Sight and Sound 8.1

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CONTENT Issue 8.1
content magazine, san jose sight and sound 8.1 $9.95 display until june 30, 2016
F eaturing : Kwesi Young | Chris Reed | Q & A | Chris Wondolowski | Frances Marin | B. Lewis | Adega
Silicon Valley’s Innovative and Creative Culture





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Issue 8.1

“Sight and Sound”

May / June 2016

The Makers:


Daniel Garcia

Managing Editor

Flora Moreno de Thompson


Odile Sullivan-Tarazi

Julianne Jigour, Holly Cooper

Vila Schwindt, Joan Johnson


Elle Mitchell

Brand Director

Julia Canavese


Kristen Pfund


Silicon Valley Creates


Elle Mitchell, Omar Rodriguez

Miranda Squires, Garrett Hernandez


Stanley Olszewski, Mark Chua

Scott MacDonald, Dan Fenstermacher

James Tensuan, Vivian Sachs

Gregory Cortez, James Tensuan

Mario Ayala, Julie Johnson

Catherine Walker, Arabela Espinoza

Jay Aguilar


Mark Haney, Brandon E. Roos

Chad Hall, Kate Evans

Michelle Runde, Nathan Zanon

Kevin Biggers, David Perez

Derek Haugen, Nicole Tindall

Monica Cruz-Hernandez, Jessica Owens

Shannon Amidon, Derek Haugen

Diane Solomon

Our annual Sight and Sound issue is one of my favorites because we focus on local visual and audio artists. This year we celebrate six top South Bay image makers by inviting them to do their interpretation of the five senses we’re all familiar with, plus the sixth: spirit. The results are stunning. In addition, we’re excited to introduce you to some new musicians, a parkour gym, and a recently opened restaurant. We think you’ll find a little something for each aspect of your life: new tastes as well as new sights and sounds.



Chris Wondolowski / Frances Marin / Kwesi Young / Chris Reed / Terry Thompson

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May/June 2016 San Jose, California
The Cruiser Shop, pg. 56
Day Trip 8 Sacramento, Ca CULTURE 10 Mayor of the Night Sight 12 Artist, Frances Marin 16 Artist, Jessica Sabogal 20 Artist, Terry Thompson 24 Filmmaker, Alex Vo Sound 28 Music Collective, TradeKraft Collective 30 Q & A, Quynh-Mai Nguyen & Alice Chen 32 Producer/Songwriter, Kwesi Young 34 Musician, Chris Reed 36 Music Producer, B. Lewis 38 Music Producers, The Changing Same Taste 42 Cupcakes, Franci Cakes 44 Coffee Roasters, Weekend Coffee Roasters 46 Portuguese Restaurant, Adega 50 International Culinary Center Touch 56 The Cruiser Shop, Dominick Guida 60 Recycle Bookstore, Eric Johnson 64 Parkour Gym, Angel Abiang Jr. & Diana Silva 68 SJ Earthquakes, Chris Wondolowski Writing 72 Santa Clara County Poet Laureate, Arlene Biala Style 76 The Senses, South Bay Top Photographers 88 Remodel, Daniel Garcia 93 Content Partners 98 Content LAB 100 Content Calendar 102 Content Contributors
The Senses, pg. 76 Wondo, pg. 68
sight & sound 8.1
Artist Frances Marin, pg. 12

Need an escape? Don’t have a lot of time? Living in Silicon Valley provides you with all kinds of options for a short getaway. From the beach to the mountains, wineries to windsurfing, the South Bay is one of the best hubs for launching into world-class scenery and activities. So why not take a day trip?

Sacramento, Ca.

If you are a Silicon Valley native, “a school bus ride to tour the state capitol” probably sums up your experience of Sacramento in a nutshell. Yet beyond the city’s rich political history, there’s much more to experience. Full of young creatives and innovative entrepreneurs, today’s Sacramento is building a hip community that promotes socially responsible businesses and locally sourced products.

A cup of joe is a great way to kick off any adventure, and Midtown Sacramento has a handful of coffee shops to choose from. If you enjoy your caffeine with a side of sunshine, Temple Coffee Roasters’ S Street location has a large patio perfect to lounge in while enjoying your specialty coffee selection. Roasting its fair trade beans on-site daily, this “Farm to Cup” coffee house always has unique brews to try, which are made possible by its direct sourcing program.

The Mill is another coffee-worthy Midtown option. They’re now serving made-to-order Belgian waffles, and these artisanal breakfast beauties can be whipped up simultaneously alongside your coffee beverage of choice.

From there, you can explore several points of interest within a two-mile radius of Midtown. Head to the Crocker Art Museum, the first public art museum founded in the West, which hosts one of the state’s premier collections of Californian art. Stroll the halls of its historic mansion, amongst antique Asian ceramics and ornate furniture. Then step over

to its modern pavilion, to view large-scale landscapes and figurative works.

A stone’s throw away from the Crocker is a tourist favorite, Old Sacramento, a Wild West time capsule. Located along the Sacramento River, the historic old town will carry you back to the era of the California Gold Rush and the Transcontinental Railroad. Grab some taffy at The Candy Barrel and pop into O’Grady’s Old Time Photos for a picture-perfect memento.

If mingling with contemporary citizens is more your pace, make your way to the R Street Corridor. This once-thriving warehouse district is now a mixed-use neighborhood full of artist lofts, craft-cocktail bars, and stylish boutiques. A little over a mile long, the industrial quarter is very walkable. You’ll want to stop on the corner of R Street and 12th for happy hour at the Bottle & Barlow, a local watering hole with an art deco–inspired bar that’s attached to an upscale barbershop. Pick a drink from their seasonal selection, or have some fun and ask for an off-menu surprise.

When hunger strikes, head back to Midtown to a bevy of foodie-style restaurants. The Porch Restaurant and Bar boasts a savory menu, featuring a contemporary twist on classic southern dishes and drinks. Enjoy your meal and Sacramento’s fine weather on its charming porch patio. Be sure to order a whiskey cocktail crafted from their 52-bottle bourbon library, and their grilled Brie, with a delectable house-made jam.

Another local favorite, Lowbrau Bierhall is an understatedly posh eatery. Its communal style seating makes for a great family dining spot. Pair any of its gourmet sausages with a Bavarian pretzel or duck fat fries. Try one of their specialty beer cocktails spiked with an authentic schnapps.

Or indulge in French-inspired California eats at Paragary’s. A stylish bistro originally established in 1983, its chic and fresh interior design is the perfect backdrop for the locally sourced and carefully curated fare.

Why not end the day with a sweet treat?

Dabble in chocolate heaven at Ginger Elizabeth Chocolates. Sink your teeth into a Fleur de Sel caramel, a creme fraiche, or hazelnut praline bonbon. Toss in a batch of their luxurious macarons to take home—they are only available as an in-store purchase.

Stop for a quick pit stop before heading onto the highway. Gunther’s Ice Cream store looks almost the same as it did when it opened in 1940. Cruise inside for some good old-fashioned ice cream made from original recipes developed by the Gunther family.

Reminiscent of Silicon Valley before the tech boom, Sacramento’s community and culture provide a much-needed escape from the Bay Area buzz. An easy two-hour drive from the South Bay, it’s definitely worth heading upstate to California’s capital for the burgeoning food, style, and art scenes.

Day tri p 408

Temple Coffee Roasters 2829 S St Sacramento, CA 95816 916.454.1272

The Mill 1827 I St Sacramento, CA 95811 916.469.9683

Crocker Art Museum 216 O St Sacramento, CA 95814 916.808.7000

Old Sacramento Sacramento Visitor Center 1002 Second St Sacramento, CA 95814 916.442.7644

The Candy Barrel 1006 Second St Sacramento, CA 95814 916.446.5196

O’Grady’s Old Time Photos 1026 Second St Sacramento, CA 95814 916.446.4242

Bottle & Barlow 1120 R St Sacramento, CA 95811 916.379.7719

The Porch 1815 K St Sacramento, CA 95811 916.444.2423

Lowbrau Bierhall 1050 20th St Sacramento, CA 95811 916.706.2636

Paragary’s 1401 28th St Sacramento, CA 95816 916.457.5737

Ginger Elizabeth Chocolates 1801 L St, Unit 60 Sacramento, CA 95811 916.706.1738

Gunther’s 2801 Franklin Blvd Sacramento, CA 95818 916.457.6646

Welcome to Sacramento, CA Population: 485,199 The Sacramento River was named by a Spanish cavalry officer for Santisimo Sacramento (the Most Holy Sacrament), and the city was named for the river. One of the most historic cities in California, Sacramento boasts an impressive array of landmarks, including Sutter’s Fort, the Tower Bridge, and California’s state capitol. Lowbrau Bierhall Old Sacramento Bottle & Barlow Paragary's Old Sacramento

Mayor of the Night

Advocating for the night-owl economy

As the City of San Jose recovers from the Great Recession, there is a renewed vision for a well-balanced, equitable economy. An economy not solely focused on one industry, like technology or manufacturing or real estate, but an inclusive economy that provides opportunity across all segments. One San Jose industry in particular is a relatively untapped resource—nightlife. The nighttime economy, which includes live music, clubs, and late-night entertainment, when cultivated correctly, has the potential to yield substantial results both culturally and financially for the city.

San Jose’s nighttime economy is a fairly unknown asset with a tumultuous history. With significant top-down intervention, the live music and latenight entertainment scene has been significantly stifled over the past few decades. The civic landscape and attitude toward nightlife in San Jose has become unnecessarily, cautiously, and unapologetically against providing new opportunities for late-night businesses.

The reasons for past interventions were both real and perceived. But often the policy conversations and eventual decisions that brought about these significant changes occurred during normal workday hours, when a majority of the nighttime economy is asleep. Thus, decisions were made without any real input from those who were most affected by them, the live music venues, the musicians and artists, and the patrons. A whole economy has been overlooked by decision makers who may not understand or who are suspicious of how that economy really runs.

But San Jose is not alone in this erosion of understanding. Other cities around the world have taken notice of this divide and have appointed a “night mayor” as a solution. Though the word mayor sounds official, it simply refers to an advocate, a person holding a recognized position by

Photography by Catherine Walker

the formal government of the city who mediates between day dwellers and night dwellers.

San Jose needs an ambassador not just for live music or clubs but for the nighttime economy in its entirety. The Netherlands has pioneered this concept and currently has 15 municipalities with designated night mayors, with the largest city, Amsterdam, appointing a former club promoter to the position.

Granted, unlike Amsterdam and Paris, which currently have night mayors, and London and Berlin, which are considering them, San Jose does not offer a booming economy for the night mayor to step into. In fact, he or she would be stepping into a failing economy and be expected to revive it. This means the role of advocate would need to be paired heavily with the role of promoter. In other cities, this position is paid equally by the city and by the participating nighttime businesses so that the individual is the liaison between the two sides. Both groups have an equal stake in the conversation, and it is the duty of the night mayor to mediate those conversations.

In some cities, handing over control to one individual creates too much power, necessitating an alternative option. San Francisco has seen success using an Entertainment Commission. Though not solely focused on nighttime activity, this commission offers the SF nightlife a single information source via web content that showcases all things nightlife. Similar to the Arts Commission in San Jose, this commission would be comprised of a group of individuals whose sole objective would be to champion San Jose nightlife and push the city ’s nighttime economy agenda forward.

However the position manifests itself, whether as a single individual or a commission, there is a substantial need for a dedicated nighttime advocate in San Jose. We need an advocate who recognizes that just as racial and ethnic diversity is an essential component of the city ’s cultural vibrancy and economy, a diversity of entertainment is also critical for San Jose to stay relevant in an ever-changing region. The city needs more live music and late-night entertainment options to help create a unique sense of place. A healthy, diverse nightlife is essential for the economic well-being of the city and the cultural well-being of the citizens.
twitter: thinkbiggersj instagram: thinkbiggersanjose
Though the word mayor sounds official, it simply refers to an advocate, a person holding a recognized position by the formal government of the city, who mediates between day dwellers and night dwellers.



Describe your process, your medium. It generally starts in the sketchbook. I’ve always taken sketchbooks when I travel, but in the last three years I’ve been bringing one everywhere. In recent years, I’ve been into water media: Sumi ink, watercolor, and gouache. I like the immediacy and how it lends itself to being in the moment. It’s a good mix of control and accidents. When I use color, it tends to be mixed down and sort of faded. I also paint with acrylic on salvaged wood. In the last few years, I’ve made some paper installations and other large-scale work. I want to do more of that this year.

