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Seattle, Washington, known as the City of Goodwill and also as Emerald City, is known for coffee, rainy weather, the Space Needle, and some great musical legends. While it may not be along the lines of New York or Hollywood in terms of being a magnet for entertainers, Seattle’s high quality of life, strong arts culture, and much educated populace are enough reasons for the city to generate more talent than anywhere else.
Here are some of the famous artists, musicians, and bands that came from Seattle or at launched their careers while living in Seattle.
1. Jimi Hendrix
Hendrix had a short-lived career, spanning seven years. In all of those seven years, the last three years catapulted and cemented his stature as the “Black Elvis”. These last three years of superstardom were and still are considered among the most influential in the history of pop music.
Jimi Hendrix was born and bred in Seattle. In fact, his first ever gig was in the basement of Temple De Hirsch, a synagogue in Seattle. His ticket to fame was touring with the Isley Brothers and going to London, where he attained worldwide fame as a singer, songwriter, and guitar phenomenon.
He died a premature death due to the fatal combination of alcohol and sleeping pills. He was only 27 years young then.
2. Ray Charles
Technically, Ray Charles isn’t a native of Seattle. He was born in Albany, Georgia on September 23, 1930, lived as a blind, orphaned young boy in Tampa, Florida, and later on moved to Seattle to get as far away as he could from where he currently lived.
He stayed briefly in Seattle, but it was noted that it served as the launch pad of his career. This was where he cut his first record and developed the genre-bending musical style that made him the international star that he was.
3. Quincy Jones
Quincy is a record producer, composer, arranger, conductor, film and TV producer, and musician rolled into one. His career spans six decades and his resiliency in the entertainment industry is proven by his record 79 Grammy award nominations. Of these, he has won 27 awards, including the prestigious Grammy Legend Award in 1991. He has worked with some of the biggest names in the music industry including Celine Dion, Frank Sinatra, and Michael Jackson. Incidentally, Quincy Jones was a good friend of Ray Charles, and in fact, owed his musical beginnings to the latter.
4. Nirvana and Kurt Cobain
Kurt Cobain grew up in the logging town of Aberdeen. In the late 80s, he formed the band Nirvana together with his fellow Aberdeener, Krist Noveselic. Nirvana was famous for grunge music, and it was in the early 90s, through the said genre, that Seattle shot to a type of cultural prominence it has never experienced before.
Kurt’s strong vocal prowess, uncanny command of melody, and adolescent rage combined to form hits such as “Smells like Teen Spirit”. Sadly, Kurt’s life was cut short when he took his own life at the age of 27, after struggling with depression, stomach pain, and heroin abuse.
5. Kenny G
Known as the titan of smooth jazz, Kenneth Bruce Gorelick was born in Seattle, Washington on June 5, 1956. He attended Franklin High School and University of Washington. After graduating from college, he became a successful jazz instrumentalist and even played along with Barry White while on tour. Eventually, he recorded his own work, which paved the way for his multi-platinum success. Over the years, he has sold over 70 million records and he continues to be a popular jazz instrumentalist to this day.
Some of other famous bands/musicians (living and otherwise) who hail from Seattle are:
Eddie Vedder and Pearl Jam
Alice in Chains
All these names are proof that Seattle has, indeed, a great musical history and that it has produced more talent per capita than any other city in the United States.Read More
Twelve hours apart from each other by car and just about two hours by plane, Seattle and San Francisco tend to be two cities with a highly educated, nature-loving, culturally-rich population. They are both favourites among travellers, especially those who enjoy long driving trips. There are still a lot to see and do in between and what would you actually expect when you spend a week in each of these wonderful cities? There are so many differences and similarities, so let’s try pinning them down and maybe if you’d be in a pinch in choosing which city to stay longer in, this list would help.
Skyline and Architecture
Depending on where you stand, both cities offer perfect panorama skyline shots. Both define what makes each a unique city and would spell a character of being bustling, friendly or adventurous.
