Local Anchorage Music Scene
Anchorage, Alaska is America's most northern crowd of people with a 2010 metro population of nearly 375,000. Although the area is not known for producing national acts, there are many annual festivals and local venues. Cuddy Family Park Amphitheater has been home to many of these events. The main campuses are Ubiversity of Alaska Anchorage and Alaska Pacific University. The local music scene is covered by Anchorage Daily News, The Anchorage Press and Make-a-Scene Magazine. The history of the Anchorage music scene has not produced a lot of nationally signed acts.
Pink Utopia offers a creative dose of electronica, acid house and acid jazz music. "Go On and Shake It" is a useful track for DJs to add dance flavor. The project consists of DJ MzTickle (Adriana) and Lizzy Beaver on vocals.
AK Hunter * Bare Roots * Benzo * Coyote Creek * EL * Haze Smoke * Incolide * Jarred Woods * Jason Esler * JC Holley * JT * Kyle Harrington * Liz Malys * Marian Call * Matt Hammer * Matt Lagao * Michael Thompson * Mountain Mission * Omorro * Patrick Kidd * Pink Utopia * Rebuttals * Sea Cubed * Shane Russell * Simon Milliman * Static Cycle * Taj Showalter * The Jelly Jam * Voni K *
Anchorage Local Music Scene History
One of Alaska's most successful music acts, Portugal. The Man, announced in April 2020 they would buy books for students or parents who requested recently banned titles by the Matanuska-Susitna Borough School District in Palmer, north of Anchorage. The board voted to ban five classic books including The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald. The controversial books were banned due to descriptions of rape and incest.
Rosie Hamlin, the singer of early 60s group Rosie and the Originals, died at the age of 71 on March 30, 2017. Their most well known national hit was called "Angel Baby" in 1960. Hamlin was born with the name Rosalie Mendez Hamlin in Klamath Falls, Oregon on July 21, 1945. She spent part of her youth in Anchorage before moving to the San Diego area. John Lennon named her as one of his favorite singers in a 1969 Life Magazine interview.
The 2015 Alaska State Fair included the return of several musical acts native to the region. One of those bands, Portugal, is now based in Portland, Oregon. Another featured act from the region is Redhead Express. The state fair schedule was from August 27 through September 7, about an hour north of Anchorage in the Matanuska-Susitna Valley, surrounded by the Chugach Mountains. The headliner of the 2015 fair was Blood, Sweat & Tears from New York, who had several hits in the late 60s and early 70s. They performed on August 27 at the Kendall Toyota of Anchorage Borealis Theatre.
One of the most authoritative directories of the local Anchorage music scene is AnchorageNightOut.com. The site is lists several local artists by genres and includes links to bars and restauarants. The site is a broad portal for people who want to learn about the region in general. It's an excellent tool for vacationers.
The Anchorage Music Co-op is a grass roots organization that gives live performance opportunities to local musicians at places like Hot Club of Nunaka. In 2013 the independent musicians collective added Fiori D'Italia as a venue for their performances. Co-op artists have been interviewed on KNBA (90.3 FM) and KONR (106.1 FM), which broadcasts the shows live. Spendard Farmers Market has helped the Co-op fund its sound system. Another supporter is the Anchorage Folk Festival. The Co-op was co-founded by Laura Oden.
The Co-op was written about in this Kathleen McCoy article 4/26/2013 on the KSKA Alaska Public Media website.
Spin Magazine covered the Anchorage music scene in a piece by Jeff Weiss 11/12/2012. The article summarized the region's music with spotlights on a series of bands such as The Meg Mackey Band, Emma Hill, SJ Stephens, Alex The Lion, Dig Sista, The Sweeteners and Ghost Hands. The article also explored establishments such as the venue Vagabond Blues and the record store Mammoth Music. Other venues mentioned were The Tap Root, The Marlin and Platinum Jaxx.