What themes do you use in your work? My work goes between the familiar and the mysterious, often with a narrative. I’m really interested in the idea of escape by painting places that feel serene, welcoming, or a little strange. I love when viewers respond to my work by saying they want to live in my paintings. I think the work resonates with people by being a place they want to be in or that triggers a memory or nostalgia. Recurring themes include mysterious landscapes and places, architecture, objects, and people.

Tell us about your involvement in the creative community of San Jose. I run a monthly sketch night called SoFA Sketch, which is held at SoFA Market on First Street. Everyone brings a sketchbook, and we hang out and draw. Sometimes it’s all friends and sometimes I’ll meet new artists. I recently received a grant through the San Jose Office of Cultural Affairs’ Creative Industries Incentive Fund through the Center for Cultural Innovation. I’m excited to start on that project—I’ll be working with Black Arrow Printing to make a line of San Jose–based tote bags that are organic and made in the US. That’s something that is really important to me. I also show my work at Empire Seven Studios, Seeing Things Gallery, and Kaleid Gallery. I love the community we have.

What influences outside the visual arts inspire and impact your approach to making work? Friends hugely inspire me. I went to a cabin with friends last November and had the best time. Being surrounded by trees, making a communal dinner, watching deer wander by, and hearing the rain fall on the A-frame roof was the best inspiration. The group there were mostly practicing artists and creative people.

I need to get out in nature frequently, so living in San Jose makes it easy to escape to amazing places nearby. Quiet time is best to get creative energy. It’s pretty hectic living in the Bay Area, in terms of the speed in which everyone operates. Working in a fairly tidy studio is important for me too. And in 2014, I went to Cádiz, Spain, for an art residency. Wandering around a very old city and working in a studio that looked out on the Atlantic Ocean was incredibly magical and still influences my work greatly. Watching documentaries, recording things I’ve seen into my memory bank, and reading about new things also impact my work.

When you need inspiration, are there particular things you read, listen to, or look at to fuel your work? I’m always learning and taking in information, whether verbally or visually. If I’m going to paint something new, like a specific animal, I like to learn all about it. Some of my work might appear simple, but I do tend to do research (the librarian side of me). I read pretty regularly and love reading books with adventure. I think it’s really important to not be thinking about art all the time.

What are you currently working on? In the next few months, I’ll be completing book proposals so I can find a publisher, designing the San Jose tote bags, and I’d like to do another art residency. Other than that, I love that I don’t really have anything planned for this year. It’s kind of great and kind of scary, but I want to be more in the moment and focus less on the future.

Written by Shannon amidon Photography by Daniel Garcia Make-Up by Mercedes Dandrea Hair by Van Bui
Frances Marin is a multifaceted artist who paints, designs, and illustrates original and commissioned artwork. Taking on a variety of projects from painting people’s dreams to creating large paper installations keeps her open and always growing and exploring as an artist.

instagram: francesmarin



Tackling Social Issues with Passion and a Paint Can

Interview by Michelle Runde Photography by gregory cortez

It takes a lot of nerve to create art that generates conversation, tells an artist’s personal story, and highlights ongoing social and cultural issues. First-generation Colombian American graffiti artist Jessica Sabogal accomplishes all this and more with her eye-catching murals.

Born and bred in the Bay Area, Sabogal constantly pushes boundaries in what has been a traditionally male-dominated medium. At age 28, Sabogal has already made front page on, in 2011 with her time-lapse tribute to the Egyptian revolution. She has an ongoing campaign, titled “Women Are Perfect,” aimed at empowering both women and men to accept women as they are. Sabogal is currently commissioned by Facebook headquarters and is their first female muralist.

When did you take an interest in art? Ever since I was very young, my brother had a huge influence on me. He’d give me a blank paper and have me draw something he liked, and I’d just do it. I was never allowed to major in art since my parents are both PhDs, and my brother is a molecular biologist PhD. Coming from an academic, first-generation Colombian family, there was pressure to succeed. In college I majored in political science, and after I graduated I wanted to be political without having to put on a suit and tie and work for some governor. So I explored art. I bought some spray paint and started experimenting with stencils. At first I displayed my art in coffee shops, tattoo parlors, wherever I could. I never tried to market my work; it’s all just happened organically.

What inspires you personally and as an artist? People always ask what influences me more, the fact that I’m Colombian or that I’m a lesbian. They go hand in hand, but above that, I’m a woman. Those issues are deeply ingrained. I’d say 98% of my day is influenced by being a woman. I wanted to make art that is purely for [women].

I have a campaign called “Women Are Perfect” that came

about when my brother’s wife had a baby. I kept thinking, “Oh my god, women are made for this amazing thing. We are made so perfect, without us there would be no life.” Around that same time, a series of rapes had occurred near the Mission district where I worked. At first the campaign was targeted toward men to say, “Stop getting in our way.” As time went on, I started to think how different the world would be if [women] owned that, like, “I’m a 200-pound black woman and I’m perfect” or “I survived breast cancer and I’m perfect.” We’ve put the slogan “Women Are Perfect” on T-shirts, murals, and public art. It’s been really successful. There’s this huge movement right now of empowered young women who don’t give a fuck what people think of them. With social media, these women can find each other.

Why do you feature minority groups in your work as well as women? I feel like [women are] all united. The first Colombian mural I did had three Colombian indigenous women and one woman from the Middle East to show that our struggles are universal. Whether you’re a woman in Colombia or in Pakistan, we all experience similar oppressions from men, society, the government, et cetera.

A lot of my friends and colleagues deal with issues like migration, immigration, and reproductive rights. One frequent topic is how we’re all living on stolen Native American land. A few years ago I was invited to a street art conference in Montreal. To prepare, I looked for an issue that wasn’t being talked about and learned that indigenous women in Canada go missing or are murdered, and that the government isn’t doing much about it. I knew I would present that issue since that was where I was. That’s been a journey as well: that wasn’t my story, but it was a story that needed to be told.

As time goes on, I’ve been looking for my story. Recently I went back to the same conference in Montreal, and this time I did a big lesbian mural because that’s part of my story. I thought, “If I don’t do this, it won’t exist, and it’s my voice I want to portray.”

instagram: jessicasabogal




For locals, the dancing neon pig that advertises Stephen’s Meat Products while watching over a parking lot off Montgomery Street is an icon. It celebrates San Jose’s history, the brashness of mid-century neon marketing, and the fact that this city tries not to take itself too seriously. For local artist Terry Thompson, it serves as inspiration. Thompson celebrates the many aging neon signs and relics of the South Bay’s urban past in a photorealism style that is precise but not clinical, warm but not kitsch. His aesthetic frames the intersection of beauty and nostalgia.

Born in Mountain View, Thompson spent his formative years in Milpitas before attending San Jose State University, then went on to work for IBM as an industrial engineer. A true Baby Boomer, he is the child of Indiana transplants who moved to the area in the early ’60s. His dad was “a machinist, a farm boy who came out here with the Navy” and then worked for HP. Thompson remembers the days when San Jose was dotted with orchards, and reflects on his home with the pure love of a native son. Soft-spoken, mild-mannered, modest, and kind, Thompson recalls being forced to make a choice when the pursuit of his master’s of fine arts conflicted with his full-time job at IBM. He chose his art. “The day I gave my notice at IBM was a hugely pivotal moment.”

Thompson’s art fills an important role in this community: his work shines a spotlight on what busy commuters rush past and records a brief moment in this area’s history. He recognizes that he is, in a way, a historical documentarian. He often looks for signage that is “just empty so that it’s in limbo, between one incarnation of a business [and another], or maybe on the way out, because so many of these places that I’ve painted, they don’t exist anymore.” These antiquated advertisements of motel swimming pools or long-defunct liquor stores tell a story. The layers of paint, the way the sun has faded or stripped the colors, the rows of shiny bulbs, the long sinuous lines of neon lighting, the mid-century typography—he finds beauty in all of it.

Stylistically, his paintings are so realistic that they take on a tactile quality. At first glance the brain thinks it must be a photograph, as the lines of neon and shadow match up perfectly. Thompson believes this ability derives partly from the precision he learned in his engineering background, but it’s also because he paints only what he has visited in person. He takes innumerable photographs, which serve as his reference, but by being in the space, he absorbs his environment and is able to fill his paintings with a sense of place.

Terry composes his paintings meticulously, finding the most interesting shadows, angles, patterns, colors, and letters. By cropping out letters and framing interesting angles, he leaves just enough to the imagination so that it’s easy to put the pieces of the puzzle together. The compositions fill the canvases, overwhelming the space with a larger-than-life snapshot of a moment in time. Thompson’s work revels in the “in-between-ness” of the signs. They are no longer relevant forms of advertising, and they live under the threat of destruction, yet they’ve evolved to become symbols of endurance and reminders of the relentlessness of time’s passing. The paintings are so real that they draw you in, inviting you to be a part of the experience, a spectator to history.

Today, Thompson’s work hangs in private collections and museums around California, the Southwest, and even as far away as Alabama. He continues to paint signs and other pop culture vestiges of the past, but he’s increasingly exhibiting his photography. He is particularly proud that his Stephen’s Meat Products piece, Pig Dynamism, hangs in the San Jose Museum of Art. Thompson laughs, “That sign is just so ironic and funny. The pig dances. So it’s animated. It cycles [through] three separate neons, dancing to the meat grinder.”

When asked, “Why these signs?” Thompson references his technical background. “I look at how things are made and the little intricate pieces. I’m drawn to that and the historical value, but I also try to find beauty in places where you might not necessarily find it.”

Thompson celebrates the many aging neon signs and relics of the South Bay’s urban past in a photorealism style that is precise but not clinical, warm but not kitsch.

facebook: terrythompsonart

twitter: TerryThompsonSF


Alex Vo

Storyteller with a Cause

You could say it was being at the right place at the right time, or you could say it was a calling. Either way, when Alex Vo got the actual phone call telling him he’d been awarded the scholarship to Full Sail University’s film school in 2008, he didn’t think twice before packing up his life and driving cross-country with little more than a sense of adventure and his guitar.

Fast forward to 2016, and Alex Vo has brought his visual storytelling art to San Jose’s community and beyond. Specializing in short-form documentary, Alex tells a story of San Jose’s homeless, films the rebuilding of impoverished communities in rural Texas, and highlights projects building water wells and schools in Nicaragua. By exploring the human condition and the lives of those around him, Alex uses film, curiosity, and compassion as tools to capture and tell compelling stories. His documentaries give a voice to people whose stories raise awareness around issues of poverty and homelessness—people who otherwise may not be heard—but also raise hope and funds to help those in need.

How did you get started in visual storytelling? I’ve been doing this for close to six years now. The first time I fell in love with filmmaking was while making videos in my high school Spanish class. I was a terrible student, but making these videos was one project I always aced. I learned a lot and created stories by editing popular films with our original content on two VCRs. It was so much fun, but at the time, the thought of doing this professionally wasn’t even an option.

Who gave you your first camera? While growing up, I never owned a camera. I come from a humble background of hardworking immigrant parents, and during that time, buying a video camera would have been out of the question.

Do you remember the first film that struck you? The first film that struck me was Jurassic Park. As a kid, it was inspiring to see the seemingly endless possibilities of cinema.

Through technology and talent, filmmakers crafted a world where anything is possible.

What inspires you, and what sparks your creativity? When I was young, I loved superheroes and was always drawing them in my sketchbook. Today I’m inspired by the stories of everyday people and real-world superheroes.

Filmmaking is such a huge collaboration with so many aspects of creativity. Music is a big inspiration for me, and I like to listen to soundtracks while working. Throughout the years, I’ve learned that "spark” is extremely important. It brings an excitement to a project, one I need for me to create. When I first started, I took every client that came my way, whether a spark of inspiration was there or not. It took time for me to get out of survival mode with my own company and into a position that allowed me to thrive creatively.

In the end, I learned that my biggest inspiration is doing what I love for a living while helping others in the process. This has allowed me to refocus my company and redefine what success means to me. When I’m focused less on my own success and more on the success of others, the happier I am with what I’m doing. Capturing human emotion is a driving factor in my work and definitely my favorite part of the production process. Bringing understanding and empathy through video and storytelling is very satisfying.

What is your favorite aspect of the work? Conceptualizing and scripting are definitely my favorite parts of the storytelling process. I love brainstorming while driving or walking my dogs; it’s one of those processes that I can work on anytime and anywhere. The more freedom I allow myself, the more creative I feel.

What’s next for you? I’m focusing on growing the team and bringing assistant editors on board. This year I’m also joining a mentorship program at Santa Clara University that’s focused on solving big problems through social entrepreneurship. A bucket-list dream for me down the road is to create a kick-ass feature film.

