Seattle Washington is not only the birthplace of grunge music, but was also the birthplace of my interest in music. It seems like only yesterday I was listening to some of my favorite bands play their hit songs on the radio, but I never thought that I would someday live in the city where they became established.

I’m from Clarinda, Iowa originally. I grew up with most of my friends liking country music and top 40 hits. My parents schooled me pretty early on, though, with a generous helping of 70’s and early 80’s music. I didn’t mind some of the 70’s stuff, but I got into some of the hair metal bands of the 80’s. Of course the ones that everyone else liked as well. Then, all of a sudden 90’s alternative rock came out and I was hooked. Although I still think that Stone Temple Pilots is one of the best bands of all time, Seattle Washington’s finest tie for first place.

Of course, I’m talking about Pearl Jam. The state of Washington isn’t really known for much except for the Space Needle, the basketball team that we used to have (Seattle Supersonics), and the music scene. Throughout this post, I’ll identify a few of the bands I listened to growing up that hail from Seattle Washington. You might be surprised by a couple of them.

Seattle Washington

Seattle Washington Bands

Pearl Jam – Who can resist jumping out of their seat with Seattle’s best bands of all time? I grew up listening to ‘Alive’ and ‘Jeremy,’ mainly because my brother liked them, but through osmosis I became enthralled with their sound wherever I went. One of the first songs I really learned how to play on guitar was ‘Yellow Ledbetter.’ It’s still one of my favorite songs that came from Seattle Washington.

Nirvana – The band that depressed everyone on the planet sold albums like crazy. What’s really interesting though is that when Kurt Cobain died, there were so many people at my school who were in tears. I’m not sure why people took it so hard. I mean, when a celebrity dies, of course my condolences go out to their family and loved ones. That’s never an easy thing to deal with and it really was a travesty.

BUT!… the kids in my school who were crying that day didn’t even really listen to the music. It’s unfortunate that Seattle Washington rarely has any sun and it causes a lot of people to be depressed all of the time. This is called Seasonal Defective Disorder. I’m not saying that that is the sole reason for Kurt’s passing or anything, but it might explain why so many people in Seattle liked his music. If you’re wondering where to take visitors in Seattle Washington, then check out the next page.

Soundgarden – Now this band I really dug when I was in high school. I don’t think I caught on to their music until they released their ‘A Sides’ album which was a collection of their greatest hits so far. Too bad there weren’t any more after that album. They had a really cool sound and I learned a bunch of drum fills from their unique timing.

Alice in Chains – Another Seattle Washington favorite that played on our appetite for depression. Most of their songs were played with a lot of minor chords in their progressions that seemed to help us REALLY feel in the moment. I used to pop these guys’ tape in my player when I was feeling depressed about a girl that just dumped me. Of course I was in middle school at the time and I didn’t really know what that meant, but it felt good to listen to these guys at the moment!

Sir Mix-a-Lot – Man, everyone in my school loved this dude. It’s sort of like how everyone in Seattle Washington now loves Macklemore. I don’t think he was rapping yet, but I’m sure he showed promise. Sir Mix-a-Lot sure was. This guy was talking about big butts like it was nobody’s business. I think it was the first time that white people started to realize that liking that part of a female was ‘trendy.’ There might not have been a lot of things to do in Seattle at the time, but at any rate…thank you Sir.

That about wraps up the musical experience of my childhood, as far as Seattle Washington is concerned anyway. Who knew that I’d grow up to live here?