Tonight in Seattle:  

A tour of Seattle's new Hard Rock Cafe

All photos by Lori Paulson

On Wednesday, the Seattle Hard Rock Café opened its doors at First Avenue and Pike Street. Overall, I think it’s a very good thing for Seattle and Seattle music, but first let's talk about the Wikipedia/press release details.

The Hard Rock Café in Seattle will be one of more than 150 locations worldwide. In an economy where the unemployment rate has been hovering around 10%, this restaurant put somewhere around 150 employees through orientation. The space is two stories high and occupies about 14,000 square feet. Before the lobby of the Hard Rock was a lobby of the Hard Rock, it was a pawn shop; the second floor, where there is a bar and restaurant and music venue was previously an adult bookstore. While I’m not necessarily in favor of pushing pawn shops or porn stores out of the way to make room for a corporate chain of restaurants on principle (and one directly across the street from where another burger chain fizzled: Johnny Rockets), combined, I doubt either of those seedy businesses ever had payrolls approaching 150 people.

All photos by Lori Paulson

The roof of the space was converted to an outdoor patio with gas fires to keep warm. The view from there of Puget Sound is breathtakingly beautiful and with a bar and a capacity of around 80 people. I want to have my next birthday party there; even if it is outdoors and my birthday is in January.

All photos by Lori Paulson

To me, the memorabilia is both very impressive and the most underwhelming aspect of the tour that I and a handful of other media representatives experienced two days prior to its opening. Some of the items are stunning, such as guitars used by Eddie Vedder and Kurt Cobain or the topper on Courtney Love and Cobain’s wedding cake. Grunge was very well represented although I’m not convinced it’s a story that hasn't already been told so often it's familiar, but, moreover, does the Hard Rock have the credibility to tell that particular story after the Vegas hotel and casino altered one of Cobain’s guitars to censor an expletive?

You could learn a lot about the genre from the exhibits on display, as well as the audio tour where you can call on your cell phone to hear recorded details on items throughout the restaurant. We were told that it is the first location to offer that service, which I think is a good thing because I believe the stories behind each item are more interesting than the item itself.

All photos by Lori Paulson

I found the memorabilia less thrilling overall but am still enthusiastically bullish on the restaurant as a whole. Moreover, I asked a curator during our tour whether or not riot grrrl was represented here and it wasn’t. One photographer noted to me that also missing weren’t just influential riot grrrl bands like Sleater-Kinney and Bikini Kill, but other Northwest bands who were wildly successful more recently, like Modest Mouse and Death Cab for Cutie. Certainly, though, it doesn’t take a focus group or an advanced degree in marketing to tell you that Eddie Vedder’s guitar will sell more cheeseburgers than Carrie Brownstein’s would.

All photos by Lori Paulson

The curator did explain that his approach was to find acts that are either from Seattle or played here, so that may explain those omissions: Modest Mouse (Issaquah), Sleater-Kinney (Olympia) and Death Cab (Bellingham) have their origins outside of the city. The inclusion of acts that have played in Seattle is hardly exclusive, though: I’m not sure I can name any major acts that have never played a Seattle stage. I know Elvis, The Beatles and Led Zeppelin have had memorable instances in their respective careers in the 206 area code.

One cool thing about the dining and memorabilia experience is that each booth has an interactive monitor that lets you learn about certain items as well as zoom in close enough to notice small details on each item. 

The Hard Rock Café will still be the spot for tourists to eat Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Sandwich underneath Eddie Vedder’s guitar while hearing U2 and Stevie Ray Vaughan overhead. Ok, the club sandwich part I made up (or maybe remember from a previous trip to the since-closed Hard Rock in Vancouver years ago with my family, but it’s not on the list of menu items I was given), but that isn’t to say that’s all that it is.

