Future Twin frontwoman Jean Yaste likes to start things.
Not just the leader of the San Francisco garage, lo-fi rock band, she also opposes condominium development in The City, is involved with the group that took over land in Albany and converted it to a guerilla farm, and is co-founder of an all-female moped gang.
Future Twin, which appears Friday at Uptown Nightclub in Oakland, includes drummer Antonio Roman-Alcalá, bassist William Cotton and keyboardist Dan Kennedy, all socially active musicians. The band’s name implies imagining the type of person you want to be and making that happen.
Speaking on limiting development, Yaste believes proposed legislation that would increase the number of rental units that could be converted to condos would deplete affordable housing.
“[Property owners] could come in and evict long-term residents,” she says. “They would flip the property and sell it to other people as an owner unit. I’m really concerned with having a diverse city with lots of different voices.”
She adds: “I just got owner-evicted from my long-term home in the Mission,” noting that most working artists cannot afford to buy housing in The City.
Her experience spurred her to join the boards of the San Francisco Community Land Trust and HomeownershipSF, tenant advocacy nonprofits.
Also an avid gardener, Yaste advocates for access to homegrown produce. A year ago, she and Roman-Alcalá joined Occupy the Farm protesters who wanted to turn land in Albany owned by UC Berkeley into a farm.
“We clipped the lock, and we went in and we planted a farm in a day,” she says. “We just wanted to have access to the land to grow food for people who don’t have a lot of access to organic, low-cost produce, or free produce, for that matter.”
Although the land, known as Gill Tract, was designated as agrarian, protesters believe it eventually will be developed if a nearby parcel, also owned by the university, is developed.
The group has been allowed to return to farm the land, but university officials remain steadfast that the nearby land will be developed.
While there are no political ramifications to the Lockits, a moped gang Yaste helped start in 2009, it is entertaining and full of camaraderie: “It’s fun to ride through the streets really fast and terrorize yuppies.”
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