Wednesday, June 10, 2009

The Emerald City

This past weekend, a friend and I took a brief trip to Seattle. The main reason for our visit was to see a Jens Lekman concert, which was immensely enjoyable. As part of our more standard tourist activities, we went to Paul Allen's unique and richly detailed Experience Music Project and took in as much as we could. There was the Jimi Hendrix exhibition, the Northwest Passage (a section that traces the history of music in Seattle and beyond from the age of speakeasy jazz to Heart to grunge to Sleater Kinney - very cool), an area that featured a slew of posters by Nashville's Hatch Show Print, and much more. We also checked out the Sound Lab, an interactive collection of studio technology that allows visitors to lay down a vocal track or remix a song or even record one. It was a hoot. One of the stations actually played an audio clip of Sir George Martin describing the convoluted process that he and others concocted to create the untamed crescendo on "A Day in the Life." It was a bit confusing but also pretty interesting. Needless to say, their inventive work paid off handsomely. More on the making of that masterpiece here.

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