Author: Sam Chapman

The Art of a Mayoral Run: Nikkita Oliver

Local artist, teacher, activist, community organizer and attorney Nikkita Oliver recently launched her run against Ed Murray for Seattle’s mayoral seat. Oliver, who’s gained recognition as both an eminent Seattle artist and a keen and passionate community organizer, is a vocal leader of Seattle’s Black Lives Matter faction, has helped spearhead the campaigns against the proposed massive North Precinct police station and a new King County youth penitentiary in an effort to eliminate the city’s investment in the school to prison pipeline.

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Mykki Blanco Gives You Hope

To this list of historical blowouts, I’d submit this date for inclusion: Monday, February 27, 2017. Monday night, in the belly of the newly renovated Neumos, Cakes da Killa, Mykki Blanco, and a host of local performers threw Seattle an enormous, kaleidoscopically diverse party. It was the kind of thing we need more now than ever.

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Hazel English And The Power Of Ambiguity

Sunday night, Hazel English took the stage wearing a delicately checked blue and yellow sweater, acid wash jeans (relaxed fit), and pink vans. Fittingly for the Vera Project, the crowd was mixed in age and seemed subdued to the point of drowsiness. Most of us sat placidly along the walls through the two openers, but stood and drifted towards the middle of the stage as she and her band began playing.

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Kehlani the Comeback Kid

Cliché’s aside, everyone loves a comeback kid. In March of 2016, Kehlani, the R&B wunderkind behind a series of commercially and critically successful EPs posted an Instagram of an IV. In the caption, she alluded to attempting to take her own life and addressed swirling rumors about her relationships and alleged infidelities.

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Contradicting Coachella

In reports that shocked exactly three people, it was revealed by Teen Vogue and Afropunk that Philip Anschutz, the CEO of AEG, which owns and operates many of the major venues and music festivals in the U.S. donated more than $190,000 to anti-queer groups over the course of four years. They also revealed that Anschutz and his wife have, over their careers, donated vast sums to conservative Republican candidates and super PACs.

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The Spiritual Prowess of Guayaba

“Most of my songs are about bugs, but this one is about a lizard,” announced local artist Guayaba (FKA Aeon Fux) earlier this year to an audience at the Crocodile. While she probably intended this comment to be jokingly self-deprecating, it was also a fair summary of her set.

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Art is Salvation

I don’t know what to say. Last night I sat in a bar with a group of friends–bright, articulate, kind young people–and watched as our nation decided that fear, economic anxiety, and racism were more valuable than common decency. I sat, tingling in my own skin, and my heart slowly broke. We, especially economically advantaged white folks, had the opportunity to send a message, to blow up the Death Star, but instead we kicked Yoda in his tiny green balls and threw a parade for Vader. My heart breaks for many reasons. I’m so sad and scared for so...

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The Grandeur of Mal DeFleur

Drag, French cabaret songs, and pizza are not ideas that usually appear in close proximity to one another, yet somehow, on a Wednesday night, I found myself sitting in Dino’s with Seattle’s premiere drag chanteuse. The world is funny like that.

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They’re Here, They’re Queer: Little Richard

It’s a phenomenal time to be a queer musician. But while all of the attention being paid to contemporary queer artists is wonderful and important and completely deserved, it’s important to remember the artists who fought tooth and acrylic nail to carve out spaces for themselves in a largely white, straight musical landscape.

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