The Ventures: Starting Rock & Roll in Tacoma

UW Tacoma student Tracie Huynh explored The Ventures, known as 'the band that launched a thousand bands', as her final project for the Musical History of Tacoma class at UW Tacoma. To learn more about this important Tacoma band, read Tracie's research paper, or check out her multimedia presentation!  


Soundtrack of Early Tacoma History

Tacoma historian Michael Sullivan was kind enough to sit down with me for a conversation about music's role in Tacoma's history, which I shared with my students taking my 'Musical History of Tacoma' course at UW Tacoma. Our wide-ranging conversation begins with the arrival of the railroad, and extends to about 1950. Enjoy! Video... Continue Reading →

Tacoma Theatre

For long-time Tacomans of a certain age, it was a movie theater known as the Music Box, but for the first few decades of its life, it was a stage venue, playing host to a wide range of musical guests. The grand brick structure at the corner of 9th and Broadway, between the Pantages and... Continue Reading →

Historic Venue Map

Tacoma has long been home to a fascinating range of venues utilized for music - many of which no longer exist. This StoryMap is a work in progress to share some of these stories!

Tacoma’s Rock-n-Roll Legends

This short documentary by Randy Sparks is an excellent introduction to some of the great rock-n-roll bands to come out of Tacoma beginning in the late 1950s and early 1960s. Well worth the time of anyone interested in music, Tacoma history, or both! Tacoma's Rock-n-Roll Legends from Randy Sparks on Vimeo.

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