Reviews

Martha at Listen & Be Heard Poetry Cafe. Photo by S.N. Jacobson
Martha at Listen & Be Heard Poetry Cafe. Photo by S.N. Jacobson

“The words come rapid fire, faster than the TV announcer revealing the disclaimers to car leases. The audience whoops and screams to climax. This invocation officially starts off the spoken-word soiree Listen and Be Heard. Every Thursday evening at Rafael’s Bar and Cafe in Vallejo, words pop and explode through jazz and funk rhythms. Here poetry bends the mind and charges the soul …”Vallejo verse Rafael’s Bar becomes the place to Listen and Be Heard by Venise Wagner, Special to The Chronicle Friday, July 26, 2002

Writing Reviews

Dreamscape, Real Dreams Really Make a Difference
“Martha Cinader has the rare ability and talent to bring ancient tales to life for contemporary readers and audiences. If history classes had been this witty and bright, I would have paid more attention. – Merlin Stone author of When God Was a Woman

When the Body Calls

“Hold everything! is what you’re doing right now, for this book contains multitudes. MC Martha Cinader herewith enters the realms of bookography with a slingshot satellite launch of new groove. Hear the jazz, there the battlefield of love, and everything in between your hands, your hands. Genre-busting from perfpo to prosepo, I tell you this — Martha C meshes body organs and imagination in an arena of politics from the inside out. Hail, Poet of the Future!” –Bob Holman-Mouth Almighty Records, Author of Collect Call of the Wild

“In style and substance both provocative and original, When the Body Calls is a both a challenge and a pleasure to read. Martha is a poet whose sensual prose takes us into a world full of complex questions.” –Lan Cao, author of Monkey Bridge

“When you cook chicken you have to stick a fork in it to tell if it’s done, but you don’t have to do that to Cinader’s poems. They’re raw and cooking at the same time. She’s like a female Sun Ra who can coax words out of her saxophone. She never omits any detail even when she’s taking us to another stratosphere. When the Body Calls is daring and unflinching. An important body of work.” –Hal Sirowitz, author of My Mother Said and My Therapist Said

“When The Body Calls is an urban livre compose that leaves no pavement stone unturned in telling its tale of a young poet-mother ejected from her father’s suburban mansion onto the stark concrete plains of Manhattan. Her daughter, her mother, her lovers, her ambition, her desires — all are embraced with a revolutionist’s ardor as she assembles her story around her like a rambling house. Its rooms are built from poetry, letters, fairy tales, dreamscapes, journal entries and stories. And through its windows Cinader can be seen to whirl in an enticing dervish beneath her veil of words, seducing all visitors with her “body of need…of dreams…of people.” –Fiona Giles, editor of Dick for a Day

“Martha Cinader’s boldly unique When the Body Calls is a collection of poems and prose to be savored by those thirsty for art and intelligence. There is magic here. The reader will dive into a cool ocean of Cinader’s sensuality and sharply honest creativity. There are dangerous currents of truth in these depths that ultimately are refreshing and stimulating. And there are also the tender and universal longings of mother, lover, artist and activist. Each piece is a treasure of a different shape and color.” –Kate Horsely, author of Crazy Woman and A Killing in New Town (which won the Western States Arts Award for Fiction)

“The challenge of being a woman, being a lover, a mother, a user of words, of metaphors, signs and symbols in this postmodern age in terms of one’s self identity can easily lead to rage. These stories, poems, and memoirs are not simply told, but as you read and listen to them, they easily unfold and innervate one’s soul, the spirit.” –Steve Cannon, Publisher A Gathering of the Tribes Magazine

“1-800-YOR-DICK” in DICK FOR A DAY:
What Would You Do If You Had One?

Martha Cinader’s story entitled “1-800-YOR-DICK”, written under the pen name Senator Sin, was included in the anthology Dick for a Day, edited by Fiona Giles, published by Villard Books. It was published first in the USA in 1997, subsequently in Australia and the UK, and in translation in Germany and Japan.

