Free Make Music Pasadena returns with Surfer Blood, Yuna, more

Malaysian artist Yuna, left, is among the Make Music Pasadena headliners.
Malaysian artist Yuna, left, is among the Make Music Pasadena headliners.
(Mel Melcon / Los Angeles Times)

Highly melodic rock act Surfer Blood and Malaysian R&B artist Yuna will anchor this summer’s edition of the free Make Music Pasadena festival. Returning for its seventh year, the day-long June 7 event will once again feature more than 150 largely independent artists throughout Old Town Pasadena.

Make Music Pasadena, one of the last remaining free neighborhood festivals in Southern California to draw name indie and rock acts, will also feature appearances from the breezy Tennis, light-stepping locals Saint Motel, evocative singer-songwriter Shelby Earle and the intimate, worldly electronic stylings of Moses Sumney.

Others on the bill include Andy Allo, Finish Ticket, Wild Ones, Run River North, the Record Company and Ester Rada. A list of confirmed artists is below. Organizers expect to add to the lineup in the coming days and weeks. Make Music Pasadena will run from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.

Attendance at past Make Music Pasadena events has exceeded 35,000, according to organizers, and the festivals have generally operated with a budget in the low six figures. Organizers are once again seeking to raise money via crowd-funding efforts, with various perks offered for different donation tiers (a button for $5, and VIP access for $150, for instance).


Pop-up stages can be found in outdoor courtyards, parks and neighborhood churches and more. Make Music Pasadena is produced by the Old Pasadena Management District and the Playhouse District Assn.

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 recognizable artists 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.

Confirmed acts are as follows:

Surfer Blood
Saint Motel
Andy Allo
Finish Ticket
Moses Sumney
Wild Ones
Run River North
Shelby Earl
The Record Company
Ester Rada
The Second Howl
Ted Z and the Wranglers
Slow Graffiti
Max and the Moon
She, Her and I
Celeigh Chapman
The Janks
Future Loves Past