Interview by Nicole Tindall Photography by daniel garcia
Alex behind the camera. Photograph by Amber Myers.

Boxer screen grabs

Client: Meant4More Apparel

Cinematographer: Marco Bercasio

Director: Alex Vo

Boxer: Jake “The Bull” Giuriceo


Client: Rambus, Inc.

Cinematographer: Alex Vo

Director: Alex Vo

Talent: Martin Nuñez (L); Joe Lawrence (R)

Desert girl photos

Client: None. First camera test with the RED Epic

Cinematographer: Alex Vo

Director: Alex Vo

Model: Amber Myers

facebook: alexdvo




The mission behind TradeKraft Collective, a San Jose–based group of electronic musicians, is, "To bring exposure to new up-and-coming artists who are devoted to their craft." The group’s name is partly a play on the espionage term tradecraft, referring to the specialized skills needed in the field, and partly an attempt to capture the collective’s belief in lifting one another up through the exchange of knowledge.

In less than a year, TradeKraft has released a number of singles and EPs on its website, featuring both members of their group and affiliated artists. They also produce a radio program via SoundCloud every other week, with Thien “TQ” Nguyen as host. Each episode features a guest mix by a DJ or producer.

Six young San Jose State students and recent graduates make up the core of the collective. Each member brings a different skill to the table. In addition to Nguyen, Brandon Feist makes music as Skylark but also does design and engineering, while William Houcheime and Sarbpreet “Charlie” Buttar collaborate as Wooshay and also have marketing expertise. Dylan Baker specializes in sound recording and mixing; and Michael Mundy is the finance man. Though their backgrounds and musical tastes all differ, they agree that DJs like Diplo and Skrillex are major inspirations for the group as a whole. Not just for their music—they also admire the DJs’ willingness to invest in and support diverse artists and communities, something that coincides with TradeKraft Collective’s mission.

The idea behind TradeKraft began in 2015, with Nguyen and Feist musing about the local music scene. “There are a lot of small DJs that are just competing with each other,” Nguyen

says, “and we realized if we unified and marketed it, it would bring everyone together. At first it was like a joke, but it ended up being…‘Well, we might as well try it.’ ”

They decided that in order to launch their new venture and prove to themselves they could succeed, they needed a kickoff party. The first event was held at Feist’s parents’ home in the hills of East San Jose, but it wasn’t the kind of irresponsible kegger one might expect from a group of twentysomethings throwing a house party: after securing a sound system, a huge projection screen, and DJs for the night, they notified the neighborhood, hired security, and kept tabs on attendance to ensure things didn’t get out of control.

Although music is the element they’ve focused on thus far, the TradeKraft team has bigger ideas for incorporating a variety of artists into their ranks. Feist, who built the group’s website in his spare time, hopes to add functionality for artist features and submissions. They’ve connected with designers and photographers to create album artwork and flyers. They plan to release a clothing line, a video series, and maybe even a video game. Eventually, they hope the Collective can act as a hub, connecting artists and performers with opportunities.

“In San Jose...there’s a lot of talent,” Nguyen says, “but because the Bay Area is so big that everything is so far apart, it’s hard for people to meet up and collaborate, network creatively. This [is] a cool way for people to come together and be able to do that—network—and not just musicians, but creative people in general.”

“It’s definitely easier to come up together than individually,” Buttar adds.

1 2 3 4 5 6
7 1. Michael Mundy 2. Dylan Baker 3. Brandon Feist (founder) 4. Sarbpreet Buttar (founder) 5. William Houcheime (founder) 6. Thien Nguyen (founder)
7. Silvino Jimenez (not pictured: Arabela Espinoza, Deanna Villarreal, Tonya Dollente) social media: tradekraftcollective Quynh-Mai Nguyen and Alice Chen

Q A &


With a self-described musical sound of “pretty, gritty harmonies and smooth-ass grooves,” San Jose’s Quynh-Mai Nguyen and Alice Chen form the duo Q&A. They play heartfelt, stripped-down tunes with harmonized vocals and simple beats that are quietly attention-getting and easy to tap your feet to.

The two have been close friends since high school and have spent many nights over the past decade jamming together privately. “Just for fun,” Chen says. “But whenever we did, it was an escape for us. It was a creative expression and a way [for] us [to bond] even more.”

Encouraged by their peers to break out of their shells and perform, they began testing the waters at open mic nights and found their style made a strong impression on listeners. “We play what’s honest to us,” Nguyen explains. “People are able to feel vulnerable with us.” This connection has worked well in other intimate San Jose venues, like Caffe Frascati, San Pedro Square Market, and small art galleries.

The close personal bond that Nguyen and Chen have with each other has fueled their music, but they still seem genuinely surprised and touched when audiences are able to

understand some of the same feelings in their work. “I think the greatest comments we get are when complete strangers come up to us and say how moved they are or how much a song brought them to a different place,” Chen says.

“I’m happy that [the music] can resonate with [them]— that’s the purpose of playing music,” adds Nguyen, “but to actually see it happen is still new.”

In addition to original songs, Q&A also do mash-ups of more famous hits, but even these take on a personal quality: they meld songs—often of very different genres—that they feel represent their two personalities. “Sometimes, we let the audience guess who’s who,” Nguyen says.

“A lot of our songs are motivated by self-empowerment and self-love, learning how to love yourself in order to give love—not only to another person but to everything in general in life,” Chen explains, summing up the outlook both women share. “Even though it’s hard, even for us, when we sing our songs, it’s a reminder for us to keep with that belief, and hopefully it will touch other people as well.”

Look for Q&A to touch your soul with their smooth-ass grooves sometime soon.

Written by Nathan Zanon Photography by Daniel GArcia social media: qandamusic


It’s almost 2am on what’s now Saturday morning. While the townhouses across the street stand silent behind the SAP Center, the dozen or so bodies inside the nondescript headquarters of BAMN (By Any Means Necessary) seem to just be getting started.

“I’ve been here three days straight, literally taking naps and then I’m back at it,” shares Kwesi Young from inside his cozy office. That nonstop mentality has stayed with Young since his days working out of his uncle’s studio in LA. During that time, he was in the studio 21 hours a day. He’d sleep the remaining three and manage the exhaustion with constant caffeine intake.

What kept him awake? “I was trying to search for the new sound.”

He’s never quite lost that outlook, which helps explain the cohesive diversity of his latest project, Digital

Age 2.0, released earlier this year. As he explains on the track “#HELLAMANI,” he’s trying to bring the spontaneity of jazz back to hip-hop, which he says in recent years has catered too much to a follow-the-leader mentality. More recently, he’s seen the visceral appeal and has applied the genre’s recent “trap” wave to his own output. Case in point: the near-suspended swing of the track’s layered, unpredictable cadence.

“On the surface, it might seem like I’m a rapper. But underneath, I’m thinking, ‘What’s gonna [happen] 10 years from now?’” Young explains. He actually sees his role as more in line with that of a producer, and in time, he plans to pursue schooling that will allow him to bring an academic focus to the exploration and dissection of the art form.

“What hip-hop is doing right now, it is fine art,” he notes, “I want to get to a point to show that.”

Since his creative partner Marlo Custodio first shared the idea of using pop culture to spread social awareness three years ago, the two have turned BAMN HQ into a DIY one-stop shop comprising young rappers, producers, bloggers, screenwriters, make-up artists, web designers, and more. Young adds, “We’re using every bit we can to create.”

Despite having logged time in Ghana, Las Vegas, and LA, San Jose remains the town he views as home. Like other creatives who continue their artistic pursuits in the South Bay, Young is seduced by the town’s untapped potential.

“It’s just a matter of time [before we] find a rhythm and authenticity in our art,” he shares optimistically. Until then, he’ll continue searching for that next sound, while pushing the next generation of creatives to discover their own voice.

At first glance, Kwesi Young is a burgeoning rapper and producer. That’s only one layer. Young has a greater vision: to lead a new generation of local creatives and change the conversation on hip-hop.
Intervew by Brandon E. Roos Photography by Daniel Garcia


Chris Reed radiates positivity, and like his music, it’s infectious. He offers up an emotional integrity as he engages listeners with lyrical themes, ranging from social plight to empathy and understanding.

Reed’s solo project represents a drastic departure from the reggae and world music sounds of his previous group, Aivar. And yet, he insists that this new direction has been in the works for some time. “I was writing music, and it didn’t all fit into that Aivar box,” he notes.

His debut solo album, Sweet Destiny, was recorded organically over the course of two years with producer Steven Murr, a former keyboardist for Aivar. The DIY approach to recording the album reflects a passionate sincerity. “I was able to really work through a lot of emotional issues, to be honest with myself and write pieces that I’ve never written before.”

One thing Reed has taken from his collaboration with musicians is the universality of the medium. “Music is truly a could sit down with anyone, play music together, and have that kind of conversation—without speaking the same language.”

He mentions the international artist Manu Chao, as well as Ben Harper, the Gipsy Kings, and a variety of blues and

African musicians as sources of inspiration. Despite influences from all over the world, he is invested in the local scene. “To be able to go into the SoFA district and see it become what it’s become over the last few years is just awesome,” he says.

Arts Initiative, an organization started by Reed and his father, seeks to bring music and theater programs to elementary and middle schools that lack funding. “We’re just trying to find creative and sustainable ways to keep music alive and breathing for kids,” Reed states. Currently, the program spans four schools in the Willow Glen and South San Jose areas.

There is a refreshing extension of his musical message in his recognition of others. “I value people who fight the good fight,” he says. “Anybody in the public sector doing good for the world—they have my utmost respect.” Two of the songs from the album, “Because of You” and “We are One,” are directly inspired by and feature the many voices of his students. His belief that there is an artistic outlet for everyone seems to be a driving force behind the project’s success.

Reed is currently working on the release of Odyssey, a multivolume collection of recent work.

35 social media: chrisreedmusic

B. Lewis

SJ-based producer provides a snapshot of his vibrant sound on “An Abstract.”

When Universal Grammar released the first installation of its The Changing Same mix series this past October, Tommy Aguilar and company chose to kick things off with “An Abstract,” a 45-minute window into the sound of San Jose–based electronic beatsmith B. Lewis. The dynamic journey features surprise sonic turns and swaths of bass, yet at its core, there’s always a distant dose of soul.

In the mix, which first aired on The Changing Same Radio on KZSU-FM, Lewis (real name Brad Lewis) provides a blueprint for the “future bass” sound, an eclectic and farreaching tag birthed in the SoundCloud era to categorize tracks with vibrant synths, chilly hi-hats, and—most importantly—plenty of low end, whether it’s to nudge along a four-on-the-floor house groove or anchor the woozy swing of trap.

Raised in San Jose’s Evergreen neighborhood, Lewis attended Expression College in Emeryville, where he studied audio engineering. His remixes have flipped songs by artists as disparate as jazz pianist Robert Glasper and Bay Area rapper K. Flay, and he’s collaborated with a number of producers who have been key players in electronic music’s new vanguard,

including Sweater Beats, KRNE, and Sango, a heavyweight in the buzzing crew Soulection.

Universal Grammar describes his sound as “messy soul,” an apt term to encapsulate an output that often boils over with ideas that push the sonic envelope yet still feel tethered to an undeniable sense of joy.

By phone, Lewis reveals that a new album is on the horizon. He notes the project is “still B. Lewis,” albeit “an elevated version of my past projects.” He’s also developing a side project he’s calling Saints. In what should be a welcome surprise for fans, the oft soft-spoken producer notes that this release will actually feature him singing. Additionally, 2016 has seen him gain some serious footing within the music industry after securing a cowriting credit on “The 80s,” a track featured on the international version of Chris Brown’s recent release, Royalty.

It’s been more than a year and a half since he’s dropped an official project, and he’s eager to let listeners hear his progress soon. He also admitted he’s not the only one. “I have a lot of producer friends wondering where the project is,” he says. “That’s a good thing if they’re curious.”

Interview by Brandon E. Roos Photography by Jay Aguilar

“An Abstract” mix:

twitter: blewis





Cory Randolph: “We’re like knives. We sharpen each other. That’s what good friends do. It deepens the sound spectrum, and that’s what makes the unit what it is. You need that.”

Shea Modiri: “On our other nights, we have a certain task to do, but on Thursday nights, we’re there pushing what we think is the future, or what we think people should hear. We’re promoters of good music.”

Tommy Aguilar: “This is what I’ve been waiting for, a moment to cultivate a weekly dance party like our forefathers, DJs from legendary parties from past days in Chicago and New York City. I want to carry on that legacy with this night.”

