Celebrate Subterranean Seattle on Saturday at Fantagraphics Bookstore

Come celebrate the legacy of Seattle’s early music and comix on Saturday, November 29 as Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery hosts the book launch party for Sub Pop USA: The Subterranean Music Anthology, 1980 -1988. The book documents the formative years of Bruce Pavitt’s fiercely independent fanzine, cassette label and music column. Fantagraphics Bookstore curator Larry Reid was a contributor to the fanzine (under the pseudonym Lewy Louie.). Bookstore staffer Russ Battaglia contributed graphics and photos to the zines, which were graced with covers by Lynda Barry and Charles Burns. It was amazing to see the almost immediate impact Pavitt’s modest enterprise had on pop music. To those close to him, it came as no surprise that within a decade, Sub Pop would impact popular culture on a global scale.

The book includes essays, by Reid, Charles R. Cross, Ann Powers, Gerard Cosley, and Calvin Johnson, founder of K Records and early Sub Pop fanzine collaborator. Johnson will perform music at the party, which is the first time he will play Fantagraphics since Beat Happening rocked our wild warehouse party in 1994 (attended by newly anointed princes of punk, Nirvana). Many contributors to the old zine and new book will attend the reception from 6:00 to 8:00 PM – a great way to spend Small Business Saturday.
Fantagraphics Bookstore is located at 1201 S. Vale Street in the heart of Seattle’s historic Georgetown arts community. Open daily 11:30 to 8:00 PM, Sundays until 5:00 PM. Phone 206.658.0110.

How Kurt Cobain changed Seattle, and how it changed him. A discussion with Charles R. Cross at Town Hall

Here We Are Now by Charles R. Cross

“How Kurt Cobain changed Seattle, and how it changed him.” A discussion between Charles R. Cross, author of “Here We Are Now” and “Heavier Than Heaven,” and John Richards of KEXP at Town Hall on Thursday, April 3rd at 7:30pm.

It’s the 20th anniversary of Kurt Cobain’s death; after so long, why is the Nirvana frontman still so popular? In an in-depth account of Cobain’s enduring presence, bestselling author Charles R. Cross chronicles the man, the legend and the legacy. Here We Are Now: The Lasting Impact of Kurt Cobain explores Cobain’s influence on music, fashion and popular culture, including society’s perceptions of drug addiction, suicide, and rock ‘n’ roll. According to Cross, when every new generation knows the lyrics to “Smells Like Teen Spirit,” it’s clear that Cobain is still on the brain. Cross is the author of Heavier than Heaven, the definitive biography of Cobain. In Here We Are Now, Cross interviews those who knew Cobain and those who only wish they had, reflecting back on the last 20 years without the face of grunge. He’ll appear in conversation with KEXP’s John Richards.

Tickets available on the Town Hall/Stranger website.

A dozen free or low-cost musical events, classes and festivals in Seattle for families and youth

Racer Runts red upper

1. Racer Runts continues their all-ages show the first Saturday of every month with the next show scheduled for Saturday, April 5th at Cafe Racer 5828 Roosevelt Way NE in Seattle, from 4pm to 7pm.

2. Seattle School of Rock has announced their new Spring shows, plus you can sign up for summer camps:

3. There’s a great new class by Ed Hartman, the owner of the Drum Exchange, and it might be a good 3-hour class for budding composers at North Seattle Community College, Saturday May 17th, “How to License your Music”.

4. If you’re at the Seattle Center anyway, consider this panel discussion about the legacy of Kurt Cobain at EMP with Charles Cross, Bruce Pavitt, Jack Endino, Charles Peterson and Jacob McMurry called Come As You Are: The Legacy of Kurt Cobain (free and look at that line-up!)

5. Another free event at EMP for high school and college kids, “City of Music” career day on April 10, but must pre-register.

6. For a very in-depth and intellectual foray into pop music, you may want to look into this free 3-day conference on pop, rock and modern music at EMP called Go! Music and Mobility

7. Folklife Festival (FREE!) May 23-26 – BTW, you don’t need any kind of busking license to play anytime at the Seattle Center:

8. Another fun free music event, Honk Fest, is June 19-22 this year. It’s hard to join an existing band because most are made up of 21+, so maybe it’s time to start your own marching band. Anyone can sign up! HonkFest West

9. Vera Project is signing up now for new classes in Sound, Studio, Lighting, DJ classes and song writing.

10. And if you’ve ever wanted to learn to sing in harmony and barbershop quartet, there’s a fun camp called “Harmony Explosion” that our older son Max went to a few times. It’s July 10th-12th in Tacoma at UPS: Harmony Explosion

11. There’s a fun, free event, World Rhythm Festival at Seattle Center April 5th & 6th.

12. Youth of all ages enjoy music and performances at an accessible, welcoming venue, Fusion Cafe. There are 2-3 shows per month, featuring established local, regional and national bands as well as up-and-coming youth bands. Youth performers benefit from career development when placed on show bills with more established musicians, and show-goers get a safe place to socialize, listen to new or favorite music and learn about community and Y resources. All shows begin at 8 p.m., cost $5 (free for Y program participants) and are staffed by Y employees and volunteers.