Sedge Thomson's West Coast Live, San Francisco's Radio Show to the World!

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We're sure it is only a coincidence that the phone circuit failed the day we featured a marvelous history of the phone phreakers by Phil Lapsley and and interview with Hedrick Smith who produced a documentary for PBS on how the phone company shares all your data with the government.  

From The Chapel at 777 Valencia (b/t 18th & 19th) in the SF Mission, SEDGE welcomes:



the Pulitzer Prize and Emmy Award-winning journalist with Who Stole the American Dream, on trail of political and corporate decisions that have, over the past four decades, dismantled the American Dream.



whose latest novel Hold Fast tells the story of an 11-year-old girl who falls into Chicago’s shelter system and from there must solve the mystery of her father’s strange disappearance.



the engineer, hacker, author and entrepreneur brings us his fascinating new account Exploding the Phone: The Untold Story of the Teenagers and Outlaws who Hacked Ma Bell.



the Canadian fiddler, singer/songwriter and step dancer brings us a few of the high-energy songs from her new album Bright Like Gold.

The Yale


this year's lineup of 14 senior Yale University men who comprise the world's oldest and most famous collegiate a cappella group..

The Zealous


house pianist extraordinaire.

Sedge brings together - 
DIANE ACKERMAN - Natural History of the Senses, Slender Thread
JULIA WHITTY - Oceanographer
WILLIAM GIBSON - author Neuromancer, Pattern Recognition
SUSAN KARE - original icon designer for the Mac; acclaimed designer
STEVE WOZNIAK - engineer, originator of Dial-a-Joke, inventor and co-founder of Apple Computer compnay





We commence for you our Certified Wisdom & Happiness summer series of broadcasts with compelling people from all walks of life in all kinds of places.  This week, in celebration of American independence


SEDGE's guests: 

WHITFIELD DIFFIE, cryptographer and inventor of PGP (Pretty Good Privacy) and early advocate for internet privacy via encryption

disappear fear CD photo by Charles Freeman
Image result for Declaration of IndependenceImage result for Whitfield DiffieThe Tragically Hip, Photo: Gordon Hawkins

The JESTERS -  Songs of the 20s and 30s by this stylin' trio

DISAPPEAR FEAR - the renowned duo stops in

Reading of THE DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE - First read aloud on July 2nd, 1776

BILL BARICH - author of Laughing in the Hills, Travelling Light, and his major book on California, Big Dreams

THE TRAGICALLY HIP - The acclaimed Canadian Band from 7,034 feet in the High Sierra


ECORAP - The international consciousness raising of environmental awared for urban youth in Germany, Greece, Croatia, and the US, organised by Leonard Pitt

DIANE HIDY, house pianist 





Today's live broadcast (June 25th) is the last of our 10AM broadcasts.

Since 1994, we've enjoyed that place of temporal geography. New construction is going up in that space.  Starting July 2nd, our San Francisco broadcast time will be Noon-2pm.  As we broadcast live to many places in the world at 10A PT, we must get our show now earlier to them than 10AM PT, so we are changing how we produce West Coast Live.  We might change the name.  Some weeks we will do a live show at noon from some interesting place and the other stations might carry it a week later.  Sometimes we will record a show during the week and it will air Saturday.  All a bit complicated, but we've worked out a way to morph.  We will maintain conversation, music and play.  With as much of a live audience as we can.

I started this show to bring unheard and well-known voices to live radio. Live.  No delay.  Immediate. Pure. From places far from airless studios - community theatres, cafes, moving ships, kitchens, museums.  It's a tightwire walk.  It's theatre and alive with the unknown. I feel alive in the moment of it.  That's my personal motivation.  The guests rise to embrace the risk.  It's part of our mise en place that allows for the unexpected delights.  

What's Next?  -  We'll all find out. It's all live.