.. most of the humor here comes not from inventive use of the equipment but from quirky takes on the question. In a hilarious poem, Senator Sin imagines that by calling the number “1-800-YOR-DICK”she participates in a study in which women are given penises and then report the results (with the poignant coda, “A few/ never returned/ their dicks,/moved away/ from family/ and friends,/and are assumed/ to be passing/ as men.”)…(Feb.) Publisher’s Weekly

Let me just say something about the best of the lot. Senator Sin’s 1-800-yor-dick. Even though it reads like a female view of what is would be like to have one – hey, that is the purpose to the book…is it not? – I howled at the Senator’s escapades. The price of the book is almost (not quite) worth this one poem. – Amazon customer review

Listen & Be Heard Reviews
Best Artistic Gathering 2007 Between poetry competitions, comedy jams, live music and a newsletter to bring it all together, Listen & Be Heard Poetry Café is gathering steam. _ Solano Magazine

“The words come rapid fire, faster than the TV announcer revealing the disclaimers to car leases. The audience whoops and screams to climax. This invocation officially starts off the spoken-word soiree Listen and Be Heard. Every Thursday evening at Rafael’s Bar and Cafe in Vallejo, words pop and explode through jazz and funk rhythms. Here poetry bends the mind and charges the soul as everyone with something to say is invited to the mike to display their skills in the consummate rap. Folks come from Oakland, Los Angeles, Fairfield and around the corner to perform poetry, hear poetry and live poetry.” – Vallejo verse Rafael’s Bar becomes the place to Listen and Be Heard by Venise Wagner, Special to The Chronicle Friday, July 26, 2002

Record Reviews
Martha Cinader’s
Po’azz Yo’azz
Living It!
For once, we have a review of an album that hasn’t been released yet. It can be obtained only from the artist Martha Cinader herself. Martha Cinader caught our attention with the phenomenal track “Living it”, of which the Victor Simonelli remix is extraordinary. The reason this track caught our attention was because of the lyrics, yes, the lyrics ! The lyrics of “Living it” are one strong emotional outlet about life in its fullest effect. It breaths the spirit of a creative artistic energetic life which immediately catches ones attention. That made us look furhter at who the artist Martha Cinader was and brought us to her Po’azz Yo’azz album. This is not the ordinary album for sure ! It’s clear that Martha Cinadar offers plenty of interesting views through her lyrics. In fact, she describes her music as a mixture between poetry and music and so it is. Listen to the track “White Linen” and you’ll know. It’s a sort of poem about becoming old in this society. “Eat” is completely differently styled, reflecting societies fast food way of living in both lyrics and tempo. There is “Yes No” on drum’n’bass music that in some way reflects the undeciding battles between loving people. Weird for sure as the music and lyrics go hand in hand with the emotions. Of course “Living it” is here too, but in a much more intimate disguise on drum’n’bass music. Here, the vocals get much more accent than on the Victor Simonelli remix. More poetry goes in “Rosebud” and “Belated Mother’s day”, where we hear Martha Cinader’s soft voice telling the Rosebud poetry on piano background or the “Belated Mother’s day” on violin. Finally, there is “Po’azz yo’azz” where Martha Cinader is sort of introducing what it is all about. A little strange she puts this track on the last position. She tells about the mixture of poetry and jazz, about digging one’s soul to express emotions, and feelings. And that’s exactly what she has been doing in this full album. It’s perhaps a combination we’re not so used to these days, but it’s sure that Martha Cinader brings an original way of making music, poetry and emotions. She seems to be the kind of person that goes for her own ideas, style, feeling, interpretions, without giving in to commercially dictated styles. And that alone is great ! – Freestyle Grooves

“This is a good marriage of spoken word and drum n’ bass. It’s fresh and definately a new take on things.” —-DJ Marquess Wyatt, MIXMAG USA, Feb./March 1998 DMA

