Seattle Music Commission

The Seattle Music Commission and the Office of Film + Music work toward the realization of the City of Music 2020 Vision by cultivating partnerships, developing policy, and facilitating connections between the community and the music industry to make Seattle a place where musicians thrive, communities are strengthened, and music businesses flourish.

Reach out to the Music Commission at SeattleMusicCommission@seattle.gov.


Your Seattle Music Commissioners

Reese Tanimura, Seattle Music Commission

Reese Tanimura

Chair
Program Director, Rain City Rock Camp for Girls
Appointed by: City Council
Term: August 17, 2015 - August 31, 2018

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Reese Tanimura is passionate about music. She began her study of music on the ukulele, at the age of 3; at 10, she joined the league of eternal band geeks wielding her F horn and eventually, a drum major's mace; and since the age of 19 she has taught music in some form or other. At 25, her world got rocked inside-out upon listening to her favorite folksters, the Indigo Girls, electrify their album, 'Come On Now Social' and then, at 35, Reese got her socks rocked, again, when she volunteered at Rain City Rock Camp for Girls - she has been hooked ever since. In the rare moments she is not devoting her time to plotting a RCRC Revolution to take over the world, Reese teaches music at Totem Middle School in Federal Way.  She also directs the MoodSwings, an all-female jazz 'big' band, teaches private lessons and is a founding member of the queer, urban bluegrass band, Lavender Lucy.  Reese is also extremely passionate about equity in education.  For the past four years, she managed education and work-training programs serving unstably housed and court-involved youth in Seattle and South King County. She is ecstatic to have all her worlds collide in next incarnation of growth and development for RCRC and is dedicated to providing MOAR programming opportunities for our ever-expanding community. Reese graduated from the University of Illinois with a BS in Music Education. More recently, she earned a certificate in Non-profit Management through the University of Washington.

Nadine Zgonc

Nadine Zgonc

Vice Chair
Head of Brand Strategy and Account Architecture, PlayNetwork
Appointed by: Mayor
Term: Feb. 1, 2015 - August 31, 2018

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Nadine Zgonc is a NW music veteran with over 15 years of entertainment media experience in audio, video, and system design and integration services and is currently the head of Brand Strategy and Account Architecture at PlayNetwork. 

Nadine has held several key positions in Client Management, Sales, Business Development and Project Management. Prior to joining PlayNetwork, Nadine spent several years at AEI Music Network and a variety of media organizations. She has worked directly with some of the best known retailers to help define media solutions that promote their brand experience and create meaningful experiences for their customers.

Nadine is also involved with a project near and dear to her heart - the Sea-Tac Airport Music Initiative. In conjunction with the Port of Seattle, The Office of Film + Music, and the Seattle Music Commission - she and the folks at PlayNetwork help bring a variety of media elements designed to showcase our region's diverse musical identity and expose travelers to the City of Music's heritage.


Jen Czeisler

Jennifer Czeisler

President and Founder, Rogue Octopus
Appointed by: Mayor
Term: September 1, 2016 - August 31, 2019

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After founding and running the licensing department at Sup Pop Records for 16 years where she served as Vice President Licensing, Jennifer Czeisler exited her VP position in July 2012 and founded Rogue Octopus, a synch licensing company focused on Northwest artists and labels and built to help musicians land film, TV, and commercial placements. Jen's abilities have showcased themselves in music placements for Sub Pop bands The Shins, The Postal Service, Fleet Foxes, Band of Horses, as well as local indie artists on Rogue Octopus such as Tangerine, Hot Bodies In Motion, J. Pinder, Sweet Water and more. A Seattle native, Jen received her B.A. in International Studies and her law degree from the University of Washington.

Jerry Everard

Jerry Everard

Founder, Crocodile Cafe, Neumos, Rendezvous Cafe/JewelBox Theater, Sole Repair Shop and 1927 Events
Appointed by: City Council
Term: September 1, 2016 - August 31, 2018

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From his childhood home in the fiercely independent and frozen Alaska, Jerry Everard migrated to the Pacific Northwest in the late 1970s to attend college at the University of Puget Sound.  After a stint in San Francisco at the University of California, Hastings law school he returned to Seattle to practice at Davis Wright Tremaine. It was during that time that he found Seattle's music community and met many interesting people that would set him off on an untraditional path where he would balance his career as a lawyer with his passion for gathering places and old buildings. In the 1990s, Everard founded and operated the Crocodile Café and Moe's Mo'Roc'N Café - two signature concert venues in Seattle the latter expanding into the current concert venue - Neumos and Barboza. He has gone on to launch and operate several other key nightlife venues in Seattle including Rendezvous Café and JewelBox Theater, Spitfire, Sole Repair Shop and 1927 Events. In 2015 Everard added to his music portfolio and launched - Moe Recordings - a Seattle based recording label. Jerry is actively engaged in volunteer and nonprofit work serving on the Board of Directors for The Vera Project, One Reel/Bumbershoot, and the Capitol Hill Housing Foundation 12th Avenue Arts Steering committee.

