Photo by Spike Mafford

ABOUT MOE

 

Seattle's Club Moe (aka Moe's Mo'Roc'N Cafe) opened in 1994, and quickly became known for its great sound, outrageous interior design, and artist-centric staff and facilities. Primarily because of this prominence, Moe's became one of the top places for bands to launch their U.S. tours.

By the time Neil Young launched his collaboration with Pearl Jam with the debut performance of their Mirror Ball album at Moe's in June of 1996, many other platinum-selling bands had used the club as a launching pad - including Bush, Oasis, Better than Ezra, Goo Goo Dolls and Garbage. Seattle music royalty 7 Year Bitch, The Presidents of the United States of America, Gruntruck, The Posies, Tad, and others called Moe's their home base and gave many an legendary performance in the venue. Some memorable shows included a 40-person turn out for No Doubt's first pass through town, a free Radiohead show that caused near-riots when the room hit capacity, and one of several Flaming Lips shows that threatened to knock the power in the block out when the tens of thousands of lights were instantaneously lit up on the Turn it On tour. Many famous actors, directors, athletes and others made their way into Moe's during those years but none of their entourage was as nervous as the Secret Service detail that accompanied President Bill Clinton when he dropped by after a fundraiser at the Paramount to see Jakob Dylan's Wallflowers perform.

During the height of Club Moe's prominence in 1995, the trailblazing start-up iMusic.com became the world's first website to broadcast nightly from a music club and shared hundreds of live performances from Club Moe with the rest of the world during the early days of the Internet. At that time, producer and iMusic founder Scott Blum also had the forsight to record these shows, although hundreds of these high quality master recordings languished in boxes for nearly two decades after the original Club Moe closed in 1997.

Fortunately, Blum discovered the boxes and began listening to hundreds of hours of unreleased recordings that hadn't been heard since the mid-1990's. When it became clear that the performances and sound quality had more than stood the test of time, Blum reached out to Club Moe founder Jerry Everard and the two decided to form MOE Recordings to make these historical recordings available to the public.

"When I came across these boxes of over 350 unreleased master recordings from Club Moe," said Scott Blum, "I was curious to discover how the performances and recordings would compare to my memories of being at the shows nearly 20 years ago. I was hoping that the recordings would satiate my desire to remember the '90's Seattle music scene, but it ended up being much more powerful than that. The music contained in many of the recordings was not simply nostalgic, but still burst with vitality and relevance decades later. To Moe's credit, the percentage of artists which still sounded fresh and relevant after all these years was surprisingly high. It was at that moment that I realized that I had to share these recordings with the world."

"The Moe twentieth anniversary week in 2014 highlighted for me the deep connection Seattle still has for the heady days of the Grunge years," said Jerry Everard. "That period of time, and the bands that played our little club, continue to influence and inspire music makers, making these old recordings still relevant. It is a great treat to be able to share the sounds of those years with these live recordings. And how cool is it that these were the first shows broadcast live from a club over the Internet."

In January 2016, MOE Recordings will begin releasing these historical recordings starting with Seattle punk legends 7 Year Bitch.