Today SEDGE welcomes:

Positively Ellinwood Street: H ... from

MARY ROACH - She eschews polysyllabic titles: Bonk, Stiff, Spook.  Her new one - Grunt - reports on the curious science of humans at war.  Jolly topic, or she'll make it so....

CLAIRE PEASLEE - The naturalist says her focus will be divided between lepidoptera and cartilagenous fishes (one or these will receive more loving detail).

SOLSTICE - Women's vocal sextet marking their 20th anniverseray this weekend  of complex harmonies and the joy of song.

MIKE GREENSILL - the maestro will play exceptionally well today, and WESLA WHITFIELD will help him.

Other guests To Be Announced this week

If you'd like to be in the live audience for this bit of San Francisco Broadcast History, tarry not!

LISTEN to SEDGE's guests today on relationships, those problematic connections of our lives.  What do we know about ourselves and others?

Alain de Botton to curate an "anti-blockbuster" | Art | Agenda ...

ALAIN DE BOTTON - His new book, The Course of Love, is a novel, and an exegesis on relationships.  We speak with him overlooking his garden on a damp London day.  He says we always marry the wrong person.

JONATHAN RICHMAN - The singer songwriter who set the tone for There's Something About Mary with his theme song he sang throughout, and has his own music about relationships from the Modern Lovers, his band, to his solo career today.

PATRICIA MORRIS - Her Fifty Lessons on Love and Sex is the result of her own psychotherapeutic practice in London

VIRGINIA IRONSIDE - Comic writer and memoirist, for decades she was one of the UK's leading Agony Aunts, the Ann Landers sob sister of her day



Sedge's guests, punctual, articulate, and masters of the 100 yard em dash, the colon, and the apostrophe.  Astonishing tales of grammar, cash register exorcism, and gorgeous guitar.   Catch up with us Live at the Ferry Building, in two weeks, June 25 .

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A.S. Byatt, author, The Little Black Book, Posession, The Children's Book

Lynne Truss, author, Eats, Shoots and Leaves

Pico Iyer, travel writer and philospher

Dave Gleason and Wasted Days

Rev. Billy and the Stop Shopping Choir, changing the world




The Surfcoasters, from Japanvpcc81504

Roger McGuinn, guitarist, songwriter, co-founder the Byrds - "Mr Tambourine Man"

Opiniones de Roger McGuinnRuth Ozeki, author

Alice Stuart, singer songwriter

1-70-49 stock photo of California, San Francisco, Tidal marsh at sunset with bridge, Crissy FieldSan Francisco Bay, portrait of an estuary, David Sanger and John Hart, authors


Sedge presents a superb program from May 6, 1995, with clarion voices and timeless and timely insights - the first broadcast in 21 years. - Requested by a listener, Sarah, who wrote last week to explain why she wanted to hear it:  "At a pinnacle of the song, [Cynthia Green] sang a sustained high note and Clemons nodded his head and silently applauded her, his eyebrows raised to the sky....Their perforrmance has played over and over in my mind ever since then.  These were my most favorite WCL moments of all time."  The rest of the show is pretty darn outstanding, too. From the Cowell Theatre

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Clarence Clemons (The Big Sax Man from Bruce's "E" Street Band) and his Red Bank Rockers wtih Cynthia Green, vocal

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Alistair Cooke, BBC presenter of Letter from America, host of "America", "Masterpiece Theater", author

Image result for lucy kaplanskyLucy Kaplansky, recovering therapist and renowned folk singer

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Thomas Keneally. author of "Schindler's List (Ark)" and acclaimed Australian novelist, on writing about concentration camps while looking out at the strapping lads and lasses on Sydney's Bondi Beach.

