Grown Kids Radio expands its horizons 

In quite possibly the best date night ever, the California Academy of Sciences hosts its weekly Nightlife event tonight with the theme “Art of Illusion” and live DJ sets by San Francisco’s emerging Grown Kids Radio.

The location itself is about as cool a venue as a date night can get, says Sergio Flores (aka B Maj) co-founder of the six-person DJ collective.

“It’s fun. It’s pretty mature. You can walk around and look at all the exhibits, go to the rain forest with a drink in your hand and listen to music. The whole environment is unique,” he says.

Artist Thom Nguyen does a pop-up exhibit, San Francisco tech company Obscura Digital showcases cutting-edge illusion technology, magician Patrick Martin gives a talk on illusions and the academy’s award-winning planetarium visualization team members explain how they maintain accuracy — all part of the “Art of Illusion” theme.

Soundtracking the academy is part of 3-year-old Grown Kids Radio’s own coming-out plan. The team of like-minded DJs debuted its online podcast series in 2009, but is moving more and more into the material world.
Chicago native B Maj came to The City in 2005, starting Grown Kids Radio in 2009 with Diversify to showcase hidden gems of modern soul, hip-hop and eclectic global crate-digging.

Grown Kids Radio had its first South by Southwest event this year, and its podcasts caught the ear of the Nightlife programmer, B Maj says.

Grown Kids Radio will theme out three levels of the academy by beats-per-minute and genre tonight: “Left field U.K. bass” will bump in the dark basement aquarium, he says, with more relaxed, modern soul and hip-hop on the upper levels.

Each DJ will rotate through the rooms from 6 to 10 p.m.

Grown Kids Radio also hosts a hit monthly live music night at the S.F. Patient & Resource Center, a high-end cannabis dispensary. The event has included guests Mophono and Mr. Lif.

As weekly podcast downloads and subscriptions continue to swell, the future holds more Grown Kids Radio live events, and, the group hopes, a first album.

“I’m excited,” B Maj says. “San Francisco’s so concentrated and the electronic music scene is just becoming so rich and vibrant.”

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David Downs

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