“Living It”, The Remixes featuring Martha Cinader
Liquid Sound Lound Lounge Recordings
You know, if it comes from Jeannie Hopper, I absolutely KNOW it’s gonna be good-that girl’s definitely got her finger on the pulse. First she sends me the original set of mixes on her very own LSL production “Living IT” (see review in Feb/March ’98 DMA) which totally blew me away; then she turned me o to the smooth Philly soul assemblages of King Britt’s Sylk 130 When the Funk Hits The Fan LP on Ovum/Columbia Records (see review of the album elsewhere in this issue). Now she slams me with two more goodies, the Victor Simonelli remixes of “Living It” and the Burnin’ EP” from German house producers Ruffcut. On the “Living It” remixes, Victor Simonelli gives a classy minimalistic interpretation that clearly places Martha Cinader’s philosophical word-smithing in the centerstage; it bumps along at a lively 122 BPM pace with mellow synth sstabs, subtle funky key work and a thick atmospheric texture. Simonelli also includes a beatless acapella and a bonus beats-only track so those whar are inclined may work their own turntable magic. Also included on this 12″ is Birth of Cool’s Deep Dub, a continuation of their Dub mix from the original 12″ that goes straight for the funk in a fluid, energetic U.K. deep house fashinon.
URB Magazine

Martha Cinader
Living It (Victor Simonelli Remix)
(LSL) Simonelli’s mixes transport this trippy spoken poem into the dreamy, drugged-out state it should have been presented in. Taken in with a blunt or in a smoky dark club, I think the effect will be the same, at least in theory. The VJS a cappella, with 808 sounds, harp and oscillating vintage keys, is dope. Kicks are to be had on he vox mix; they are as sedate as Simonelli’s original designs, but the ethereal mood vanishes a bit. The Pseudo a cappella is the joint. ¥DJDK
Dance Music Authority

” LIVING IT ”
DJ JeannieHopper and Sabine Worthmann
Featuring Martha Cinader
” You know in this job as a reviewer, I listen to a LOT of vinyl, and it’s actually VERY rare when something really jumps out and grabs me as much as this piece did. DJ Jeannie Hopper and the LSL crew really caught my attention with this very creative project that marries some interesting spoken word-smithing with various jazz-rooted remixing styles. On the A side, even the drum n’ bass oriented Original mix appeals to me (usually not a genre that I would be drawn to), with its snappy drum programming, subtle booming bass, and sparse, dreamy instrumentation; John Ward (of Sub Dub fame) then offers his trippy Sub -Freak version, an eclectically sound -effected jazzy dub rendition that suits the philosophical musings of Martha Cinader quite well. But for a more uptempo dancing experience, I’d flip on over to Lars “lb” Behrenroth and Michael Carstensen’s deeper Birth of Cool House and Dub mixes. Swirling, dreamy atmospheric synths, bumpin’ key stabs, meandering jazzy vibe riffs, bubbling samba-ish bass lines and syncopated (at times) percussion over a pumpinhouse track-very well produced, giving Cinader’s poetic rambling a totally different framework in which to flow. I absolutely love this piece, and I hear Tony Humphries is also a fan of the BOC mixes. For more info, check out Hopper’s LSL website at www.liquidsoundlounge.com.”
Margaret Coble Dance Music Authority March ’98

If you’re a fan of Dana Bryant or Me’Shell Ndegeocello this is for you. Pure poetry in motion – quite literally; DJ Jeannie Hopper has teamed with ‘wordologist’ (sic) Martha Cinader in a journey through life – mixing poetry with improvised-jazz, house-beats, techno-chords and drum n’ bass arrangements. Similariy the four remixes are equally eclectic moving from dub to trip-hop and house, and all working well within the song’s framework. Original and highly innovative. (LD)
BLUES & SOUL Feb.’98 issue 758

PERFORMANCE REVIEWS

 VOICE CHOICES, Village Voice
May 21, 1996

SURF REALITY
Martha Cinader & Po’azz Yo’azz
Whether debunking loser men or rejoicing in ” Living It”, poet Martha Cinader takes you over continents and through waterways to open third eye chakras with sexy rhythms. Cinader and bassist /toymeister Sabine Worthmann — collaboraters at last year’s Edinburgh Festival–rework this hour-long program of urban poetry and storytelling, unearthing secrets from inside Amsterdam cafes to the floor of the Atlantic.

