With 2011 underway and the sun shining in the Bay Area (at least temporarily), UC Press has declared it safe to come out of winter hibernation. We know of at least three good reasons to leave your house in January: Amiri Baraka, Terry Theise, and Michael McClure. And who knows? There may even be others.

Baraka and Mitchell
Rosco Mitchell and Amiri Baraka

These acclaimed authors and performers, who are set to appear at four separate events in San Francisco this month, will surely deliver a jolt of vitality to your new year.

Iconic poet Amiri Baraka, author of the American Book Award-winning Digging: The Afro-American Soul of American Classical Music, will be at Yoshi’s San Francisco on January 17 in a historic collaboration celebrating Martin Luther King, Jr. with founder of the Art Ensemble of Chicago, Roscoe Mitchell. Baraka and Mitchell will give two performances—one at 8:00 p.m. and one at 10:00 p.m.Reading between the Wines cover image

Legendary wine importer Terry Theise, known for his top-notch portfolio and his illustrious writing, will appear at Omnivore Books on January 20 at 6:00 p.m. to discuss his latest book, Reading between the Wines, an opinionated, idiosyncratic, and beautifully written testament to wine.Of Indigo and Saffron cover image Then, Theise heads to Kepler’s Books in Menlo Park for a reading on January 22 at 2:00 p.m.

Finally, American poet, playwright, songwriter, and novelist Michael McClure will read from his collection of new and selected poems, Of Indigo and Saffron, at City Lights Books on January 26 at 7:00 p.m. McClure, who is as ingrained in San Francisco’s Beat scene as City Lights itself, was there when Allen Ginsberg first read “Howl” at San Francisco’s Six Gallery in 1955, and read his own poetry, too.