music

Flickr Photo/Ted Leung

What happens when you become a star and then you’re not anymore? Where do you go after that?

Seattle guitarist Dave Dederer was a member of The Presidents of the United States of America. In the '90s they had three top-40 hits, two Grammy nominations and a platinum album.

Dederer’s star has faded but his career hasn’t. Now he’s at Amazon as the head of music programming. Bill Radke asked Dederer what made him switch careers.

Courtesy of Bazillion Points Books/Steve Double

In June 1989, Sub Pop Records rented out the Moore Theatre in Seattle to showcase three of its up-and-coming bands: Mudhoney, Tad and Nirvana. The manager sent security home early because he didn’t think anyone would show up.

The manager was wrong: It was the first sold-out show by a local group. The lack of control and the chaos from a crazy crowd resulted in Sub Pop being blacklisted from the Moore for the next 10 years.

12 Years a Slave is the most compelling film about music to be released this year, maybe this century. It's so many other things, too, as others have noted: a corrective to the weird cocktail of piety and cartoonishness that Hollywood usually supplies when depicting slavery; a gorgeous art film and an actor's hellish paradise; a cultural highlight of the Obama administration.

Steve Scher talks with Barsuk Records co-founder Josh Rosenfeld. The Seattle company is celebrating 15 years in the music business.

Flickr Photo/Man Alive!

Lou Reed, songwriter and frontman to the band The Velvet Underground, passed away yesterday. Without Reed and The Velvet Underground, music writer Charles R. Cross said, "There would be no Nirvana, Pearl Jam or any edgy rock 'n' roll."

Kurt Cobain's Lost Interview About Identity

Oct 28, 2013

In 1993, reporter Jon Savage recorded this interview with Kurt Cobain in preparation for a story he was writing. After the story was published, the cassette languished in storage. Blank on Blank unearthed it and turned it into a cartoon.

One of rock's most beloved and contrarian figures has died. Lou Reed epitomized New York City's artistic underbelly in the 1970s, with his songs about hookers and junkies. He was 71.

Dave Beck On The Legacy Of Toby Saks

Oct 16, 2013
Flickr Photo/Martin A Lester

Last Monday, musicians from around the world gathered at Benaroya Hall to remember cellist, UW music professor and Seattle Chamber Music Society founder Toby Saks. She died from pancreatic cancer this summer. Classical KING FM host (and KUOW alum) Dave Beck attended the memorial. He talks with Marcie Sillman about the memorial and about Saks' legacy.

Janis Joplin's Lost Last Interview

Oct 7, 2013

A recently unearthed interview with Janis Joplin – which turns out to be the last interview she gave – reveals a woman struggling to make herself understood, at a time when women in the media were still largely defined by men.

Blank On Blank takes interviews like these and animates them for PBS.

Peter Ames Carlin’s biography "Bruce"

What’s there left to say about Bruce Springsteen? He burst into national consciousness in 1978 on the success of his hit album "Born to Run" and his face was featured on the cover of Time and Newsweek magazines.  Since then he’s been exhaustively interviewed and analyzed. However, Peter Ames Carlin’s biography "Bruce," covers new ground to even the most avid fans. The author speaks with Ross Reynolds.

5 Latin Songs, Engineered To Cheer You Up

Sep 27, 2013
Nirvana's album "In Utero."

It’s the 20th anniversary of Nirvana’s final record, "In Utero," released  in September 1993. Kurt Cobain wanted the album to sound less like a pop record so the band brought in producer Steve Albini.

But the record company thought the results were too harsh. Another producer did the final mix. To mark the anniversary, there’s new deluxe edition of the album out that includes the rougher original mixes. Ross Reynolds and music writer Charles Cross discuss the impact and influence of "In Untero."

Flickr Photo/Michael Holden

Dave Meinert manages bands like the Hey Marseilles and the Lumineers. He’s involved with the 5 Point Café, and he started Seattle’s other big music festival: the Capitol Hill Block Party. He's also been a driving political force for the last few decades, helping shape the culture and nightlife of this city.

Pages