VOICE CHOICES, Village Voice,
December 13, 1994

University of the Streets
Po’azz Yo’azz
The Listen and Be Heard series mixes acid jazz (The Liquid Sound Lounge provided by WBAI DJ Jeannie Hopper) with spoken word (hosted by poet Martha Cinader) in a campaign to free your mind and your ass simultaneously. (McDonnell)

DREAMSCAPE – Edinburgh, Scotland Poetry and jazz have been blowing up a storm together since Allen Ginsberg and beyond. These days spoken word albums have become commonplace. Storyteller Martha Cinader and double bassist Sabine Worthmann aren’t as confrontational as latterday noiseniks, coming on instead like a hip beatnik Sesame Street for grown-ups. Cinader is cool, sensual and assured as she translates myth into sexually evocative oral glimpses into the lives of forgotten icons of the feminine and feminist persuasion. Alongside this are raps by Lenny Bruce contemporary Lord Buckley and an improvised baass solo to die for. With four different programmes to choose from, you’re bound to dig something. Neil Coooper, The List

To the deep, soothing accompaniment of an inventive double bass score, New Yorker Martha Cinader tells tales of exceptional people in a lyrical, jazzy style that is just right for this morning slot. Her stories vary from day to day, but you might catch the one about Emperor Nero, here transformed into a “fat cat with some bread who gets his kicks outa crucifyin’Christian brothers”; or hear how Queen Boadicea refused to take those Romans lying down…”she was bad, know what I mean, and she couldn’t be any other way”. Skipping a few centuries, Cinader moves on to tell how one green George Orwell got himself tangled up in the Spanish Civil War…”in Barcelona he found there was no first class, no second class, no any kinda class-now, that, that was a situation worth fightin’ for.”

Cinader’s use of language is so seductive and her rhythmic, rapping voice so carressing, that you really don’t want her to stop. Catherine Fellows – The Scotsman

From the DJ’s

DJ Tony Humpheries Hot 97, NYC – In Rotation 5 weeks straight

DJ Doc Martin, Los Angeles-“Interesting Changes in deep bass mix. All mixes are Good” – Heavy Play!

DJ John Alvarado, WVUM-Power 96, Miami – “Wicked Concept. This is Phatness required for my People”

DJ Bruce Wilcox, WOMB & Spec’s Music, Miami -“It’s Cool. Original for my radio show!”

Phil Turnipseed, DJ Times, NYC – Reminiscent of the Daou’s “Surrender Yourself”.

DJ A-Gram, Diesel Store, NYC – “Dope Spoken Word, Dope Instrumental, Dope Record!!” Original Mix

DJ Pope, Baltimore – “Good job…Keep it Up!” Liquid Side

DJ Nickodemus, Giant Step, NYC – “Uplifting Vocals. Nice Deep Feel” Original Mix & Liquid Side

Brian Shutta, Scratch Pad, Milwaukee – “I like the different genre’s of mixes on one piece of vinyl.” BOC DUB

DJ Aou, Step Ahead/12″ Dance, D.C. – “tony edward’s kickass again on keys.” Original & Liquid side

DJ Cozmic Cat, Philadelphia – “Reminds me of Dana Bryant. Go Girl!!” Sub Freak & BOC Mix

DJ John Curley, Chicago – “Dig’m all, but programming BOC mixes”

Tony Aco, Choctaw, OK – “The dub is deep…I’m Loving It!”

DJ Dealer, Denver – Wearing it out! “Lovely, Lovely, Lovely!!” Liquid Side

DJ Garth – Hardkiss, San Francisco – “Fresh” Liquid Side

DJ Niven – Hardkiss, San Francisco – “Lovely vocal, sensible lyrics..punched with rhythm” Sub – Freak mix

DJ Dove, WPSC, New Jersey – “This Record is pretty cool and very different” BOC Mixes

Jason Hodges, CKLN, Scarborough, Canada – “Love it ..poetry over top slammin beats a welcome change!”

Neil Aline, WNYU, NYC – “Good Job! I will play the original!!”

Mike McCloud, Discovery Disco KDBF, LR, AR – “2 Words…THE BOMB!”