Frida Kahlo, the wit of the Guerrilla Girls, art activists and provacateussesImage result for Guerrilla GirlsImage result for Guerrilla Girls Frida

Mike Greensill, piano 





What writers really think



whose novels explore late 20th century urban America in a gritty, realistic manner, talks about Lush Life.



known for his memoirs, including This Boys Life, shares insights about his latest book, Our Story Begins.



the British writer stops by to talk with us about his award winning novel Pravda.



the world's only bass clarinet quartet, inventing and performing heavy chamber music.



this San Francisco-based Quintette will bring you right back to Paris in the '30s.

The Omnivorous


on Piano.

Join us at the Ferry Building in San Francisco to make beautiful radio together!

February 26, 2011 Show Guests

Sedge welcomes (from Feb 26, 2011 -- when 1'-2' of snow was forecast in San Francisco:

WESLEY STACE (AKA singer-songwriter John Wesley Harding) with his new novel, Charles Jessold, Considered as a Murderer

MAXINE HONG KINGSTON: In her singular voice—humble, elegiac, practical—Maxine Hong Kingston sets out to reflect on aging as she turns sixty-five, in her new book I Love a Broad Margin to My Life

Naturalist CLAIRE PEASLEE on Central Valley waterbirds

DAN HICKS and his Kollege of Musical Knowledge  A special visit with the late, great Maestro of Musical Drollery


and so much more!

Today -  Sedge feature conversations from 1994 to today about mothers and motherhood (and fathers, as necessary to this...) with

MAYA ANGELOU, with her son GUY JOHNSON on motherhood, poetry, and becoming herself through red beans and rice,


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TILLIE OLSEN, on political demonstrations and writing and being a mother, and being in the SAT test.


Image result for Tell Me A Riddle Tillie

ANNE LAMOTT, with observations on her self as mother,

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RUTH REICHL, about NOT becoming her mother and,

MARILYN YALOM on the history of the breast.  

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Please sign up to the mailing list for the most current information, including live show schedule.  And availalbe via the Listen button to the left in the center column.

From May 24, 2008 - FILM, POETRY, MYSTERIES  never before re-broadcast!

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  • ELEANOR COPPOLA, author of Notes on a Life including her work as a filmmaker.
  • JOHN STRALEY, author and private eye in Sitka, Alaska, has a new thriller set in 1935, The Big Both Ways.
  • AUGUST KLEINZAHLER, poet who doesn't like to call himself a poet whose marvelous books include The Strange Hours Travelers Keep and Sleeping It Off in Rapid City.
  • RICK DI DIA and AIREENE ESPIRITU,Guitar meets ukulele. Guitar loses ukulele. Guitar wins ukulele .
  • WES SCOOP NISKER, author of Crazy Wisdom Saves The World Again .
  • Music from piano player MIKE GREENSILL, who knows his Sitka from his Skagway

November 4, 2006 at The Booksmith on Haight Street, helping celebrate their 30 years as San Francisco's leading independent bookstore. 



Surf Band from Fukuoka, Japan stop through on their West Coast Tour.



founder of Need we say more?

The Prolific


award-winning author and illustrator of hundreds of children's books, including Strega Nona, The Art Lesson, and Christmas Remembered.



author of No Plot, No Problem and the man who turned November into National Novel Writing Month, will inspire you to get out your pen and paper.



with legendary banjo slide player TONY FURTADO and local singer-songwriter MEGAN SLANKARD.

From November 2011, when SEDGE welcomed:



The world of Oz comes full circle in Gregory Maguire's fourth and final novel in the New York Timesbestselling series The Wicked Years.



author and illustrator of the best-selling children's classics Polar ExpressJumanjiThe Mysteries of Harris Burdick and many more.



whose well known "Distorted Urban Realism" style combines elements of graffiti with classical art training, here with his new book The Legends of Hip Hop.



the fine five piece string band from Kalamazoo, Michigan, who Rolling Stone assures is "representing the genre for a whole new generation."

The first of Sedge's renowned kitchen table shows!  From January 1999:

ANNE LAMOTT, the hilarious and insightful writer, live at the kitchen table.

TERRY JONES, British Comedian best known as a member of Monty Python.