Ricardo Frazer

Ricardo Frazer

CEO / Director / Executive Producer, ZakiRose Agency and MeMusic.com
Appointed by: City Council
Term: May 1, 2015 - August 31, 2018

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Ricardo Frazer is a long time pioneer and ambassador of music business in Seattle.

Manager to Sir Mix A Lot, multi theater group board member and longtime entrepreneur, Ricardo has worked in conjunction with Universal Music Group, Sony Music, Warner Bros., Rick Rubin, Sony/Epic, Capitol Records, RCA, and others.

In addition to his latest venture as CEO of ZakiRose, Ricardo Frazer is the VP of Business Development/Artist Development at hardroad.com as well as President and Owner of MeMusic, both located in Seattle. Ricardo has served as Manager and President of RCR Records and Subgroup LLC, working with artists Sir Mix-A-Lot and The Presidents of the United States of America, and also founded a computer software consulting company.

Ricardo currently serves on the board of 4 Culture, and has previously served as Chair and board member of the Seattle Arts Commission and Seattle Theater Group. He is a dedicated volunteer, patron and arts advocate.

Ricardo holds an MBA in management and marketing from City University and a BA in communications from Evergreen College.

Catherine Harris-White

Catherine Harris-White

Musician
Appointed by: Mayor
Term: September 1, 2016 - August 31, 2019

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Catherine Harris White is an singer, songwriter & producer based in Seattle, Washington who performs under the stage name SassyBlack. With roots in classical & jazz, her voice is often compared to Ella Fitzgerald & Erykah Badu. Her production value is reminiscent of Roy Ayers & Herbie Hancock. Graduating with a Bachelor in Music from Cornish College of the Arts in 2008, Black has traveled the world performing. You may also know her from her previous group THEESatisfaction and her appearances on both Shabazz Palaces albums released on Sub Pop Records. SassyBlack has garnered attention from Okayplayer, The Huffington Post, Pitchfork, The FADER & more. Her debut album "No More Weak Dates" is out now.

Ben Hunter, Seattle Music Commission

Ben Hunter

Musician / Founder, Community Arts Create / Co-Founder, Hillman City Collaboratory and Black & Tan Hall
Appointed by: Mayor
Term: Sept 1, 2016 - Aug 31, 2018

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Benjamin Hunter is a professional musician (violin, mandolin, guitar, tenor banjo, vocals) who plays roots, blues, jazz, folk, bluegrass, gospel and classical music locally, nationally, and internationally. As a community activist and entrepreneur, he's founder and director of local not-for-profit, Community Arts Create, and he's also one of the primary forces behind both the Hillman City Collaboratory, and a community-driven restaurant and performance space, the Black & Tan Hall.

Born in Lesotho, raised in Arizona and Zimbabwe, Ben attended Whitman College and found his passions within the intersection of arts and culture, politics, and philosophy. Ben plays an active role in the SE Seattle community, serving on a variety of boards and committees that serve to develop the south Seattle region economically, socially, environmentally, and all the while, artistically.

In 2015, Ben was awarded the Governor's Arts & Heritage Award for Young Arts Leader, and in 2016 Ben was included on City Arts Magazine's Future List. In 2016, along with musical partner, Joe Seamons, Ben was awarded 1st place in the International Blues Challenge. He also received 2 awards from the Washington Blues Society, Best of the Blues.

Tony Kiewel

Tony Kiewel

VP of A&R, Sub Pop Records
Appointed by: City Council
Term: September 1, 2016 - August 31, 2019

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Tony Kiewel began his career at Sub Pop in 2000 as the Commercial Radio Director but shifted over to the A&R department fairly soon after his arrival. While overseeing the A&R department, he was also responsible for bringing dozens of artists to the label like The Postal Service, Sleater-Kinney, Father John Misty, Flight of the Conchords and David Cross to name but a few. After many conversations with Sub Pop's co-founder Jonathan Poneman, and Sub Pop's CEO, Megan Jasper in 2008, they co-founded Sub Pop's sister label, Hardly Art. In 2014 Tony was instrumental in starting the aptly named, Sub Pop Publishing, their music publishing venture, which focuses on retrieving performance and mechanical royalties for songwriters as well as securing placements in films, television shows, and commercials.