All photos by Lori Paulson

I certainly agree, but I wasn’t the first to note that arguably the savviest move the Hard Rock made in Seattle was hiring Amy Bauer as part of their sales and marketing team and as their booker. Bauer, as many Seattle music insiders know, spent many years running day-to-day operations for Loveless Records (the label co-owned by John Richards of KEXP), where they released several albums by local artists like Voyager One, New Faces, Pris, Vendetta Red and Carrie Akre. I met Bauer for the first time just a little over a week before this tour at a party for the Grammy Awards and she was very excited then to tell me some of the ideas that she had for booking shows at the Hard Rock. She hasn’t unveiled a full schedule but did say that she planned on having Tuesday night residencies with local artists, labels or blogs booking weekly shows for a month. Another idea she floated was all-ages matinee shows on weekends. Those aren’t the ideas of a corporation conscience of their bottom line but of someone given the opportunity to be a part of the community it serves. Not entirely unrelated, the Hard Rock will serve Caffe Vita coffee.

I did ask Bauer how aggressively she would pursue booking out-of-town acts and she said that she wasn’t there to compete with their neighbors at the Showbox at the Market but wanted to be the place where those acts come for dinner; she noted the capacity of the Hard Rock compared to the Showbox’s (477 vs. 1200ish). While that’s true, the space is more comparable to the Crocodile’s (whose capacity is around 560) and Chop Suey (which has a similar capacity to the Hard Rock).

All photos by Lori Paulson

We’ll have to wait until her schedule is revealed, but from the time I’ve spent talking to Bauer, she doesn’t see the Hard Rock as competition for any live music venue but as another place for bands to play. Of course, every thriving scene needs more, not fewer, venues for artists to perform. Moreover, if the restaurant was going to be a major player in luring high-profile acts, that would have been a focus of the tour and the shows would have already been announced.

Early March is when Bauer said that live music would begin. Thus far, the only band I know of to announce they are playing at the Hard Rock is the hip hop/rock hybrid Eli Porter, who revealed they are playing March 6 on Twitter and on their website.

The staffers I spoke with who had backgrounds in music or were familiar with this scene were not hesitant to say that they were worried about how they’d be received in Seattle. Seattle, unlike a lot of other major cities, has a strong indie rock ethos and is protective of that ideal (even if bands like Death Cab and Modest Mouse are no longer “indie” and have considerable mainstream success). That’s certainly true, but a music community that cares about itself is hardly a bad thing. Moreover, the link I included above about the Vegas hotel altering Kurt Cobain’s guitar is more than troubling, but if the Hard Rock is going to win over a skeptical audience that could think the chain is already “lame”, they’ll have to do it, like a vice chairman of the Seminole tribe said when they bought the chain, one hamburger at a time. For whatever it is worth, the Seattle Hard Rock Café is definitely not lame: the technology is quite advanced for a restaurant; the rooftop terrace is gorgeous and offers a remarkable view; everyone on the staff I spoke with was friendly, knowledgeable and helpful, including the lovely cashier in the gift shop I talked to when I purchased a pin for a collector in my family; it’s a big improvement to the neighborhood that brought in a lot more jobs and I was assured that diners would be pleased with the happy hour specials on both food and drinks (from 3-6 and 8-10pm).

In the end, though, the Hard Rock Café is still a restaurant and it will either flourish or flounder based on how good the food is and how good it’s served. I haven’t tried it yet, but am anxious to give it a shot.

All photos by Lori Paulson

I'm sick; All photos by Lori Paulson

{All photos by Lori Paulson.}

It's too bad that Microsoft Surface, or whatever it is in the last pic, doesn't say "...I'm sick" at the bottom.
I did put that in the notes to the photo though!
"...it doesn’t take a focus group or an advanced degree in marketing to tell you that Eddie Vedder’s guitar will sell more cheeseburgers than Carrie Brownstein’s would." Genius writing, Chris B!
As always, you guys are thorough, witty, and to the point. I can't wait to go to the Hard Rock Cafe! It's so beautiful! IN FACT, I will be going to see Eli Porter. I saw this band about a month or so ago and they are crazy good. I was surprised to see you mention them on your site though. I haven't seen any reviewer even talk about them. Good job on this review all the way around! Car
I have to agree with Carrisa. Great write up very complete and is on point. Eli Porter is playing the Hard Rock Cafe?! Really? Wow. I haven't read anything about them in the press at all. I saw them at Nectar last month and blown away by their live show. Glad to see Hard Rock giving them a shot. Just goes to show you it isn't always about who you know but what you do.
Just to let you know, ELI PORTER is play August 13th! You guys should go! I think you'd like them!