(L to R): Cory Randolph, Shea (Butter) Modiri, Tommy Aguilar, Mark Gamab

Tommy Aguilar

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Cory Randolph

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twitter: followthecme

Shea Modiri

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twitter: djsheabutter

Mark Gamab

instagram: markplstk

Sake One

(not pictured)

instagram: sake1derful

It’s a sell-out inside the Continental, with stylish folks from around the Bay Area crowded around a stage to see acclaimed LA trio KING. A handycam captures the groovy bass lines and delicate keyboard comps on a flat-screen television on the back wall, and the crowd shows love from start to finish, enough to earn an encore from the thankful group.

The performance is a watershed moment for the Changing Same (TCS), producers who host a weekly party at the Continental, showcasing musical minds interested in novel approaches to soulful music. On this night, Tommy Aguilar, well-known for bringing acts of this kind to San Jose under the Universal Grammar umbrella, is particularly proud. While a New York Times review may have just brought KING’s name into the mainstream, he’s been eagerly waiting to present the group since hearing their debut EP in 2011.

In a musical world increasingly obsessed with classification, TCS stands out. The night they host is more about a feeling than a certain sound, and the eclectic roster of talent they have presented over the past year is a testament to the night’s diversity. Internationally respected selectors like DJ Neil Armstrong, DJ Proof, and Shortkut have all headlined, as have underground production duo Christian Rich and red-hot Soulection crew mainstays, like J-Louis and SoSuperSam. Live acts have included jazz/electronic innovator Taylor McFerrin, house band Tortured Soul, and vocalist SPZRKT.

On any given week, any or all of the producing group’s four residents maintain the TCS heartbeat: ringleader Tommy Aguilar (Chale Brown, formerly Chatos1013), futurist Mark Gamab (MarkPLSTK), the eclectic Shea Modiri (DJ Shea Butter), and the innately talented Cory Randolph (the CME). DJ Bluz and DJ ThatGirl are regular contributors. So is the night’s spiritual forefather, DJ Sake One, whose weekly San Francisco party Pacific Standard Time (PST) provided a blueprint for TCS’s future success.

When Sake’s party was running in the mid to late 2000s, he remembers PST regulars would occasionally ask if he was familiar with Aguilar’s work in the South Bay. Though Sake can’t quite pin down when they first met, just as with the other TCS residents, Aguilar’s reputation preceded him.

“The Changing Same [production] was a concept that literally came from a conversation me and Tommy had about music and society, the idea that ‘roots’ and urban music forms can [be] and often are the most progressive, quickly evolving, and influential genres,” shares Sake. The name came from the essay,

“The Changing Same (R&B and New Black Music),” written in 1966 by African American writer and music critic Amiri Baraka.

“I wanted to bring a live element to a nighttime party—not just DJs,” Aguilar adds. “The Changing Same [concept] was a platform for this modern take on where R&B, soul, and hip-hop were kind of going,” Aguilar points out. “It had electronic elements. There was jazz in there, funk…. It was speaking to all those genres.”

With Pacific Standard Time and Universal Grammar as copresenters, the Changing Same debuted at Mighty in San Francisco in 2007. That night, the party presented LA duo J*Davey. Platinum Pied Pipers soon followed.

Randolph entered the TCS picture around this time, though he started as just an ardent PST attendee. “I was going [to PST] religiously because I was looking for something that catered to my musical tastes,” he says. One night, he finally decided to approach Sake to tell him he was going to be his shadow. Sake laughed, and Randolph insisted he was serious. Thus began a mentorship that helped Randolph finally pursue the art of DJing, a dream he’d had since first attempting to scratch on his Big Bird 45 record player at age four.

After a short hiatus, the Changing Same returned as a monthly series in 2010, this time migrating to the South Bay. With partner Michael Grammar, Aguilar and Universal Grammar presented LA beat scene luminaries like Flying Lotus and Gaslamp Killer in addition to Bilal and Theophilus London. However, Aguilar felt the party was moving away from its original intent, and placed the name on hiatus for a second time in 2011, opting to program under the banner Live at the Pagoda.

Then, in 2014, the Continental opened on South First Street—a new bar and performance space featuring craft cocktails, a hip ambiance, and—most importantly—an incredibly well-tuned sound system.

“It was the perfect room for what I wanted the Changing Same to be, in terms of how it was going to influence [the music scene],” says Aguilar. He soon took over the Thursday night spot, launching TCS as a weekly in January 2015.

Aguilar began assembling his roster of residents. He brought Randolph into the fold, as well as Mark Gamab and Modiri. Just as Randolph was, the two were aware of Aguilar from his work as a promoter. Both considered themselves fans.

“Tommy was bringing people that I wanted to go see, and I just wanted to be involved,”

recalls Gamab. He and Modiri had become supporting fixtures for Aguilar’s shows inside the Pagoda, a makeshift performance space that was formerly an Asian fusion restaurant inside the Fairmont.

There’s an undeniable camaraderie among the four in person. Aguilar is in awe of Randolph’s wide-open musical palette, adding, “His ear is just deeper than the rest of us.” Modiri describes Randolph as “the yin to my yang.” It’s a feeling Randolph shares “without question,” adding, “We are kindred spirits. I’m always hearing something I’ve never heard before, and I DJ with him at least once a week.” The other three credit Gamab’s ability to stress the electronic component of the night.

“Everybody’s pushing each other,” notes Randolph. “We’re like knives. We sharpen each other. That’s what good friends do.”

Essentially, the format is not to follow one, giving the residents as much creative space as possible to share the sounds they, and their audience, love. The intent is to educate as much as it is to simply rock a crowd. That freedom remains a pleasant surprise for featured acts, even veterans like Shortkut. As Gamab remembers, “[Shortkut] said it’s one of the only parties where he’s been able to play whatever he wants and the crowd responds to it.”

“The crowds we produce in San Jose, whether they’re coming from the East Bay or San Francisco to join us for those special nights, the energy’s there, man,” adds Aguilar.

The cultivation of TCS as a home for hearing innovative, soulful sounds isn’t simply an outgrowth of Aguilar’s many years of programming locally. As he points out, the attendees from a decade back have largely moved on and started families. TCS has found a new crowd, and that makes Aguilar hopeful for what can be accomplished in his hometown.

“Due to Tommy’s and other people’s work in San Jose, it is arguably a more music-friendly city now than San Francisco is, and equal to Oakland,” says Sake. “The work they put in opens doors for all music lovers in Northern California. They deserve our appreciation and gratitude for that.”

In time, the crew hopes to export the night to other cities. For now, they’re content to keep playing what will soon be your new favorite song.

“I see cell phones Shazaming, trying to figure out what [song] that was,” says Randolph. “That’s how I know I’m doing a good job—that’s when you know you’re in the right space.”



What makes it so thrilling to see a local maker evolve and grow their maker business right in front of you?

A lot of it is the narrative. We love seeing the fruits of the hustle. We love getting inspired by courageous creative directions. We see hope meet aspiration, aspiration meet execution, and execution meet success, all in front of us and all clear enough for us to follow along, measure, and celebrate as if to say, “This is the real deal.”

You could say this is what makes it so exciting right now to be around Franci Gire of Franci Cakes, the brand under which Gire makes and sells what a lot of people consider some of the best cupcakes in San Jose. Gire, who was born and raised in San Jose and who graduated from San Jose State University, started Franci Cakes in 2013, making cake pops and cupcakes for friends and the occasional event. At the time, Gire was teaching art and exploring the world of fashion blogging and styling.

“I was living in the The Alameda neighborhood when a new shop called The Usuals had its grand opening,” Gire said. “I brought the owner some of my Mexican Hot Chocolate cupcakes to celebrate. The owner turned out [to be] Marie [Millares] from SJMADE, and she’s been a mentor of mine ever since.”

After meeting Millares, Gire connected with SJMADE to launch her first pop-up shop in downtown San Jose’s Repertory Theatre for the first half of 2015. She credits the experience with having really kicked off things for the business. Once the pop-up shop’s run ended, Gire ramped up her schedule of events, becoming more or less a mainstay at SJMADE’s weekly craft and artisan maker markets at Whole Foods Silicon Valley on The Alameda as well as popping up at more and more events and gatherings around the city.

If you’ve managed to cross paths with Franci Cakes at more than one of these events, you’ve undoubtedly noticed the versatility of Gire’s high-level deliciousness. Her sign says, “New Flavors Weekly,” and she means it. This gets at the heart

of Gire’s growth as a cupcake maker: her willingness to push herself to explore—and perfect—bold new flavors.

“I’m also very adventurous when it comes to baking with new ingredients,” Gire said. “For example, [my husband and I] have been watching a lot of The Great British Baking Show, and it inspired me to take on French desserts. So I made croquembouche for the first time and decided to put choux pastry on top of my cupcakes. It went over well and even impressed a couple who had a croquembouche cake for their wedding in France.”

In a way, following Franci Cakes feels very much like following an artist you love. Perhaps you are drawn in by the undeniable classic—in this case, it could be the decadenceincarnate Red Velvet Oreo cupcake with Red Velvet Cookies & Cream frosting. Then the imagination and the skill evident in the work seduce you into wanting to know what’s next, into nerding out on the next brilliant iteration of her craft’s evolution.

“The customers are amazing. I’ve had a lot of the same ones who have followed me since the beginning and pass the word around, whether by word of mouth or social media,” Gire said.

Coming up, you’ll be able to find Franci Cakes at the SJMADE Local Maker Residency at Whole Foods Silicon Valley every Saturday from April 2 to May 7. Beyond that, Gire has expressed the desire to run another pop-up shop, somewhere where you could satisfy that cupcake craving any day of the week. And beyond that, who knows?

“I’m a Cottage Food Operation, which means Santa Clara County has licensed my home kitchen for food preparation,” Gire said. “This law has been really great for the entrepreneurial small food business. I’d like to think that in the near future, Silicon Valley will have homegrown food businesses that got their start as Cottage Food Operations, like [how] so many of our tech giants grew out of garages.”

Content Magazine Maker Series is curated by sjmade SJMADE Makers Market at Whole Foods, 777 The Alameda instagram: sjmade

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Greg Melson, Linnah Marlow, Chris Marlow, Stephanie Bryant, and Brandon Marlow

Enjoy your Weekend Cofeee Roasters

Once a month in a small warehouse in north San Jose, a handful of family members behind Weekend Coffee Roasters gather to talk shop over—what else?—a cup of coffee. There’s Chris Marlow, the company president, and his brother Brandon, the CFO. Linnah, Brandon’s twin sister, is in charge of marketing and graphic design. Greg Melson, their cousin, is the head roaster. Stephanie Bryant, sister to Chris, Brandon, and Linnah, is the VP and buyer for the company. And Don Fort, another cousin, is in charge of operations.

Weekend Coffee Roasters sources the highest quality, fair trade beans to make a delicious cup of coffee. About five years ago, this burgeoning coffee roasting business began like many Silicon Valley startups: in a garage. Greg, a longtime coffee aficionado and addict, began buying beans and roasting small batches. They would often get together and visit coffee shops across northern California to discover how other roasters made coffee.

“We realized the best coffee was where they roasted their own beans,” Brandon says. This led them to strive to perfect their own roast, and in the process they eventually outgrew the garage and relocated their operations to a commercial space.

Weekend Coffee Roasters quickly went from a hobby to a family business. While everyone keeps day jobs, they spend weekends tending to business matters and roasting coffee—which explains how they got their name. Weekend meetings cover everything from roasting, grinding, and packaging their coffee to discussing business goals for the future. And sampling the latest flavor profiles that Greg has created.

Currently, Weekend Coffee can be purchased on Amazon and from their website. On occasion, they set up shop at events such as SJMADE markets. Their best-selling roast is the Costa Rica. While their company is small, they are working hard to change that. “It’s exciting because the coffee scene is still growing,” says Chris. Weekend Coffee is working to get their coffee into restaurants and cafes, as well as in stores like Whole Foods.

Ultimately, their goal is to open their own coffee shop and roastery in town. “It’s a San Jose phenomenon where people go somewhere else for culture other than San Jose,” says Greg. “We are local, and family, and trying to make coffee better.” They hope to create a space where coffee lovers can get their fix while supporting a local business. As head roaster, Greg is always looking to improve on his previous roasts, striving to develop new flavor profiles. “The roasting process is trial and error,” says Brandon.

“People are into Starbucks,” Chris says. “We want to elevate the customer’s taste.” They want their customers to know the difference between a mediocre cup of coffee and a great cup of coffee. This includes giving customers tips on how to pour a proper pour-over and constantly offering new kinds of coffee. They also work to educate themselves to gain as much knowledge in the coffee industry as they can, taking classes such as barista training, milk chemistry, and coffee tastings. Weekend Coffee plans to enter their Sumatra and Costa Rica coffees into tasting competitions to get feedback on their roasts and continue to improve.

