Friday, February 17, 2012

Sunday Blues Tradition At The Spar in Old Town Tacoma

The Spar
is Tacoma Washington's oldest saloon located in the heart of Old Town. The venue has a widely popular tradition of Sunday blues music. The Spar's fan base knows it can always find quality live blues there on Sunday evenings. Steeped from a long colorful history of the Tacoma waterfront, The Spar has a classic Pacific NW atmosphere. The building itself is cool-- an old brick structure in Old Town perched just above Ruston Way and the Commencement Bay waterfront.

On their calendar you will find local, regional and national acts (both familiar and new); which is why blues fans from all over the Puget Sound find there way to The Spar each weekend. March's calendar is yet to be published. But, this month is a perfect example with shows by the NW's Junkyard Jane, Mojo Overload, Toast, and some new faces: Todd Wolfe out of the east coast played last Sunday, and Mia Vermillion (out of the NW) will perform this coming Sunday, February 19th.

Photo By Ilona Berzups
February 19th is show you will definitely want to catch. It is Mia Vermillion's debut at The Spar, but definitely not in the region. Last year, Mia played the main stage at the Safeway Waterfront Blues Festival in Portland, Oregon, and opened two nights for Grammy nominee and Blues Hall of Fame inductee John Hammond at Seattle’s Jazz Alley.

Mia released her debut CD titled Alone Together With the Blues in 2009. Despite the fact Mia couldn't promote it through touring because she incurred a serious back injury shortly after the release, the record received national attention and rave reviews boasting airplay on The Roots Music Report Blues Radio chart Top 50, as well as climbing to #2 on XM Radio’s B.B. King’s Bluesville’s ‘Picks to Click’ with her recording of I’m Going to Copyright Your Kisses. She has come back from the injury in full force playing in prestigious venues around the region.

Mia has her own unique style and voice compared to many of the female blues singers out there today. “…One of the best vocalists I’ve heard in a while…” according to Graham Clarke with Blues Bytes Magazine. Mia’s voice and stage presence has been described as sultry and intoxicating. “…she infuses her singing with more humidity than Ma Rainey and more sex than Lena Horn,” according to’s Michael Bailey.

The last Sunday in this leap year February at The Spar will be the home town, T-Town Aces. They are always a favorite at The Spar, and another reason making the trek to Tacoma on a Sunday evening should be in your plans!

The Spar is located at 2121 North 30th Street in Tacoma. To visit their Website CLICK HERE.


  1. Thanks for the post on The Spar. We're in Tacoma once and a while and didn't know about this obviously cool spot for Blues!