Before making the move to Seattle Tony spent several years in Los Angeles working for various record labels. In 1995 while still in college at Loyola Marymount University, he began working full time as the College Radio Promotion Manager at a small independent record label called Alias Records. In 1997 he moved on to Geffen Records working in their Alternative Radio Promotion Department for bigger and more well-established artists like Hole, Beck, and Elliott Smith. After Geffen Records was absorbed by the Universal Label Group, Tony went to work for the large but still independent DreamWorks Records where he was able to continue working with artists he loved like Elliott Smith. While there he was also able to transition into the New Media Department and began overseeing the creation and implementation of online marketing campaigns for their artists. Throughout his time in Los Angeles he hosted a radio program called Demolisten on his local college radio station, KXLU, which as the name suggests exclusively featured music from demo tapes. 

When Tony isn't working or going to shows, he spends an inordinate amount of time traveling, eating things, and researching places to which he might travel and eat things.

Tim Lennon

Tim Lennon

Executive Director, The Vera Project
Appointed by: City Council
Term: Sept 1, 2017 - Aug 31, 2020

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A native of Providence, R.I., Tim Lennon moved to Seattle in September 2001 and has worked on and volunteered for arts and cultural events here ever since. He currently serves as executive director of the Vera Project, an all‐ages music and arts center that fuels personal and community transformation through collaborative, youth‐driven engagement in music and art.

Prior to joining Vera, Tim worked at Seattle's Office of Arts & Culture to create opportunities for musicians and artists of all disciplines and to connect them and their amazing work to Seattle audiences in a variety of ways. His past work includes program manager for The Next 50, a six‐month series of performances and events marking the 50th anniversary of the 1962 World's Fair, and programming coordinator for One Reel, a job that allowed him to work with hundreds of local, national and international writers, artists, curators and performers to bring arts experiences to Bumbershoot, the Family 4th of July and other local festivals. Tim has also coordinated events for the Elliott Bay Book Co., the University of Washington and local non‐profits. Tim is a member of the Leadership Tomorrow class of '15, the Civic Innovators Club, and the Seattle People of Color Salon, co‐founder of the music and advocacy community POC as F**k, and father to the greatest stick‐lightsaberfighter/dancer/baker/kung‐fu‐er/builder‐of‐lego‐spaceships of all time.

Sharlese Metcalf

Sharlese Metcalf

Host of Audioasis / Community Event Coordinator, KEXP
Appointed by: City Council
Term: September 1, 2016 - August 31, 2018

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Sharlese Metcalf began her radio career at Green River Community College in 2001 hosting their Northwest music focused show Local Motion on KGRG. She attained her Broadcasting Certificate from Green River, and was offered a job at Jones Radio Networks. There, she worked on Classic Country and Top 40 shows as a production assistant. While at Jones Radio, she was given a KEXP internship to work on the show Audioasis as an assistant to the host and booker. In 2009, She became an Audioasis producer, and in 2012, was promoted to host and KEXP's Music Community Events Coordinator. Sharlese additionally works as DJ, promotes events at clubs around town as False Prophet, and is a member of the collective TUF.

Daniel Pak

Daniel Damian Pak

Singer, Songwriter, Producer, Co-Founder and Executive Producer of Totem Star
Appointed by: Council
Term: September 1, 2016 - August 31, 2019

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Daniel Damian Pak was born and raised on O'ahu and is a fourth generation Korean American and fifth generation Japanese American. Learning to play the piano and the 'ukulele at a very young age, music was always a big part of Pak's life. In the fourth grade he played the role of Shere Khan in his elementary school's production of The Jungle Book, including a solo performance of Michael Jackson's "Bad." After moving to Seattle to attend the University of Washington, Pak fronted two college bands while earning a bachelor's degree in metallurgical engineering. Graduating "with distinction," Pak turned down an offer to work as a nuclear engineer and bartended downtown while writing songs to front his new band Kore Ionz. The band released its first record in 2008 and has since shared the stage with The Wailers, Toots and the Maytals, Steel Pulse, Sly & Robbie, and Third World, among others. The band has released five records and four music videos to date and performed three times at Bumbershoot. The Seattle Weekly describes Pak's voice as sounding "like it was birthed right in the heart of New Orleans, with enough jazz heart to lead a Jamaican revolution of peace and love."