Along with getting to know their customers, the folks behind Weekend Coffee like to get to know other roasters as well. “Some don’t want to share,” Brandon says, “But no one is going to roast a bean the same way.” They hope to eventually see the coffee scene in the Bay Area like that of the wine industry, where vintners are eager to share their knowledge with other vintners.

They still think San Jose’s coffee scene is in its infancy and has a long way to go. “It hasn’t grown as I thought it would,” says Greg. “But we want to change that.”

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twitter: weekendcoffee1

Written by FLora moreno de Thompson Photography by Stanley Olszewski


Jessica Carreira


The Carreira family and their executive chef, David Costa, breathe new life into Alum Rock with authentic yet modern Portuguese cuisine.

In December 2015, Carlos and Fernanda Carreira opened Adega—Portuguese for “wine cellar”—on Alum Rock Avenue in East San Jose’s historic Little Portugal. They inherited and retooled the 33-year old legacy of the former Portuguese restaurant, Sousa’s.

“My husband and I approached the owner,” Fernanda says. “He was pretty much ready to retire. So we got lucky and approached him at the right time.”

“It was always a lifelong dream for us,” Carlos explains. “We’ve been in the wine business for 20 years and we always wanted to have a restaurant. It only happened when our daughter, Jessica, went to culinary school in Los Angeles.”

San Jose–born Jessica studied culinary arts in Pasadena, California, and honed her craft in Portugal, where she became a professional pastry chef at age 20. While working in the kitchen at Michelin-starred Restaurant Eleven in Lisbon, Jessica met David Costa. In early 2015, after three years abroad, she began to talk with Fernanda about starting something special back home.

The plans for Adega came together quickly. The space was renovated with an aesthetic that tastefully integrates Portugal, wine-cellar motifs, and modern dining. Just inside, the proud, glass-enclosed wine rack invokes the Carreiras’ Portuguese wine business. To the right, sculpted birds curve in metallic migratory flight as they would over the Azores. To the left, through the cellar doors, traditional barrel-making tools are hung along the main dining area. Dark walnut paneled tables echo the barrels themselves. The blue-painted tiles of Portugal’s azulejos are here too. Abstracted into a singular wave along the wall, the mural serves as a reminder of the source and approach of Adega’s cuisine: the traditional transformed.

The family asked Costa to serve as executive chef at Adega. Carlos says that Costa’s technique reflects what’s been going on in Lisbon for over a decade. “You get your traditional dishes—same ingredients, same way of processing and cooking them—but presented out of order. Everything makes sense, but everything is different. The way he cooks and presents his dishes is unique.”

In Costa’s hands, the original ingredients and flavors evolve into the evocative. The Bacalhau à Adega is his interpretation of the classic codfish dish. “The Bacalhau is a very old tradition,” Costa explains. “People would salt the codfish to conserve it, then soak it in water to remove the salt. There are a thousand and one ways that the Portuguese prepare codfish. Normally all of the ingredients are mixed together, like a big casserole. For ours, instead of being jumbled up, everything is plated individually.”

“We’ve had some of the older generation of the Portuguese community come in; they’re curious,” Jessica smiles. “They eat the Bacalhau, and they’re like, ‘What is this? This is not what I’m used to.’ But they eat it and they get it. They understand the idea, and they leave satisfied. We want to keep and maintain those authentic flavors, but kind of jazz up the presentation, make it more youthful, more unique and special, and give it new life.”

For Costa and Jessica, the process is a partnership. Jessica describes creating the dessert Arroz Doce Adega based off the traditional Portuguese rice pudding dish: “I had the idea of the flavors—rice pudding is just a big block of pudding, and it’s creamy, but I wanted to incorporate a lot of tropical flavors. But then I had no idea how to make it happen. David’s idea was to roll it into little balls, fry them up, and serve them with a coconut cream and mojito sorbet.”

Still, the landscape of East San Jose contrasts with what Adega offers inside.

“We looked at other options, other locations,” Carlos recalls. “Ultimately this made the most sense. For years this area was known—and still is—as Little Portugal. So it made the most sense to have an authentic Portuguese restaurant in what for so many people is—and hopefully will be again— Little Portugal. I think that’s actually been one of the keys to our success. We are meeting everyone’s expectations, in part because no one is expecting such a nice place here.”

Fernanda echoes: “Everybody asks us, ‘Why? Why here?’ We say, why not. We have people who come here and say, ‘We’ve never been to this side of town.’ They’re willing to come and explore.”

Mouse de Chocolate chocolate mousse Polvo octopus
Barriga de Porco pork belly
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Entering the light-filled kitchens at International Culinary Center is a sensory experience: the gleam of professional equipment, the clatter of cooking activity, aromas of aspiring chefs’ latest creations.

Founded in 1984 as The French Culinary Institute in Soho, New York City, ICC expanded to Campbell, CA, in 2010, bringing with it an award-winning curriculum and impressive resumé— among its grads are Bobby Flay, David Chang, Josh Skenes, Dan Barber, and Christina Tosi.

Graduates of ICC’s professional programs leave with the credentials, confidence, and global connections for a rising career.

The ICC California experience reaches far beyond the kitchen, to the area’s restaurants, farmers’ markets, and vineyards. A Total Immersion hands-on curriculum transforms students from novice to professional skill levels in just months, including real-world experience and career services long after graduation, tapping into the school’s remarkable alumni as a hiring network.

The school’s deans are masters—Jacques Pépin, David Kinch, and Emily Luchetti, to name a few—and a low student-to-teacher ratio assures students get the attention needed to flourish. Advisors help with financial aid and scholarships. Day and evening schedules are available for most programs.

More than 90 percent of students graduate, and ICC is the only culinary school to hold commencement in the legendary Carnegie Hall in NYC.

Graduates work in every facet of the food industry around the globe, including TV, publishing, recipe development, R&D, food styling, management, and—of course—restaurants.

ICC offers a variety of career programs. The six-month Professional Culinary Arts program takes students from basic knife skills through externships in highly rated restaurants. Grads of the Professional Pastry Arts program, also six months, acquire the classic and modern skills needed to work in a pastry kitchen. Italian Culinary Experience offers students language and culinary training in the Unites States followed by a seven-month authentic Italian study-abroad program. Then there’s the ICC’s Intensive Sommelier Training, which is the first in the world to be approved by the Court of Master Sommeliers and the only to have 11 master sommeliers on faculty.

While ICC emphasizes the artistic and professional development of its students, it also encourages them to think about their connection to the environment. Professional Culinary Arts + Farm-to-Table helps students understand how food is grown, bringing them directly to the source. “I really enjoyed the emphasis ICC has put on sustainability," says a graduate of this program. "We, as students, got to make informed decisions about how we want to proceed as chefs.”

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W Hamilton Ave, Campbell, CA | 866.318.2433 50
Photography by Daniel Garcia

Eric Entrikin’s experience spans 20 years in wholesale, distribution, and import, involving the sale of wines from every major wine-producing country in the world, with a focus on Europe and many of the unique varieties of grapes and styles of wine produced. This breadth of experience allows him to have a valued view of the wine industry and the viability of wines in the US markets.

Eric began his career in the restaurant and wine industry while in high school. After holding various positions in the Los Angeles area, he landed a job at the Regency Club in Westwood with then relatively unknown chef Joachim Splichal. Joachim offered Eric the opportunity to follow him to his new restaurant, Patina, where he was the assistant to the maître’d and sommelier.

In 2005, he accepted the position of sommelier at a new steakhouse in Cupertino. Alexander’s Steakhouse offered him the opportunity to create a wine list from the ground up, giving the guest a personal experience of many of the wines. In 2008, the wine list was awarded the Wine Spectator’s Best of Award of Excellence. At Alexander’s, he enrolled in the Court of Master Sommeliers introductory course and continued through the other levels, becoming a Master Sommelier in 2010.

Eric began teaching at ICC’s Intensive Sommelier Training in 2010, a fast-track program that leads to the Introductory and Certified Sommelier exams, administered on-site in ICC’s state-of-the-art wine classroom. He divides his time between teaching the next generation at ICC and consulting for various clients, in addition to advising on the US wine market.


Originally from Ossining, NY, Chef Jeanne’s pastry career began in 1998 when she was in college working at a restaurant—something about the kitchen drew her in. She enrolled at The French Culinary Institute (now ICC), impressed by the school’s well-rounded curriculum.

She spent the next 12 years in and around Manhattan. “The joyous chaos of feeding hundreds of diners during the boom of the celebrity chef in a city that is a food mecca was an invaluable part of my career,” she recalls. Chef Jeanne stayed in New York where she worked in restaurants (Gramercy Tavern, Dressler, RK an American Brasserie, Scarabee, Equus at Castle Hotel), at a patisserie (Gribouille), and for caterers (Abigail Kirsch, Spoon Catering).

In 2010 she began the next journey of her career when she started teaching at ICC’s NY campus. After so many years in the industry, she found it rewarding to share the passion and knowledge she’d gained with pastry students just beginning their path. In 2012 she jumped at the opportunity to move to California with the expansion of the Campbell campus, where she has the pleasure of watching the food scene in Silicon Valley grow. Says Jeanne, “I adore that you can spend 300 days a year here outside and take full advantage of it.”


Chef Marc is dedicated to making sure that aspiring cooks are getting the best education the ICC’s team can provide. The Chef-Instructors share their personal knowledge, expertise, and passion as they prepare students for success.

Marc’s grandparents were self-sufficient farmers, so he was fortunate to be exposed to food and good eating since his “very first steps.” Almost everything on the table was produced from their hard work: meat, vegetables, dairy, oil, nuts, fruits, and also wine! They even grew their own wheat to make bread. “I have very fond memories as a kid of watching my grandmother rule the kitchen and work the fields, while my grandfather was in charge of wine and all kinds of meat products,” he recalls. “From killing to butchering and processing the animal, he did it all—cured ham, sausages, and charcuterie.”

Marc decided to become a cook at age 17, attending cooking school in the South of France, next to the Italian border, in a very small town called Menton. After completing the program, he started as a Commis de Cuisine in a traditional upscale hotel restaurant. After honing his skills with one of the most renowned chefs in France, he started travelling and working primarily in Italy, Spain, and England. His trade took him to other continents as well—first Australia for more than a decade and now the US.

Aside from food and travel, his interests are vintage motorcycles and music (he’s “an addicted vinyl collector”). His proudest moments? “When I can cook, share my adventures, and give answers to my kid’s questions.”


Yeojin Yi, also known as YJ, was born in Korea, raised in Seattle, and currently resides in San Mateo, CA. She has a bachelor’s in Urban Agriculture and Sustainable Food Systems with a self-designed major of Sustainable Entrepreneurialism encompassing restaurants, Farm-to-Fork, and entrepreneurial work in her community. YJ is an alumna of the International Culinary Center, Campbell. She took the Professional Culinary Arts + Farm-to-Table program and graduated top of her class. After graduation, she continued her work in Michelin-starred restaurants in the Bay Area before joining the ICC. Her flavors are dominantly influenced by her Korean heritage, but she also loves Californian-American cuisine and handmade pastas. YJ works in both the student affairs and culinary departments of the school. This position allows her to contribute her own experience and guidance to the students while helping them find the career path they are looking for.


Growing up in New Jersey meant feasting on an array of Italian-American delicacies, such as muzzarell (mozzarella) and gavadeel (cavitelli), but Nicole’s perspective on food changed when she moved to New York City to attend New York University. She began her career in the nonprofit world, but the culinary scene in NYC ignited her zeal for food and drew her to The French Culinary Institute (now ICC). After graduating from the Professional Culinary Arts program, she worked as a private chef for a small advertising company. She realized her passion for education and began leading food tours of NYC, plus teaching cooking to children and teens. However, the Bay Area’s climate and year-round growing season called, and she relocated to Northern California, finding her way to the ICC’s new CA campus, where she has been working in student affairs and career services for five years.

“I really enjoy supporting [the] students as they move through our program and enter the industry,” she says. “It’s so exciting to celebrate student and alumni accomplishments. I love the moment when someone shares they ‘got the job!’ ”

Dominick Guida, Owner



Explore downtown Campbell and you’ ll find The Cruiser Shop tucked inside a Valley-of-the-Heart’s-Delight-era courtyard on Campbell Avenue. Walk into The Cruiser Shop and you’ll meet Dominick Guida, 38. He builds custom bicycles and he sells the things aficionados need to build or customize their own bikes. Whether they’re called Kustom, bike rods, rat rods, or cruisers, Guida’s bikes are cool and people all over the country want them.

