About American Music

A store for Musicians run by Musicians for 38 years in the Northwest.

In 1973, regional bands and lounge musicians playing one night dance/concerts had dominated for over a decade. It was a time of 45 single records, AM radio, and powerful agencies booking NW bands from Canada to California. Names like the Kingsman, the Wailers, Paul Revere, The Sonics, Dave Lewis and many others hail from that time. The 70's saw a shift toward bar and tavern jobs as the children of the 60's came of age. This led to the rise of club dance bands playing bluesy rock and R&B, original groups like Jr. Cadillac, Sweet Talkin' Jones, Epicenter, Rail & Co. and show bands like Burgundy Express. American Music was a busy place, supplying the changing needs of working musicians playing up to 6 days a week 5 hrs a night, putting their equipment to demanding use. We were loaning new gear to try out, repairing the old, finding special instruments for musicians and provided a meeting place to meet with other players, and form new bands with new gear needs.

In 1981 large music festivals like Bumbershoot and Bite of Seattle became the reason to add large sound systems to the Rentals division and build up our new specialty in back line: amps keyboards, drums kits and just about anything else concert musicians need. High production values in recording and show bands during the Eighties had raised the stakes to run a performing rock band. NW bands acquired bigger sound and light systems and elaborate multi-keyboard setups led by groups like Heart and Queensryche, Stryker, Epicenter and Push touring and recording in Seattle. Players of the 60's rock touring bands were now working lounges and clubs.

Now that the pro music scene in Seattle was more polished, the underground was heating up: flannel clad musicians hit the streets with a new/old approach featuring a gritty and raw portrayal of life and social issues, a new style would sweep the world with it's popularity. During this time American Music and other music business were promoting NW bands to the rest of the country via the Northwest Area Music Association (NAMA). These activities helped set the scene for the music revolution known as the Grunge Explosion of the 90's. American Music was a social center for the group of musicians who founded the guitar bands that would go on to make history, supplying their equipment needs and providing a place to hang and exchange information. Members of bands like Soundgarden, Pearl Jam, My Sisters Machine, Alice in Chains, The Posies, The Presidents and many more geared up.

As the 90's closed, the post-Grunge music industry in Seattle was in upheaval. A period when famous groups disbanded, while others became international mega-stars. Big record companies and famous musicians found a home here. Seattle had become a serious music town with management and record company agents, a place where an artist can get signed, and many do. Music styles are morphing into new sounds and new instrumentation, with new song writers and many hopeful performers looking for a chance to move ahead.

Today our staff of musicians continue to play music in the clubs and studios, doing shows, using the gear we carry so their experience can inform their advice and guidance to customers in choosing the right gear. The performers, the hopefuls, the just starting, the famous and the emerging stars are in the store and playing in this city and beyond. In the new century, we're a store run by musicians for musicians, active in the Northwest music community.

 


Burgandy Express '76

 


80's Bite of Seattle

 


Stryker

 


The Seattle 90's Music Scene

 


Children of the Revolution

American Music
4450 Fremont Ave N
Seattle WA 98103

CALL US: 206.633.1774
Toll Free: 877.813.7390

Store Hours
Monday - Friday 10 - 7
Saturday 10 - 6

Sunday 12 - 5
Repair Shop Hours
Monday - Friday 10 - 7
Saturday 10 - 6

Sunday Closed
Toll Free: 877-813-7390
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