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Old 11-01-2009, 04:42 PM
7 posts, read 17,988 times
Reputation: 12


Hi All,

I'm a single 43 year old guy, no kids, never married. I've been living outside Boston, MA for 15 years. I currently own a house 45 minutes SW of the city. I've lived in the NE for pretty much my entire life. Generally I'm sick of the attitude & weather (snow in Winter & humidity in Summer) in the New England area. I'm totally cool with rain though.

I'm ready for a change. I'm a technician by day and a musician by night, I'm one of two drummers in a Grateful Dead tribute band. I'm very environmentally consious and care very much for the planet. I like to eat healthy and not junk. I've heard a lot of wonderful things about Portland and plan on flying out in early January for a visit. I know, not a great time to visit, but I want to check it out ASAP, but won't have the vacation time until January. I'm a big fan of the speed & general attitude of the West Coast.

So whet do you think?

What's the job situation like in Portland? As I said I'm currently a technician, but am excellent in customer service and also the natural food business.

Is it a cool city? What's there to do there? Are there a lot of places for bands to play?

Where should I go when I fly out in January? Any suggestions? What's the weather going to be like? I would guess cold and rainy.

What are good "cool", safe and affordable places to like in or outside the city? I'm looking to rent an appartment.

This is just the beginning of my questions. Thanks in advance.

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Old 11-02-2009, 07:05 AM
Location: Portland, OR
1,657 posts, read 4,268,100 times
Reputation: 907
Portland area has high unemployment.

Portland city has lots of creative people. Yes, there are lots of places for bands to play, and lots of types of music to choose from. You will be joining the queue of bar band musicians looking for a gig. But dude, I heard this twice: Portland don't need another musician, it needs someone who can figure out how to sell the bands already here, and their creative music, so as to earn money. Emphasis: earn money, like from outside just Portland, OR.

Local free newspaper on entertainment scene - Willamette Week | Monday, November 2nd, 2009

Compared to almost every city of similar size East of Mississippi River, Portland is very safe. All parts. When compared to an idealized perfect world, Portland does have crime. It is a large city, not BIG, but large. Live where you want to. If you can afford it, check out the Pearl District. Then again, maybe near Lloyd Center Mall? I presumed you did a Google map search for music recording studios, Portland OR.

Check a map; you will notice that Portland is one of the most northern cities (distance to arctic circle) in lower 48 states. Just eyeball on my part, but Portland OR seems to be around same latitude as Portland. Maine. Climate is still mild due to ocean, but January should be short daylight hours. Portland OR, and Seattle, WA don't have N'eastern winter storms like New England.

Good luck on your research. You should do a lot before such a move.

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Old 11-02-2009, 03:49 PM
151 posts, read 216,648 times
Reputation: 332
aryon, sounds like Portland might be a good fit for your attitude. There is a lot of music going on here. You will find the music scene very young here.

Portland is generally safe, and any inner neighborhood (and many outer neighborhoods) have much to recommend them. The city is divided into quadrants by the Willamette River and Burnside Street. The west side features downtown, and is generally the more expensive side of the city. It features the old hillside homes of well-to-do Portlanders past and present, and also most of the new condo development from the past ten years. SW features established neighborhoods in the rolling hills.

The eastside features great old neighborhoods of mostly single-family homes, with commercial streets running through them. There are many neighborhoods with differing personalities and price points. I live on the eastside and strongly prefer it, but there are others I know who live in NW and hardly ever go to the eastside at all.

If I were coming for a trip, as it sounds like you are in January, and wanted to case out the town, I would check out the following neighborhoods.

Pearl District
NW 21st/ 23rd Street areas
(These neighborhoods are relatively expensive by Pdx standards, and have a yuppy, new arrival feel to me personally. But they have a lot to do/eat/easy to get around, nice old and new housing.)

SE Hawthorne/ SE Belmont
NE Fremont
NE Alberta
(These are neighborhoods with a strong commercial presence on the streets mentioned. These are popular walking streets with plenty of dining and shopping. You can just go a few blocks off these streets to see what the surrounding housing vibe is.)

It appears in these forums frequently, but worth repeating: if you'll need employment, look for a job before moving out here. The job market is tight. Even if you don't find anything, you'll have an idea of what you'll be dealing with when you get here.
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