“A lot of people see our bikes and say, ‘That’s a lowrider,’ but to me a lowrider has a bent fork, spoked wheels, and they’re real small,” says Guida. “Those are different than what we do. You could call them lowriders because they’re low, but I like the term ‘hot rod bicycle’ because they’re custom and they look like hot rods.”

Growing up in South San Jose, Guida says he was into Hot Wheels, model cars, hot rods, and working with his hands at Gunderson High School ’s auto and wood shop classes. After high school he began customizing and showing classic cars for fun with his friends, and he began working at Race America in Santa Clara, making race-timing systems for drag strip racing. “We built all of the electronics that were on the track measuring the speed of cars, and we built the scoreboards,” says Guida.

In the late 1990s, Guida began collecting 1960s-era Schwinn bicycles and customizing them. “Back then it was hard to find these bikes,” says Guida. “It was word of mouth, you had to know somebody that knew somebody to find them. It was frustrating. A friend and I were both into this and I said, ‘If we’re into this, there has to be other people who are doing this too.’ ”

Guida and friends had been showing their cars at the Happy Days Diner’s weekly Classic Car Night on Union Avenue. Guida organized a bike show there to see what would happen.

“The first show we did was in 2000. We were kind of blown away by how many people showed up because we didn’t think there were that many others out there who were into the custom bicycle thing. We did more shows and they just kept getting bigger and bigger.”

Guida and friend Boogie Breiz formed Behind Bars, Inc., named their bicycle show “Shiny Side Up,” and in 2011 moved it to History Park in San Jose’s Kelley Park. Held annually in July, the show draws about 4,000 locals and fans from as far away as Japan. Growing along with it has been the formation of clubs like the Kruzr3Mob, The Others, and LuxuriouS, anchoring a vibrant South Bay Area custom bike community.

Because Shiny Side Up led people looking for bikes, parts, and accessories to Guida, he opened The Cruiser Shop in December of 2012. Business was so good, he was able to quit his day job six months later.

Although Guida sells plenty of ready-made cruisers, designing and building custom bikes is a large part of his business. Despite the fact that they cost $2,000 to $4,000 a pop, Guida says there has been a waiting list for them since the shop opened, largely because customers from around the country find him on the internet and place orders for them.

Debbie Tozzo is a Sarasota, Florida, art collector. A dozen of Guida’s custom cruisers are housed in her 6,500-squarefoot garage along with sculpture, pottery, ’60s-era Schwinn bicycles, and vintage VW vans and Bugs.

“I found Dominick [online] and I gave him a call. He really listened to me and took the time to design what I wanted,” says Tozzo. “I can take them out to ride, but when they're in the garage on pallet racks, sometimes I just walk in and look at them because each and every one of them is a work of art.”

“My custom bikes aren’t something that you can take off of a shelf,” says Guida. “Every single thing has been handpainted, hand-built, and is ‘one of’ completely. You don’t see any two that are the same, that’s the thing. You get to design your own.”

“When I opened, a lot of people said, ‘What are you going to do when the trend ’s over?’ This isn’t a trend…I’ve seen no signs of anything slowing down because these bikes grab everybody—men, women, kids. Custom bikes have been around for a while, but these are modern-day cool cruisers. I’m putting a new spin on it.”


Family-Friendly Ride

2nd Saturday of the month

6pm meet at The Cruiser Shop

Upcoming Events

Silicon Valley Bikes! Festival & Bicycle Show

Sunday, May 15, 2016

History Park, San Jose

Rose, White & Blue Parade

Monday, July 4, 2016, 10am

The Alameda, San Jose

Shiny Side Up Bicycle Show

Sunday, July 24, 2016

History Park, San Jose

321 East Campbell Ave Campbell, CA 95008 instagram: thecruisershop

_Dominick Guida



Founded in 1967 by Pat and Joan Hayes, Recycle Bookstore has become a San Jose institution, where visitors can wander through cases of books, from literary classics to special interest texts, in the company of the shop’s well-loved felines. The distinctive character of each cat, detailed on the bookstore website, matches the character of the shop’s offerings—many of the books are rich with the history of previous readers. In 1998, Eric and Cynthia Johnson bought the store, and in 2004, they opened a second location in Campbell. We spoke with Eric Johnson about the business, the medium, and the joy of books.

Tell us about yourself and how you came to own Recycle Bookstore. I grew up in Campbell and went to San Jose State, not knowing what I would study. I was much better at math than English but ended up being inspired by a few undergraduate literature courses and fell in love with words and books. I think in some sense, the authors I read became a type of second parent for me, guiding me and helping to develop my own becoming, spiritually and morally. I continued with a masters degree at San Jose State as well.

During my college years, I often visited the Recycle Bookstore on Santa Clara Street, spending quite a few happy hours along the creaky floors with their two cats, Ernie and Rusty. After graduating, I taught at community colleges for a few years and worked at the San Jose Mercury News. My wife and I hadn’t gone to Recycle Bookstore for a while because the store stock was stale; obviously very few new books were coming in. When we finally did visit, they were trying to sell the business, and...I thought I’d take a risk. I had no business experience and very little money, so the City of San Jose backed half of our loan because they wanted the bookstore to stay in business. The bookstore also had to be moved from its location on Santa Clara Street to The Alameda, which was a huge job.

Through the years...we slowly built up the quality of our store stock and our customer base. I mostly learned how to run a bookstore on the job and developed my ideas about what a bookstore should be by listening closely to what customers want and making the store as relaxed and welcoming as possible.

I think one of our main strengths is trying to carry the standard classics people ask for, their all-time favorites. Authors like Hemingway, Steinbeck, Sartre, Agatha Christie, Raymond Chandler, and Robert Heinlein have always been mainstays. If I had a mission statement, it would be this: create a bookstore with thousands of books, constituting a mix of standard classics and books with topics to inspire curiosity, in an atmosphere that encourages browsing and quiet exploration.

What would you say reading provides that no other medium can? The act of reading a book, as opposed to online news bits, is really a philosophical statement on what you think a human being is. By reading a whole book and cultivating the art of staying with a story or idea for a longer period of time, you are saying that it is take the time to absorb information in a slower method and thereby make that information part of you.

Information that’s gleaned by reading online or skimming over short articles will always


end up being superficial and won’t take hold in an important way in our—for lack of a better word—souls. Most of what we encounter in our modern world is pure distraction and doesn’t actually add to the quality and depth of our lives. There is great potential in the interconnectedness of the world through the internet; it’s just that we haven’t learned how to make that experience authentically human yet.

What book have you recommended most? One of my favorites is The Song of the Lark by Willa Cather, a story of a young woman growing up in [fictional] Moonstone, Colorado, with a great musical talent. She both feels emotionally connected to and limited by the small-town experience she has had, and the book explores how she becomes an artist while staying true to herself and her roots.

How are Amazon and online retailers affecting your business? We’re starting to mix new books in with our stock because it’s just impossible to keep a used book of a popular title in stock. Which means we have to compete with Amazon prices, which are 40 percent off retail, which is exactly what we pay as retailers. As far as price point is concerned, we really can’t compete. We don’t even try when it comes to new hardcovers because our customers can save so much by buying through Amazon or Costco. But we do carry a good number of new books, especially in our Campbell location, because people really like to support their local bookstore, and they like the convenience of having the book right there, even if they have to pay a couple of extra dollars.

What do you see for the future of bookstores? Bookstores, I think, will always be part of the cultural landscape of cities. A certain number of people will always gravitate toward a physical place dedicated to the concept that books are gateways to explore ourselves and the world. Bookstores are the gatekeepers for curiosity. When people enter a bookstore, they aren’t entering a retail store, but a magical portal—they can go anywhere they want to go and be anyone they want to be: a nebula, the Ottoman Empire, the American Revolution, the beginnings of humankind, their inner selves, far-off lands full of treasure, lands populated by dragons, the quantum world. The choices are almost infinite, which sort of makes bookstores transdimensional spaces.

People will always want that experience, and they will want to support it in some way. Communities around the country are realizing how important bookstores are, and people know they have to support them by shopping more. This goes hand in hand with being aware of where our money goes, whether food or clothing or books, and makes a statement on what’s important in our lives and our communities.

It's common for people to say they don't have time to read. What do you say to them? It isn’t easy. Heck, I used to have a lot more time for reading before I opened a bookstore! As with anything in life, you have to prioritize what’s important to you personally. Reading keeps me engaged with life, keeps me questioning who I am as a human being and as a citizen of the United States and the world. Without that, my life becomes a mindless series of routines without purpose. That shouldn’t be acceptable to anyone. You have to just look at what takes up time in your life and cut what isn’t adding to your life experience. You could be overcommitting to projects you aren’t passionate about or spending way too much time playing Words with Friends (guilty!) or chattering with friends on social media (instead of going out with them!).

Other than simply buying books, how can book lovers help support independent bookstores? The best way is to support the culture of books. Talk to your friends and families and coworkers about local bookstores. Comment on the books you are reading on social media and in social gatherings. Read in public. Think of yourself as an ambassador on a mission.

Downtown 1066 The Alameda San Jose, CA 95126 408.286.6275 Campbell 275 E. Campbell Ave Campbell, CA 95008 408.370.3514 63

Bay Area Movement

Opening the Door to Parkour

When entering the Bay Area Movement (BAM) studio in San Jose, a buzz of energy and excitement fills the air. Huge wooden structures loom overhead, waiting for people to leap from them—into a foam pit, of course. A large spring-loaded floor, similar to what gymnasts use to reduce impact when training, takes up the center of the studio. A group of young kids and teenagers vigorously exercise under an instructor’s watchful eye, anticipating the moment when they’re free to practice the moves and techniques they’ve been working on.

Parkour, the sport of moving quickly and smoothly through an area, often urban, might sound like it appeals to a niche interest group, but as partners and cofounders Angel Abiang Jr. and Diana Silva explain their journey, it becomes apparent how many people in the Bay Area have taken up this sport.

Angel and Diana, husband and wife of 10 years, discovered parkour through their son, Ryan. When he was four years old, he loved anything to do with ninjas. He became interested in online parkour videos because the

athletes’ style was similar to that of ninjas. Ryan had no interest in conventional sports; he wanted to do parkour. Angel recalls this time fondly: “We would have loved it then if he’d just liked something easy, like soccer, but we knew we had to find something he wanted to do.”

They found Frank Fuentes, who was teaching parkour in Bay Area public parks. Frank had no formal class structure or meeting place—he just taught any kids that were interested. “We would use whatever we could find,” says Frank. “We’d be outside in a park using an old mattress for a mat.” Frank was already a close friend of another parkour enthusiast, Desheay Jenkins, and eventually, Angel, Diana, Frank, and Desheay sat down to discuss the possibility of starting an official parkour program. “We got together and had weekly meetings to make a road map for the business,” says Diana. “We knew we had to stick to a plan to make this happen.” After finally securing a small space, they quickly realized they needed more room to keep up with demand. “We outgrew the first space after just a few months. It was basically the size of a large bedroom,” says Angel. They held

by Michelle Runde Photography by Scott MacDonald (L toR) Ryan, Diana Silva, and Angel Abiang Jr.

classes in public parks again until they found a space more suited to their needs. When they came across a large warehouse off Senter Road, they’d found the space they’d been looking for.

Parkour might be the most well-known style of urban athletics, but there’s also tricking, freerunning, and other specific techniques. The team didn’t want to alienate any one style, so they named their business Bay Area Movement, using the term movement to include all styles. Inclusivity, in terms of style and clientele, is important to the team. “There is a perception that people who do parkour are like skateboarders or punks,” says Angel. “That’s just not true. By starting these classes, we’re introducing it as a family activity, something parents can feel comfortable having their kids participate in.”

While classes are busy with kids and adults alike, BAM is already looking toward the future. The Bay Area has no single organized parkour community. With the help of Richard Alvarado, a college freshman and parkour trainer, they hope to create more clubs that are open to anyone who’s interested, at any skill level.

Today, BAM offers a wide range of classes for all age groups:

for beginners as young as five years old, for preteens and teens, for adults, and recently, for women specifically. “We decided to introduce the women’s class to work on moves that are more customized for them,” says Diana. “So far, everyone has loved it. The women in the class are great; they cheer each other on in class and support each other.”

BAM also plans to have summer camps for kids who want to spend more time training and perfecting their moves. “It takes a lot of technique to master some of these moves,” says Frank. The staff laughs as they recall dealing with “chuckers,” a fitting nickname for those who come to the studio for the first time and are overly eager to try the flashiest and often more difficult moves without any training. No one gets hurt, but it takes discipline to get to that skill level.

