Just got back from a great family vacation in Seattle and Vancouver a week ago. I have worked in Seattle for a long time, originally with KZOK, and in recent years for Entercom at KISW and KNDD. It's a great town that has the contrasting corporate cultures of Boeing, Microsoft, and of course, Starbucks. But of course, you don't get much of a chance to see a city when you're on a market visit or conducting L.A.B.s.
While walking through the Pike Street Market (yes, we said hello to the "FISH" guys), we ran into the original Starbucks, a little coffee shop that actually doesn't look like a franchise. Like so many of the stores and shops in the Market, it's a fun place that's very tourist-friendly.
And of course, there's EMP - Paul Allen's Experience Music Project - an amazing tribute to music that blows away Cleveland's Rock Hall of Fame. I usually don't like interactive museums because the hands-on stuff rarely works or makes much sense. But in this place, the live music "Sound Lab" studios were fun, user-friendly, and encourage people who have never seen each other before to interact and... jam with each other.
The "Roots & Branches" sculpture - guitars to the ceiling - that greets you on the way in sets the tone. And the "Guitar Gallery" is a place you could spend hours exploring. Tributes to Hendrix and Dylan are also "can't miss" exhibits.
The big takeaway on EMP is that it reconnects music fans to why they first discovered and loved Rock, Hip-Hop, and other genres in the first place. It's a fabulous tribute to why we all dove into this culture way back when.