Seattle holds the most number of high-rises in Washington, numbering over 200 completed ones and is still growing. There are 13 listed complete skyscrapers and a lot more under construction. The tallest building in Seattle is the 76-story Columbia Center. A visit to Seattle’s observation tower, the Space Needle is a must-see!
San Francisco boasts of 436 high-rises and 21 skyscrapers, the tallest of which is the Transamerica Pyramid. Of course, the famous Bay Bridge, one that has the longest span in the world, at dusk would be a lovely sight.
Don’t forget to take your camera and a fast lens when going out at the blue hour for a captivating shot.
The best months to visit Seattle is between May and September, typically a mixture of clouds and sunshine with mild temperatures. Although many would say it is rainy all throughout, don’t be discouraged, locals would prove you that there are much more lovely days to walk by than not and why not enjoy a dance in the rain while you’re there?
San Francisco’s Mediterranean climate is characteristic of the cool-summer and moist mild winters. The fog that blankets the city at times, gives it a mysterious aura that sends tourists wanting to discover more. September and October are the best months to visit San Francisco, for with its crisp air, mild temperature and there’s a bit of sunshine that would peak from the foggy landscape.
Culture, Entertainment and the Arts
Seattle and San Francisco fare well in the scene of music, entertainment, and the arts. Seattle has been a regional center for the performing arts for many years and is considered the home of grunge music being the home to artists such as Nirvana, Pearl Jam, Soundgarden, Alice in Chains, and Mudhoney. It also lists Jimi Hendrix,Duff McKagan, Kenny G, Nikki Sixx, and Quincy Jones to its famous musicians. And though much younger compared to other cities, it is home to a number of museums such as the Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture which holds 14 million artifacts and specimens. There are also a lot of notable art galleries and studios mostly housed in the famous Pioneer Square. Overall, Seattle’s lively neighborhood would be dear and valuable to music and art enthusiasts.
Diversity describes San Francisco’s various museums. To name a few, there’s the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco, the Chinese Historical Society of America Museum and Learning Center, the Contemporary Jewish Museum, the Mexican Museum, the Museo ItaloAmericano, the Museum of Russian Culture and the Museum of the African Diaspora. The museums’ names alone would describe the multifarious culture you will experience in the city.
Outdoor Activities and Sports
Seattle’s nickname “Emerald City” comes from the lush evergreen forests in the area and this is not just lip service. Strategically located between the saltwater Puget Sound to the west, lies the Kitsap Peninsula and Olympic Mountains on the Olympic Peninsula; to the east, beyond Lake Washington and the eastside suburbs, are Lake Sammamish and the Cascade Range, spanning all-over 7 hills. Thus, Seattle is perfect for hunting, as well as a handful of activities such as sailing and kayaking in the waters of Puget Sound, camping, skiing, , rock climbing, bicycling, and hiking: all year-round in the any of the hills and even the cities suburbs. Seattle boasts of more than 5000 acres of parkland, walking alone is worth an activity to do everyday in this picturesque city. It is fitting to be called the fittest city in the United States for all these activities citizens enjoy.
San Francisco Bay is famous for boating, sailing, windsurfing and kitesurfing and Golden Gate Park has facilities for such sports as tennis. There are a number of clubs and parks open for golf, swimming and rowing. The Escape from Alcatraz triathlon is a must for professional and amateur triathletes for its annual race. The city has a yacht harbor in the Marina District and hosted this year’s America Cup yacht racing competition.
Both cities’ professional sports profiles fare well in the country, not limited to football, baseball and basketball.
That each city is unique and offers diverse chunks of culture, architecture and entertainment is given. Seattle is a bit an underestimated city that has a lot to boast while San Francisco lives up to its reputation of being one of the best cities in the United States. It is in the best interest of every traveller to get the finest holiday experience in every city they visit. In the same way, there are several sites for online holiday comparison where one can get deals from to somehow save a few bucks which he or she can add to his or her pocketmoney. Seattle and San Francisco are two cities worth visiting, one may be cheaper than the other but with a good planning and some researching, you’d be able to enjoy the best of both these beauties!Read More
Seattle is considered the major commercial, educational, and cultural powerhouse of the western Washington region. It may seem like an ordinary city, but you would never want for anything when you visit the place. The city boasts of extraordinary and fun things to do no matter what age group you belong to.
