It's getting awfully difficult to discover hidden gems of funk and pop these days—two generations' worth of beat-makers, sample-sorcerers, and collector geeks have pretty much dug the crates clean. Luckily, our city's own Light in the Attic Records, run by Seattle native MATT SULLIVAN, has not only been unearthing rare records but reissuing them in smartly packaged editions. So far, LITA's output includes soundtracks from '70s porn opuses Lialeh, by R&B drumming great Bernard Purdie, and the infamous Deep Throat; the first two albums by '70s proto-rappers the Last Poets; and the back catalog of twee '60s outfit the Free Design. But the label's most ambitious project is also likely its best. Last year's Wheedle's Groove: Seattle's Finest in Funk and Soul 1965–1975—compiled by Sullivan and local DJ hero MR. SUPREME—helps fill in a relatively minor but crucial chapter in the city's musical history, highlighting a number of acts that, back in the day, got down with the best of them. Sullivan and Supreme each gave us a list of their other local favorites. www.lightintheattic.net.
Matt Sullivan's Picks
Best Place to Grab a Burger:
McDonald's on Third and Union—"Not so much for the food, but for the possibility of witnessing a crack deal gone bad while you eat."
Best Band in Seattle:
"Young Circle. We just signed them, so it's a conflict of interest. But when their debut hits in 2006, all of Seattle will be believers. [They] sorta sound like the Stone Roses taking Lee Perry and the Beach Boys out for fish and chips."
Best Lunch Spot:
Salumi in Pioneer Square. "House-cured meats, lasagna, vino, and all the finest Italian fixings. Get the prosciutto sandwich!"
Best Album of 2005:
The Militant Rhythm Section ft. Johnny Horn and Lynval Golding, Mexican Weed Dub (PureFire). "Johnny Horn's gotta be one of the most talented and underrated musicians in town. And the host of your Sunday mornings on KEXP."
Best Postal Worker:
"Roger at the Wallingford post office. Who else quickly and kindly processes your mail while intertwining tidbits on the Atlanta Hawks, baked beans, and the Grateful Dead? And it always ends with, 'Party on, dude.'"
Best Hidden Gem of a Record Store:
Georgetown Records. "Great selection of used vinyl and CDs from '60s psych to hillbilly country. Last Valentine's Day, I scored major points with the girlfriend thanks to a sweet triple LP called Super Girls."
Mr. Supreme's Picks
Best Record Store:
Respect in Capitol Hill, "still a best-kept secret after being open for a few years—great prices and selection."
Best Furniture Store:
Belltown's Chartreuse International. "Modern contemporary furnishings, knowledgeable staff, and lots of cool shit."
The W downtown. "A nice clean suite with a few groupies after DJ'ing on Saturday night makes for a wonderful after-party. (Don't forget the camcorder.)"
Best Barber Shop:
Gentleman's Quarters in the Central District. "Mr. Clark runs a class act over there, and it shows. Go get faded or twisted. (Then get a haircut!)"
Best Adult Videos:
Blue Video on Aurora Avenue North. "Not only do they have a vast selection of pornography on hand, but it's fun to go see how many girls you actually know in these movies!"
Home of Good BBQ in the Central District. "I have been eating here since the early '70s when the kitchen was on the east side of the building! The hot sauce is bang-a-lang, crack-a-latin'—don't forget the sweet potato pie, either."
Super Genius in Capitol Hill. "Run be a really cool dude, and they do great work. Maybe if you're lucky (or not), I will take my shirt off for you one day and show you one of the 15 tattoos they've done. Award winning!"