octopus literary salon

Three weeks ago, The Octopus Literary Salon finally opened its doors at 2101 Webster Street in Oakland. In that time, the Octopus has hosted The John Brothers Piano Company with John Morgan and Greg Ashley, Dreamdate with Yea Ming and Anna Hillburg, plus Dyllan Hersey and Pistachio. True to the name, it also delivered a book launch, as well as literary open mics every Monday. You can find tons of good stuff on sale, including books, records, cassettes as well as coffee, beer, wine, and delicious food. The Octopus is providing a sorely needed music scene to the earlier hours. Saturday events end at 11pm and several “Live Music Happy Hours” are bringing bands from 6-8pm on weeknights. Sundays play host to a “Kid’s Open Mic Brunch”. BART is close and you will never miss a single encore.

anna hillburg with yea mingAnna Hillburg and Yea Ming Chen

The months ahead are a treasure trove of Bay Area goodness and some tremendous touring talent. Quite remarkably, Omaha’s Simon Joyner plays the Salon on May 16. On May 9, there’s a triple bill of “Songwriters in the Round” with Jerry David DeCicca (The Black Swans), Sylvie Simmons (who just released her first record after a lifetime of music journalism), and Colin Gilmore (son of Jimmie Dale). On May 2, you can hear Michael Beach (who will soon tour the US with Australia’s Shovels), Charlie Megira (Oakland, from Tel Aviv via Berlin), plus words from Anker Frankoni (who is working on his second book – part 2 of his fascinating debut trilogy “Mexican Eskimo”). Tomorrow – Saturday, April 25 – there’s another triple bill with Danny Paul Grody (from Tarentel and The Drift), ALI (Michael James Tapscott and Raphi Gottesman from Odawas and China), and Dibson T. Hoffweiler (a recent Oakland transplant after years as a fixture on the NYC anti-folk scene). Do check out The Calendar – it goes on and on with shows from The Ian Fays, Beshka & the Bolsheviks, Slouching Stars, Field Medic, and King Lollipop (Cody from Shannon & the Clams). Like the Octopus Literary Salon on Facebook to keep up on last minute details.

Literature freaks will not be disappointed. This Sunday, the Bay Area Book Festival presents The Lacuna Project with words from Paul Corman Roberts, Annelyse Gelman, Hollie Hardy, Sarah Kobrinksy, and Simon Crafts. On May 8, Jennifer Blowdryer, Richard Loranger, QR Hand, and Cassandra Dallett are on the bill. On July 11, the Salon participates in Beast Crawl with venues all over town. Tonight, Echo Brown performs her one woman show “Black Virgins Are Not for Hipsters“.

The Octopus was born nearly twenty months ago when some friends and I organized some pop-ups in the MEGADOME at Chabot Space & Science (and one very special living room). We know you will like it. What are you waiting for? Go check it out!

If you are interested in performing, contact The Octopus here.