Casual fans of Fantagraphics may not be aware of the close association we have with Seattle's illustrious music scene. I was reminded of this relationship on Friday while attending a sold out Mudhoney and Tom Price Desert Classic concert. Nearly half the musicians on stage that night were former or current Fantagraphics staffers. What a great place to work!
We'll celebrate the legacy of Seattle's early music and comix on Saturday, November 29 as Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery hosts the book launch party for Sub Pop USA: The Subterranean Music Anthology, 1980 -1988. The book documents the formative years of Bruce Pavitt's fiercely independent fanzine, cassette label and music column. Fantagraphics curator Larry Reid was a contributor to the fanzine (under the pseudonym Lewy Louie.). Bookstore staffer Russ Battaglia contributed graphics and photos to the zine, which were graced with covers by Lynda Barry and Charles Burns. It was amazing to see the almost immediate infleunce Pavitt's modest enterprise had on pop music. To those close to him, it came as no surprise that within a decade, Sub Pop would impact popular culture on a global scale.
The book includes essays by Reid, Charles R. Cross, Ann Powers, Gerard Cosley, and Calvin Johnson, founder of K Records and early Sub Pop fanzine collaborator. Johnson will perform music at the party, which is the first time he'll play Fantagraphics since Beat Happening rocked our wild warehouse party in 1994 (attended by newly anointed princes of punk, Nirvana). Many contributors to the old zine and new book will be at the November 29 reception from 6:00 to 8:00 PM - a great way to end Small Business Saturday.
Fantagraphics Bookstore is located at 1201 S. Vale Street in the heart of Seattle's historic Georgetown arts community. Open daily 11:30 to 8:00 PM, Sundays until 5:00 PM. Phone 206.658.0110.
Mark your calendars for Saturday, November 29 at Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery as we celebrate the publication of Sub Pop USA from Brooklyn publisher Bazillion Points. Longtime Seattle residents remember the humble beginnings of the legendary record label as a fanzine, cassette compilation, and broadsheet column by visionary indie music impresario Bruce Pavitt. His early efforts soon brought national attention to bands like Big Black, Sonic Youth, and the Wipers, while laying the foundation for an international pop culture phenomenon that gave us music by Nirvana, Soundgarden, Mudhoney, and more. This collection of the first 8 years of Sub Pop includes art by Charles Burns, Lynda Barry, and Charles Peterson, with forewords from Fantagraphics curator and former Sub Pop contributor Larry Reid and K Records founder and Beat Happening front man Calvin Johnson, who will play music at the book launch event. Make plans now to spend the Thanksgiving holiday weekend at Fantagraphics bookstore. Open daily 11:30 to 8:00 PM, Sundays until 5:00 PM. Phone 206.658.0110.
If you don't have tickets to the sold out beer festival, be sure to take in theMacefield Music Festival in Seattle's Ballard neighborhood, where the Tom Price Desert Classic, featuring our own Martin Bland, open for legendary Northwest proto punk band The Sonics on Friday.
Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery is pleased to welcome an amazing array of accomplished cartoonists throughout the fall and winter of 2014, culminating with an appearance by one of America's most influential artists.
The action begins on Friday, October 10 with Danny Bland presenting his new book of haiku, I Apologize in Advance for the Awful Things I'm Gonna Do from Seattle's illustrious Sub Pop label. Bland will engage in conversation with equally accomplished Northwest author Jonathan Evison, followed by a reading, book signing and reception. The next night, Saturday, October 11, we host an international crew of incredibly talented cartoonists. Simon Hanselmann from Australia and Canadians Michael DeForge and Patrick Kyle will join American artists Lane Milburn and Conor Stechschulte in presenting their imaginative new works to Seattle audiences for the first time.
On Friday, November 14, in association with Seattle's Short Run comics and art festival, we present "Short Run Marathon II," an exhibition, book signing and reception featuring Tom Neely, MariNaomi, Josh Simmons, Pam Wishbow, John Porcellino, and special guest Ed Piskor.
