Tanlines, Yacht, Robert DeLong to play free Make Music Pasadena

Tanlines, Yacht, Robert DeLong to play free Make Music Pasadena
Jesse Cohen of Tanlines at this year's Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival in Indio, Calif. (Karl Walter / Getty Images)

Worldly synth-pop act Tanlines, atmospheric electro-pop act Yacht and politically minded dance artist Robert DeLong are among the artists slated to headline June's free Make Music Pasadena. The all-day event, set for June 1, will feature more than 150 concerts spanning indie rock, Latin music, folk and jazz, and will continue to announce participating artists in the coming weeks.

Among the more than 30 confirmed acts revealed thus far are Amanda Jo Williams, Las Cafeteras, the Peach Kings, Dom La Nena, Taken by Trees, Radar Bros., Hunter Hunted, We Are Scientists, A House for Lions and Superhumanoids, among many others. Make Music Pasadena was estimated to have drawn more than 20,000 people to Old Town Pasadena last year, and the final lineup will boast more than 100 artists. A list of many of the confirmed performers is below.

In a post-Coachella landscape where music festivals are increasingly common, Make Music Pasadena stands out as something of an endangered species. Rare these days is the day-long music fest that is free. One week after Make Music Pasadena, for instance, will see the launch of a refurbished Jubilee Music and Arts Festival, once a $5 per day event in Silver Lake and now a $50 two-day extravaganza in downtown's arts district.

In an effort to ensure Make Music Pasadena's long-term viability, organizers this year for the first time attempted to crowd-fund the event. "As Make Music Pasadena continues to grow, so do all the costs," organizers posted online. Co-founder Josefina Mora says the fest has not yet met its fundraising goals for 2013.

"Yearly, it has been a struggle to put on an event of this magnitude, with the climbing city fees and the small production team," she says. "However, we have triumphed and been lucky to have [broken] even the past few years, as no income is made with Make Music Pasadena. We figured that we would give crowd-funding a try to help alleviate some costs."

The 2012 budget came in at less than $200,000, and the fest carries on due to sponsorships and local artists who are willing to play for free -- or close to it. Now in its sixth year, Make Music Pasadena is presented in conjunction with Santa Monica public radio station KCRW-FM (89.9).

The Pasadena festival, modeled after the Fête de la Musique in Paris, celebrates music at its most quirky, casual and community-focused. It's grown from an event that largely featured intimate, acoustic appearances in storefronts to one that can now draw artists with national appeal spread across five main stages and more than 30 smaller performance areas. Many of the primary stages are set around Old Town's Colorado Boulevard and the Playhouse District's Madison Avenue.

Pop-up stages can be found in outdoor courtyards, parks and neighborhood churches. Pasadena's ARTS buses will once again also host live music onboard, and carry riders to Make Music Pasadena's multiple main stages. Make Music Pasadena is produced by the Old Pasadena Management District and the Playhouse District Assn.


Confirmed Make Music Pasadena artists as of Wednesday:



The Peach Kings

Robert DeLong

Taken by Trees

Hunter Hunted

KCRW DJ Valida

We Are Scientists


la Nena

High Places

Sleeping at Last

Las Cafeteras


The New Limb

A House of Lions

The Record Company

Yellow Red Sparks

Simone White

Amanda Jo Williams


The Dustbowl Revival

Radar Bros.

Letting Up Despite Great Faults

Haunted Summer

Salt Petal

The Ukulele Orchestra of the Western Hemisphere

Freedom Fry

Tashaki Miyaki

The Eagle Rock Gospel Singers

Los Angeles Free Music Society

Jessica Fichot

Kid Cadaver

Amanda Jo Williams

Will Courtney

White Dove