Portland/Seattle advice request

Discussion in 'The Pub' started by guitrr, Mar 10, 2015.

  1. guitrr

    guitrr Reverb Junkie Silver Supporting Member

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    My family will be flying up to the Northwest next week, our third trip in half a dozen years for the purpose of scouting out possible communities for relocation.

    I know, I know; why would anyone move from Florida to the Pacific Northwest? A more moderate climate (after 30 years here, my wife and I are both sick of 7 month long summers), more opportunities for wilderness/nature experiences, and frankly, we'd like to move to a more socially and politically liberal area. Our time frame for moving up there is sometime in the next 2-3 years. I retired after a fire dept career last year, and my wife will likely retire before we relocate, so we're not super concerned with the employment picture. We have relatives in Seattle, Victoria, BC, and friends in Portland.

    We are also aware of the sales/income tax situation in both states.

    Despite several excursions up there, I've never really checked out the music scene, even on a prior trip to Seattle. This will be our first time in Portland, and we will be visiting Portland, MacMinnville, Vancouver (WA), Seattle, and possibly going across Puget Sound to check out Port Townsend/Port Angeles/Sequim area. We're going to be in the Pacific Northwest for about ten days.

    So to all you who live up there, what are the "don't miss" music venues? I play mainly in the blues/jazz vein, so that's primarily what I'm interested in, but am open to everything, including acoustic music. I am also particularly fond of Surf music, if you can recommend a place where I can see some surf bands. (I'm an admin for the Surf Guitar Appreciation Group on Facebook.)

    Also, are there any guitar shops I should check out?

    How is the music scene in the area where YOU live? I don't play for a living, but have been a "Weekend Pro" for 40 years; so I'd be looking to gig when we move up there.

    Thanks in advance,
    Kane
     
  2. ThugNoMoe

    ThugNoMoe Member

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    Portland> seattle.
     
  3. django49

    django49 Member

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    If you have any sort of significant income in retirement, you can get the "best of both worlds" being in or near Vancouver, WA (no income tax). Right across the river from Portland, where you can shop without sales taxes on a lot of things.

    Vancouver is (in some respects) more conservative than "Portlandia" but it is easy to get to Portland. Also, you get a LOT more for your real estate dollar on the north side of the river. And Seattle is more expensive than Portland.

    One little side benefit of this area......There is a recurring "jam class" at the junior college that is a good place to meet folks with whom to play blues and light rock. As well as learn.

    BTW....I grew up here, lived in SoCal for 28 years (also public sector employment) and moved back as soon as I could "escape".
     
  4. AndrewC

    AndrewC Supporting Member

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    My favorite Seattle venue is Jazz Alley. I've got to see and even meet many of my heroes there. Chick Corea, Dave Grusin, Tom Scott, Lee Ritenour, Dave Brubeck, McCoy Tyner, Stanley Clarke to name just a few...
     
  5. fusionbear

    fusionbear exquirentibus veritatem Gold Supporting Member

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    I just came back from visiting the land of "coffee, heroin, and suicide" (Seattle). Did not care for it. Everywhere I went it smelled like rotting compost, bogs everywhere! Much prefer Vancouver, WA. But, there is a lot of work in Seattle for certain industries, so visit before you consider...
     
  6. pfflam

    pfflam Silver Supporting Member

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    7 month Summers are soon to be the new norm


    Portland is a young middle-ager's town - middle agers who are living their youth to the very end - which, in my upper-middle-agedness and perpetual and infinitely slacker ways - suites me fine. But it really has its fair share of the trendies even among the domestic parent scene. Get yoga pants for her and vintage wear for he . . . which, again, suites me fine.
     
  7. pbmw

    pbmw Member

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    If you like mild winters, you're gonna LOVE Summer in Seattle
    Portland claims to be > than Seattle. Yet we voted in Gay Marriage and legalized Pot.
    We got better coffee too.
     
  8. tiktok

    tiktok Supporting Member

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    Oh, Portland's way better than Seattle.

    Definitely move to Portland.
     
  9. Jerrod

    Jerrod Silver Supporting Member

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    Whaaaaattt?
     
  10. SteveO

    SteveO Member

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    Yes, most definitely. Seattle is a horrible place to relocate to. It rains up here ten months out of the year. You wouldn't like it.
     
  11. Trotter

    Trotter Supporting Member

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    First of all, it's a little f-ed up to call Seattle the land of "Heroin and Suicide".

    Second, didn't you say you were going/staying to Kent?? Did you go to Seattle? "Rotting compost"... specifically, where?? Did you crawl into a dumpster or something?
     
  12. critter74

    critter74 Supporting Member

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    I'm not sure where you were at in Seattle but it certainly doesn't smell. Especially lke bogs or compost (well maybe Pioneer Square). I lived there for 7 years. One of the most gorgeous cities in the US. Surrounded by 3 mountain ranges, 3 bodies of water, an arboretum that is something like 15 square miles in the city itself and one of the cleanest cities I have ever been to. The air is so clean and crisp. On the few days it might snow there, the whole city shuts down and it's gorgeous (plus hilarious watching cars slide and eat **** going down Queen Anne Hill).

    I was born and raised in California (Bay Area, Delta and Central Valley). I never realized how much of a shithole San Francisco and the Bay Area was until I lived in Seattle. I would fly in to see friends and family and we would always have lunch in SF. My dislike for that city has only grown since moving back to CA. Doing anything in SF is a pain in the ass. You can't even piss in that city without it being a 20 minute ordeal.

    I miss Seattle every day. Funny thing is I thought I would miss the music the most. I ended up missing the restaurants more. I will live in the NW again one day. For sure.
     
  13. Jay K

    Jay K Member

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    That was going to be my answer as well.
     
  14. critter74

    critter74 Supporting Member

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    Yeah being in Kent and saying Seattle is like going to Fremont and saying you went to SF (Fremont, CA not Fremont district. Oh and I miss Freemont too. I used to work right on Lake Union.).
     
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2015
  15. Jay K

    Jay K Member

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    Good one!
     
  16. SteveO

    SteveO Member

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    The Smith Brothers dairy farm in Kent is rather aromatic, and the fields around that area are often semi-flooded.
     
  17. Dog Boy

    Dog Boy Member

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    You're getting sick of 7 month summers will not be cured by 7 months of rain...
     
  18. fusionbear

    fusionbear exquirentibus veritatem Gold Supporting Member

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    My friend who grew up in Seattle and moved to LA gave me that epithet...

    Everywhere I went in the whole Seattle, Tacoma, Kent, Renton area smelled like wet compost... I have a sensitive nose, what can I say.... I did not state dump or trash, but compost. Big difference. Think of a pile of Autumn leaves that gets wet and starts decomposing. That is what I smelled there.... sorry...



    But, at least that is better smell than some areas down here that are close to the Dairies...


    I like smaller cities, but Seattle seemed haphazardly laid out, I guess due to the rivers and what not. Just did not seem appealing to me. But, for some it might be heaven...
     
  19. PAF

    PAF Member

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    Sequim is a great spot, in the "rain shadow" of the Olympic mountains - only 16 inches of rain per year.

    Beautiful as well and the cost of living is wayyy lower than Portland or Seattle metro

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]


    Downtown is pretty cool too in terms of being a casual walkable space - also one thing about Sequim (I travel all over the NW region for work) - during the recession, it was the only place that you'd see *new* construction/remodeling going on ..

    [​IMG]
     
  20. clint

    clint Member

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    That would be my advice depending on your financial situation. Bellingham, WA is also very nice.
     

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