Cultural celebration at UCSC

“We all smile in the same language” That’s this year’s tagline for UCSC’s Multicultural Festival.

For 36 years, this campus has been dedicated to celebrating the varied cultures of UCSC’s diverse student population with an annual festival. It’s a fun time to share your culture, and take part in someone else’s as they share with you. And what better way to discover a little piece of their experience than through our most common human enjoyments: food and music!

The Multicultural Festival will take place this Saturday, May 16th from 12pm-6pm. Open to all, a great family event!

This year’s featured artists are: Rocky Rivera and La Santa Cecilia

Rocky RiveraThe festival  takes place at Oakes College’s lower lawn.

Oakes is known for its focus on creating a safe space for students from a diversity of backgrounds, offering housing which bears the names of various leaders and cultural icons such as Harvey Milk, Queen Lili’uokalani, Frida Kahlo, Dolores Huerta, and Steven Biko; while bringing to light the issues surrounding culture and ethnicity in our world; some of which students have faced on a personal level.La Santa Cecilia

While we learn about the complexities and tensions in the world, it’s a beautiful moment when we can join together to the motto “We all smile in the same language”.

Here at KZSC we are so glad we can provide the university and Santa Cruz community with a variety of world music shows every week.


SambaDá: a new album and Moe’s Alley performance May 9th

Locally based AfroBrazilian group SambaDá celebrates the release of their new album “Ritual” for 2015. It will be their first record with Senegal native and drum master Ibou Ngom, playing the djembe, sabar, and talking drum, and bass player Etienne Franc. Ritual also features special guest contributions from renown jazz and gospel pianist Tammy L. Hall, Bay Area trombone player Alan Williams of the Afro Funk Experience and Afrolicious, trumpet player Jon Cavanaugh from Flor de Caña, and saxophonist Anne Stafford. Each adds their own energy to this fantastic group dynamic.

imgresTrue to its name, and the SambaDá reputation, Ritual is an album filled with rhythms grooving together! Percussion and horns blend with folkloric songs, and soulful vocals into an album that becomes a ritual experience celebrating AfroBrazilian roots and music.

To listen or download their album, check out their website and listen for them here on the great 88, KZSC!


27955_396701962918_1215286_n  Willie K

Willie K. at Moe’s Alley May 21

As powerful and as unpredictable as an exploding volcano, Willie K pours his musical prowess over Santa Cruz on Thursday May 21st.

Moe’s Alley will be the dancing party point Thursday, May 21st, as Willie K brings his diverse musical interests to the stage.  Willie K knows his blues, as well as reggae-influenced tunes.  Rockers gonna rock, jazz fans will be entertained, as Willie K can play “any kine” ~ with virtuoso status on guitar, ukulele and bass.  He’s musically energetic and prolific, starting in the early family days, as the second of nine boys and four girls in the Kahaiali’i family.  Whether he’s playing traditional acoustic indigenous Hawaiian music, voicing operatic Italian arias (check out the video below) or twisting up tunes on the ukulele, Willie K packs a powerhouse, a warehouse full of blues to you, the listener.

Listen here at KZSC from 6:00 – 9:00 on Wiki Wiki Wednesday mornings, for cuts from Twisted Ukulele, recorded in Germany, and Willie K’s Warehouse Blues.

Let Willie K’s music move you LIVE at Moe’s Alley Thursday, May 21st, doors open at 7:30, for an 8:30 showtime


Tal National, the most popular band in the West African country of Niger.

Tal National: Moe’s Alley May 5th

In a journey that began with selling their CDs on street corners, to becoming the most popular band in Niger, now Tal National is promoting their new album Zoy Zoy and on tour, playing Moe’s Alley May 5th.
Tal National’s members represent the different cultural groups of Niger. Their music is a mix of traditional and originals, with a rhythmic complexity that separate them from their Afrobeat contemporaries of neighboring Nigeria. The album Zoy Zoy was recorded in Niamey, Niger’s capital, using a remote recording rig in a dusty makeshift studio. Despite this or perhaps because of it, Tal National thrives in a country parched of resources but teeming with music and rhythm!
If you want to enjoy the high energy of a live performance by this Nigerien group, check them out at Moe’s Alley on Tuesday!

MOON BLOCK presents fourth annual Desert Daze Festival!

MOON BLOCK presents several music + art festivals a year including DESERT DAZE, BEYOND THE WITCHING HOUR, & MOON BLOCK PARTY. Each event is curated, organized, and built from the ground up by a group of close friends and a growing collective of musicians and artists from Los Angeles and beyond including members of JJUUJJUU, Deap Vally, Fever the Ghost, + more.

Once described as a ‘psychedelic bootcamp’, Desert Daze returns for its fourth annual appearance, bringing with it an amazing lineup to create this magical experience once again. Desert Daze will be featuring performances from Warpaint, DIIV, Chelsea Wolfe, Bass Drum of Death, and much more! It will be held at the Sunset Ranch Oasis in Mecca, CA on Saturday, May 2.

Tune in this week for a chance to win tickets to Desert Daze Festival! Keep an eye out for upcoming Facebook and Instagram giveaways.


Photo by Eric Thompson

Seabright Stringfest Apr 24th-26th

The 4th Annual Seabright Stringfest (Santa Cruz, CA) kicks off with a square dance Friday evening, April 24th, called by Erik Hoffman with music by the Earl White Stringband and The Percolators at the Market St. Theatre. Free concerts that feature 12 bands playing Appalachian string band, bluegrass, blues, Celtic and other traditional string music from around the world continues on Saturday, Apr 25th from 11am-10:30pm at the Seabright Brewery patio, with concurrent directed indoor jamming in the adjacent Java Junction Coffee House from 9:30am-6pm. The fourth Sunday of the month bluegrass and old-time jam session at Ocean View Park follows on April 26th starting at 1pm and continuing until people are worn out. Schedule and details are at fiddlersjam.com. Tune in to KZSC for “Backroads” on Sundays 12-2pm and “Ramblin’ Round” on Wednesdays 2-4pm to hear more acoustic string music.