Spawned from the squalor of Del Playa Drive, Isla Vista band and Extravaganza 2008 opening act Out of State is striving for more than just rock ‘n’ roll glory as it aims to gather funds for cyclone-ravaged Myanmar.
Four UCSB students formed Out of State three years ago, shaking their dilapidated apartment’s walls with heavy bass lines and drumbeats. Now the band – on the verge of graduation and with a fifth member in tow – has set its sight on Los Angeles and the professional music industry.
However, the band’s musical aspirations aren’t its sole concern.
At Extravaganza, members sported T-shirts with the slogan “Burma Says React” on stage to publicize a fundraising project they are spearheading on campus. Their campaign is designed to provide direct relief for victims of the recent cyclone in Myanmar that left nearly 80,000 dead.
The weekend, prior to Extravaganza, the rock quintet worked with students from Art Studio 7A: The Intersections of Art and Life to screen-print mass quantities of the “Burma Says React” shirts. The band then sold the T-shirts for $10 each at a booth on the sidelines of Extravaganza.
According to band member Adam “Catfish” Weinberg, Out of State has already raised $600 from T-shirt sales and donations. Half of the money collected will go to direct relief for the Burmese and the other half will be sent to the United Nations International Children Education Fund.
Weinberg, a fourth-year anthropology major, said the band hopes to use its success as a platform for future philanthropic events.
“It’s always about the music, but it’s more, it’s about getting people involved, to think about something positive and make a change in the world.” Weinberg said. “As a band, we are always going to be doing something like this because we want to get the message to people to take action and make positive change.”
In addition to continuing their charity work, Out of State members plan to take their show to LA next fall to shop for a deal with an independent label.
However, Weinberg said regardless of where the band ends up, Out of State will return to its roots in I.V.
“This is definitely not the end of the band,” Weinberg said. “We were really happy to be able to play at Extravaganza and finish up at UCSB with a stadium show. No matter where we go, I think we will always come back to I.V. for some shows.”
Meanwhile, David Avon, a first-year global studies major, said he believes Out of State has the talent to stand out in the world of professional rock bands.
“Out of State put on a really good show at Extravaganza.” Avon said. “They definitely have the potential to become one of Santa Barbara’s great bands.”