DICK DALE, King of the Surf Guitar.

HUGH MASEKELA AND BAND, South African Jazz and Afrobeat musician.

MARE WINNINGHAMactress and singer-songwriter.

And More!

This week, Sedge presents some brand new and archival material, including:

HELEN MACDONALD, whose memoir H is for Hawk recounts the year she spent training a goshawk in the wake of her father's death. (2016)

JIM HARRISON, (1937-2016) author of Legends of the Fall and other works about the outdoors and food; Sedge's interview with him on Fresh Air. (1990)

WES JACKSONfarmer, philosopher and author of several landmark books on sustainable agriculture, Wes is founder and current president of The Land Institute and a member of the World Future Council. (2014)

GREENHORNS, Severine von Tscharner Fleming, farmer, activist, organizer and director of The Greenhorns, a documentary film and grassroots organization working to recruit, promote and support the growing tribe of new agrarians. ('14)

MARIAH PARKER'S INDO LATIN JAZZ ENSEMBLE get us grooving on a world of musical influences, from Havana to Kolkata. ('14)

Live from the Hearing Room upstairs at the SF Ferry Building, Sedge welcomes:

GREIL MARCUS, music journalist and cultural critic with his newest titles Three Songs, Three Singers, Three Nations, and Real Life Rock: The Complete Top 10 Columns 1986-2014.

SCOOP NISKER, author, radio commentator, comedian, and Buddhist meditation instructor with the new collection of his wit and wisdom You Are Not Your Fault and Other Revelations.

MURIEL MURCH shares some of the wisdom that comes with age and illness in The Bell Lap: Stories for Compassionate Nursing Care.

KARL & CARLthe globe-trotting comedians stop by with thiier latest edition of Tips on Travel.

ENSEMBLE MIK NAWOOJ, a hip hop orchestra led by composer JooWan Kim, featuring a 7-piece chamber orchestra, 2 MCsand an opera singer.

And More!

From October 19, 2013, when SEDGE welcomed:



the beloved California writer joins us to release the second volume of his collected short stories Collected Stories Vol II.



the critically acclaimed author of Music Through the Floor brings us his achingly tender and funny portrait of an unraveling family in Model Home.



the 30 member male a capella choir performing the songs of the legendary poet, novelist and singer-songwriter Leonard Cohen.



vocalists who fall outside a cappella traditions, landing in a hot tub of humor and vocal prowess.



Nashville singer-songwriter on tour with her album Ruby Red Shoes -- inspired by Sedge?!

Piano Man


the Bay Area's favorite jazz and cabaret piano maestro.

Join us! Sedge welcomes:

RAMBLIN JACK ELLIOTT, legendary troubadour and cowboy poet with over 40 albums under his belt, he is a direct link to the foundations of American folk music.

BOX SET, the outstanding Americana band serves up their extraordinary guitar playing and rich vocal harmonies.

CAROLINE PAUL, author of The Gutsy Girl, tales of her greatest escapades -- as well as those of other women throughout history -- inspiring girls to pursue a life of adventure.

LEONARD PITT, the Berkeley author reminisces about a youthful trip to Paris that sparked a life in the arts in his new memoir My Brain is on Fire.

And More!

Live from Studio 55 Marin at 1455 Francisco Blvd E, San Rafael, Sedge welcomes:

GORDON EDGAR, author of Cheesemonger: A Life on the Wedge brings us the fascinating history of one of the world's most beloved cheeses in Cheddar: A Journey to the Heart of America's Most Iconic Cheese.

JOHN MUIR LAWS, artist, naturalist, author and educator renowned for his field guides, here with his latest, The Laws Guide to Nature Drawing and Journaling.

FERGUS BORDEWICH, the political historian offers some perspective in his new account The First Congress: How James Madison, George Washington and a Group of Extraordinary Men Invented the Government.

