Picks of the Week: No shortage of events for post-Labor Day Bay Area

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With Labor Day behind us, we’ve entered a long stretch of holiday-free weeks until Halloween rolls around at the end of October. Luckily, the Bay Area never needs an occasion to host a concert, film screening or comedy show. Along with an album release from Ariel Pink, this week promises plenty of adventures for you, your friends or your family — grab yourself a pair of tickets and head on over to any of this week’s picks for a marvelous time.

Tuesday, Sept. 12 | Corbin & Shlohmo + D33J at UC Theatre

Corbin, also known as Spooky Black, is an elusive R&B musician from Minnesota. His sound tends to blend hip-hop with indie-electronic vibes — a soft complement to the almost purely electronic energy of D33J, or Djavan Santos, from California. The two artists are touring alongside Shlohmo, another young electronic musician from California. Henry Laufer, whose stage name is Shlohmo, started making music at the age of 14 before founding a collective called WeDidIt. The trio’s individual sets should blend seamlessly together for a night of chill, atmospheric tunes at the UC Theater. Doors open at 7 p.m., and the show, which is 18+, is set to begin at 8 p.m. Tickets are $30 and can be purchased online here.

Wednesday, Sept. 13 | Music in the Park at Memorial Park

Michael Jackson’s artistry transcends the era in which it was created — hits such as “Billie Jean,” “Smooth Criminal,” “Thriller” and “Man in the Mirror” do not even begin to flesh out the list of Michael Jackson tracks beloved by music listeners of all ages. It’s no wonder then that the Albany Recreation & Community Services Department is bringing Foreverland, a 14-piece Michael Jackson tribute band, to Memorial Park this week as part of its Music in the Park series, during which different music groups — ranging from bluegrass to funk — are invited to come perform in Memorial Park on a Wednesday evening in September. Music in the Park is a free offering in its 14th year, and this Wednesday’s show will begin at 6:30 p.m. and run until 8:00 p.m.

Thursday, Sept. 14 | Film Screening of “I Am Not Your Negro” at BAMPFA

Raoul Peck’s 2016 ode to James Baldwin, one of the most prolific essayists in history, features narration provided by Baldwin’s writings — including some of his unfinished and unpublished work, “Remember This House,” in which he had hoped to reflect on the recent deaths of Malcolm X, Medgar Evers and Martin Luther King, Jr. — read by Samuel L. Jackson (of “Pulp Fiction,” “The Avengers” and, most recently, “The Hitman’s Bodyguard” fame). The film also, somewhat self-reflexively, includes clips from Baldwin’s essay “The Devil Finds Work,” in which he muses on the influence of film on his own life and provides a critique of certain movies for their politically complicated or even problematic representations.

If you’re the type of filmgoer who relies on more than the knowledge of Baldwin’s incredible influence to see a film like this, “I Am Not Your Negro” currently has a rating of 98 percent on Rotten Tomatoes. If ever there were a voice that could speak to the current political climate (and everything that lead up to it), it’s James Baldwin — and with this film, Peck attempts to revitalize Baldwin’s discourse through cinema. The film is approximately 93 minutes long and will begin at 7 p.m. at the Pacific Film Archive, within the Berkeley Art Museum. Tickets can be purchased at the museum or online here. A second screening of the film will take place at 1:30 p.m. Sept. 17.

Friday, Sept. 15 | Ariel Pink releases album Dedicated to Bobby Jameson

Ariel Marcus Rosenberg, also known as Ariel Pink, hasn’t released an album since 2014’s pom pom. His lo-fi pop with soothing synths and sweet vocals have rocked the music world since his first release in the late ‘90s. Earlier this year, he released an EP, Myths 002, with Weyes Blood via Mexican Summer, which blended her ethereal vocals with his unmistakably dreamy instrumentals. Coming back to his own sounds for this fall’s release, Ariel Pink has released three singles — “Another Weekend,” “Time to Live” and “Feels Like Heaven” — in anticipation of Dedicated to Bobby Jameson. In “Another Weekend,” he taps into his characteristically poppy jams, whereas “Time to Live” is much more fuzzed-out, with deeper vocals and an ‘80s energy — and “Feels Like Heaven” seems like a blend of the two, with an almost romantic feel. The album is sure to bring Pink’s own dream-pop sound to the fore, perhaps while tapping into the musician’s darker influences.  

Saturday, Sept. 16 | Improv Comedy Shows at All Out Comedy Theater

Improv comedy is a fantastic evening out for date nights, family outings and solo ventures alike — it’s spontaneous, casual and fast-paced. This Saturday, the All Out Comedy Theater in Oakland’s theater district will be hosting two 90-minute improv shows, a family-friendly one at 7:30 p.m. and an “anything goes” show at 9:30 p.m. The shows will feature short-form improv — which is defined as a series of games usually based in audience participation, designed to evoke unusual characters, humorous situations or witty quips. While improvisers can by nature never make any guarantees, they can almost always promise a few good laughs and make the price of a ticket well worth it. Tickets are available online here or at the door.


Shannon O’Hara is the arts & entertainment editor. Contact her at [email protected].
Sophie-Marie Prime is the assistant arts & entertainment editor. Contact her at [email protected].