Curt Yagi’s “Sweep Me” has been chosen for the Local Scene 8 CD to be released by KFOG, a leading San Francisco Bay Area pop station. The station is also featuring Yagi currently on its Local Scene page as Artist of the Month.
“Sweep Me” is the second track of Close My Eyes, Yagi’s second album, released in March. It combines the singer/songwriter’s charismatic vocals with catchy rhythms and breezy melodies for a startlingly original and companionable collection.
His first album, What’s Come Over Me, was released in mid-November of 2007. It was the product of a decision to end his 10-year gig as a corporate tech consultant and take a big pay cut to become executive director of Real Options for City Kids (R.O.C.K.), a nonprofit to which Yagi had been volunteering his Saturdays.
The career change prompted Yagi to move from Cow Hollow to 18th Street near Arkansas Street. He learned guitar, suppressed the lifelong stage fright that had kept him playing bass and piano in the back, and began stepping up to open mics around the Bay Area as front man for his own band. Yagi has developed a following and now plays regularly at local cafes and clubs.
Curt Yagi was born in Hayward and grew up in Fremont. While in high school he taught himself piano after hearing his schoolteacher mother play a rock tune. He practiced on a keyboard while studying computer science at UC Davis. He spent a decade working in San Francisco’s high tech industry. But when his father died of a rare disease Yagi faced up to his unhappiness with his career and made some big changes in his life. His songwriting began during the transition to his new career at R.O.C.K.
“I think many of my songs, including the title song off the new album, have a definite focus on my Dad,” he said in March. “So, I suppose I started writing a little later in life than many others and just thought I would try to sing. The first several times of going to open mics were horrible, but I just kept going back and eventually got more and more comfortable.”
Yagi runs, plays soccer and even helps coach his high school wrestling team in an effort to stay in shape. He is single.