Angel, Diana, Desheay, and Frank overcame the hardships of starting a business, working from the bottom up to get to where they are today. They love what they do, and they welcome anyone and everyone to come try a class. With a little hard work and patience, you too might be able to perform astonishing leaps, vaults, and rolls.

instagram: bamvpk

twitter: bamvmnt

facebook: Bay-Area-Movement-Parkour



Some may wonder what drives the face of a franchise to walk the stadium after each home game and sign autographs for as many eager fans as he can until a handler finally ushers him into the locker room?

He certainly doesn’t have to. Fans would likely love him regardless. He’s scored enough goals to cement his status as one of the club’s greats, possibly its greatest. But Chris Wondolowski —Wondo to the fans—continues to sign pieces of paper and articles of clothing because he hasn’t let go of what such moments can mean to the person on the other end of that exchange.

“I remember being the kid in the stands,” reveals the Danville native while seated on a couch inside a quiet and empty Avaya Stadium post practice. “I was going to games at Spartan Stadium when they were the Clash. I remember when Troy Dayak and guys like that would sign autographs after the game. I thought that was the coolest thing ever—it really made an impression on me.”

On the field, Wondo is propelled by an undeniable passion for the game. It’s apparent in his scrappy, poacher style of play (the ball continually seems to find him at just the right time) and in his energetic bursts when he disagrees with a referee’s call (he attributes this largely to nervous energy. “I need to turn that down a bit,” he jokes). And as some defenders will likely tell you, Wondo is relentless. Chelsea’s John Terry said he was a nightmare to cover during the 2012 MLS All Star Game.

What makes Wondo’s story so incredible is that his road to stardom wasn’t a likely series of events. He didn’t train for years with a traveling club team as a teen nor was he courted by tons

of scholarship offers from colleges. Quite the opposite: he played multiple sports year-round until he decided to give up baseball to focus fully on soccer. In fact, he was courted by schools more for his ability in track than his skills as a striker. But he chose to stick with the sport, accepting a scholarship to Chico State, where he played from 2001 to 2004.

After a successful college run (where he met his wife Lindsey, an all-conference volleyball player) and a stint with the Chico Rooks, he was selected in the 2005 MLS Supplemental Draft by the San Jose Earthquakes. The moment felt like a dream come true, but looking back, he says he knew there was still a lot more work ahead once he earned that preliminary spot. Little did he know it would take five more years before he’d secure a regular spot in the starting XI.

After just one season with the Quakes, Chris and his teammates migrated from the Bay Area to Texas to become the Houston Dynamo. It was a huge change: he had never lived outside the Bay, and wasn’t used to dealing with the reality of his family living half a country away. In retrospect, he admits it was an eye-opening experience, and though he continued to work for his chance to shine, he never found regular playing time while in Texas.

His transition to the Wondo we now know likely began when he was traded back to San Jose in 2009. The move home offered a better chance for starting time, and he responded with three goals in 14 appearances that year. However, it was the season that followed that proved to be his breakthrough.

Scoring 18 goals in 28 appearances, his offensive explosion

Naysayers call Chris Wondolowski’s scrappy goals lucky, but is it possible to be lucky 103 times since 2010? A retrospective of his career thus far reveals the story of a man’s tireless work ethic and the eventual fruits of that labor.

in 2010 made him the team’s new focal point. The tally was enough to earn him the MLS Golden Boot, awarded to the league’s highest scorer.

He won the honor again in 2012 during San Jose’s storybook “Goonies” season, which saw the team cobble together several late victories to win the club its second Supporters’ Shield. The year was similarly magical for Wondo, who earned MLS MVP honors as part of a 27-goal season that matched the all-time record set in 1996.

Remembering what was special about that season, Wondo explains, “The brotherhood we had in that locker room showed on the field. I think that drive and fight was what helped us get those results late in those games.”

With 110 career goals, Wondo currently stands as the fifth highest-scoring player in MLS history, and one of only nine players to cross the 100-goal mark. What’s even more impressive is that 103 of those goals have come since that breakthrough 2010 season.

Asked how he was able to break through in meteoric fashion, Chris chalks up the change to perfect timing. “I really had confidence in my ability,” he says. “Confidence is one of those funny things. It kind of snowballs, and you get more and more belief in yourself. When you do that, especially as a striker, special things can happen.” After gaining a chance early in his career to learn from more senior players, like Dwayne De Rosario and Brad Davis, he was able to own the moment when it finally arrived.

In such a fluid game, and especially as a striker, where confidence can sometimes mean everything, Wondo has brought not only an incredible offensive output but has done so with remarkable consistency. As Dominic Kinnear, his head coach at both Houston Dynamo and the Earthquakes, said of Wondo in a profile for Grantland, “Some of his goals look lucky. Every striker gets lucky. But a lot of times, he’s creating his own luck.”

US Men’s National Team coach Jürgen Klinsmann impressed upon him that every day is game day. To Wondo, that means extra shooting drills after every practice and a focus on the match ahead no matter what. “There’s a lot of things that go into being a professional on the field, but there are just as many of those things off the field as well,” he adds.

As much as he hates it, sometimes that means letting bad results go. A notorious competitor and an admitted bad loser, Wondo says losses tend to stick with him well after the final whistle. But thanks to his wife’s 24-hour rule, he’s able to be miserable all he wants for one whole day. “After that,” he says, “I have to move on and get everything sorted.”

Another person who’s helped him let go is his two-year-old daughter Emersyn. Chris admits that becoming a father has helped him realize that, win or lose, he’s still playing the game he loves.

“I think that’s something she’s helped me remember,” he says. “You never know how long you’ll be able to play, so enjoy every moment out there.”

With 110 career goals, Wondo currently stands as the fifth highest-scoring player in MLS history, and one of only nine players to cross the 100-goal mark. twitter: ChrisWondo

Arlene Biala Radical Healing


Santa Clara County’s newest Poet Laureate, Arlene Biala, presents a rich Filipina and Pacific Island heritage in her poetry. Everyone has a story capable of transformational effects—an idea cocktail with beneficent volatility. For the next two years, Biala’s mission is to find these stories and coax them skyward.

Why is it important for Santa Clara County to have an advocate for poetry? Our county, this valley, is not a melting pot. Each person has her or his own story to share through poetry, dance, theater, and all artistic genres. It is important to encourage each other to “talk story” so we can recognize and witness each other’s struggles and strengths—to lift each other up in song. We should all be advocates for this. Every day.

Does poetry have something to offer people who do not identify as fans of poetry? If so, what is it, and how might you help it reach the people it can serve? Absolutely, yes. It can spark dialogue, debate, conversation, and the inspiration to express and create in other ways. As an undergrad in college, I had an English teacher who actually said, “If you are not writing like Milton by the time you are 19, you may as well give up.” I never forgot this because I am vehemently opposed to that belief or anything that alludes to “the fine art of poetry” or that excludes anyone from poetry. So, my primary focus is to expand the accessibility and enthusiasm for poetry in our community.

One of my projects is a pop-up poetry making station, which we are calling POETree, that will invite people of all ages to contribute lines for collective poems. POETree will happen at public spaces and events throughout the county over the next two years.

If it’s true that poetry begins not with words on a page but as a way of seeing the world stripped clean of one’s personal agenda, does that mean that poetry is in a way omnipresent something you discover rather than something you create? I think it’s both. Through the process of creation—the intention and the physical act of writing—you are discovering the work. When my daughter was eight, she wrote a poem to honor the children who were killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School. She wrote, “the grass opens like doors.”

Poetry comes at you, through you. You have to get out of its way.

Sometimes you read a line that speaks to you at the root something that you always knew was true but never articulated until an author laid it bare. I know you’ve read lines like this. Tell us one and break down what it does for you. This is one of the boom-POW lines of poetry from our current US Poet Laureate (#PLOTUS), Juan Felipe Herrera, in his poem “Five Directions to My House”: I said five, said five like a guitar says six.

This line has the impact of standing directly beneath El Capitan in Yosemite. Sense of place in the universe. Nature, poetry, music, art...moving us beyond words.

Once you’ve written something, what, if anything, is your relationship to it? Are you done with it, or do you hope it achieves something specific? Good question. It depends. Sometimes you know when a poem is pau, finished. You offer it to the universe. Sometimes you know it is not ready but you nudge it out anyway. I always give thanks and send good intentions.

Do I hope it achieves something specific? Inspiration. A sense of peace. Healing from despair.


sister, the things we don't talk about how you discovered god just after your daughter took god into her own hands and choked him out

how we came to find ourselves at yet another wake lola vering piercing eardrums again with her death wail while we chose hennessy in the parking lot over holy watered novenas

anak na lasi daughter of thunder we never ask who whispered in her ear that night, suggesting she silence the thunder of voices in her head

we don't count the number of times the women in our family have been beckoned into the hallway by the same whisper


blessing: this cradled body

i want to be five tones deeper. translucent syllables vowels from the na’au longing. check. moontimes rock me back and forth, back and forth. familiar lullaby. exquisite.

i want to stay awhile in this lapis prayer bowl as the ochre star rises to rinse me clean.

75 social media: poetlaureatescc
Excerpt provided by Arlene Biala


For this year’s “Challenge”we invited six local photographers to create a fashion image that conveys one of the senses. Here are the beautiful results.


Photographer: Phil Emerson | Photo Assistant: Jordan McKenzie | Model: Vanessa Leigh Hair Stylist: Saaj Lane of Umbrella Salon | Make-Up: Diana Cortez | Location: Jessica Russell


Photographer: Khiem Hoang | Model: Anastasia of Stars Model Management | Hair Stylist: Nathan Libra of Umbrella Salon | Make-Up: Janyl Moreno


Photographer: Markas Plato | Photo Assistant: Brooklynn Plato | Model: Vanessa Wilkinson (left) of Stars Model Management | Model: LaNisa BuenaVista (right) of Look Model Agency Make-Up: Lukas Plato | Hair Stylist: Anna Draganova, Debbie Duran, and Aubrey Brillo of Umbrella Salon | Stylist: Danielle Tavia Wardrobe: (This page) Jacket, Moschino | Top, Model’s Own Skirt | Ankle Cuff, Manokhi Leather | Shoes, Alejandra G. (Left) Jacket, Faubourg Du Temple | Top, Moschino | Jumper, OTT | Shoes, Tamar Braxton Photographer: Tanja Lippert | Assistant Photographer: Kayleigh Sullivan | Model: Sterling Clairmont of Scout Model Agency | Wardrobe: Manic Designs, Rachel Riot Accessories: Tanja Lippert and Asiel Design | Art: Tulio Flores | Hair: Vanessa Ramos | Make-Up: Tanja Lippert | Location: Asiel Design



Photographer: Paul Ferradas | Model: Sabrina of Stars Model Management | Hair Stylist: Adrian De Lorzada of Umbrella Salon Jewelry Design: Atzi Designs | Stylist: Michelle Rivet | Make-Up: Janice Daoud | MUA Assistant: Arbella Yousif Prop | Stylist: Danielle Wallis


Photographer: Bekka Bjorke | Models: Alekzandria Murry, Brad Elliot, and Ryan Bettencourt of MDT Agency, Inc | Hair: Brianna Virta | Make-Up: Renee Batres Body Paint/SFX Make-Up: Amanda Nguyen Sari | Wardrobe: SWATI Couture | Set Design: Joshua De Lozada | Assistant: Paul Lewicki | Location: AWAAZ Productions

remodel remodel

Photographer: Daniel Garcia

Photo Assistant: Arabela Espinoza

Model: Cameron Henn of Stars Model Management

Art Director: Elle Mitchell

Stylist: Eric Belladonna

Hair Stylist: Lisa Likes of Bigsby House

Make-Up: Karla Olivares of Maven Artists Agency

Wardrobe: Ted Baker London and Scotch & Soda


Thank You

This issue is made possible with the support of our partners—companies and organizations who share our desire to support and develop the creative community of the South Bay. We are grateful for their contribution and support and for actively taking part in the betterment of our region.

For more information on becoming a mission partner, contact

Knight Foundation supports transformational ideas that promote quality journalism, advance media innovation, engage communities and foster the arts. We believe that democracy thrives when people and communities are informed and engaged.

Knight is working to support the urbanization of a traditionally sprawling city with a specific focus on Central San Jose. Our investments tap into the region’s creative energy and disruptive history to accelerate the city’s significance as a well-connected, transport-accessible hub for culture and innovation in the South Bay.

Working with partners in the public and private sectors, we support a range of projects from prototypes and pop-ups to in-depth research and sustained organizational support.