I found it interesting that the article stated that staff was worried about how Eli Porter would do at The Hard Rock. A firsthand report from tonight's 8/13 show:

All Presales Sold Out on Thursday, the Online Sales Sold Out by late afternoon on Friday, and there were only 22 tickets available for sale at the door at 9pm and they were gone by 9:30.

Bands were getting calls from fans left out on the street trying to get in. Lion's Ambition alone had 40 fans who could not get in. Scalping was happening on the street.

Even right up to 1AM, fans stayed for the last band. Even the best Indie bands in Seattle have a hard time pulling these types of numbers consistently and holding an audience until 1AM.

This is no fluke. The bands on the bill have consistently sold out shows at The Showbox, SODO, and other major clubs in Seattle yet they are all overlooked in the press.

The fans have spoken.. Seattle press, maybe you should listen. The city is tired of the same bands getting all the press and seeing the same bands playing our major festivals like CHBP and Bumbershoot. Open your arms to the upcoming bands... fans have.

The one element you cannot deny is when the music and the performance is good... no lack of press can keep a fan away. These bands get no press yet they're selling out shows.

How many more venues do these bands have to sellout before you give them the attention they deserve?

Hey Anonymous, I'm not entirely unsympathetic to your point and try to cover a lot of bands that are good but aren't getting a lot of attention (and I'm often not a fan of the bands that are getting a lot of press attention from my friends and peers). Moreover, I can name at least a dozen local artists that have gotten their first feature story or full-length review from me. Still, though, can you point to one word where I wrote that the staff was worried about Eli Porter's draw? I wrote nothing of the sort and if you re-read it, you'll see that. I did say that staffers were worried about how a corporate restaurant chain would be received by an indie music scene, but that is a completely different animal altogether.

I did re-read the following statement.

"Thus far, the only band I know of to announce they are playing at the Hard Rock is the hip hop/rock hybrid Eli Porter, who revealed they are playing March 6 on Twitter and on their website."

"The staffers I spoke with who had backgrounds in music or were familiar with this scene were not hesitant to say that they were worried about how they’d be received in Seattle."

I found that this statement right after talking about Eli Porter to be a bit misleading. Now that you write me and tell me what you meant, I can see that you were talking about the Hard Rock, not Eli Porter, but without the explanation, it's really up to the reader how they interpret the statement. Maybe inserting 'The Hard Rock' for 'they'd' would've defined that better.

I was talking to the bands last night after the show out on the street and they all said, "We just SOLD OUT the Hard Rock leaving tons of people on the streets trying to buy tickets and no one will even write or know about it."

They all wondered why they all continue to sellout shows yet never get any press? And the bands say it's not because they haven't sent requests to Music writers. These are not newbie bands. Three of them played a sold out Showbox Market show in June with over 1,000 in attendance on an 'all local' lesser known band bill yet no one heard about it.

All of these bands are bringing in 150-200+ to every show. There are few bands in Seattle who are doing that consistently. Eli Porter alone has sold out or had a near sellout of 'every' show they've played yet has never had one thing written on them and they've been around for 2 yrs. Same with Eclectic Approach.

Last night a rather new band, 'Vice Versa' comprised of members from Gran Rapids had their debut. Awesome band yet no one was there to write about it.

At 1am, there were approximately 100 people still in the room. How many shows can hold an audience of that size that late? Headliners don't even want to go on last anymore for they know crowds don't stick around anymore but last night they did and Vice Versa was tight, charismatic, and they ended a night with a bang! The Hard Rock had to chase people out of the room for everyone was having such a good time, they didn't want to leave.

