The Package includes:
- One night in the lavish WOW Suite at W Seattle
- Two Cool Cocktails in Living Room Bar
- Breakfast for two at TRACE Market
- Two-hour VIP Experience in Sound Suite for up to six people, including light appetizers, a bottle of Champagne + access to a professional sound engineer
- Two Adult tickets to MoPop (Museum of Pop Culture)
- Late check out at 2 p.m.
The WOW Suite was absolutely stunning! With an extra large bathroom, separate shower and soaking tub, and city views to die for, my boyfriend and I were in suite heaven. Complete with a personalized welcome card, complementary mixes to make our own Manhattans, all were ingredients for an unforgettable start to the weekend!
VIP Experience in Sound Suite
The WOW Suite is across the hallway from the Sound Suite. There my friends and I met our sound engineer, Will. We were treated to complimentary appetizers including Pork Belly Sliders, Grilled Shrimp Salad, Seared Scallops and Brut! Everything was light and delicious!
My boyfriend, Kyle, is really good at the guitar and I am a little bit of a drummer (although not a great one as I don’t practice enough). The Sound Suite has a nice, small drum set and some guitars, although Kyle brought his own guitar to record with.
My friends Dan and Mishana were going to be our vocalists while Sharesa played photographer and videographer. After practicing and playing around, we ended up attempting to record “Crazy Bitch,” by Buckcherry. You can hear the full cacophony of perhaps unpleasant sound on our YouTube channel below. At least we had a lot (and I mean a lot) of fun trying though!!!
I also had the chance to interview one of the sound engineers, Andrew Ginn.
Tell us more about you! Where are you from and what was life like growing up?
I was born in Brooklyn but my family moved to Port Angeles on the Olympic Peninsula when I was less than a year old. Technically I can say I am from New York, but really I’m a small town kid.
In Port Angeles we had the Olympic National Forest in our backyard so I spent a lot of my time hiking and spending time in nature. When I wasn’t meandering on a trail somewhere, I was likely doing what most teenagers do in small towns – driving around all night with friends getting into random shenanigans. While there wasn’t a ton to do in town, my curiosity for life kept me from getting bored. I was (and always have been) interested in learning new things. I almost always have some sort of project in the works, or building a new skill.
What got you interested in the music industry?
This will be a bit of a meandering answer as I didn’t necessarily seek out working in the industry specifically. I more or less fell into it. I guess you could say it found me.
Music has been a part of my life since I was a kid. I have been a drummer since I was 8 years old, started playing with other people in 7th grade, been in a number of bands throughout my life, and went to school for music performance. But my journey into the industry side started shortly after graduating high school. I moved to Seattle for a year and that is when I got connected with the Seattle Drum School.
There I met a man named Mike Vraney who had been part of the punk rock scene back in the 70s and 80s. Some of his claim to fame was being one of the owners who opened The Showbox in 1979, was the manager of punk rock bands the Dead Kennedys and TSOL, and used to run a comic book/skateboard shop called Time Travellers downtown.
I was 19 when we met. He was managing his teenage son’s band and I thought it was so cool he was friends with some of my punk rock icons (particularly Mike Ness of Social Distortion). After I moved back to Port Angeles, my punk band was put on a bill with his son’s band. He sent me a stack of show posters and was amazed at my ability to promote. From there he took me under his wing and we began producing rock shows on the peninsula. Over the course of the next 2 years we put on some of the largest shows in Port Angeles and Port Townsend bringing out 300+ attendees per show.
This is really what set my journey into the music industry into motion. Mike would book the bands and I would do everything else, from securing the venue, to promoting, setting up audio/lighting, decorating, wrangling staff etc. I had no idea what I was doing but it seemed to work out with no casualties (though at our first show a kid was tripping on mushrooms and decided to crowdsurf. Unfortunately no one caught him and got knocked out when he hit the ground. We were lucky he was ok. Very valuable lesson learned – ALWAYS HAVE INSURANCE FOR YOUR EVENTS!!!).