On Small Business Saturday, November 29, we celebrate the publication of Bruce Pavitt's new book Sub Pop USA, The Subterranean Pop Music Anthology, 1980 - 1988, which chronicles the seminal years of what would soon become an international pop culture phenomenon. The book includes the early issues of Pavitt's Sub Pop fanzine, his columns from The Rocket, and related ephemera, along with essays from Fantagraphics curator Larry Reid and K Records founder Calvin Johnson, who will DJ and perform music at the signing.
Saturday, December 6 marks the festive closing party for the "Short Run Marathon II" exhibition featuring Eroyn Franklin previewing her upcoming graphic novel, Dirtbag.
The bookstore celebrates its 8th anniversary in spectacular fashion on Saturday, December 13, as cultural icon Robert Williams presents The Complete ZAP Comix Anthology with an exhibition and book signing, kicking off a weeklong commemoration of this monumental achievement. We'll screen the documentary Robert Williams: Mr. Bitchin' on Sunday, December 14 at Northwest Film Forum, and on Wednesday, December 17 editor J. Michael Catron will give a slide talk on the history of ZAP. The festivities coclude on Saturday, December 20 with a tribute to S. Clay Wilson featuring Patrick Rosenkranz, Dennis Dread, and Jim Blanchard. We'll see you all soon and often!
As a musician, Pyle was a member of Shadowy Men on a Shadowy Planet, widely recognized for their musical contributions to the Kids in the Hall television show. His photography show opens Wednesday, September 24 and remains on view through Sunday, September 28. Pyle will present his Out-of-Focus Talking Slideshow this Friday at 7:30 at Machine House Brewery, 5840 Airport Way S., across the street from the bookstore. The talk will be followed by a concert by Girl Trouble down the road at Slim's.
As if you needed another reason to visit Georgetown, Fran's Chocolates is opening their new chocolate factory this Thursday, directly across the street from the bookstore. Fran Bigelow's milk chocolate and salt caramels are a favorite of Barack and Michele Obama, who serve the sublime Seattle confections to White House visitors. The facility includes a viewing platform, tasting room, and retail outlet. Georgetown also plays host on Thursday and Friday to an Amazon Prime film adaptation of Philip K. Dick's classic futuristic novel The Man in the High Castle.
Don't miss a wild weekend of amazing music, movie making, beer, art, candy and comix in the country's coolest neighborhood. Parking might be tight, so arrive early and stay late.
I first crossed paths with Charles Burns in the mid-70s, when we both attended a small college in rural Washington State. I later learned that Burns wasn't entirely comfortable in an art school attended by eccentric Charles Manson enthusiasts and Symbionese Liberation Army sympathizers. By contrast, I had finally found my people. Burns soon departed for the greener pastures of The Evergreen State College, where he joined talented young artists Lynda Barry and Matt Groening.
Upon graduating in 1978, I opened the experimental Rosco Louie gallery in the tony Pioneer Square section of Seattle. I was privileged to give both Lynda Barry and Charles Burns their first gallery shows. Burns later served as soundman at Rosco Louie for a performance by San Francisco band Pink Section, which included his then-girlfriend, fashion designer Carol Detwieler. He in turn designed the cover for the 1982 Sub Pop 7 cassette compilation, which included my wife's band, Little Bears From Bangkok. At the same time we were both frequent contributors to Seattle music monthly, The Rocket.
As Burns migrated to the East Coast, we both continued our association with Sub Pop. In 1988, Burns illustrated the stunning cover to the momentous Sub Pop 200 LP. Shortly thereafter, I promoted a Tad, Mudhoney, and Nirvana show at my alternative space, the Center on Contemporary Art, which found Kurt sporting a Burns tee shirt. (As seen in Charles Peterson's photo above.) On a subsequent Seattle visit in 1993, I accompanied Burns to a secret Tad and Nirvana show at a small downtown venue, where he was received as a rock star himself.