I just think Seattle is big enough for everyone and I'd just like to see bands who are working hard with a solid product, get a little love : )

Hey! Maybe those bands should hire a publicist! Or at least a better one. Just a thought.

hi anonymous -- I can't speak for all the writers here on 3IG, but I can speak for myself when I say I'm here writing about / shooting bands that I love. the same kinds of bands that, six years ago, I'd drive for hours to see... and then go home and blog about for eighty paragraphs. bands that, often, no one cared about reading about but me. (and I'm quite sure that no one was excited about all the blurry point-and-shoot pictures I took but me, and one or two supportive, cringing friends.) my point is, if you love / are excited about these bands that much, write about them! get a blogging gig! be the change you want to see happening, instead of complaining that the umbrella of "seattle press" isn't doing these bands any justice. again, speaking for myself -- but I know it holds true for many others -- I spend the majority of my free time talking about, blogging about, shooting, getting excited about, or getting other people excited about bands that I'm excited about. because I like, have to. sounds like it might be the case for you too.

Have to agree with both comments 10 and 11....

Hire a publicist? Who will do what? The same things they are probably already doing? Or someone who takes $ in order to get someone they know to do them a favor and mention said band's show? Seattle hasn't turned dirty like our political system has it?

It's obvious this scene is more about who you know than what you do to get any sort of spotlight, because . . .

Where was the press when Fresh Espresso & Thee Satisfaction were booooooo'd throughout their set at Sneaker Pimps by Seattle's very own? Tell me how many people bought D.Black's album, (besides his family)? How much of Grynch's draw aren't other rappers trying jump on his hype ride (there is a reason why he still lives with his parents and a label hasn't taken the risk, folks)? How the hell did Lisa Dank get into Bumbershoot? WHY HAS THERE NEVER BEEN A CRITICAL THING SAID/WRITTEN ABOUT MASH HALL?!?!

It's more looking like the Oregon Trail around here if you take a look at the band wagon effect the umbrella of "seattle's press" likes to role model after. Anyone notice that the same acts get a ton of attention, buzz & praise from the umbrella? The same acts get recycled for Sasquatch, CHBP, Bumbershoot? One would think that they must be considered to be at the top of Seattle's music scene for receiving these accolades and honors. But if that was the case, then why aren't their shows packed? Why am I only 1 of the 20 people to pay cover? Why is nearly half of the attendance made up of bloggers/writers/other music acts (who are having industry night at the bar; rather than listening to the ACTUAL MUSIC!)? Shouldn't the response of the Seattle market itself be used as an indicator as to who is making a splash in our music pool, instead of reporting who has their Cool Club Card punched?!?!

My advice to these bands? Don't hire a publicist, they are better off donating money to Larry Mizell's weed fund to get the umbrella to look their way.

I don't even know any of these bands nor have I seen them but *IF* Seattle is responding overwhelmingly to them (or any other band/act), even I can come to the conclusion that there must be a reason. As an avid member in Seattle's music scene I feel it's the umbrella's responsibility to their readers to be on the look out for acts like this (instead of worrying about their site hits, link backs & name recognition).

Even when the umbrella is helping the same circle of Cool Club Card members stay dry, they still won't have the fan base to keep them from getting washed out in the long run. The umbrella needs to be shaked out and closed up, you know it doesn't rain in Seattle year round, right?

Hiring a publicist is only one suggestion. In the long run, Victoria is correct: Local press will write about what they love (with or without PR). Why bother writing about anything else, if there's so little else in it for them?

But to answer your question, well-done publicity can arouse enough interest with editors who make sure that artists are assigned coverage; also, if that publicist has good taste with what s/he promotes writers learn to trust him/her. For example, I'm pretty damned sure I'm going to listen to anything four or five publicists I know are going to send me; and sometimes it turns out to be three in five, or in some seasons, one in five, things I get excited about and want to cover. These are MY interests as a reviewer or writer -- I'm not going to "take one for them team" if your band doesn't appeal to me, just because other local people may dig them. If I was drawing a full time check for this work, I would probably be doing the community more of a "service" -- but the only people getting paid now are the last remaining owners of labels, media, etc.

