New track from our friends in Cults as a limited 7″ release for Record Store Day called “Abducted“. Check them out at this weekend’s Coachella music fest! Anyone heading out there? You should keep our lovely Kenny Laubbacher company while he’s braving the festival all weekend long.

Still.. so.. excited to tell you about our 25 event bands. Just a few more days!

a young, Kenny Laubbacher

It’s been a little quiet on the blog front, but rest assured the music department has been working steadily, hastily, tirelessly to lock in 18 INCREDIBLE bands for our upcoming national event 25. I cannot wait to announce them all for you. Check in with us at our 25 page to find out what bands are playing in your city.

Rob Crow, best known for being in Pinback, lesser known for being music department, Kenny Laubbacher’s longtime friend and former…

Some of you may know that along with working for Invisible Children, I also run a music blog called Friends With Both Arms. I feel really fortunate to be surrounded a creative community here at Invisible Children, one that extends to the local community of some pretty wonderful artists and musicians. I’ve met some good friends, and have taken every opportunity to expose local San Diego musicians to the greater FWBA audience. I just found out that San Diego magazine 944 featured…

(photo credit: Jered Scott)

If you haven’t heard yet, Invisible Children has had the privilege of traveling the United States on the “Dirty Work Tour” – featuring All Time Low, Yellowcard, Hey Monday, and The Summer Set.

Each of the bands have supported us in huge ways in the past, and now, they have expressed interest to participate in our 4th event.

Our bus-mate and fellow Dumb and Dumber fan, Cassadee Pope, has created a personal fundraising page for 25….

We all love us some Fleet Foxes around the office and we are counting down the days to the release of their new album coming out on May 3rd. This video below is getting us more excited and from the looks of it, it looks like they have created another masterpiece. -JF

Fleet Foxes – Grown Ocean from Fleet Foxes on Vimeo.

We had the good fortune of stumbling across verb/re/verb a while back and were totally blown away by the fact that it was run by Eloise- a sixteen year old blogger from LA. The originality, quality and consistency of her musical finds is impressive to say the least. You absolutely must check it out, and maybe become inspired to start one yourself. We invited her to come along to occassionally post and share some neat projects she’s working on. She’s totally amped on Invisible Children so for…

We are currently traveling the 50-states with All Time Low’s “Dirty Work” tour. There’s a great lineup of supporting bands – including Yellowcard (yes, Yellowcard is BACK), Hey Monday, and The Summer Set. All of these artists have been huge supporters of IC, and we couldn’t be happier spending the next 6 weeks with such incredible people. It’s like a family reunion… without the endless game of Horseshoe.

We’ve partnered with FENDER and the FENDER Foundation on a couple…

Middle Brother (John McCauley of Deer Tick, Matt Vasquez of Delta Spirit)

We just got back from SXSW and we’ve still got the sleepy eyes but we’re so eager to show you some of the photos and share some stories from Austin, so here goes it. As many of you know, we invited 25 artists to perform in the park for us to honor the 25th anniversary of SXSW and the 25th year of the war in East Africa. We had something of an idea of how it’d go down, mostly chaotic- asking artists,…

PatesTapes :: Interview


I came across a site called PatesTapes which is the project of Charles Pates who has curated hundreds of hours of mixes from vinyl to tape- all online and streamable. Meticulously organized in genres and moods, PatesTapes has been my go-to site for mixtapes.

I wanted to find out more about the man behind the mixtapes- Charles Pates and his impressive catalogue of vinyl. Read my interview below, then check out PatesTapes for yourself.

I found out about the site a while back and have since gotten everyone in my office to listen to it regularly. Where did the idea for Pates Tapes come from?

Well first off, thanks for converting the people in your office.

I relocated, and all my tapes were packed in boxes – normally I have shelves stuffed with them so I can pick and choose, for the first time I was forced relying on shuffled digital music. That was tolerable for a couple of months, and then it became annoying, because if I’m alone or with friends I like music to do what I designed it to do. So I started to drag the tape boxes downstairs, out of the attic where they slumbered. I had a new audience and everyone loved the tapes; the computer had not improved on the human experience. So slowly but surely the collection is going online, and now everyone can sit at my stereo and play whatever tape they want to.