Throughout my tenure at Fantagraphics Books, I've continued to encounter Charles Burns, a pleasure that will repeat itself this evening when Burns appears at Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery to present his new graphic novel, Sugar Skull. Please join me in welcoming this immensely influential artist back to his hometown.
One of the highlights of Seattle's Bumbershoot arts festival over Labor Day weekend is the exhibition Jini Dellaccio: January 31, 1917 - July 3, 2014 co-curated by Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery curator Larry Reid. This show celebrates the life, career, and art of Jini Dellaccio, an American photographer best known for her iconic images of Northwest proto-punk bands including The Sonics, Wailers, Merrilee Rush, Daily Flash and many others. This special tribute show features the diverse subjects of Dellaccio's lens over her long and legendary career. Friday afternoon offers free viewing of the art exhibits. The festival includes music by the Replacements, Mission of Burma, Negativeland, Dream Syndicate, Afghan Whigs, Foster the People, Elvis Costello, Rose Windows, Los Lobos, and countless others. (Photos appear courtesy Jini Dellaccio Collection, all rights reserved.)
Don't miss the apocalyptic Dead Baby Bike party this Friday, August 1 in Georgetown. Live music, BMX daredevils, beer gardens, and bike jousting right outside Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery. The party begins at the conclusion of the reckless Dead Baby Bike Downhill Race about 7:00 PM and continues into the wee hours.
Arrive early to the Dead Baby Bike Party on Friday for a front row seat to the big Boeing Air Show. Watch vintage Spitfires, Thunderbolts, Mustangs, and Tomahawks, along with breathtaking Boeing F-18 Blue Angels and more fly right over the store.
Join us on Wednesday, August 6 from 6:00 to 9:00 PM at the reception for emerging Canadian cartoonist Georgia Webber with her compelling comix serial Dumb. This event will also serve to celebrate the City Arts Award bestowed upon Seattle cartoonist Max Clotfelter for his piece in last April's Intruder art exhibition at Fantagraphics Bookstore.
Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery is located at 1201 S. Vale Street (at Airport Way S.) just minutes south of downtown Seattle. Open daily 11:30 to 8:00 PM, Sundays until 5:00 PM. Phone 206.658.0110.
Honk Fest West on Friday was a blast! Over 30 cacophonous brass bands from across the country descended on Georgetown for this annual gathering. As was the case last year, the event began on a somber note with a funeral march in front of Fantagraphics Bookstore in memory of Kim Thompson on the first anniversary of his passing. The concerts climaxed with a pitched percussion battle between the Super Bowl champion Seahawks Blue Thunder and the Garfield Drumline (alma mater of musicians like Jimi Hendrix, Quincy Jones, and Macklemore.) Too much fun!
Our good friend and former Mayor Mike McGinn dropped in to do some comix shopping during the festival. Lest we be accused of favoritism, we also played host to current Mayor Ed Murray a week earlier at the colorful Georgetown Carnival below. Good times.
Don't miss Fantagraphics Bookstore's latest creation in Hazardfactory's world famous Power Tool Races. This thrilling side-by-side spectacle is the centerpiece of Saturday's colorful Georgetown Carnival. Extreme Measures is powered by a DeWalt retractable tape. You'll just have to see it race. The bookstore has entered wicked tools in every race since 2007 and won the top prize in 2011 with the Georgetown Chainsaw Massacre.
The Georgetown Carnival is a festive celebration of the creative diversity of Seattle's oldest neighborhood. Acrobats, aerialists, sideshows, stiltwalkers, interactive arts, carnival games and confections combine to create one of the region's liveliest art fairs. Musical highlights include Tummy, Ancient Warlocks, Mark Pickerel (formerly of Screaming Trees), Vaporland (featuring former Love Battery, Tad, and Fluid members), and more. Then get ready to Rumble with the architect of the Seattle Sound, Jack Endino's Earthworm. Seattle Mayor Ed Murray kicks off the festivities with opening remarks at noon. All free, all day, all ages. See you Saturday in Georgetown!
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