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Live Music Program Hits High Note With Expanded Offerings at Sea-Tac Airport

More artists, More often in more locations
March 27, 2014

The local beat goes on at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport.

Starting today there will be twice as many live musicians playing double the number of hours throughout the terminal as part of the award-winning Sea-Tac Airport Experience the City of Music Program.

“With Sea-Tac Airport providing the first and last impression of Seattle for many travelers, we have a unique opportunity to showcase our region’s iconic music culture — and support jobs in the local music industry," said Port of Seattle Commissioner John Creighton. "We are pleased with the popularity of our live music program, and the expansion of the program in partnership with our airport merchants will allow us to connect with even more of the 34 million passengers who travel through the airport every year.”

The artist roster will be expanded to 40 local musicians who will play seven days a week over an eight hour period in up to three different locations throughout the terminal. A new three-year contract funds the expansion as the Port of Seattle will split the cost with The Merchants at Sea-Tac. Previously, the program consisted of two musicians playing four hours only during weekdays.

“The Merchants at Sea-Tac are thrilled to be part of this award-winning program,” said Stacy House, Senior Director of Operations for HMSHost, Sea-Tac Airport. “Anything that makes the airport experience more enjoyable for our guests is worth the investment. Not to mention, the music is fantastic and livens the atmosphere of our restaurants and shops. It’s an all-around win!”

In the first year of performances, 20 different Northwest musicians played 780 hours of live music. The Sea-Tac Airport Experience the City of Music program – a partnership by the Port of Seattle, Seattle Music Commission and PlayNetwork – is a comprehensive effort to enhance the traveler experience with the music of Northwest artists including overhead music, safety and public information announcements by artists, curated videos on terminal and baggage claim monitors, and a multi-channel web radio player available through the free airport Wi-Fi network.

“We went into this collaboration with the Port of Seattle and Play Network with big ideas. Seeing it grow so far beyond the initial pilot program is extremely exciting,” said Marcus Womack, Seattle Music Commissioner and General Manager at “It’s a testament to finding that secret sauce and leveraging what makes the Pacific Northwest such a vibrant place to live and visit. The Music Commission is incredibly proud to facilitate this kind of program, which has become a national model for other music cities.”

Live music programming will consist of three performances daily, ranging between 6 a.m. and 5 p.m. at various locations throughout the terminal past security. Gigs 4 U won the contract to handle soliciting artists’ applications, screening and selecting artists, scheduling and providing on-site management. Local artists interested in applying for the live music program can do so online here.

In just the first year of the overall music program, the airport playlist has grown to 630 songs with 204 Northwest artists volunteering their time to tape overhead welcome, security and informational announcements including such diverse artists as Macklemore, Ben Gibbard, Ann Wilson, Sir Mix-A-Lot, Jerry Cantrell, Quincy Jones, Ludovic Morlot, Brandi Carlile, John Popper, Allen Stone and many more.

Award Winning

In 2013 a panel of international industry experts recognized Sea-Tac as the Best Arrivals Experience due to the Experience the City of Music program. The Future Travel Experience Awards honor the most innovative, ambitious and effective initiatives and organizations in the airline industry.

More Details and Schedules

For detailed schedules, locations, a video of live performances, and how musicians can participate, visit the Sea-Tac Airport Music Initiative page. You can also find sample audio clips of safety and informational announcements from top Northwest artists, plus more information on the program.

When you are at Sea-Tac Airport, travelers can also submit feedback or let the airport know what they are hearing by following @SeaTacAirport on Twitter and using #SEACityofMusic.

About The Merchants at Sea-Tac

Sea-Tac Airport and its merchants are well-known for an award-winning dining and retail program. Ninety-two units are located throughout the airport with competitive street pricing for food, specialty services and duty-free operations.

About the Sea-Tac Airport Experience the City of Music

In a private/public partnership between Sea-Tac Airport, the Seattle Music Commission, and PlayNetwork, this is a comprehensive program to enhance the traveler’s experience through exposure to the diverse variety of musical artists from the Pacific Northwest. The program includes overhead music in common areas, live artist performances in the terminal, artist- recorded overhead announcements, curated videos on terminal and baggage claim monitors, and a multi-channel web radio player available through the free airport Wi-Fi network.

About Seattle-Tacoma International Airport

Operated by the Port of Seattle, Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA, KSEA) is ranked as the 15th busiest U.S. airport, serving more than 34.7 million passengers and more than 292,708 metric tons of air cargo in 2013. With a regional economic impact of more than $13.2 billion in business revenue, Sea-Tac generates more than 138,000 jobs (89,902 direct jobs) representing more than $2.2 billion in direct earnings and $412.4 million in state and local taxes. Twenty-four airlines serve 76 non-stop domestic and 20 international destinations.

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