Where that leaves us is artists on the same plane as scribes -- you do it for love, so do we. SO MAKE US LOVE YOU -- seduce us. I know that sucks, having to persuade audiences and journalists instead of demanding fair treatment ... but if you're too busy with the day job, the primary relationship, and actually writing and recording and mastering and manufacturing/distributing the music you make, you probably want to hire somebody like those people I described above who make me look out for the music I know I will probably enjoy.

Just like most DJs at KEXP spin about 75% of my own record collection and are my private DJ when I don't want to keep putting albums on/in (making my wife very happy we're not fighting about what to listen to next), and then actually inform me on the next 25% to buy, a good publicist is the liaison between a working artist and the music junkie who writes. A good writer respects publicists -- 95% of the music I loved last year came from my friends (and a couple of assholes!) who do PR. A good musician knows they can't do everything themselves so throw a few bucks to some music junkie who knows writers and DJs and other people willing to give the music a chance. A good editor will know what writers know their shit and hire them to make decisions in pitching and who would be fun and responsible with coverage of a band. 

That being said, it's fascinating to see Seattle bands hiring people from LA and New York to hustle their music, which is still mostly regionally known, EVEN IF THE BAND ISN'T TOURING. Which means they're spending whatever is left over from all that expensive and/or time-consuming recording in another place's economy, and wondering why they never make a connection between their Seattle press and the national magazines. (Answer: Because no one in LA knows who the hell you are and why should they care?!) 

You spent the money you had on gear and making the music sound great to be "discovered." You spent nothing on promotion hoping that the people with money will go ape-shit over your work like your friends and family do -- and maybe (a whole lot less maybe these days) they will. But you STILL need to make relationships with writers and bloggers and editors and photographers by: (1.) Playing good and playing out frequently enough; (2.) Not being a passive-aggressive whiner with petty jealousies; and (3.) Getting your music to the people who might care enough to hype it (and not complaining that those people want "freebies" -- more than likely, they're doing this for free for you already, and they too have day jobs, primary relationships, and may be artists of some type too). How do you get that music out there? Directly, if you have time and energy to do it. But if you don't, budget for it the way you do recording and buying equipment. THIS SHIT JUST DOESN'T HAPPEN. You have to "make it happen" as the big boys say. Don't have the bass player's girlfriend send out CDs unless she's willing to do extensive follow up, get people on guest lists, buys some drinks for pals to check out this music they haven't heard yet. Don't give money to anyone else to do it unless they know the tastes of the people you hold with such thinly veiled contempt. And maybe you should work on that, too.

I feel like there's some confusion around the fact of what deserves to be reported on and what is reported on. TIG's mission statement is to share news about the bands we love (mostly Pac NW, indie-pop) with our imaginary friends. The motto being: there are too many bands out there to waste time talking about the ones that aren't for us.  

If someone wants my two cents look at it, I think the important thing for a band to do is send music to folks that you think would like it, not just throw it at everyone and hope something sticks. That's a waste of your time and money and the recipients' time and trashcan space.

For example, by perusing our site, it's fairly obvious that if things are of the funk, reggae, dub, or metal ilk, we probably wont cover it. Based on our personal tastes, we tend to lean towards things in the indie-pop, twee, pop family tree with some Pac NW sad-bastard (and anything Oberst-related) thrown in.  

The sad but true fact is that no one at TIG gets a paycheck. The few ads you see around the site pay our operating expenses like webhosting and developer time to fix weird bugs when they arise (expenses like parking tickets for taking a chance on a poorly labeled Belltown parking space near a show venue are not covered). Huge hugs and props to our advertisers (and to the deep pocket folks: we could always use more funds if you want to post an ad!). 

This isn't such a bad thing as it also means that we get to spend our time and exclamation points on things that we are truly excited about and want to share with the world. Is there any greater joy than turning someone on to a band you can't stop talking about?

