Places of rock ‘n’ roll interest

Jimi Hendrix Statue

© Rock 'n' roll travel / William David Wilson

Seattle’s most famous and iconic rock ‘n’ roll figure (Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain was actually from the small logging town of Aberdeen in Washington State), the legendary Jimi Hendrix was always likely to be immortalised in bronze.

Alas, in 1997 an impressive bronze sculpture was commissioned by music impresario, guitar collector and real-estate developer Mike Malone, to be seated on 1604 Broadway in the bohemian area of Capitol Hill.

Local sculptor Daryl Smith designed the lifelike statue of Hendrix,  features the legendary guitarist in a rock ‘n’ roll moment, sliding on his knees with his trusty Fender Stratocaster wielded horizontally. The detailed portrait even replicates Jimi’s fuzzy afro and trademark bandanna.

Not surprisingly, the statue is popular with rock tourists (even those of the rock star variety), and sits close to the intersection of Broadway and East Pine Street.

Fans regularly gather on Hendrix anniversaries to leave tributes and sometimes play classics from his enviable repertoire. A must visit site for those rock pilgrims travelling to Seattle.

Location: 1604 Broadway, Seattle, Washington, USA 98122

MoPOP MuseumCreative Commons / Cacophony

The eye-catching, non-profit MoPOP Museum situated in the heart of Seattle by the Space Needle is one of the most impressive contemporary cultural museums in the world.

Founded by Microsoft co-conspirator Paul Allen back in 2000 and designed by noted architect Frank O. Gehry, the Museum bills itself as being “dedicated to the ideas and risk-taking that fuel contemporary popular culture.”

Boasting an impressive Science Fiction Museum will its own annual Hall of Fame, it is its exceptional music related exhibits and collections however that make it a must visit for rock enthusiasts.

Amazing exhibitions on local heroes Nirvana and Jimi Hendrix should be filed under must see, and there are many new exhibitions and artefacts turning up regularly.

Former Nirvana bassist Krist Novoselic proclaimed that MoPOP was “much more than just a museum,” and a visit for discerning rock fans, particularly for those of either a Hendrix or grunge persuasion, will illustrate why.

Location: 325 5th Avenue North, Seattle, Washington, USA 98109


Viretta Park

This pleasant grassy strip that looks out over Lake Washington is best known to rock fans for being a place of memorial and gathering for Nirvana fans both mourning and celebrating the life and music of the band’s magnetic frontman Kurt Cobain.

Indeed, it was here that thousands gathered when news of the rock legend’s death circulated in April 1994, as the park is in very close proximity to where Cobain’s life was ended in his Lake Washington Boulevard mansion.

Significant gatherings still occur here, most significantly on Cobain’s 20th February birthday and the 5th April anniversary of his death. Of particular interest to those who visit here is a bench inscribed with heartfelt tributes to Kurt and fragments of his lyrics from ‘Pennyroyal Tea’, ‘Heart Shaped Box’ and more. 

Location: 151 Lake Washington Boulevard East, Seattle, Washington, United States 98112

Featured image courtesy of David Herrera