The Colourbox

113 1st Avenue S

Contemporary photo of The Colourbox location at 113 1st. Ave S. Seattle, WA 98104 .

Constructed after the Great Seattle Fire, the Terry-Denny Building initially housed the Hotel Northern and was a favorite stopover for the likes of “Northwest Cattle King” Ben Snipes and boxing legend John L. Sullivan. Beginning in the 1970s the Sitka Design home furnishing store was based here.

In January 1991, Chris Beno and Steve Johnson opened the Colourbox with a goal of providing a creative space where emerging artists could gain performance experience. The Colourbox initially drew crowds with a techno-disco format hosted by popular KCMU radio DJ Paul Aleinkoff, and Robin Harnish. Changing times saw a manager, Chris Roberts, transition the room to a rock and roll venue with goth overtones. Among the musicians to play here: Artis the Spoonman, Black Moses, Critters Buggin, Fear of Texas, the Gits, Lipstick Vogue, Lloyd’s Rocket, M-99, Metal Church, the Orange King, Painted Sun, Rorschach Test, the Rhyming Polanskis, Running With Scissors, Sadhappy, Silly Rabbit, Skin Picnic, Sunday Driver, Sunshine Miner, Supersonic Soul Pimps, and Tiger Zane. In time, Archie O’Conner (vocalist with Dodi) began booking live bands here five nights a week.

A protracted feud with the landlord over the faulty sewage system, and related troubles with the city Health Department, led to the dance club’s demise in June 1999.

Continue south on 1st, crossing S Washington Street, to our next two stops.

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