Rock On! Live Long!
Combined into one gleaming hulk of a fantastic tangled building (one of the most eccentrically shaped structures you can imagine), the combined Experience Music Project and Science Fiction Museum combines two of the interests of wealthy Microsoft magnate Paul Allen. The slogan of the place ("Rock On! Live Long!") combines both a greetings segment of a certain famous science fiction character's alien race with that of the common salutation of more than a generation of garage bands.
The museum is not hard to find at all: it is located at Seattle Center, which is the same old World's Fair grounds on which the Space Needle, monorail, and a dozen other civic attractions now call home. In fact, the monorail clips through part of the edge of the building just outside its Seattle Center station.
The odd shape of the structure is supposed to be inspired by a smashed guitar that Jimi Hendrix was so infamous for producing during his short but creative and productive music career.
Entering the structure presents two odd images: one is a full size science fiction move prop vehicle hovering above the ticket counter, with the music of various rock bands of ages past and present issuing from the hall upstairs, beyond it. What can only be described as a huge, three floor tall tornado of electric guitars (with a few dozen other instruments thrown in for good measure) is the centerpiece artwork for the main lobby of the museum.
The Science Fiction Museum is actually fairly small, and really only occupies one relatively small section of the 2nd floor. This is the permanent exhibit hall of the Science Fiction Museum. The 3rd floor gallery is also used for rotating and temporary display of traveling exhibits, which usually belong to the Science Fiction Museum as well. Most of the displays on the 2nd floor are static items and a few movie props and costumes from various landmark (and not necessarily famous) science fiction TV shows and movies, and to a lesser extent popular literature. It covers the entire history of science fiction, starting with collector's item "fantasy" novels of the very late 19th century - before the term "Science Fiction" was developed to describe space flight and other such futuristic literature.
A significant section of the 2nd floor is also taken up with a display of certain parts of music history. While the subject matter of 20th Century Music is a very broad subject, the timeline displayed there concentrates mostly on what was going on in the local Seattle area and region, and some of the very unique developments and famous musicians. People may think of popular Pacific Northwest music starting with grunge bands in the 1990s. Thankfully, the Experience Music Project puts that in perspective, and starts with such Pacific Northwest music legends as Bing Crosby (born in Tacoma in 1903) upon whose shoulders artists of the middle and late 20th Century stand.
Near the center of the 2nd floor is a hallowed hall of guitars, with the history of the instrument shown in dozens of rare and historic examples, including one of a kind early experiments that led to the development of the modern electric guitar.
The 2nd floor is also where you will find a room of tribute to Seattle legend Jimi Hendrix, whose career was cut tragically short by an overdose of sleeping pills, but whose influence in popular music was still very strong.
A much less visited room on the 2nd floor, but one that may be very interesting to those researching certain artists is a room with a number of computer terminals, each of which contains a collection of rare interviews and other archival information. If you want to dig down deep into the details of particular artists and their affiliates, this is the place to go.
But what about that name, Experience Music?
The western room of the 2nd and 3rd floors is a huge chamber known as the Church of Music, and is basically a large screen concert hall, where various musicians performances are projected with surround sound. This does allow the visitor to experience music in a larger than life situation, that is for sure. You will typically find several engaged music experiencers sprawled out on the very few benches in this place experiencing music here in that very way.
The third floor also features interactive "experience" music displays: this is where each instrument in a band has its own small studio, and visitors to the museum can try their own hand at composing music for and playing instruments. The exhibits are designed to be self-teaching, but lets face reality: it takes years to really become proficient at some of these instruments. 20 minutes in a museum display isn't going to prove too much - but the opportunity to try is here, should you want to.
I can't really do too much with the Science Fiction Museum temporary exhibit gallery on the 3rd floor, because there is going to be different stuff in there, with the exhibits changing fairly regularly. Starting October 2010 it was devoted to Battlestar Galactica, and contains several full size props from the original movie and TV series as well as the most recent rendition for cable TV. There are costumes, full size "space ships" (made of wood and epoxy, though they look like metal) and even a few costume details on display. Future displays after the Battlestar Galactica display is over will most likely be similar, but with different subject matter. I've been told that some of the displays that have been here have been reasonably hands-on, but there's only so much that can be done with movie props that must not be touched except by expert hands.