You’ve clearly got a certain encyclopedic wisdom about music, especially from early eras- what do you attribute that to? Were you a musician? Are you simply nostalgic?

I’ve always loved music, always been a collector, combine this with years of hanging out with people who also love music, and you have a rich musical stew.
I don’t really see it as nostalgic, although there is an evocative side to music that does stimulate memory. You look at paintings and you don’t think of them as nostalgic. Music like the visual arts is an ongoing story, and I’m trying my best to record some of it. In regard being a musician, I play the guitar, but I wouldn’t call myself a musician.

What was the process like, extracting files from tape to digitally?
Long, it’s real time and I’ve been at it a year. I’m about 30% into digitizing the collection, and I have about 10% of those tapes uploaded and online. So the site will not be fully loaded for years to come.

Do you feel that the quality has been lost through transferring?
No, I play the tapes and I’ve listened to it streamed, and I haven’t noticed any difference.

There’s a distinctive feel to sitting down to listen to records.
The playlists were made mostly at night when I was in the groove both metaphorically and literally – I think that comes across. They can be listened to like concept albums with a certain reverence I suppose. They can also be listened to in the background – the only difference between background and foreground is volume.
On the site you can’t take the needle off, I think this is really important, people are listening to music they don’t have access to, their trusting the taste, and not blowing things off. These days it’s so easy to skip, fast forward and chop and change…new technology is developing short attention spans. Maybe my contribution can get us ‘back to where we once belonged.’

Out of all genres posted- which one is your favorite?
All of them. I don’t ‘play favorites’…well I do ‘play favorites’…but …ahh you know what I mean.

How many records do you own? How do you go about finding and collecting them?
I have around 2,000, most of them were ordered or came to me from ‘bin dives,’ some came as promo’s from record company’s when I was in the magazine business.

Which are your favorites?
All of them really, but I suppose collectables and great graphic design are high on my list of criteria’s.

How do you go about crafting a mix?
There is definitely a musical narrative and it tends to be built around pace and mood changes, which come around every 12 to15 minutes. So you end up with 3 or 4 episodes in 45 minutes, it’s like making a film or designing a magazine, – I’ve done both so the disciplines come in handy. The hard piece is getting the end of one track to go with the start of another. Even harder than that, is knowing when the records sound, will hit the needle – exactly at the time you release the pause button on the tape deck. I didn’t work on the turntables and mixing units that are available now…the turntable went one way…forward. If you get your timing right Eureka! Well almost…then you have to rewind the tape and see if it worked…often it didn’t. It’s a serious labour of love.

Do you listen to any contemporary music- if so, what do you listen to?
Absolutely, all the playlists except Café contain – or will contain new music. I’m listening to reviews in MOJO, because there’s precious little on the TV, or on the Radio. Great name for a band…almost?

Most young people my age who write about music are constantly consuming whatever the newest/latest/most hyped bands- can you suggest any older artists that would be required listening for this generation?
All of them, I don’t think it’s just young people, it’s all people. Music is one of the few things, that when played, forces you to think.

What is the most popular mix you’ve posted? Are you surprised by this?
The Peel Sessions is the fav fight now, but as the site goes increasingly more international, I’m expecting that to change.

I’ve noticed that you’re also an artist- is that a hobby or a career?
I’ve painted for most of my life, but that doesn’t pay the rent

Do you see PatesTapes growing?
It’s growing, and I can’t see it dying.

Any new genres to introduce?
No I think I have it covered.

Will it ever be available for download for those of us that don’t have iPhones?
You can’t download it. It’s available on everything but Androids at this point.

The recent 8.9 magnitude earthquake in Japan has prompted musicians to reach out to their fans to help the victims.

Linkin Park’s Mike Shinoda designed t-shirts for his Music for Relief charity. One shirt reads “Not Alone” and another is a paper crane type white butterfly. Donations of $10 can be made by texting MFR to 85944.

On Friday, Lady Gaga designed a special Japan Prayer bracelet which will go to Tsunami relief efforts. She also urged fans to visit the Citizens Effect website…

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Themed by: Hunson