CJ @VybeMuzik, Miami – “give me mood, give me feelings, give me drama, that’s what living it is about”

Kevin @VybeMuzik, Miami – “I’m very impressed..it’s lyrically & musically deep..I’m Living It!”

DJ Snowhite, Beach Radio, Miami – ” sooo smoooth & sensual. Keep the åabstracicity’ coming.”

Hot Wax Harley, WKNC/WXYC, Durham, NC -“My God!! WOW GAVE ME CHILLS!! HOOK-HIT-HOOK-HIT”

Trevor Nicholas, WRUW, Cleveland -“BOC workin'”

DJ Boom Bip, WAIF, Cinncinati-“I like what LSL Records are all about. Always Supportin'” all mixes.

Luis Lopez, WCRX, Chicago – “Love the product. Record Sounds Phat & definately movin’ the masses”

DJ Jezus Juice, Net Radio, Minneapolis – “Great Record! Great Mixes! all Workin”

DJ Sun, KPFT, Houston-“Lovin’ the Jazzy Drum and Bass!”

DJ E-Live, KRTM, Temecula, CA – “A hypnotic blend of beats, grooves and poetry”

Listen & Be Heard Poetry Cafe
Listen & Be Heard Poetry Café closing its doors

By Tony Wade
DAILY REPUBLIC CORRESPONDENT
VALLEJO – The Listen & Be Heard Poetry Café, run by husband and wife poets Tony and Martha Mims, is closing its doors for the final time Saturday afternoon, March 29. While the café has helped spawn the careers of local poets, musicians, and comedians, the devastated economy of Vallejo has made it impossible to keep the Mims’s dreams alive of providing local artists with a physical place to explore their creativity. “It’s disappointing but a bit of a relief to be honest because Tony and I have been working so hard these past three years,” Mims said. “The promises of downtown Vallejo have not been fulfilled.

“There was talk of new condos being built and new development on the waterfront and the downtown economic revitalization was supposed to be led by the arts. None of that has happened. Still, we feel like we’ve accomplished a lot in these last three years and contributed to our community, but it’s time to move on.”

The Mims insist that the ideas behind the café are not going anywhere. Listen & Be Heard sponsored several events before there was a café and they will continue to do so. In addition, their online newsletter will continue to be a virtual clearinghouse for the creative community. The impact of the café on those striving to have their art pass from their imagination into the popular consciousness is undeniable. Numerous artists have gotten their start, received invaluable experience and were plugged into a network of artistic people through the café. “We’ve worked with so many people — musicians, comedians, artists and a host of poets and seen how there’s a need for what we’ve done,” Mims said. “There’s the big world of commercial art and then there’s a whole other world of people who want a way to express and develop themselves as artists. A good example of that is 10-year-old Gabi Wilson who now has made many national television appearances and actually did her first concert at the café. There are poetry slam champions who started at Listen & Be Heard too.”

With the doors of the poetry café closing, another door is opening for Tony Mims which is close to his heart: mentoring at-risk youths. Utilizing the experience he garnered running four group homes in Vallejo, Mims plans to be a force for positive change in his community.

“I’m opening up New Life Self Discovery Center on Monterey and Tennessee streets and what I teach is self-love and personal responsibility,” Mims said. “There’s such a need to capture kids’ attention before they get into the criminal justice system. Schools are cutting funds for counselors and kids don’t get attention they need. I try to get people in touch with who they are and take responsibility for their lives to reach their full potential.” As Listen & Be Heard transforms itself into a new entity, Martha Mims had a few parting words. “It was fun creating a stepping stone so people could exercise their creative muscles and feel comfortable in their expression,” Mims said. “We’d like to thank all the people who came into our doors and all the loyal customers and the wonderful performing artists who brought this place to life while we were here.”
Reach Tony Wade at getthelowdown@sbcglobal.net.

