Seattle Music Pilgrimage 2018: Day 1

Posted: August 15, 2018 in My Seattle-Related Concert Experiences

So it was time. I almost didn’t make this trip, but something told me it had to happen. So off I ventured to Seattle for my annual musical pilgrimage. For those so interested, I decided not to rent a car on this trip. By using a combination of the Light Rail, Water Taxi, and Uber, I saved hundreds of dollars as well as the aggravation of finding parking in Seattle. (Note, if you’re considering Seattle Public Transit, invest in an ORCA card. It’s worth it.)

I got in on Friday, August 10, around noon, took the Light Rail/Uber combination to meet up with the one and only Jim Tillman, who has played bass for the legendary U-Men and Love Battery. Coincidentally, Love Battery’s classic line-up reunited for a show several days prior and played their 1992 album Dayglo in its entirety. Sorry I had to miss that one, but I had to attend my father in-law’s 85th…and I’m glad I did.

I met Jim at Uneedaburger in Fremont, a casual place that serves…well, duh. I had a Philly burger, fries, a beer, and a shake. Yeah, that’s a weird combo, but this is my vacation, not yours.


(Love Battery, Slim’s Last Chance, August 4, 2018. From left: guitarist Ron Rudzitis, Jim on bass, drummer Jason Finn, and guitarist Kevin Whitworth. Photo by Anna Mehau Parkhurst.)

(At Uneedaburger with Jim and his friend Marie.)

After saying good-bye to Jim, I headed back to an apartment I rented in Upper Queen Anne through Airbnb. Although it was a little out of the way, I enjoyed staying there. Nice, quiet, but within walking distance to Queen Anne Avenue, which has shops, restaurants, and Safeway (more on that later.)

Next on the agenda was beers with my writer friend Dave O’Leary. And where do we meet up? Well, the George & Dragon Pub in Fremont. Of course. The G&D is a British owned establishment that is Dave’s second home. It’s a casual place to hang, have a few beers, and chat with friends.


It was a beautiful evening, and I hung out with Dave, his wife Allison, and a few friends. I found myself chatting for a long time with Dave’s buddy Bruce about…music. Yeah, surprise, surprise.

I heard Pearl Jam was playing at Safeco field that evening. I didn’t have a ticket, but it’s not my thing, anyway. I like them, but I’ve become spoiled in recent years. I like having a band play right in front of me and not have to deal with enormous stadium crowds.

So I walked about a mile to the Elk’s Lodge where The Tom Price Desert Classic would be headlining, supported by the Young Pioneers and Nunes. I unfortunately missed most of Nunes set, but I did get to say hello to Chris Pugh and Scott Vanderpool of the Young Pioneers. If you don’t know who they are, they came from the Olympia scene of the early to mid-’80s which birthed K Records and Beat Happening. Chris and Scott moved to Seattle after college and formed Swallow (who played Saturday) and Chemistry Set, respectively.

I said hello to Tom Price (also in the U-Men) and Daniel House of Skin Yard. In the back, they were cooking up dogs and burgers and coupled with a beer and good music, what else is there?

I had never experienced the Pioneers before and I enjoyed them thoroughly. They kind of had a punk rock meets British post-punk vibe about them.


(The Young Pioneers. Note the little girl entering on her left holding her ears. They were kinda loud. Don’t parents provide their kids ear plugs anymore?)

Tom’s band went on next, with him announcing: “We’re the Desert Classic.” I’d seen his band a few times before and they never fail to shred.


(Ladies and Gentlemen: The Tom Price Desert Classic. Not pictured, grooving along to the TPDC, is Matt Wright, who was in Gas Huffer with Tom.)

Exhausted after a cross-country flight and long day, I Ubered back to Queen Anne and headed to bed. The next day would be a long one, starting off with breakfast with the incomparable Leighton Beezer of the Thrown Ups and then heading over to West Seattle for the Sub Pop 30 Festival.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s