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When We Were Young Playlist: Billboard’s 130-Track Mix to Get You Ready for the Pop-Punk Festival

Have you ever wanted to take a time machine to two decades ago? Clearly, the organizers of the When We Were Young festival are hoping the answer is yes.

Announced earlier this week, the aptly named live music extravaganza will bring together 65 bands from across the emo/pop-punk/post-hardcore/metalcore galaxy, most of which found prominence in the early 2000s. The lineup, which includes all your favorites from My Chemical Romance to Avril Lavigne to Boys Like Girls to The Starting Line to Glassjaw, invites attendees to grab their iPods, don their skinny jeans and Warped Tour T-shirts, and step back about 20 years.

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When We Were Young will take place in Las Vegas — now over two days, on Oct. 22 and 23, with the same lineup each day — and the ticket pre-sale is officially live as of Friday morning. But in case you don’t want to wait nine months to embrace the nostalgia this festival evokes, Billboard has you covered: We’ve curated a jumbo eight-hour playlist spanning every single artist on the When We Were Young poster. To keep things fun, we’ve picked one defining signature song for each artist on the lineup, but also one overlooked or underrated deep cut.

For instance, you probably recall “Welcome to the Black Parade,” the glam-flecked centerpiece from My Chemical Romance’s 2006 rock opera The Black Parade; but what about “Bulletproof Heart,” an escapist pop anthem from the band’s 2010 swan song Danger Days? Or you, like Taylor Swift, might have listened to Jimmy Eat World’s “The Middle” a lot in middle school; but did you stick with the band long enough to fall in love with “Dizzy,” the epic, emotionally bruising climax from their underrated 2007 LP, Chase This Light? And we’ve all talked a lot lately about “Misery Business,” the pop-punk banger that netted Paramore a retroactive writing credit on Olivia Rodrigo’s chart-topping “Good 4 U” last year — but when was the last time you listened to “All I Wanted,” the superb emo-pop torch song that closes out the band’s third album, 2009’s Brand New Eyes?

Whether you’re doing your homework to get prepped for the When We Were Young festival or just looking to lose yourself in sweet nostalgia for a few hours, consider this playlist the perfect way to ring in your weekend.




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