Thank you (and Tony) for all of your love and support over the years – we were just talking last night about how much fun we had at the last marathon we participated in!!!!  and i’ll never forget the warmth i felt at your venues when i performed solo.  keep us updated on your future ventures!   blessings!!! cho

I want to thank you for bringing spoken word to the people. Being in your cafe offered to me inspiration to get up and be heard on stage. Thank you for your vision, encouragement and inspiration. U will be missed. Blessings

I just heard the news from Rich Freedman and I’m still in shock. We will stop by this weekend to say goodbye. It’s too bad the city of Vallejo can’t get their stuff together. The Wilson Family

very sad. the poetry cafe is going to be missed by so many people but your reasons for your decision are correct. still, that doesn’t make it any easier, you know?

d

Tony & Martha: Well, damn! Poetry is a hard act to follow…you guys have given Vallejo and the area a great deal, it was a trip…from my first visits to the Fetterly, to doing your graphics for awhile to being the only featured acapella Handyman to grace your stage, you guys rock. Keep me on your circulation e-list, -Peter/Pedro Bray, Benicia, CA

Dear Martha,   I was so sad to read about the closing of L&BH Poetry Cafe.  L&BH is such an asset to this community.  I can only imagine how hard you and Tony have worked to keep the doors open.  What a blessing you and your family are to Vallejo.  Your presence in downtown is going to be missed.  Please add me to your email list:  dariecew@aol.com.   Warmly, Dariece Warren (Tilton)

Hi, Martha,

I just heard from Bill Vartnaw that your cafe will be closing on March 29th. I’m so deeply sorry about this. You are such a bright spot in Vallejo, a wonderful place for all kinds of people to find refuge, creativity, spirit. Please give my best to Tony, and I wish you both all good things in the future. Thanks again for allowing me to read; I’ll always remember that night.

Best Love, Katherine Hastings

Dear Martha and Tony,

I’m so sorry you are closing.  The warmths you both gave to Listen and Be Heard Cafe and to the Open Mike Night encouraged a wonderful freshness and vitality and made Friday night poetry special.  You created a connection with poets of all ages and ethnicities, an atmosphere of genuine sharing.  Vallejo is losing a gem in its community.  I will personally miss not being able to come to your cafe or your reading when I am in town.  Thank you also for your encouraging support of Q. R.’s book throughout the last few years of its incubation.

Please keep in touch with any plans that can use some of my energy.  See you on the 29th.  Best wishes in the time ahead!

Yours, Bill Vartnaw

Dear Martha:

I am sorry that the L&BH cafe is closing, especially with your unique lineup of poets and other talent not found anywhere else. Skywalker & I were honored to read our poetry there.

Sincerely, Anita S. Linker VCAT

Hi Martha:

I’m sorry to read in the latest BANG that your Cafe is closing. From the email, if looks like for good, rather than just a re-location. THANKS so much for being part of the art culture at the Cafe and thanks for the constant emails about the events in our area.   I hope you resurface someplace nearby and continue to express yourself artfully.   Sincerely, Janet Manalo

Hi Martha – I’m very sorry to hear this. Good luck to you and Tony in your next endeavors. Ana K. Cotham Associate Editor Solano Magazine

Hi Martha, I’m so sorry to hear this. I will go ahead and cancel the grants for all the poets. Best of luck to you in your future endeavors whatever they may be and please keep us in mind if you plan other events.

Best, Jamie Jamie Asae FitzGerald Poets & Writers, Program Associate California Office & Readings/Workshops (West)

There are not enough words to epitomize how grateful I am for Listen and Be Heard. I reveled in being a part of the People’s cafe. Growing up in Vallejo, I used to pray for something like L&BH to come around. I am honored to have felt the passion that manifested in your cafe. Thank you for everything. Jessica Ryan

Hello Tony and Martha, It was with sadness that I read in the paper that you are closing Listen and Be Heard.  We have only just moved to Vallejo, and one of the great things I have been telling everyone when they ask why we moved to Vallejo has been that 4 blocks from our house was this great poetry cafe. We came to one of your Friday night jams and I was so inspired that I went home and began to write poetry.  I came back twice on Friday nights to read, poetry on folded paper in my pockets but once you were dark and once I was too late.  Alas, I will not be able to make your last weekend due to other commitments, but I thought I would share with you the quickie limerick I wrote for my lightning round piece.  I earn my living as a performing artist and know how difficult it is these days, so I don’t fault you for throwing in the towel, but it is Vallejo’s loss (and I am left with pages of poetry that no one will ever hear!  Oh well.)