At least three bodies of water surround Seattle – Lake Union, Lake Washington, and Elliot Bay. In addition, it’s where you’ll find Mount Olympic, Cascade, and Mount Rainier. Aside from these natural treasures, Seattle boasts of a thriving city life, world class museums such as the Seattle Art Museum, classic theaters, restaurants that serve world class cuisine, and many more famous landmarks.
Nevertheless, one of the most famous distinguishing features of Seattle is the Space Needle. This 605 feet tower, which was built for the 1962 World Fair, has become a favorite tourist attraction and a symbolic figure in Seattle. It is to Seattle as Sears Tower is to Chicago or the Statue of Liberty is to New York.
Edward Carlson envisioned the Space Needle, and he had the Stuttgart Tower in Germany to thank for the inspiration. Upon seeing the tower in Germany, he immediately made rough sketches on a napkin of something that would eventually become the Space Needle. Carlson’s original design had a top that looked like a floating balloon. However, the man who was responsible for bringing it to life was John Graham. For practical reasons, Graham and his team of architects decided to tweak Carlson’s original design, transforming the balloon top of the tower into a UFO. This is the sauce-topped tower we see now.
You’re probably wondering why Carlson would design something so futuristic. Well, the theme of the 1962 World Fair hosted in Seattle was “Century 21”, which explains why the Space Needle’s design had to be so. At 605 feet, the Needle seems to be teetering on a precarious ledge. However, the architects made sure that its concrete foundation was 30 feet deep in order to balance the structure. The actual tower and 24 lightning rods ensure that the structure is safe when lightning strikes.
Ever since it was created, the Space Needle has always had a light atop the structure. Through the years, this light has seen different “versions”, the most recent of which is the Legacy Light. The Legacy Light was first illuminated on New Year’s Eve of 1999/2000, as the whole world ushered in a new millennium. This beam of light shines its light skyward from the top of the Space Needle and is lit up to honor national holidays and commemorate other special occasions celebrated in Seattle.
The Space Needle owes part of its appeal to its observation deck, which is at 520 feet, and this provides a 360-degree view of Seattle’s landscape. Through telescopes found on the deck, you could zoom in on 60 different landmarks found around the city of Seattle.
The Needle also has a restaurant called the SkyCity, which revolves fully at 500 feet every hour. Incidentally, Where Magazine’s Visitors Choice Dining Awards named this restaurant “Best View”, and the Washington Wine Commission named it Best Restaurant for 2009. There is also the Skyline Banquet Facility that hosts events at 100 feet. If you want to go shopping for souvenirs, there is a gift shop at the base of the Space Needle aptly called the Space Base.
A trip to the Space Needle would be pretty special, and just the mere sight of this beautiful structure is enough to confirm that. If you haven’t been there, go and visit the place to find out why people are abuzz about it and why Seattle Weekly calls it the “Best Place to Get Engaged”.
South Africa is a beautiful and vibrant country, and with such a vast history – both devastating and exciting – there’s so much for tourists to experience here. With millions of people visiting South Africa every year, there’s no doubt that it’s stunning countryside, museums, restaurants and bars offer a wealth of entertainment, and one of the highlight attractions will always be its glorious beaches. From dolphins and whales to beach sports and finishing excursions, South Africa’s beaches are the hub of some of the most cultured and social activity in the country, and if you’re thinking about visiting this magnificent country this year, you’re going to need to know which ones to visit!
Eastern Cape – Port St Johns, The Wild Coast
Both iconic and beautiful, Port St Johns can be found on South Africa’s Eastern Cape, and it one of the most visited shorelines in the country. Although it’s fairly undeveloped, there’s no underestimating the natural beauty of this beach, with hubs of tropical beauty everywhere you look. Furthermore, the water is some of the warmest of the coastline, meaning it’s popular with swimmers and surfers alike.