A display inspired by the movie Avatar opened in 2011 and will continue through 2012, with some rearrangement of the exhibits to continue showing the Battlestar Galactica exhibits through March of 2012.
The $20 price of admission seems a bit on the steep side compared to what is in the museum, and I would really suggest looking for an entrance deal of some sort. There are various discount entrance fee options at a number of attractions, and after some looking my friend found a two for one coupon available on one of the popular Seattle discount local guide entities. So, you may have to search a bit to find such a deal, but they are available.
EMP- Experience Music Project
This is a truly one-of-a-kind interactive music museum, that attempts to depict the innovative and rebellious spirit of popular music in America. Even if you're not a big music fan, it's worth visiting this place.
THE EMP MUSEUM
Firstly You will be taken by the fantastic architecture of this building which houses this unbeleivable Museum. Located right beside the famous Seattle landmark of the Space Needle this wonderful music museum contains the most amazing and significant collection of guitars and Rock music and Rock legend memorabilia and pop culture that is possible to see anywhere. there are many floors featuring various themes .
on Level one is a jaw dropping mountain of some 500 guitars and various stringed instruments must be seen to be beleived..also on level one is the JBL Theatre..here you can see some wonderful movies and listen to some wonderful Rock music..The day I was here the movie was .'Elvis on Tour" and in front and below the screen was one of Elvis's cars with its monogrammed uphoulstery..
A really awesome collection of Jimmy Hendrix music memorabilia including his guitar from "Woodstock" and just so many of his personal items and his famous jackets also another collection is of Curt Cobain's NIRVANA and of his many smashed guitars How these were located heaven knows.....both of these artists being local music legends are to be seen along with just so much more on level two...
A better collection of guitars I beleive would be hard to find anywhere on earth.and these are also to be seen on Level TWO in the "Guitar Gallery" There is really so much to see here allow yourself at least four hours.
Level Three is " Women Who Rock" and here is another amazing collection .of memorabilia of just so many of the famous women of Rock and Blues.along with their manyiconic artifacts instruments and stage costumes...along with there much and varied memorabilia.also on this level is a "Sound Lab" where one can explore their own musical talent and a sound stage if your up for it..
Become a rockstar for the day at the Experience Music Project. This Rock-and-Roll museum's collection was amassed by Paul Allen the building unique structure was designed by Frank Gehry. Music fans flock to the exhibits featuring memorabilia spanning from Jimi Hendrix to Nirvana, Run DMC to Paul Revere and the Raiders. Probably the most unique feature is the interactive exhibit on the top floor. It features individual sound-proof booths in which patrons can learn to sing, play the guitar or drums, sound mix, etc. Sessions are limited to ten minutes each, allowing for everyone to give it a try. Be prepared to wait for you chance to jam in this exhibit as it is highly popular. Here you can eve record your own song for a small fee. Equally popular (and longer in wait time) is the stage in which you and your group can discover first-hand how it feels to play for a packed audience. EMP is connected to the Sci-Fi museum and you can buy discounted tickets to both. There is also a full bar and restaurant located in the lobby next to the gift shop. Beware: Tickets are expensive.
What a great museum for those of us that like music. Very interesting and educational. I left my boyfreind there for an hour to play around with stuff and went to the Science Fiction Museum next door. I loved the Hendrix exhibit and the costumes. Lunch was tasy and affordable. Do not miss out on this new piece of Seattle culture.
You can find Experience Music Project [EMP] at the Seattle Center. We didn’t have enough time to actually go through the project this last visit, but it’s worth a look if you have not done it before. EMO is a visually stunning environment that also offers your ears something enticing. There are the usual exhibits but like a museum they always have something new that they are opening up for everyone to see. The cost is a little steep but worth it, especially if you are a music lover. The average cost for adults is $19.95. Check out their website for more information.
Go see the Experience Music Project.
EMP started as Billionare Paul Allens tribute to guitar god Jimi Hendrix. Paul's billions could not buy enough Hendrix memorabilia, so the museum is dedicated to Seattle Rock and Roll, All Rock derived music and Jimi Hendrix. The muesum is one of architect Frank Gehry's latest creations.
Experience Music Project oe EMP for short.