A couple resides in Vallejo They opened a poetry café, so Vallejans could gather And eat if they’d rather But verse always has the last say-so.

Ok, now that I re-read it, it’s probably best that I stick to puppet theatre (which I am rather good at.) I had thought that possibly someday we might be able to do something together with our respective arts, and that still may be a possibility. Best to you in your future endeavors.  Michael

— Michael & Valerie Nelson Magical Moonshine Theatre

Hi Tony,Martha

I’ve been in your wonderful cafe twice and i loved it. Great place to relax and learn and enjoy the pure friendship. I am going to miss you guys big time.My son Hami is one that he brought me to the cafe. I want to thank him as well for introducing you to me. We love you and wish you the best of everything.

jay ramani

Tony and Martha!   Have to thank you for all your work to bring poetry forward in this territory.  Will miss your venue—your energy—your opportunities!   I hope you are in Vallejo—–not leaving territory?  Because if you are still here— I will watch to see what you are up to next!   Will try to be there on the 29th—-but if I cannot make it—–please stay in touch—-   sincerely and all that—-Bonnie Weidel

you cannot imagine how sad i am that you’ve closed. although i only made it to several poetry nights, i was always so inspired and happy that you are (were) there. i will miss your presence very much and the closing of the cafe is a great loss for our community. you’re a great inspiration to all of us. stay around in whatever capacity you can!

steve oliphant

Hi Tony / Martha,   A sad day for all of us. Just wanted to extend our gratitude and appreciation for the opportunity to extend ourselves artistically; for the good memories; and especially for the friendship. Your place served as an artistic refuge for all aspiring artists.   Peace and blessings to you and your family,   -Talons   Tony and Martha,   What a wonderful exerience we have all had, together.  Time leaves its mark on all things.   But, you are priceless and timeless.  Continue to dwell in peace and love, and the music will follow.   C

Hey Tony and Martha. Thank you very much for opening your doors and allowing the Talons to perform at  LBH. It has been an exciting and growing experience. We will truly miss your kindness, generousity, and hospitality. Thank you for inviting us to be a part of a wonderful experience. David Rages; Talons

Tony and Martha,

I wish I would’ve found out about the closure sooner, otherwise I would’ve came to read my pieces on that very stage for the last time. When I think about the fact that a place that gave me a voice is gone for good…it saddens me, it made me cry, hell, I even wrote a small piece about it. I wish I knew why you guys are closing, but I do wish BOTH of you the best!!!

One more thing…do you still have that Jimi Hendrix poster by any chance? I want a piece of Listen and Be Heard…anything, even a menu LOL. Lastly, I’ve been craving for that smoked salmon cream cheese for the LONGEST…do you guys have the recipe or did you buy it at a special store????????????????????

Much Luv 2 BOTH of you,

Tiffany C. Pace a.k.a. Poetic Old Soul

Martha,   I was sad to hear you were closing. Best to you and your husband.

JMB Times-Herald

We came to have Avacado and cream cheese bagels yesterday and we were very sad to see the Cafe gone. We drive from Napa to enjoy your food and warm personalities! We wish you the best in all that you do.

Valerie and Zach

Listen and Be Heard Folk,

There is a cafe in England called, “Cafe` Poetry”.

How they continue I do not know.

But they survive doing what Kierkegaard wrote a book about: “Purity of the Heart is to Will One Thing.”

Perhaps, someday, there will be a “Cafe` Poetry” somewhere in the Greater Bay Area. Until then we will have the ghost of “Listen And Be Heard” to haunt us…whether we have just been guests online or able to travel to the site in person.

I am sad.

Agape, kiitos, shalom, Xie Xie, salaam, ja namaste,

Don as “Tauno”

Dear Martha, thank you so much for continuing your work on this web site.  I don’t usually have a lot of tim eon my hands, and I appreciate so much reading the poems and other information that you include. Thank you again,  Joann Dandurand

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