Local news: “Seattle, City of Music”October 30, 2008
Mayor Greg Nickels thinks that Seattle is not getting the recognition it deserves as a music city, and last night he unveiled the Seattle Music Commission. Modeled after similar organizations in Austin and Chicago, it has a twelve-year mandate to work to improve Seattle as a city for musicians, for live music, and for music businesses. Nickels has had a somewhat rocky relationship with Seattle music venues, having spearheaded some fairly draconian city bylaws, including asking for the authority to shutter clubs that didn’t comply (the City Council balked, and ultimately Nickels decided to veto the scaled-back versions). However, he’s recently proposed rolling back the admission tax at venues and providing city assistance to help new venues start up. Last night also marked the release of a new economic impact study; highlights include the 20 000 or so music-related jobs in Seattle, the 1.2 billion dollars of revenue, and the fact that about 40% of this revenue comes from sales outside King County, bringing cash into the area. Nice to see the Mayor’s Office step up to the plate to help Seattle get even better as a music town.