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Music + Starbucks = Very Cool

Other Beverage

Tuesday was a great day for music with U2’s No Line on the Horizon and Neko Case’s Middle Cyclone both being released. First off, Mutineer Graphics Correspondent Jordan Luckman bought both albums at Starbucks, which is very cool by itself. He already had a track for the Neko Case album via a “Pick of the Week” card from Starbucks, which he acquired the week before at Starbucks, giving him free access to “People Got a Lotta Nerve” on iTunes.

PROOF! Fine beverage and culture are like two peas in a pod!

After covering the Pacific Northwest coffee scene for several months now (February/March issue – Coffee Warriors by me. Upcoming April/May issue – Seattle Coffee Special Report by the talented Erin Jimcosky) it is clear that the independent coffee scene isn’t the biggest fan of big, bad, corporate Starbucks, but that doesn’t mean they can’t get in on a piece of the action.

There is huge potential for independent coffee shops, and brewpubs, and wine bars, and any fine beverage business, in pairing with local bands to sell cds, or even better, releasing compilations of local artists, who can then distribute the compilations at shows. The bands promote each other, and EVERYONE promotes you. Just as music can be a soundtrack to life, so can fine beverage, and when the two combine, you suddenly have life in stereo. Very cool.


  1. Katie | Friday, March 6, 2009

    I’ve always wanted to open a little wine shop and sell music alongside. Maybe some old vinyl too. Definitely a worthwhile idea.

  2. Ben T | Friday, March 6, 2009

    I admit, the following is a knee-jerk reaction:

    Starbucks can suck it. Perhaps I would be halfway impressed by some of their clever ideas if they didn’t seek out neighborhoods with thriving, locally owned coffee shops and blow them out of the water with the overwhelming wealth, marketing and administrative power of a giant corporation. Evil bastards. Their sins are too many to mention. (Though will mention Howard Schultz selling the Sonics down the river.)

    It pains me to see a plucky little periodical like yours that embodies genuine personality and independence indiscriminately promoting the giant robot that is Starbucks. I’m a big fan of Neko Case (the best country singer from Tacoma ever) and U2 (Bono=annoying tit/genius lyricist and saver of African lives), but I wish they’d choose more soulful methods of reaching their listeners.

    In full disclosure, I’m a former NYC Starbucks employee.

  3. Alan Kropf | Friday, March 6, 2009

    Great comment Ben. I see your point, and we here at Mutineer Magazine will do everything in our power to be a resource for the independent coffee shops out there. We had the feature about the Barista comp in the last issue and an article on Seattle independent coffee in the upcoming issue, so it is a scene we care a lot about. As a journalist though, I call it like I see it, and I think it is a very cool thing that the two albums I really wanted to buy were both at Starbucks. It is a great example of fine beverage and culture combining, and that gets me stoked.

  4. Adriann | Wednesday, March 11, 2009

    You got the new U2 album??

    I can’t remember the last time I went to Starbucks and ordered coffee. The Mandolin Cafe has lovely rosewater. Ehem.

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