In 2010 Pak co-founded Totem Star, a record label for youth that offers music production, performance opportunities, and career development for young recording artists with little or no access to the arts. Pak currently serves on the board for The Creative Advantage and the Pacific Northwest Chapter of the Grammys. He is the father of two musical and adventurous boys.

John Roderick

John Roderick

Musician, Writer, Podcaster
Appointed by: Mayor
Term: September 1, 2016 - August 31, 2019

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John Roderick is a Seattle musician, writer, podcaster and front-man of the band The Long Winters. Roderick has appeared on albums by Death Cab for Cutie, Nada Surf, Harvey Danger (he was also a touring member), The Decemberists, Mt. Desolation, David Bazan, BOAT, Say Hi, and many more. He's co-written songs with Kathleen Edwards and Shelby Earl and produced Earl's debut LP.

Roderick wrote a column for the Seattle Weekly for several years and continues to be a journalist, a music correspondent, and an opinion writer. His written work has appeared in publications including The Stranger, LA Weekly, Talkhouse, The Believer and Rolling Stone.

Roderick is also a frequent guest on podcasts ranging from Judge John Hodgman to Systematic. He has co-hosted, along with Merlin Mann, his own podcast Roderick on the Line since 2011. He is a regular guest at KUOW, KEXP, KING5's New Day and Art Zone.

Most recently Roderick has been hosting his own storytelling and interview show, Roderick's Rendezvous, at the Jewelbox Theater every Tuesday at 6PM.

Gyasi Ross

Gyasi Ross

Owner / Attorney at Stronghold Law Group, Author
Appointed by: Mayor
Term: Sept 1, 2017 - Aug 31, 2020

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Gyasi Ross is an author, speaker and storyteller. Gyasi comes from the Blackfeet Nation and resides on the Port Madison Indian Reservation near Seattle. TV and radio programs and print and online publications regularly seek his input on politics, sports, pop culture and the intersections thereof with Native life.

Ross is the author of Don't Know Much About Indians (but I wrote a book about us anyways) (2011) and How to Say I Love You in Indian (2014). "I come from a family of storytellers. My family tells long stories, drinking coffee and blowing smoke in your face. It just fit for me to tell stories, and then I started writing them." He is in demand as a speaker on race, social justice and white privilege as well as issues specifically affecting contemporary Native Americans and guests on MSNBC, ESPN, Democracy Now and radio shows nationwide. Ross writes for the Huffington Post, Indian Country Today, Deadspin and Gawker. Ross has also released a spoken word/hip hop CD titled "Isskootsik (Before Here was Here)" on Cabin Games Records.

Joan Sandler

Joan Sandler

VP, Musicians’ Association of Seattle, Local 76-493 AFM
Appointed by: Mayor
Term: Feb. 1, 2015 - August 31, 2018

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Since 1996, Joan Sandler has been a member of the Musicians Association of Seattle, Local 76-493 AFM and has served in a number of capacities, heading up diverse projects such as managing and selling real estate for the Local and steering a bill through the WA State Legislature. She has been on the Board of Directors for 14 years and is currently Vice President of the organization. She managed and played in D'Nyce String Trio for 12 years, performing for hundreds of weddings and other events. For 17 years she owned a successful private violin studio in Seattle and now freelances in the Puget Sound Area, specializing in chamber music.

Nicole Jon Sievers

Nicole Jon Sievers

Founder & Executive Director, Stand for Courage
Appointed by: Mayor
Term: September 1, 2016 - August 31, 2019

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Nicole Jon Sievers is an activist, speaker, writer, and social worker with deep connections in Northwest arts and music. For two decades, Nicole has worked with youth as a social worker and advocate. Her roots in the Northwest music scene go back decades, and her capacity to build personal connections in disparate communities have helped her be an effective organizer. She's served on the Seattle Music Commission since 2014, where she champions political advocacy, social justice, and community-building initiatives. 

In 2011, Nicole started the Stand for Courage Foundation (www.standforcourage.org) which raises awareness about bullying, intolerance, and hatred, and empowers youths towards awareness and healing.  Stand For Courage was recognized with an American Psychological Association Visionary Award in 2015.  Nicole's 2015 book, "It's Your Mind: Own It!" addresses many of the issues her foundation works on, and has proved popular with teens. She has been a frequent radio and television guest, and speaks to many professional groups around the nation. 