EMP ( http://www.emplive.com )is Paul Allen's ( one of the founders of Microsoft ) homage to jimi Hendrix and the entire music scene. The building built by Frank Gehry ,the same architect who built the Guggenheim in Bilbao Spain, is quite a stunning building. With it's curving lines and bright colors beneath the Space Needle you can't miss it.
The tour of the experience music project
I have read several reviews about the EMP from ' a waste of time ', ' great experience' and' just like Hardrock with the same collection of Rock crap'. I think the EMP is a great tribute to music and there should be more of them. Upon entering the EMP ( once you pass the gift shop and restaurant ) you enter the room where this guitar sculpture stands . There are different rooms dealing with Hendrix, The history of guitars and guitarists, the changing music scene and much more there is a 3D music ride , concerts and my favorite the music lab . In the Music lab you can play electronic drums, guitar, piano, DJ, or even record singing. Everything is tuned periodically and it really lets you have a hands on experience playing music ( on great sounding equipment!) I also loved the History of the guitar part of the museum where I got to see video clips of great guitarists I'd only heard of. Chet Atkins, Merle Travis,and other guys I can't remember but that floored me with their skills.
Experience Music Project. (EMP)
Paul Allen, the co-founder of Microsoft, sold most of his stock after quitting. He is a big fan of Jimi Hendrix, and was planning to start a museum with all the memorobelia he has obtained relating to him. The project grew, and is now a major multimedia museum dedicated to all music genres. My first impression of the outside was, 'Oh no!, the museum melted', but apparently the blob design was done by one of the most celebrated architecual 'artists' in the west. I'll take their word for it.
EMP is not a museum in the technical sense. It is full of the technological toys that would fit such an owner as Paul Allen. It even has a virtual reality ride about funk featuring James Brown, George Clinton, Maceo, and Bootsy. The most interesting part of the museum is the hands on music making rooms. They allow people without any musical training to play intruments. There are even 'jam rooms', where people can get together for twenty minutes in a studio with guitar, bass, and drums. And, of course, the Hendrix gallery.....(ahhhhh....). They don't allow things to be photographed there, so I only have this pic of me standing in front of the punk display. (Punk in a museum was awfully ironic.)
The EMP is Seattle's interactive music museum, home to a huge collection of music memorabilia. If you're a musician or simply a music fan, this is a must see. While I never actually had time to visit, we were able to check out the EMP store and exterior architecture.
EXPERIENCE MUSIC PROJECT: Area: Belltown/Denny Rgde.
Address: 325 5th Ave N, Seattle, WA 98109
Info phone: 1.877.EMPLIVE. SEATTLE ART MUSEUM: Admission to SAM is $7 for adults, $5 for students and seniors, and kids under 12 go free. SAM also has an open house (i.e. free admission) on the first Thursday of every month. The museum is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday and 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Thursdays. Call (206) 654-3100 for more information or visit SAM's Web site at seattleartmuseum.org. Location: Seattle Art Museum is located between University and Union on 1st Ave at 100 University St. Just head north on First downtown until you see the Hammering Man. There is no parking available at the museum, but several parking lots and street parking (good luck) are available within two blocks' walking distance. Warning: remember 'steep hills' when thinking of downtown Seattle. You may need to walk due to parking or maybe using public transport, either way, plan accordingly whether it be shoes, carrying heavy bags, etc.
I love this place. It is two museums in one. They have many interactive exhibits to participate in. It also takes a day to get through just the exhibits that you are interested in so plan to come when it opens and leave when the place closes. Plan your time because one exhibit can take up a lot of time.
This was probably one of the coolest things I did in Seattle. The exhibits were really cool! They had the Nirvana exhibit while I was there. I'm sure Kurt Cobain is rolling in his grave that his art is encased in such a proper manner but it was interesting for me as a fan. They also had really nerdy exhibits like the horror exhibit and the Battleship Galactica exhibit as well. Both of those exhibits had a great deal of props from the shows and movies. This is in addition to the music exhibits they had. Really really awesome!
We both loved the exhibits and the production labs. The Jimi Hendrix gallery and Bob Dylan exhibit were both excellent. We spent about 5 hours there and thought it was fabulous . Highly recommend it for anyone interested in music.