Listen & Be Heard Open Mic at Rafael’s Bar in Vallejo, CA was already a successful event that had been covered in the San Francisco Chronicle when the first issue of L&BH Weekly was published on November 11, 2003, Q.R. Hand jr. was one of the first poets to show up and come back every week, and was probably Vallejo’s finest poet.
Well known all around the Bay Area for his poetry, delivered with his mesmerizing, richly deep voice, Q.R. was an integral member of the cultural community in Vallejo. I wrote a short article about him and featured some of his poetry on the second page. Also on page two, Devorah Major, who was San Francisco’s Poet Laureate at the time, and had an upcoming feature at L&BH open mic.
After investigating the print possibilities in Vallejo, we started at the copy shop. Digital Copy is a locally owned shop that gave us a good deal because they saw the value in promoting local culture. The very first issue was in a large vertical format that soon changed to folding two sheets together to make eight pages. Eventually it became unrealistic as the paper grew, and we found a printer in San Francisco that wasn’t owned by our local competition.