Another of the Eastern Cape’s tourist hotspots, Port Elizabeth is a little more commercial than Port St Johns, mainly because it’s port and marina are still active trading destinations. Protected by the gentle curves of Algoa Bay, Port Elizabeth’s shoreline is peaceful and calm, juxtaposed to the hustle and bustle of the port in many ways. With safe surfing and swimming, as well as offering a number of bars overlooking the sea, Port Elizabeth is a must-visit beach destination, especially if you’re holidaying with the family.
A far cry from the east part of England’s capital, South Africa’s East London is a laid back but thriving community, offering a beach culture like no other. With golden sand, historic rocks and spectacular scenery, this is a beach for cameras and long walks, and you might even pump into a campfire or two!
KwaZulu-Natal – Cape Vidal, iSimangaliso Wetland Park
Not only one of the finest beaches in the whole of South Africa, but one of the finest beaches in the World! Stunning snow-white stand lines the shores as marine life thrives from the ocean’s minerals, and with humpback whales as well as dolphins patrol the waters, this is a natural attraction that shouldn’t be missed.
Located just north of the city of Durban, Umhlanga’s beaches are most lively during the school holidays in South Africa. People travel from all over the country to visit the exciting and diverse sands here, and there are plenty of activities to take advantage of, including surfing competitions and mini festivals. Make the most out of your holiday in South Africa this year by booking your airfares at http://www.cheapflights.co.za – there are so many great deals to take advantage of!
South Beach, Durban
This is one the highlights of Durban’s famous ‘Golden Mile’, and it’s a hotspot for swimming and surfing. From mini markets selling handmade goods, to live music and beach sports, this is the place to bring the family, and there are loads of restaurants overlooking the beach too, just in case you get hungry!
Traveling to another country is something that is probably ever-present in people’s bucket lists. After all, there is nothing more surreal than exploring a place that’s foreign to you and immersing yourself in its culture and traditions. Everything does seem dreamlike, that is, until language barrier decides to step in and spoil the fun.
Of course, this wouldn’t be a problem for you if you come from an interracial family and are well versed with a language other than English or your mother tongue. Nevertheless, not all of us are as fortunate. At the same time, not everyone was able to learn some Spanish, a spattering of French, and some other foreign language back in high school. So will you allow this problem to stop you from enjoying your trip? Certainly not! What should you do, then?
Whether your trip is for business or pleasure, it pays to learn the language spoken at the place where you’re going. You don’t have to be an expert linguist; learning just a couple of important words would be enough. You would be surprised how much better your traveling experience would be if you know how to speak even just a few words from the local language. It can actually enhance your experience in ways you never deemed possible.
Some say, “You can’t teach old dogs new tricks”, and that may be true in this case. You can’t expect to master the language, say French, in a matter of days. Hence, a good start would be learning how to speak a few greetings, numbers, directions, simple questions, and phrases such as “How are you doing,” “What’s your name,” “Please,” “Thank you,” “How much is that,” “Where is (so and so place),” and “Nice to meet you,” among others. You would find these simple phrases very handy when you take a cab, eat in a restaurant, or go shopping.
Once you’ve got that right down pat, you could progress to a more (somewhat) complex level that would help you “survive” in that place vocabulary-wise. Of course, if you have plenty of time to prepare for the trip, then you can go ahead and have an in-depth study of the language by attending a class or hiring a private tutor.
Learning the language spoken at a certain country makes it easier for you to deal and interact with locals. Inasmuch as English is considered a universal language, you should never assume that everyone in that place speaks English. Some tourists complain that locals don’t treat them all too well, but maybe the language barrier has a lot to do with it. Therefore, if you want a slightly better treatment from locals, you had better learn even just a bit of their language. Believe me; your efforts won’t go unappreciated.
You can actually learn the basics of a language from the comfort of your own home. The Internet offers many different sources to get you started. Some websites doesn’t only teach words and phrases but these also let you listen to audio recordings so you’ll know the proper pronunciation of the words. This is a good way to pick up the basics of a foreign language.
