Hayes Valley may be known primarily for its hip boutiques and high-end cuisine, but it’s more than just a “haven for shoppers and bon vivants,” as 7×7 phrased it. In fact, Hayes Valley and its neighboring communities are also at the center of a vibrant arts scene, evidenced by the sheer amount of concerts, shows, exhibitions, and festivals unfolding in the area. But a person can only be in one place at a time, and residents of the Fulton 555 condos may find that, with the never-ending roster of events planned around Hayes Valley, it’s difficult to narrow down your choices. We can help. Now that we’ve entered the heart of summer, here are some of our picks for not-to-be-missed, end-of-summer happenings in the vicinity.
UnderCover Presents a Summer Series Finale | 201 Franklin Street
If your summer music rotation is feeling a little stale right about now, heading to an UnderCover Presents show is a fail-safe cure. The dream child of Lyz Luke and Charith Premawardhana, UnderCover Presents takes classic, beloved albums and invites a wide range of Bay Area musicians to reimagine and reinterpret the music. Luke says that her mission is to strengthen the sense of community among Bay Area musicians by creating opportunities for collaboration and friendship. In a recent interview with KALW, she reminded listeners that, rather than being a musician, her official job title is “Music Enabler.” Her goal might be to bolster the musical community, but the result is a series of epic, imaginative concerts, the likes of which aren’t replicated anywhere else. In the past, they’ve tackled albums like Bob Dylan’s Highway 61 Revisited, Bob Marley’s Exodus, and the Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. Now, as August is upon us, it’s time to get your tickets for the UnderCover SFJazz Summer Series Finale. This epic show will pay tribute to some giants of jazz—Nina Simone, Ray Charles, Miles Davis, and the Muscle Shoals Rhythm Section—with each night featuring a line-up of beloved local musicians. The series runs August 17th – 20th.
Concerts at The Fillmore | 1805 Geary Street
Summer in the Bay Area isn’t complete without a night at The Fillmore, swaying alongside your fellow concertgoers beneath the sparkling, gargantuan chandeliers. Built in 1910, the historic venue spent most of its life as a dance hall, with a short stint as a roller rink in the ‘40s. If you haven’t made it out for a show yet, don’t fret: there are plenty of options left on the schedule this summer. In fact, here are some of the performances that are still ahead: A-WA with Afrolicious (August 4th), Pokey LaFarge with Ruston Kelly (August 19th), and August Alsina with Rotimi and Tone Stith (August 30th).
Timbuk2’s “We Rollin’ Scavenger Hunt” | 506 Hayes Street
This event is a little more off the beaten path than our other picks, but we think it’s a promising way to spend a Friday. Timbuk2, a local messenger-bag maker, has been hosting a series of parties all summer. The self-defined aim of this “general revelry” is to “delight your senses and wet your whistle.” Indeed, their grown-up scavenger hunt, focused on bikes, food, and drink, promises to be a playful way to close out your summer and welcome the fall. Check it out on September 8th.