RITA HOSKING TRIO, the soulful Americana and bluegrass artist and friends bring us captivating songwriting and storytelling.

MIKE GREENSILL, our talented, wise and witty house pianist ties it all together. And More!

From Studio 55 Marin at 1455 East Francisco Blvd in San Rafael, Sedge welcomes:

PAUL LISICKY, the poet and memoirist brings us his latest, The Narrow Door, a deeply moving and bravely honest memoir about friendship among writers.

PAMELA TURNER, author of Samauri Rising: The Epic Life of Minamoto Yoshitsune, the captivating true story of a 12th-century Japanese warrior.

RAY BONNEVILLE, the roaming Canadian blues musician and poet has a library's worth of songs to sing and stories to tell.

JEFF CAMPBELL, the Philadelphia native brings us a taste of his new album The Kitchen Sink, melding his love of raucous rock with a lyricist's poetic power.

THE BLACK BROTHERS warm us up with their old Dublin street songs and historical ballads from the Irish, English and Scottish folk traditions.

A mixture of freshly recorded and well-preserved segments. Sedge welcomes:

DAN HICKS, we pay tribute to the great Bay Area singer-songwriter who passed away earlier this month at age 74. He was on our show many times over the years, with groups such as The Hot Licks, Christmas Jug Band, The Acoustic Warriors. 

IAN RANKIN, the Scottish crime writer sits down at Sedge's kitchen table to talk about his latest Inspector Rebus novel, Even Dogs in The Wild.

MAYA ANGELOU, the late literary voice revered globally for her poetic command and her commitment to civil rights, best known for her series of seven autobiographies, including I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings. 

GUY JOHNSON, Maya's son and an acclaimed author and poet in his own right, having published such works as Standing at the Scratch Line and Echoes of a Distant Summer. 

THE BROTHERS COMATOSE, a the Bay Area's southwestern-tinged, rowdy stringband bring us a track from their new album City Painted Gold.

Live from Studio 55 Marin at 1455 Francisco Blvd ESan Rafael! Sedge welcomes:

SARKknown for her personal, journal-like writings and art, inspiring others with her vulnerable and honest journeys toward self-acceptance. Her latest: Succulent Wild Love.

THE BROTHERS COMATOSE, the Bay Area's southwestern-tinged, rowdy stringband bring us a taste of their new album City Painted Gold.

CONSPIRACY OF VENUS, the women's a'capella choir that sings original arrangements of contemporary music, here with a taste of their debut album Muse Ecology, out February 27th.

ARANN HARRIS, Sonoma County farmer, teacher and musician brings us story and song -- a soulful mix of old time blues, mountain music, funk and angry Grampa!

JENNIFER KING stars in the one-woman play Bad Dates, a hilarious journey of self-discovery involving a Buddhist rainstorm, a teenage daughter and a few very bad dates. Now at Cinnabar Theater in Petaluma. 

MIKE GREENSILL, house pianist who adds his British-turned-American humour to the show.

Live from Studio 55 Marin at 1455 Francisco Blvd ESan Rafael! Sedge welcomes:

JOYCE CAROL OATES, the literary icon's new novel The Man Without a Shadow examines the mysteries of memory, personality, and identity and pierces the enigmatic force that drives human lives -- love.

SUNIL YAPA has exploded onto the scene with his debut novel Your Heart is a Muscle the Size of a Fistset amid the heated conflict of Seattle's 1999 WTO protests.

PRARTHO SERENO, writer, artist, teacher, Poet Laureate of Marin County.

HOWELL DEVINE bring us the kind of blues you just don't hear anymore; the textured rhythms that would be shaking the floors of a Southern juke joint some 70 years ago.

MIKE GREENSILL, house pianist and witty sidekick. And more!

Live from Studio 55 Marin at 1455 Francisco Blvd ESan Rafael! Featuring:

JASON MARK seeks to find out if true wilderness still exists on Earth today in his new book Satellites in the High Country: Searching for the Wild in the Age of Man.