Try to go to the mall and look for a bookstore or any specialty store that sells books, CDs, DVDs, videos, tapes, and even software designed to teach a new language. Some even offer comprehensive combination packages that would make the experience worth your while.
It may seem bothersome, but learning a foreign language offers countless benefits. What’s more, it can broaden your horizons, and perhaps, open up a growing list of opportunities for the future. So topple down that language barrier, learn a new language, and expose yourself to a world of self-improvement and self-fulfillment.
Shopping is always fun when you are getting things at a bargain. The same is true when shopping for hotel accommodations for your vacation. There are budget rooms and suites available in many hotel discount sites online. All you need to do is to check these websites at some point and find wonderful deals for your next vacation. But first, you have to choose your discount sites carefully. There are a lot of scams online and you do not want to be the next willing prey. Take a look at the following factors when you evaluate the deal website:
Reliability. How good a deal really is can only be proven when you avail of it. Most of the people who are conned into making online purchases find out too late that their money is gone and the product they got is no good. You want to make sure that the travel website that you are getting your hotel deals from will truly deliver. Check out its reputation and read through the customer testimonials on the website itself or in other review websites as well.
Timing. You have to be quick to take advantage of these hotel deals. Some of them are offered within a short promotional period only. This is why it is best if you are subscribed to receive notifications for certain deals in your chosen destinations. It is also a good idea to have a tentative travel date and some other travel preferences in mind. This will allow you to make a quick decision when the right travel deal comes along. Have a list of your “requirements” in a hotel room: number of beds, available amenities, access to business facilities, guided tour availability, and airport transfers among others.
Security. Make sure that your personal and financial details are safe at all times. You want an assurance that your data will not be exposed to other entities without your consent. Even if it’s just for regular promotional emails, you do not want the travel website to be giving out your email address to their partner establishments. Make sure too that you get your proof of payment every time you transact in any travel website to purchase your hotel deals.Read More
People who often travel as part of their job or those who simply love to travel a lot can still look their best even while on the move. A small and lightweight pack of their vanity essentials will ensure that beauty routines aren’t neglected during their trips. One such handy essential is a hair dryer that can help give your hair a salon finish look. Those who travel for business meetings can easily lose their crisp and professional look by sporting a damp and clingy hairstyle. Vacation goers may have more time to dry and style their hair as they please but this task can be painstaking without a hair dryer around. Here are some suggested hair dryer models that are convenient for travelling.
1. Sedu Revolution Pro Ionic Dual Voltage Travel Dryer. This handy dryer weighs only 1lb but it can dry your hair faster than other travel sized dryers. It is also a versatile tool that offers multiple speed and heat options, dual voltage, and cool shot options. Travelers can also bring along the detachable concentrator nozzle for easier styling. There is no problem with fitting them together in the suitcase as this Sedu Travel Dryer model has a foldable handle and a clean, compact and travel ready design.
2. T3 Featherweight Journey Hair Dryer. This is a favored model for those who prefer the conveniences of a standard sized dryer in a smaller version. It features 2 speed/heat buttons, foldable handle, dual voltage capacity and accessories to boot. These include a concentrator attachment, Velcro cord wrap and travel bag that makes packing easier.
3. Conair Power of Pink MiniPRO Tourmaline Ceramic Styler. More than just a compact hair dryer, this tool comes with attachments that allow users to style their hair while on the go. It has a 2 speed/heat setting, dual voltage, removable concentrator and diffuser, and a storage pouch. This dryer comes in a sleek and feminine look with its metallic pink body and white cord. Aside from being a stylish travel tool, the Power of Pink MiniPRO also supports the Breast Cancer Research Foundation through the $1.00 donation from Conair for every purchase of this model.
A travel hair dryer may be a necessity for some but not for all. However, one cannot deny that these tools are handy for travel. There are plenty of compact hair dryers that can fit anybody’s travel needs. So far, these three are some of the popular options in different price ranges. Travelers simply have to decide on how much they want to invest in their travel hair dryer while considering their hair styling needs during travels. With plenty of good options around, they will definitely find their match easily.Read More