Freedom of Choice - Page 5

With a musical love letter to his rapidly changing hometown, Oakland's favorite sideman takes center stage

|
(4)
Kev Choice near his home in Oakland's Lakeshore neighborhood.
GUARDIAN PHOTOS BY BRITTANY POWELL

"When people talk about Oakland as the new, hip place to be — it's always been that," he says. "Aside from LA, Oakland is the cultural center of the West Coast. There is so much art here. The music, the history, the politics...but when you start seeing Oakland on lists of top destination spots, why are they saying that? Because there's a certain amount of five-star restaurants now, or cool little hipster bars?" he says, in the few minutes before he has to leave to head toward Uptown, into the heart of them. "That's starting to get away from the essence of what Oakland really is, which is about the people."

"At the same time, there are people within 20-mile radius of us right now who are literally scared to come here. 'Oh, they'll shoot you over there, they'll rob you.' Look, there is a possibility that will happen," he says. "There's also a very real possibility that you'll meet a very intellectual person and have a great conversation, or go to a club and hear some great music, or walk up the street and see people doing capoeira, doing some crazy, creative shit.

"People block out what Oakland is because of their perception, and perception is everything. If you never spend time here, believe me — it's something entirely different from what you'd expect."

 

Comments

Congrats on this well-deserved feature! Super juiced to read this :-) Props to SFBG's Emma Silvers for sharing this story with the world.

Posted by Zsa-Zsa on Mar. 04, 2014 @ 8:05 pm

Big Up! Kev Choice. It's been a pleasure watching, hearing and experiencing the evolution of a cat who's carving out his own path to greatness. Thanks for reminding us all to Fly.

Posted by Guest G1Rhythm on Mar. 06, 2014 @ 3:19 am

Great piece! Keep rising Kev...

Posted by Mr. Hooper on Mar. 06, 2014 @ 8:06 pm

Kev Choice! You are famous. Keep making us proud.

Posted by Bert Thomas on Mar. 11, 2014 @ 1:55 pm

Post new comment

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.

Related articles

  • Nite Trax: Red Bull Music Academy schools the Bay

  • Techno is expensive

    Are clubs moving out of reach? Plus: Masters at Work, Gary Bartz, Stretch Armstrong and Bobbito, SuperDre, Rocket, and C.L.A.W.S. in a church

  • Report details how brown and black communities are decimated, step by step

  • Also from this author

  • Happy Hour: The week in music

  • Spring chickens

    'Tis the season for new releases, featuring a bumper crop of Bay Area bands. Plus, an identity crisis: Bay Area surf-mariachi-punks bAd bAd defend their honor against LA electro-pop kids badbad

  • Listen: Yesway's "Howlin' Face"