We do love getting scoops on the bands that folks are loving and we'd love to hear all about it! We just ask that no one take offense when you don't see all your recommendations covered. The 24 hours in a day only offers time enough for us to post about things that we personally connect with. If time is left over, we might also do our laundry.

And for the record, I'll donate to anything Larry Mizell, Jr. does. He's one of the nicest, most talented guys in this town (and beyond).  I can't wait for him to run for Mayor.

I like that chris estey worked in the word 'arouse' to his comment. but seriously -- well played, kittens. this is why I love and adore the 3IG 4eva.
I'm the singer of Eli Porter. I ran across this article on google but I have no clue what's going on and if the anonymous person is implying that he/she is in our band; they aren't. I hope there isn't any confusion and I apologize if there is. Thank you Carissa, anonymous and Gerald for feeling strongly about us though. Cheers 3IG. Rich
Rich, this isn't the campaign trail and the politician antics aren't needed. Thanks for the 2 cents and all, but no one is offended by your no-name band. This goes way beyond you guys and it's not your fault; so step aside.

Someone please help me here: how did Lisa Dank get into Bumbershoot? I know it wasn't the work of a publicist or the demand by seattle's music audience (I made the mistake to attend her show, twice.) My only conclusion is she got the spot based upon her being "friends" with a few writers. (BTW Liz, your last sentiment regarding Mizell shows why there isn't a critical thing written about Mash Hall; it's better to keep on good terms than to than to be on bad terms with the mayor. Which is a win for you, but ultimately a loss for the readers.)

It seems the emphasis is being made that since the service provided is free, therefore a "service"/standard to the Seattle music community shouldn't be expected. Are we really to the point to suggest there isn't a standard of journalism that is expected to be considered a legitimate source of seattle music news/reviews?

Also, what is the difference between paying for an advertising spot on 3IG to pay for operating costs versus a band budgeting a direct donation to 3IG for a write-up/review? It's all payola at the end of the day, isn't it? Either pay a publicist to know someone, who knows someone else, who will be interested enough to write about you or pay the writer directly? I can't imagine what unethical line that is crossed here?

I've been burned by going to too many shows that were hyped by the "umbrella" only to be shown that the hype was a bunch of smoke to attract hits & link backs. Or worse yet, to jump on with the rest of the online hype bandwagon (happens way too often). I'm seriously sick of it.

Listen, I know it seems I have been beating 3IG up but 3IG hasn't turned into the hype machine those other payola blogs have become. I enjoy visiting this site; seriously. I can still read 3IG (which is how i stumbled upon this convo) without worrying about getting a bunch of BS. I appreciate the honest & insightful responses everyone has shared thus far. It's best open discussion on this topic I have seen yet.
Rich's comments were, of course, quite welcome here and his band was the subject of previous comments, so he's relevant to the discussion and I'm glad he chimed in. Though I'm still confused as to what everything being discussed has to do with an article from February about the Hard Rock Cafe moving into Seattle.

Jay- I'll try to answer your questions as best as I can, but I'm only speaking for myself as to addressing your complaints. I can't help but think some of it was directed at me specifically.

I wrote the feature on Lisa Dank for TIG late last year and I did so because I really do like her music (which is consistent with a lot of the artists I've written about over the past six years for TIG - see here, here and here, for example). It was probably the first significant piece of press she has gotten (she gave an interview with another local website that thought it was okay to ask her point-blank if she was a whore). When I interviewed her for that article, it was the first time we had met. I thought her songs were catchy and she had a lot of potential to be great. I reached out to her (without going through a publicist). For what it's worth, being friends with writers (which I even doubt is true in this particular case) had nothing to do with her headlining shows in the last month at the Crocodile and Columbia City Theater.

I wish I had the influence to get artists I like into performing slots at Bumbershoot but the reality is that I spent a lot of time this summer worrying if my press pass application would be approved.

