Atlanta, GA   |


The mission of Music in Common is to strengthen, empower, and connect communities through the universal language of music. Music in Common Empowers diverse cultures and faiths to discover common ground through collaborative songwriting, multimedia, and performance.

Ruling year info


Principal Officer

Todd Mack

Main address

PO Box 82014

Atlanta, GA 30354 USA

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Formerly known as

FODfest, Inc.



NTEE code info

Music Groups, Bands, Ensembles (A6C)

Youth Development Programs (O50)

Citizen Participation (W24)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

The negative effects of the divisiveness between people of various backgrounds, cultures, ethnicities, citizenship status, religions, political parties, and other diversities are pervading our schools, communities, and our society, country and the world, both online and on the ground. These show up in forms of violence, harassment, bullying and other ways on the streets, in schools, in neighborhoods, houses of worship, and other public places, including on social media. Music in Common is addressing this problem using the power of face to face communication, dialogue, and creative collaboration to give people an opportunity to understand different perspectives, to find common ground, and to work together for solutions to issues and challenges that affect us all and that we all ultimately want to see improved.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

FODfest Community Concerts

open community music events that bring together diverse groups of artists
and audiences incorporating a unique performance format that is part
concert, part song swap, and part jam session. Many of the participating
musicians are meeting for the first time on stage. FODfest concerts are
powerful and healing experiences, generating a sense of community and
hope, often times serving as a call to action for individuals and
communities to discover common ground.

Population(s) Served

JAMMS (Journalism as Music, Multimedia, and Songwriting) is an experiential learning program for diverse faiths, cultures, and ethnicities to discover common ground through dialogue and creative collaboration. Participants engage in facilitated discussion about culture, race, religion, and current events and their influence on self-perception and the perception of others. These conversations are the foundation for the group identifying and selecting a theme for their project. Together, they write and record a song and produce a video that addresses an issue important to them collectively. Each program concludes with a performance and presentation of their project.

Population(s) Served
Young adults

RAISE the MIC is a powerful concert experience in which musicians interpret and perform the songs written by youth participants in our JAMMS and Summer JAMMS program

Population(s) Served

In Amplify musicians ages 14 - 22 have the unique opportunity to work with professional musicians and producers to learn, rehearse, and perform in concert songs written by youth from around the world. In doing so, youth learn about the faiths, cultures, and experiences of the youth whose songs they are learning, becoming ambassadors, amplifying the important messages of their songs to the world via performances at community events, concerts, videos, and recordings. Participating musicians learn the importance of teamwork, gain self-confidence, and develop strong communication and collaborative skills.

Amplify (Your Town) is a free community-based, year round program, comprised of musicians ages 14 - 22 who rehearse regularly, interpreting and learning JAMMS songs to be performed in their community at concerts, events, and other gatherings.

​Amplify 2020 Summer Residency is a tuition-based, deeply immersive, two and a half week intensive that attracts young musicians from throughout the country who live and rehearse together at Berkshire School in the beautiful Berkshire Mountains of western Massachusetts.

Population(s) Served
Artists and performers

The Black Legacy Project is a musical celebration of Black history to advance racial solidarity, equity, and belonging.
The Black LP is a national project produced by Music in Common - a nonprofit that strengthens, empowers, and connects communities through the universal language - in partnership with community stakeholders at the local level. As it travels the country, the Black LP brings together Black and White artists and artists of ALL backgrounds to record present day interpretations of songs central to the Black American experience and compose originals relevant to the pressing calls for change of our time. Community roundtable discussions help inform how these songs are interpreted and written.

Population(s) Served
Ethnic and racial groups

Where we work

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Number of Facebook followers

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success


Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

Music In Common aims to initiate and facilitate ongoing dialogue between diverse groups of people, particularly youth and communities in conflict, to provide them opportunities for improved ways of communicating and greater understanding between people viewed as "the other". Further, to provide a platform for youth to express their thoughts, ideas, and visions through public performances and music videos that can be shared globally to amplify their voices and connect them to their global peers through a shared experience.

Since 2005, Music In Common has directly served thousands of people in more than 250 communities across the globe, including Israelis and Palestinians, Christians, Jews and Muslims, as well as American-born, refugee and immigrant youth. In any community, our JAMMS and Amplify programs transform apprehension into trust, fear into acceptance, powerlessness into action. Through safe and honest dialogue, and working together face to face to address issues that are important to the group, participants expand their understanding, build confidence, strengthen their sense of community, and feel empowered to think critically and responsibly and to voice their opinions and ideas publicly through creative expression.

Creative collaboration is the cornerstone of our methods, including music, multimedia and other art forms but no particular creative skill is required to participate. To that end, with rare exception MIC programs are tuition free and open to all.

Music in Common's staff and facilitators are professional musicians, multi-media producers, and educators. All have worked with diverse groups in communities around the world. Since 2010, Music in Common has facilitated over 45 programs around the world and have developed successful methods to engage and support participants to think critically and act responsibly toward their vision of a better world. Our 2 short documentary films have proven useful tools for demonstrating the development and growth of our programs. It is our intention to secure funding for a youth produced documentary that represents their experiences and visions for the continuation and growth of our programs.

To date, nearly fifty JAMMS songs have been written and recorded by youth around the world. Most recently, participants in our Amplify program study, learn, perform and record several of those songs. In doing so they become ambassadors for the JAMMS youth whose songs they are performing, amplifying their message in new and powerful ways and connecting the audience with the stories and cultures of the songs’ authors. In the process of learning the JAMMS songs, Amplify musicians learn about the faiths, cultures, and narratives of the youth who wrote the songs, thereby connecting them to others whose backgrounds may vastly differ from their own. In their public performance, the youth share their experiences and their responses to the stories of the songs authors, demonstrating for the audience the power of music to amplify their voices. Music In Common is currently exploring ways to expand the Amplify program, as well as to train additional JAMMS facilitators.

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To identify and remedy poor client service experiences, To identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, To make fundamental changes to our programs and/or operations, To inform the development of new programs/projects, To identify where we are less inclusive or equitable across demographic groups, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve

  • Which of the following feedback practices does your organization routinely carry out?

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    It is difficult to get the people we serve to respond to requests for feedback, It is difficult to find the ongoing funding to support feedback collection, Staff find it hard to prioritize feedback collection and review due to lack of time



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The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.


Connect with nonprofit leaders


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Connect with nonprofit leaders


Build relationships with key people who manage and lead nonprofit organizations with GuideStar Pro. Try a low commitment monthly plan today.

  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

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Board of directors
as of 12/16/2022
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Todd Mack

Off The Beat-n-Track

Term: 2009 - 2011

Todd Mack

Off The Beat-n-Track

Ed Outlaw

Outlaw Consulting

John Van Vlack

Samir Nomani

Elizabeth Schroeder

Corey-Jan Albert

Barbara Watkins

Farah Kidwai

Ellen Shanahan

Berkshire Community College

Brandon Pantorno

Sandy Pantorno

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? No
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? Yes

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 1/16/2020

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? Candid partnered with CHANGE Philanthropy on this demographic section.


The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
Gender identity
Male, Not transgender (cisgender)
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or straight
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity


Sexual orientation


We do not display disability information for organizations with fewer than 15 staff.