As Regale Winery and Vineyards was being built, the overarching principle in all things was that it should not just be a place to craft fine wine, but also a place that allows individuals to engage in thoughtful conversations, relax in beautiful settings while sharing time, and, of course, excellent wine, with friends and neighbors. This philosophy is reflected in the creation of it’s amazing gardens and abundant gathering spaces. All designed to create the perfect atmosphere in which to socialize while enjoying great wine.

Regale crafts a terroir-driven collection of elegant wines. The romantic wine lover’s mantra echoes the core winemaking values at Regale; the finest wines borne in the vineyard and crafted by passionate hands and questioning minds achieve greatness primarily in relation to food and community. Every year they produce small lots of handcrafted wines from their estate Pinot Noir vineyard and other remarkable vineyards located in California’s finest winegrowing appellations. Their wines show extraordinary finesse, provocative personality, restrained alcohol and balanced acidity.

Open to the Public.

Tasting Room Hours: Saturdays 11–4 & Sundays 11–5 24040 Summit Rd, Los Gatos, CA 95033


Filco Events has been working on festivals, fundraisers, and events in the San Francisco Bay Area since 1988.

Each event is individually tailored to the special needs and goals of the organization. While fundraising is always a significant part of festivals, other priorities include media attention, corporate support, and volunteer building, as well as the opportunity to showcase specific programs and services to the community.

In all cases, advancing long-term goals while still raising significant revenue gives each event purpose and recognition for many years into the future.

From logistics to concessions to volunteer coordination, we can contract key elements of large festivals, provide consultation, or actually direct the entire production.

We are also available for national and multi-city events.

Proud Sponsor of Content Magazine Pick-Up Parties for 2016

Entertaining people with unmatched social & dining experiences throughout the South Bay. From singing karaoke daily at 7 Bamboo Lounge to grabbing a signature sandwich and craft beer at Spread Deli & Bottles to tasting wines and cheese at 20twenty cheese bar to meeting up for drinks with friends at Jack’s Bar & Lounge to enjoying local cuisine paired with craft beers & cocktails at Liquid Bread Gastropub to having us serving drinks at your next event with Your Pour Cocktail Catering, Dipsomania has something for everyone.

Universal Grammar (UG) is a boutique production house that presents quality artistry from emerging contemporary voices. As an ambassador for modern cultural creativity, UG curates offerings that reveal a devotion to authentic artistry that both challenges modern convention and respects its craft.

instagram: Chatos1013 twitter: UnGrammar



gatherings for culture creatives

On a bright Saturday morning, sixty photographers and creatives gathered to hone their craft and learn from several industry doyens. The day began with brunch, French toast and creamy shrimp and grits, provided by Deluxe, downtown San Jose’s newest hotspot eatery.

DJ Thomas Ramon Aguilar kept the music lively and upbeat. Everyone was given a Bloody Mary tasting, both a classic version and the Bloody IPA, a favorite at Dipsomania’s Liquid Bread Gastropub.

A private ballet performance began after brunch, as Dalia Rawson, executive director of the New Ballet School, introduced the four members of the Studio Company, who danced solo variations. The New Ballet School focuses on the whole dancer, gives students, as Rawson says, “a clarity of thought and action.”

Paul Ferradas then outlined his storied photography career that took him from a corporate job to shooting at New York’s Fashion Week. He offered specific advice, but more than anything, he encouraged photographers to know their tools, from camera to postproduction, and be able to create a polished, professional image. That, he assured them, is the key to building a career in something you love.

Daniel Garcia was next on the agenda. He illuminated some of the more technical aspects of photography, specifically the basic elements of lighting. Fellow photographers geeked out in a lively Q&A over watts versus lumens, but at the end, Garcia reminded the audience that however it happens, photographers are “telling a story by the use of their lights.”

Dynamic Tanja Lippert then took over with her segment on directing models. A former model herself, she has unique experience that helps her to understand how to get the very best out of her clients and models. It all comes down to one very simple idea: trust.

With the instructional portion at an end, participants were encouraged to pick up their Nikons, Canons, and iPhones lying in wait and play with the lighting equipment set up on the stage. The dancers returned to pose as models. Garcia, Ferradas, and Lippert offered portfolio critique. At the end of the three-hour event, participants had seen an inspired dance performance, developed a taste for a beer-based Bloody Mary, procured some concrete advice for moving forward with their photography, and left with a few of their own newly shot masterpieces.

Stay tuned for more information on the next Content LAB: FLOWER AND GARDEN May 14, 2016
Written by kate Evans Photography by James Tensuan & Mario Ayala



Incredibly diverse in style and content, the films of LunaFest are united by a common thread of exceptional storytelling by, for, and about women.

Motown on Mondays

DJs, producers, musicians, and music enthusiasts who share a passion for soul music and dancing converge on Monday nights.

The Continental Bar Weekly


Presented by Poetry Center San José, this poetry reading series features different poets every month and is followed by an open mic.

Works/San Jose

Every 2nd Tues

New Talent Competition Finals Round

This annual comedy competition starts with a pool of over 100 amateur comedians. The audience votes for their favorites to ultimately pick the funniest local comedian at the finals.

Rooster T. Feathers


from Planet Earth to the Firmament

Pianist Jon Nakamatsu performs the world premiere of Lee Actor’s Piano Concerto no.

2, Henry Mollicone’s A Song for Our Planet, and Beethoven’s Symphony no. 9 in D California Theatre


The second floor is set up for local artists to come and display their talent at this open mic, hosted by barista Jake Wichman.

KALEID's Two Buck Tuesday

Get together with great artists, and see what’s up in the arts community. There will be live painting/drawing, workshops, music, and $2 original art for sale.

KALEID Gallery

Every 3rd Tues


Celebrate cycling and its history with demonstrations, family fun, community building, and an off-the-hook bicycle show by Gooseneck Bicycles Magazine and Pops Fabrication.

History Park

Arte nella Piazza

Bay Area artists will offer pieces for sale in a beautiful outdoor piazza setting, joined by local musicians and other live entertainment.

Bel Bacio Cafe

Juan Felipe Herrera is the first Chicano to be appointed Poet Laureate of the United States. His poetry and performance art carry the themes of human suffering, honor, and dignity.

Santa Clara University

Nonprofit Arts Boards: Smarter, Stronger, Strategic



This second annual, all-day conference will feature presentations focused on strengthening board engagement in the organizational artistic mission. Board members and arts leaders are encouraged to attend together

School of Arts & Culture at MHP

U.S. Poet Laureate Juan Felipe Herrera
Bluelight Cinemas
Open Mic at Red Rock Coffee Red Rock Coffee Weekly
Silicon Valley Bikes


Maker Faire Bay Area


This gathering of makers who are exploring new forms and new technologies features innovation and experimentation across the spectrum of science, engineering, art, performance, and craft.

San Mateo County Event Center May 20–22

Philip Zimbardo in Conversation with Nikita Coulombe

Psychologist Philip Zimbardo joins writer Nikita Coulombe to discuss their book about a whole generation of young men retreating into virtual worlds.

Kepler's Books

Hat Blocks and Hats: Sculptural Form and Artistic Function

Take a peek inside the world of hat making with Wayne Wichern, whose millinery design and teaching career evolved out of his experience as a floral designer and classical ballet dancer.

New Museum Los Gatos

Bat Boy: The Musical

Inspired by tabloid headlines, this musical comedy/horror show is about a half boy, half bat creature. With a beat-driven rock score, the show raises issues of the dangers of prejudice, intolerance, and provincialism.

Bus Barn Theater

May 26–June 25



Bringing the spirit of spring to the table, the next Content LAB features floral design and easyto-follow seasonal gardening techniques.

27 Rio de Mujeres

Packed with nonstop video programming, original artwork, music, dance, games, panels, and renowned guests, this annual celebration of Japanese art and popular culture entertains a colorful spectrum of fans.

San Jose Convention Center May 27–30


Focused on emerging and present subcultures thriving in the region, SubZERO is a DIY, artistically bent, hi/lo-techno mashup where street meets geek in a festival and artwalk setting.


In this chamber opera, Paula dreams of escaping the rural life of the river, but is thwarted by her family and her culture. In the end, the spirit of the river and La Llorona take from her what she loves most: her only daughter.

Mexican Heritage Theater May 21–22

San Jose Taco Festival of Innovation


Moveable Feast curates thirty taco trucks serving their rendition of a taco—from Vietnamese shrimp to ice cream tacos—plus lucha libre and an air accordion championship.

History Park

Dine Downtown


For 10 days, downtown San Jose’s finest restaurants roll out the red carpet and showcase their culinary specialties. Diners will have the opportunity to try out specially priced three-course prix fixe dinners.

Downtown San Jose June 10–19

To have your event considered for listing, send to:

COntent Calendar #ContentPick
Content LAB Flower & Garden Veggielution Guillermo Galindo Special Performance Experimental composer Guillermo Galindo performs selections on Cinco de Mayo in conjunction with the exhibition “Border Cantos.”
San Jose Museum of Art
SoFA District June 3–4


The production of Content Magazine would not be possible without the talented writers, editors, graphic artists, and photographers who contribute to each issue. We thank you and are proud to provide a publication to display your work. We are also thankful for the sponsors and readers who have supported this magazine through advertisements and subscriptions.

Want to be a part of the Content community?

Contact us at:


Arabela is a creative photographer based in San Jose, interning for Content, and studying advertising at SJSU. If she’s not out photographing, you can probably find her at a coffee shop during the day or dancing with friends at night.

Derek is a creative involved with writing, music, fine arts, and acting. In 2008, he graduated from the University of CaliforniaBerkeley where he studied English and Japanese.


Jay is a Polaroid photographer and Polaroid lover from the South Bay who does anything to “get the shot” He attends art and music events throughout the Bay Area to capture melodies and memories with Impossible Project’s newest generation of Instant Films. instagram: thepolaroidjay

Diane produces and hosts a weekly public affairs program on Radio KKUP, 91.5 fm, and writes freelance for Content, Atom Magazine, De-Bug, and Metro Silicon Valley newspaper. She’s also a big-time San Jose BikePartier, Willow Glen neighborhoodie, and Silicon Valley wage slave.

A photographer in love with fashion and street photography, Mark was born in Manila, but has spent half his life in San Jose. He picked up his first camera when fashion first called to him. His primary focus is his family and documenting the lives of his wife and two daughters. VISUALSBYMARK.COM

Michelle moved to San Jose recently from Washington State. She graduated from Gonzaga University with two BAs: Political Science and History. With so much to do and see in the Bay Area, she spends her time strolling street festivals, seeing plays and musicals, and exploring San Francisco.

Nicole is an arts, culture, food, and design fanatic. She is an active community member in this vibrant city we call home—and is every day inspired by the people creating the past, present, and future of San Jose. twitter: @wonderosity

A Silicon Valley native, Monica is the creative voice behind San Francisco Bay Area lifestyle blog Living In Vogue and a #teamred blogger contributor to Redbook Magazine. Mixing modern trends with a vintage flair, she loves to create stylish looks and currently works with a variety of creative publications and leading companies, as a stylist, writer, event planner, and digital influencer.




Made possible with support from: SVCREATES Strengthening Your Organization Through Board Leadership STRONGER, SMARTER, STRATEGIC
Wednesday, May 18th; 8:15am-3pm
School of Arts & Culture at Mexican Heritage Plaza 1700 Alum Rock Avenue San Jose, CA 95116
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Santana Row San Jose, CA 408.247.8880 Santana Row San Jose, CA 408.429.2909 Santana Row San Jose, CA 408.246.6320 Citycentre Plaza Houston, Texas 713.365.9922 16.029 Straits ad.mech.pdf 1 3/15/16 12:02 PM A SAN JOSE DOWNTOWN ASSOCIATION PRODUCTION | SJDOWNTOWN.COM FRIDAYS 10-2 MAY 6-NOV 18 SAN PEDRO SQUARE ©2016 Technology Credit Union. Federally insured by NCUA. Equal Housing Lender. PERSONAL BANKING l HOME LOANS l WEALTH MANAGEMENT l PRIVATE BANKING l COMMERCIAL BANKING To learn more: CALL: 800.553.0880 CLICK: VISIT: One of our branches Dan Corson, Sensing WATER*, 2015 Downtown San Jose Highway 87 Underpass at San Fernando Street City of San Jose Office of Cultural Affairs Public Art Program * This artwork’s lighting pattern reacts to changes in weather Credit: Dan Corson CREATE : CONNECT : SAN JOSE 316-CITY OF SAN JOSE3.qxp_Layout 1 2/23/16 3:00 PM Page 1
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