Still More Underrated Seattle Music People

Posted: August 10, 2011 in Seattle-Related Lists

22) Stephen Rabow. Steve was influential as a DJ at Seattle’s KZAM, during its 1979 – 1981 “Rock of the ’80s” era.  He essentially forced Seattle commercial radio to recognize that ’70s dinosaur rock was dead, and championed punk and postpunk.  Furthermore, his “Local Tape Extravaganza” show gave a shot to anyone who submitted a tape, record contract or not.

23) John Foster. John’s Op Magazine connected Olympia (and by extension Seattle) to the rest of the underground music world.  Prior to that, John was instrumental in changing Evergreen State College’s KAOS radio format to an 80% independent music policy.

24) Bruce Pavitt (as a KCMU DJ).  Bruce gets plenty of notoriety for founding Sub Pop and publicizing the local grunge movement along with Jonathan Poneman.  He makes this list because he played a number of important roles prior to Sub Pop, one of which was as a DJ at the University of Washington’s KCMU.  Bruce became a tastemaker there, and also amused his listeners by yawning (and at least once falling asleep) on air.

25) Mike Fuller.  Mike essentially rescued KCMU from the abyss when UW pulled its funding in 1981.  Because of Mike’s efforts and others, the station would provide critical support of Seattle’s local musicians during the ’80s.

26) Faith Henschel.  Faith became Music Director at KCMU in 1984, and pushed her talented DJs (including Pavitt, Mark Arm, Kim Thayil, Charles Peterson, Ben McMillan, and others) to expand their on-air palettes.  She also improved production quality at the station.  In addition, she promoted mid-week shows at the Vogue, a critical venue for up and coming Seattle bands.

27) Jonathan Poneman (for his work at KCMU.)  Jon has also received plenty of acclaim for running Sub Pop Records.  Prior to Sub Pop, Jon was an influential KCMU DJ, hosting a show called “Audioasis.”  He, like Henschel, promoted important mid-week gigs (Rainbow Tavern).


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