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Music in Seattle

Music factors into Seattle’s cultural scene in a big way. The city made a name for itself with the grunge and alternative music movements of the late 1980s and early 1990s, with bands such as Pearl Jam and Nirvana getting their start in Seattle clubs.

There are still plenty of places for visitors to catch live local music in Seattle, including some of the venues where those artists once played. But for groups, a radio station based in Seattle Center offers great opportunities to get a taste for Seattle’s eclectic music culture.

“The radio station KEXP is widely listened to by locals — it’s really a music station for the people, by the people,” said Visit Seattle’s John Boesche. “They just moved their studios into Seattle Center in a really neat, interactive area that is open for folks to check out. They do a lot of live shows and have artists on all the time.”

In addition to watching a live radio broadcast, visitors can relax in the studio’s cafe, where local coffee purveyors roast beans and provide signature drinks for visitors.

“It just feels like Seattle,” Boesche said. “You’re sitting there having fancy coffee and listening to a grass-roots radio station broadcast indie music.”

Brian Jewell

Brian Jewell is the executive editor of The Group Travel Leader. In more than a decade of travel journalism he has visited 48 states and 25 foreign countries.