Best Seattle Bands
Seattle has always been known as the birthplace of grunge rock and has a history of being a premier jazz city. Home to Sub Pop records who have signed some of the biggest indie rock names around including Fleet Foxes, Father John Misty, Beach House, The Shins and Nirvana. Seattle is the birthplace of Jimi Hendrix and Nirvana and is where Ray Charles began his jazz career. Below is a list of my favorite artists that have ties to the great city of Seattle.
Fruit Bats- Hailing from Chicago, this alternative folk rock band settled in Seattle and have been influential ever since. They have a slight 70’s folk feel but remain unique and modern. Eric D. Johnson, the lead singer, has a very distinctive voice, with a little John Denver vibe to it. Definitely one of my favorite bands of all time. They are a classic alternative rock band and have made a big impact on the genre.
Chris Staples- This low key indie folk artist has a knack for songwriting and creating catchy and impactful tunes. The album, Golden Age, is a masterpiece and is a bit more upbeat and approachable than some of his other work. He sings in a low calm voice and his lyrics are poetic and poignant.
Fleet Foxes- This influential indie folk group gained widespread success and acclaim during the mid 2000’s. They captured the sounds of the Pacific Northwest, and were part of most college record collections. They have a mellow and soothing sound and changed the way people view popular music.
Pickwick- This energetic indie rock and R&B group mixes powerful vocals with precise instrumentals. They have a nice indie soul sound and are a bit more upbeat than most of the Seattle artists on this list.
The Cave Singers- This indie folk group has a great Pacific Northwest sound. Their music almost sounds like they are recording in a cave which is a unique quality. They use simple and early folk techniques, like harmonicas and bass drums, to give off that campfire vibe.
Rose Windows- This psychedelic rock band is highly influenced by 70’s style rock. They have created a nice layered subdued sound without being too loud or busy. They made some great songs before disbanding in 2015.
Nirvana- One of the most famous and influential rock groups of all time, Nirvana changed rock music forever. Kurt Cobain was a genius in creating a whole new genre, grunge rock. They played hard and created a loud sound that shocked the old establishment and gave life to the youth of the 90’s.
Jimi Hendrix- The greatest guitarist of all time, Jimi Hendrix changed how electric guitars were played. He used heavy distortion and effect pedals to create a new sound that even today is impossible to replicate completely. He is one of my personal heroes and one of my main influences for electric guitar.
Julia Shapiro- A former member of the Seattle bands Chastity Belt and Childbirth, Julia’s solo work is remarkable and has a lot of heart. Her songs are sad at times and deal with loss and health problems. Her music is full of hazy guitars, calm vocals and lo-fi tenderness.
La Luz- This Seattle band began in 2012 and plays surf rock with a hint of psychedelia and doo wop. I have been a big fan of this band for many years and really enjoy their clean instrumentals and layered vocal harmonies. They always seem to cam my nerves and bring me peace.
Written by Adam