2023 marks Music Forward’s 30th Anniversary! We are celebrating 30 years of stellar performances, celebrity appearances, name changes, and unbeatable opportunities all with the goal of creating a pathway for diverse voices to be empowered through music.

Get a snapshot of some of our favorite moments with our interactive timeline and click through to explore old photos, videos, and news stories.

February 8, 1993

International House of Blues Foundation Incorporates

House of Blues formalizes its nonprofit. The goal being to “Promote multicultural values of diversity and racial harmony through art and music”


Summer 1993

Inaugural Blues Ambassador Scholarship

International House of Blues Foundation awards it’s first Blues Ambassador Scholarship, $1,000 to a student dedicated to the blues.

June 21, 1994

Cookin’ Up the Blues Cookbook with Tabasco

IHOBF teams up with Tabasco and Blues icons to create a cookbook! All proceeds going to the charity.


July 30, 1994

5,000 Boston Participants

International House of Blues Foundation has officially reached 5,000 students since opening its doors.

January 18, 1995

1st Annual “Spirit of the Dream” Tribute

IHOBF hosts its 1st Annual “Spirit of the Dream” Tribute in honor of Martin Luther King Jr, and welcoming in many high profile guests.


March 28, 1995

Lil Richard performs at Blues SchoolHouse National Simulcast

Streamed across the country via satellite, Lil’ Richard performs and speaks to hundreds of young people.

January 15, 1996

The “Spirit of the Dream” Award

The 2nd Annual “Spirit of the Dream” Tribute sees the inception of the “Spirit of the Dream” Award. Awardees included: Maxine Waters, Stevie Wonder, & Jack Healey.


July 1996

IHOBF teams up with Center for Study of Southern Culture to create the HOB Teacher Institute

The HOB Teacher Institute hosts 30 teachers from Los Angeles, Boston, Oxford, and more for a week long Blues education intensive.

May 3-6, 1997

The Blues Brothers Smokin’ Tees Celebrity Golf Classic

The House of Blues hosts a 3 day celebrity golf tournament in Myrtle Beach supporting IHOBF and others.


October 17, 1997

45,000 Blues SchoolHouse Students Reached

Blues SchoolHouse officially reaches 45,000 students since its inception. Tracing the history of Blues from its roots in Africa to its influence on modern genres.


Make an Impression Launches

Make an Impression donated guitars and drums to schools and supported music education. Recitals showcased the impact in House of Blues’s across the country.



July 6, 2006

Live Nation Buys House of Blues

Live Nation purchases House of Blues and takes on the foundation with it!


Arts – Drawing Us Together Launches

From murals, to quilts, to shoe shrines, Drawing Us Together encouraged young people to express themselves and gave them outlets to do so.




Phoebe Bridgers wins Bringing Down the House

Our stages have been graced by many amazing acts including Phoebe Bridgers who was only at the beginning of her music career.


Launch of Give Music

Give Music put instruments directly into the hands of young people so they had unrestricted access to nurturing their passion.


October 7, 2014

Action for the Arts Gives $220k in Support of Music Programs

Action for the Arts gives out $220k across 63 schools and organizations to support music & arts programs



Name changes to House of Blues Music Forward Foundation

After a lot of thought, iterations, and research the International House of Blues Foundation changes its name to HOB Music Forward Foundation


April 20, 2015

Music Forward Sunset Strip Half

MFF becomes the founding charity partner for The Sunset Strip Half Marathon & 5K.

August 16, 2017

All Access with Khalid

Khalid welcomes students behind the scenes of one of his shows. The program consisted of a conversation about his music journey and an exclusive performance.



August 20, 2019

Music Forward Ambassadors Announced

A group of driven performers and artists commit to furthering Music Forward’s mission. Including; Martina McBride, Julia Michaels, & others!

March 2020

Music Forward Goes Virtual & Global

With the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic Music Forward takes their programs online. Committed to the same high quality programming being online allows HOBMFF to find a global audience.


September 30, 2021

1st Virtual All Access Fest

MFF takes its music industry career fair virtual allowing nearly a thousand young people across 30 countries to attend the 28 panels featuring 100 Industry Pros


June 29, 2021

Apple Creative Studios

40 young artists joined local music and filmmaking legends to hone their crafts as musicians, producers, and singer-songwriters.

Spring 2022

LAUSD Masterclasses with United Talent Agency

MFF and UTA join forces for a multi-week masterclass series with UTA professionals sharing insights and career pathway advice for LAUSD students.



BMG Internship & Mentorship Program

BMG and MFF teamed up to provide 31 paid internships across 3 semesters and a mentorship program for young people across the country.

February 2023

Apple Racial Equity and Justice Initiative Grant

In celebration of Black History Month, Apple awards a generous grant to MFF for being focused on uplifting Black and Brown by unlocking creative potential.



Governors Ball Scholarship

Music Forward added its 7th scholarship to its roster in partnership with Gov Ball. $10,000 to a New York City native pursuing a degree in live entertainment.

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