Rise and Fall and Rise of Seattle Music

The Seattle music scene was the best time of my life. It was a great time to be young and passionate about music. My first job was as a road hand for The Davanos(that’s why I rebuilt this site). I would meet them at their houses, help pick up their gear, and we would get set up for the show. I would have a front row seat for all gigs, and got to meet some of the greatest bands around. Then the 90s hit, and you know what happened then. Nirvana, Pearl Jam, and Soundgarden hit the scene really hard, and took the entire scene to the top of the charts. These were guys they have been playing roller rinks and high schools for years and now all of the sudden they were superstars. The end result was devastating to many of the bands.

local seattle bands

There were deaths, overdoses, and broken families left in the wake. I think many of them weren’t used to that level of success, and didn’t know how to handle it. They had more money than they could spend, and more attention than one person should ever have. The life was a constant party and along with that went large amounts of drugs and alcohol. After the death of Kurt Cobain and Layne Staley, many of the musicians took a break, and some even left the business. John Kois came back to Pennsylvania where I saw him at a Starbucks, and said the he started teaching beginning drum lessons . Mark Phillips headed for New York and the last I heard he was teaching music theory at NYU.

the seattle greats

The scene was devastated with the loss of so many greats that the term grunge became synonymous with self-destruction. That’s not to say that everybody went down that road. There were bands like Mudhoney, The Melvins, and the Screaming Trees who did relatively well and stayed on that positive path throughout their careers. They flew just under the radar to avoid succumbing to the large-scale success that destroyed many people, and led steady hard-working lives and the field that they knew and loved. I hope to go back to Seattle someday and reminisce with some of my old friends about the music scene. But my main goal will be to see if the soul has returned to the area that made it such a Haven for that brave counterculture.