Nicole lives in Seattle with her husband and their five sons. 

Karen P. Thomas

Karen P. Thomas

Artistic Director and Conductor, Seattle Pro Musica
Appointed by: City Council
Term: September 1, 2016 - August 31, 2019

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Karen P. Thomas, composer and conductor, is the Artistic Director and Conductor of Seattle Pro Musica, with whom she has produced ten critically-acclaimed commercial CD recordings, and has received the Margaret Hillis Award for Choral Excellence and the ASCAP-Chorus America Award for Adventuresome Programming of Contemporary Music. . She has collaborated with the Seattle Symphony Orchestra to co-host the 2013 Chorus America National Conference, and produced the American Masterpieces Festival. Her compositions are regularly performed internationally, by groups such as The Hilliard Ensemble and The National Cathedral, among numerous others. As a conductor, she has been lauded for her "charismatic...magnetic podium presence," and received the 2012 Washington State Outstanding Choral Conductor Award.

Ms. Thomas is a recipient of grants and awards from the NEA, American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters, and ASCAP, among others. Her commissions include works for the Grand Jubilee in Rome, the American Guild of Organists, and the Association of Anglican Musicians. She has guest conducted at international festivals in Europe and North America, and for conferences of Chorus America, the American Choral Director's Association and the American Guild of Organists. She currently serves on the boards of Chorus America, the American Choral Directors Association (NW Region), the Greater Seattle Choral Consortium, and the Seattle Girl's Choir. She has appeared on the NPR show "St Paul Sunday" and has served on the faculties of Pacific Lutheran University, Evergreen State College, Cornish College and Edmonds Community College.

Hollis Wong-Wear

Hollis Wong-Wear

Musician, Songwriter, Producer
Appointed by: Mayor
Term: Sept 1, 2017 - Aug 31, 2020

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Hollis Wong-Wear is a Seattle-based musician, songwriter, teaching artist, poet, producer, and activist. She currently fronts local band The Flavr Blue and is much sought after by other artists - locally, nationally and internationally - to collaborate, lend her vocal talents and song-writing skills on various creative projects.

Her work and collaboration with Macklemore & Ryan Lewis on "The Heist" as a vocalist and writer on the song "White Walls" and co-writer on the song "Wing$" earned her a Grammy nomination in 2014 for Album of the Year and recognition at the 2014 BMI R&B/Hip-Hop Awards.

She has produced nearly a dozen music videos including the wildly successful videos for Macklemore & Ryan Lewis' "Thrift Shop" and "Wing$" singles (with both videos receiving over 700 million YouTube views) from "The Heist" and videos for other local artists Kris Orlowski, Blue Scholars, and The Flavr Blue.

Hollis is a spoken word poet and cultivated her artistic "voice" and "narrative" through her transformative experience at Youth Speaks in the Bay Area and Youth Speaks Seattle. She is a passionate advocate for social equity, independent media, centering youth voices and marginalized narratives, and championing creativity and collaboration.

She is a commissioner on the Seattle Center Advisory Commission and also serves on the Board of Directors of 4Culture.

Adam Zacks

Adam Zacks

Senior Programming Director, STG
Appointed by: Mayor
Term: September 1, 2016 - August 31, 2018

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Adam Zacks is a Pacific Northwest native with over 25 years experience in the concert business. His career began at the University of Oregon as the school's National Music Coordinator where his first show was Public Enemy and Rage Against The Machine. During college he held a diverse array of jobs within the field such as booking bands at Taylor's Bar at the age of 19, running sound at the W.O.W. Hall, designing show posters and managing bands. He continued on the concert track after college with Portland independent promoter Double Tee, as general manager for the Roseland Theatre. In 2001 he moved to Seattle to accept a position with House of Blues Concerts (HOB), which later became Live Nation, booking shows of all sizes, from clubs and theatres to arenas and the Gorge Amphitheater. During his first year with HOB, he conceived of the Sasquatch festival and continues to be the co-producer and sole booker of the event, now in its 15th year. In 2007 Adam moved over to non-profit arts organization Seattle Theatre Group (STG) where he is currently the Senior Director of Programming, overseeing more than 600 events annually at STG's 3 historic theatres (Paramount, Moore, and Neptune) plus venues of all sizes throughout the Pacific Northwest and beyond. Adam is also a founding partner of Do206.com, an event listings and promotions website he co-owns with his childhood friend, tech guru Scott Porad. Adam is presently a member of the Recording Academy and serves on the board of directors at KEXP.