I also wrote the story on TIG for Mash Hall (back then they were They Live) because I also like them. I also listen to Fresh Espresso, so you can hold my taste in music against me if you'd like but if you're taking recommendations on who I write about (or anyone else writes about), please stop and find another writer who matches your taste or do your own research. I didn't know Larry at the time and I don't think I've talked to him since outside of a show. I wasn't trying to seek any favors with the mayor's office (he wasn't involved in that at the time anyway). If I was trying to be on good terms with the mayor, I wouldn't be saying on Twitter that his choice of police chief likely cost him my vote.

I also try to be as completely transparent about who I write about and write very little about my friends' bands. When I have to (ie, I think they're too good to ignore), I always disclose it (see here and here). Please trust me, there is little tangible advantage to being my friend.

As for hiring publicists, it's not unethical what they do because there is no bribery or payola in who gets covered, at least not to my knowledge. I care little about how the hype machine works (you won't see me at the Wavves show tonight at Neumos) and care far more about writing about artists I like, but still have to work with publicists. Often, great bands do have good publicists - sometimes the dog does wag its own tail. What a good publicist does is get the music in the hands of people who could write about it. A good publicist will reach out to writers and say "I'm working with this band I think you'll like and I'd love for you to check them out when they play next month, here's their new album and let me know if you need anything else." It should surprise exactly no one that that approach is more effective for getting press than doing nothing but putting songs up on MySpace and hoping a writer sees it and can make it out to their show.

Hiring a publicist isn't necessary (lots of bands do just as well reaching out to press on their own), but handling their press really is something that they do have to be proactive about. I know it sucks that it's one more thing to do on top of writing songs, booking shows, dealing with the collective egos of the rest of the band, practice, working a day job to pay both rent for their apartment and practice space but with dozens and dozens of different bands in the same situation playing any given night (we have a ton of great shows tonight and it's a Wednesday), there is a lot to sort through. The ones who are good and make it easy for writers are the ones who are going to get written about. It may not seem fair but just being a really good band is usually not enough.

This article was posted on the Facebook page of another local music blog this morning and I really think people in bands should read it for some great tips on taking control of getting press. Or they can hire someone to take care of that for them.

Now, does anyone know where to get a $17 cheeseburger around here?

Hey Jay -- you rule. Your response rings true. I think I understand you better this time around. Yeah, I often wonder how some artists keep going on strongly with live shows, press, etc., when other (and in my opinion) more deserving bands are ignored through their existence or wither and die. It is not a bad question to ask, it's still a mystery even if other people and I have some opinions/advice about it. Proactive relationships with people in general (including press) and having someone handle your press contacts (whether in the band or not) is always recommended, but a lot of my favorite artists do that and still don't get the love I think they deserve. (Thus, I write about them myself -- and sometimes, am one of the only ones who are.) It gets more complicated, too -- sometimes my favorite DJs play these same bands, but they still don't get the live following I think they deserve and that others have. Sometimes bands get tons of press and people think they're successful, but they don't have half the fan-base that other bands have -- and that's one of the reasons why your input above was relevant. If they have the fan-base, why not the coverage? Well, again, we write about what we love at 3IG (which you respectfully acknowledge). Bigger than this, writers and editors do need to expand their knowledge of even the music that they like -- and it wouldn't kill them to start searching the margins more too; especially the margins where people go. (A great example would be an alt-weekly editor who recently asked me at the Block Party about artists in a milieu I used to work in, who get no press at all -- did I know anyone who could write about bands like that? Because he realized that nobody here is, and that he has a responsibility to readers who might dig those press-unheralded bands. I thought that was excellent.) Best of luck to your favorite bands, and I hope at least a couple drop into my radar (which I really do wish to be as wide as possible) and I can give them love down the line. Also: Kudos to you for your honesty! And I have no idea who Lisa Dank is, some day I'll buy Chris B. a drink and he can catch me up on that action. 

Jay, I empathize with you however, my response had nothing to do with you or political antics.
The world needs more kittens! http://is.gd/eGRUW
You did a great job on the article. You may be interested in knowing the Hard Rock is now helping us launch the Seattle's first tour focused on the local music scene. The big idea is to show off the City of Music's artists and venues - historically & current. We launch in just a coupe of weeks and would love if you would come and share your opinion on this as well.

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