Behind the Scene

Vera Project's intern wrangler

Melissa Quayle: Program Director at the Vera Project

Job duties:

Technically, I work with organizational partners and the program committee to invent and turn youth-inspired program concepts into Vera programs. Which really means I e-mail and talk far too much. Just ask the interns.

How did you get your start in the music (underage) world:

By volunteering. I started volunteering when I was 14 years old and just kept finding organizations that were cool that would let me hang out and learn. I was at a nonprofit radio station, Home Alive, Vera, and various places.

How did you start at Vera:

I was 19 and just moved back to Seattle. I went to see Source of Labor play at Local 46 and started bugging the soundman at the show, asking all sorts of obnoxious questions. Found out that everyone there was a volunteer and all I needed to do was show up at the next show and I could help out. So I did. I started as a sound volunteer. I was determined to be a great female live sound tech. That didn't really work out, since I was pretty terrible, so I just hung around every weekend at Vera volunteering.

Vera success story:

Well, it's Vera's sixth birthday on Jan. 27, and the entire community has been generous enough to give the gift of a real venue. That's a pretty amazing success story.

Local bands to watch for:

This year, it's been a bit harder for Vera to identify the newest bands, you know, with the lack of a steady venue, but here's who is looking real good right now: Tall Birds, Speaker Speaker, Grieves, Damien Black, Boat, Dyme Def, Scribes, Wallpaper, and the Neons.

Your Top 5 records to listen to while:

Intern wrangling: Jay-Z, "Blueprint."

E-mailing and doing not so serious paperwork: k-os, Joyful Rebellion.

Doing serious paperwork and preparing for meetings: Bloc Party, "Silent Alarm."

Hauling Vera's sound equipment: Al Green, "Call Me."

Double Dutching: Destiny's Child, "Survivor."

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