Sunday, February 25, 2024 | 1–3pm
ADMISSION: Free with Museum admission; advance registration recommended
Presented by The CJM, Noise Pop, and Reboot, discover the vibrant and transformative music scene that defined San Francisco from the late 1980s–2000s with photographer Jay Blakesberg and Noise Pop co-founder Jordan Kurland. Presenting iconic images and trading insider stories of the city’s music history, Blakesberg and Kurland will revisit memorable concerts and musical moments, from legendary outdoor performances and festivals to shows at beloved lost music venues. Join us to celebrate San Francisco’s creative spirit, unique musical identity, and electrifying history.
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Jay Blakesberg is a San Francisco–based photographer, filmmaker, and public speaker. He is best known for his music photography beginning in 1978. Blakesberg has worked with many legendary artists including the Grateful Dead, Neil Young, Carlos Santana, Tom Waits, Red Hot Chili Peppers, the Flaming Lips, and more. His work has been published in thousands of magazines worldwide in addition to books and documentary films. He has published sixteen coffee table books of his work, including fourteen under his self-publishing imprint Rock Out Books. Blakesberg's second solo museum exhibit RetroBlakesberg: The Music Never Stopped is on view through July 28, 2024 at The Contemporary Jewish Museum in San Francisco.
Jordan Kurland is co-founder and partner at Brilliant Corners Artist Management, which has offices in San Francisco, New York, Los Angeles, and Seattle. Brilliant Corners represents several influential musical acts including Death Cab for Cutie, The Postal Service, Toro Y Moi, Perfume Genius, Soccer Mommy, The New Pornographers, Pup, and Dan the Automator. Kurland is a partner in Noise Pop Industries, which produces and promotes events throughout the greater Bay Area including the annual multi-venue festival Noise Pop. He is also the co-founder of the groundbreaking boutique outdoor music festival Treasure Island, which ran from 2007–2018.
A San Francisco resident since 1995, Kurland currently sits on the board of directors of two local non-profit organizations: the independent publishing house McSweeney's and the outdoor concert series Stern Grove Festival. He is actively engaged in politics and served on the entertainment advisory committees for Barack Obama in 2012 and Hillary Clinton in 2016. Since 2004 he has launched several democracy-focused projects with author Dave Eggers. In 2020, Kurland and Eggers created the digital compilations Good Music to Avert the Collapse of American Democracy (Volumes 1 and 2), which raised over six hundred thousand dollars in forty-eight hours in support of voting rights organizations. Most recently he quarterbacked another compilation, Good Music To Ensure Safe Abortion Access To All, which raised two hundred thousand dollars in twenty-four hours for reproductive rights organizations and debuted at number nine on the Billboard Albums Chart.
Kurland is an occasional writer and has contributed to outlets such as Billboard and Boing Boing. He has appeared as a guest on a number of podcasts including Promoter 101, The New Music Business, and Vinyl Emergency.
Travel through some of the most electrifying moments in music history through the lens of Bay Area–based photographer Jay Blakesberg. RetroBlakesberg: The Music Never Stopped presents photographs of legendary musicians that reveal the evolution of San Francisco’s unique music culture and its wide-reaching influence. Featuring images of the Grateful Dead, Joni Mitchell, Tracy Chapman, Neil Young, Soundgarden, and many more alongside original tickets stubs, press passes, and other ephemera, this exhibition invites visitors to experience a visual history of the sounds and stories that have shaped the Bay Area and beyond.
Major support for RetroBlakesberg: The Music Never Stopped is generously provided by Joyce Linker, the Lisa and Douglas Goldman Fund, Marilyn Yolles Waldman, Another Planet Entertainment, the Bill Graham Memorial Foundation, Randee Seiger, ChromaLuxe, and Magna Chrome.