In 1974, a wonderful woman named Mimi Fariņa founded Bread and Roses, a nonprofit
organization, designed to bring free music and entertainment to institutions: jails,
prisons, hospitals, juvenile facilities, and nursing homes.
Mimi Fariņa was a talented singer-songwriter/activist, and the younger sister of
singer/activist Joan Baez. She met folksinger, songwriter, poet, and novelist
Richard Fariņa in Europe in 1962 when she was 17. They married in 1963. They
recorded their first album, Celebrations for a Grey Day (released under the
name Mimi & Richard Fariņa), in 1965. The couple released only one other album,
Reflections in a Crystal Wind, also in 1965. Richard Fariņa died in a tragic
motorcycle accident in 1966. He was 29. A third album, Memories, was issued in 1968.
After Richard's death, Mimi moved to San Francisco, California. Bread and Roses
became active in the San Francisco Bay area. It is now a steadfast Bay Area nonprofit in
its fifth decade. More than 1,000 performers, program hosts, and other volunteers help over
625 shows go on each year for more than 36,000 audience members.
Mimi Fariņa died of neuroendocrine cancer on July 18, 2001 at age 56. We lost a bright
and beautiful light when we lost Mimi Fariņa.