Eventually I moved back to Seattle with my band at the time. A friend from high school was the Promotions Coordinator at 107.7 The End and hooked me up with a job. I spent 7 years working there and had all sorts of roles from street teamer, to audio engineer, videographer, video editor, stage manager, to eventually the Marketing Assistant before my departure.
I learned a wide range of skills which I took with me as I became an event producer for large-scale events and festivals. Over the years I worked production for Bumbershoot, Upstream, SXSW, Summer Meltdown, THING Fest, NW Folklife, countless concerts, plus a lot of major corporate events for brands like Boeing, YouTube, Amazon, Wall Street Journal, Valve, and many others.
While I didn’t intentionally set out to work in the events/entertainment industry, what kept me around for so many years is how it continues to push me and stimulate the problem-solver within me. Every event, whether it is a festival or CEO Summit, has its own unique set of challenges to overcome and I thrive in these environments where we are racing to get everything ready before showtime.
What brought you to W Seattle?
This is another situation where it found me. A friend and I started a company called Plus One Presents back in 2016. We put on a small 3-day festival in Missoula, MT and presented a handful of shows around Seattle. My friend was the talent buyer at a Seattle venue so we spent a lot of time there. One night, a guy who hung out at the bar from time to time stopped by and said, “I got you guys a meeting at the W Hotel.”
It was quite unexpected and we didn’t know what to make of it at the time. We weren’t seeking out corporate partnerships like this, but it was aligned with our mission of creating opportunities for local musicians. That meeting led to us booking live bands and DJs every weekend beginning in January 2017. During that first year, my partner and I eventually went our separate ways and I took over booking and managing the music program on my own starting in 2018. Since then I have worked closely with W Seattle as we continue establishing the hotel as a hotspot for local music.
What are a few things that you absolutely love about the work you do?
I love creating moments. I’m very much a behind-the-scenes guy who likes to make things happen. My line of work is project-based which I also really enjoy because it provides a sense of closure after each event.
But one of my favorite things is providing opportunities for people. This is why I love working with W Seattle and the W brand so much. Their genuine passion for music creates opportunities for artists, and I have the privilege of being their conduit to the local music scene. Together we tap into the diverse talent flowing throughout this city and showcase it for their hotel guests on a weekly basis.
What can my readers expect from booking the Live Like a Rockstar package?
Live Like a Rockstar is a unique experiential package for any hotel guest. W Seattle is one of only a handful of W properties worldwide with their own Sound Suite recording studio (1st in North America). Recording studios are a blank canvas for creativity. Guests have access to the Sound Suite and one of our talented recording engineers for 2 hours to use the space however they wish. Some people like to work on songs they have written. Others like to have jam sessions. The room lends itself to the podcasters of the world. It’s also a great place to just blast some music and have a mini dance party with a few of your friends in a soundproof room on the 25th floor of a downtown hotel.
After our evening of fun and not going to bed until Saturday morning, Kyle and I did manage to get up (eventually) and hit the hotel gym before enjoying a delicious breakfast at TRACE Market! I highly recommend the Matcha Scone and Breakfast Burrito! Thank goodness for that late checkout!
After breakfast, Kyle and I headed over to MoPOP to use our two free tickets that come with the Live Like a Rockstar package. MoPOP is just over one mile from the hotel. We decided to take a Lyft to save on some time (and it was chilly outside).
At the time of this writing, MoPOP had some really cool exhibits, including Contact High: A Visual History of Hip Hop, Heroes and Villains: The Art of the Disney Costume, Nirvana: Taking Punk to the Masses, Infinite Worlds of Science Fiction, Indie Game Revolution, Pearl Jam: Home and Away, Fantasy: Worlds of Myth and Magic, Scared to Death: The Thrill of Horror Film, Hendrix: Wild Blue Angel, Science Fiction + Fantasy Hall of Fame and the Guitar Gallery.
You too can live like a rock star for a day! The Live Like a Rockstar package is valid from now until October 25, 2022 and can be booked online here using Promo Code: EB5.
Check out a more immersive experience on the Lesley & Mishana Show here!