musician Stoney Creation, and Yanni Brump, a non-binary model, party thrower and...

Duration:00:11:51

The Townfolk Project, Documenting Oakland’s Community

10/2/2020
About two years ago photographer Scott La Rockwell started taking photos of longtime Oakland residents, and interviewing them about their roots in the Town. He published the pieces online, calling it: the Townfolk Project. He says he initially planned to take photos of 100 folks from a cross section of backgrounds and neighborhoods, but with COVID-19, things slowed down. He’s sitting on about 20 published interviews. But this past summer, when store owners boarded up their buildings to...

Duration:00:10:36

The Abolitionist Fighting Sex Trafficking with Words and Altars

9/25/2020
Regina Y. Evans works with a team of folks to assemble altars on International Boulevard in Oakland, a hub for adult sex workers as well as the sex trafficking of minors. Regina says the goal of the work is to be present for the girls-- "Beloveds" as she calls them. The altars are decorated with art, flowers, letters and fabrics, and since the start of the pandemic, she's been adding hand sanitizer, condoms and PPE. Regina says her team builds these altars as an offering and that she doesn't...

Duration:00:17:20