Rumor Has It
Dream All Day:
Wednesday, November 6, 2019
One of my core beliefs about our local music scene is that Bellingham is a place from which bands can make it.
“Making it” means different things to different people, and to me it means getting a real chance to take a real shot at real success. This is borne out by such examples as, say, Death Cab for Cutie and Odesza. Even artists that are not from here credit Bellingham with giving them a leg up. Brandi Carlile made us a tour stop long past the time when she was playing venues bigger than the Mount Baker Theatre. Macklemore won four Grammys and then played a thank you concert (not for the Grammys specifically—Bellingham isn’t that powerful) at the Wild Buffalo.
But the bedrock of my belief lies with the Posies, the band that nabbed a major-label record deal when they were fresh out of Sehome High School, and went on to write some of the most perfect power-pop gems of the 1990s. They didn’t achieve worldwide domination and end up on an episode of Behind the Music, but they did all right. And Ken Stringfellow, one half of the musical brain trust behind the Posies, did better than all right, playing with R.E.M. and a retooled Big Star.
No matter what he’s been up to, Stringfellow always finds his way back to Bellingham and he typically aims to make his concerts events to remember. So it is with “An Evening with Ken Stringfellow” on Sat., Nov. 9, which takes place at his alma mater, Sehome High School. Stringfellow is as good with a story as he is with a song, and he’ll no doubt do some recounting of his high school days at the show. Tickets for the concert itself are still available on Eventbrite and will run you $25. For $75, you can have dinner with Stringfellow at an undisclosed location. What will happen at the dinner is among the details shrouded in mystery, but it seems worth $75 to find out.
The next part is confidential to my music scene folks.
All right, we’ve done it. We’ve infiltrated the upper echelons of the local government. We got one of our own elected to city council. Now that Shakedown/Racket owner and musician Hollie Huthman is our At-Large councilperson, we’ve got two years to enact our agenda.
So, what do we want? Guaranteed minimum income for local musicians who do things like rehearse, record and tour like it’s a full-time job? A law that says drummers from opening bands can’t break down their drum kits onstage? Tax-exempt status for music venues on the auspices that church takes many forms? A city-subsidized rock festival at the Acid Ball? Seems like the sky is the limit here, folks. Dream big.
Congratulations, Hollie Huthman, Bellingham City Council At-Large. We’re real proud of you.