MARGARET WINSLOW, geologist and author of the travel memoir Over My Head: Journeys in Leaky Boats from the Straight of Magellan to Cape Horn and Beyond and forthcoming The Cusp of Dreadfulness: Fifteen Seasons in Tierra del Fuego and Patagonia.

ETHAN RAFAL, photographer and writer behind Shock and Awe, a twelve-year, autobiographical project examining the relationship between protracted war and homeland decay.

LIA ROSE, whose captivating guitar and poetic voice represent a new era of folk songwriting in the San Francisco Bay.

DANIEL CHAMPAGNE, renowned Austrailian singer-songwriter with a reputation of making crowds buzz and jaws drop wherever he goes.

MIKE GREENSILL, our beloved and talented house pianist. 

From The Chapel in the Mission dirstict of San Francisco from May 18, 2013, SEDGE welcomed:



the travel writer and novelist known for such bestsellers as The Great Railway Bazaar and The Mosquito Coast, here with his latest, The Last Train to Zona Verde: My Ultimate African Safari.



the bestselling author of The Emperor's Children brings us her next novel, The Woman Upstairs, about an elementary schoolteacher in need of a fantasy. She finds one.



author of the emotional and humorous works All about Lulu and West of Here, on tour with his latest big-hearted novel, The Revised Fundamentals of Caregiving.



the lovely Georgian-turned-Californian singer-songwriter and her band bring us some songs from their new album Ridgeline.



house pianist extraordinaire.  And More!

From October 2011 at the lounge in San Francisco, Sedge welcomed:



from MythBusters, the beloved science entertainment TV program that tests the validity of rumors, myths, movie scenes, adages, Internet videos and news stories.



author of Packing for Mars, San Francisco's One City One Book selection for 2011, and editor of The Best American Science and Nature Writing.



human rights activist for the people of South Sudan.



The legendary co-founder of The Doors and the critically acclaimed slide/blues guitarist have put their artistic minds together, creating a truly captivating new sound!



Dirty Martini singer with a solo CD.

The Spacey


Master Pianist and Entertaining Sidekick.


Join us for our 22nd Anniversary Special, live from Studio 55 Marin at 1455 Francisco Blvd E, San Rafael! Sedge welcomes:

WES "SCOOP" NISKERthe famed author, radio commentator, comedian, and Buddhist meditation instructor asks life's big existential questions and has some good laughs along the way.

CLAIRE PEASLEE, West Marin's coastal naturalist brings us some earthly winter wisdom.

MURIEL ANDERSON, world-renowned guitar and harp guitar player brings us a taste of her new show Wonderlusta virtual tour around the world in music and imagery, set to a backdrop of stunning visuals by celebrated photo-artist Bryan Allen.

THE POTRERO HILLBILLIES, J Raoul Brody and friends bring us their recreation of the Kinks' overlooked masterpiece Muswell Hillbillies.

MIKE GREENSILL, our beloved and talented house pianist. And More!

From July 8, 1995 at the Cowell Theater in San Francisco, Sedge welcomed:

ALLEN TOUSSAINT (October 1925 – August 2013) musician, songwriter and record producer who was influential in New Orleans R&B.

ELMORE LEONARD (October 1925 – August 2013) crime fiction writer, author of Get Shorty, Freaky Deaky, and Riding the Rap.

LADY BIANCA, Blues pianist and singer.

SAN FRANCISCO SYMPHONY CHORUS, featuring Cynthia Hobgood.

BILL CRAWFORD, author of Cerealizing America: The Unsweetened Story of American Breakfast Cereal

AUSTIN LOUNGE LIZARDS, the pranksters of acoustic music.

BONNIE LOYD, the Urban Geographer

CARRIE FISHER, Star Wars actress who was in town appearing in Wishful Drinking at Berkeley Rep. (from March 2008)