System of A Down ?Souls 2005? Benefit Concert

"We call this ‘Souls’ because there are all these souls that aren’t at rest. Their deaths have been overlooked."

LOS ANGELES–Multi-Platinum-selling group System Of A Down will headline "Souls 2005," a benefit concert presented by Los Angeles radio powerhouse–KROQ-FM–and held in Los Angeles on Sunday–April 24 at the Universal Amphitheatre. All tickets for the concert will be priced at $45.00 and will go on sale at 10:00 AM on Saturday–March 12 at the Universal Amphitheatre box office–all Ticketmaster outlets including Tower Records–Robinsons-May–Wherehouse–Ritmo Latino–www.ticketmaster.com–and www.hob.com. Doors are at 7:00 PM and the show will begin at 8:15 PM; support acts and other details will be announced shortly.

This is the third "Souls" benefit concert that System Of A Down has organized and headlined–and as before–the four band members–Serj Tankian–Daron Malakian–Shavo Odadjian–and John Dolmayan–have earmarked the proceeds from "Souls 2005" to benefit organizations that work to eradicate genocides across the globe. This includes the Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA)–an organization that supports legislation in US Congress to recognize the Armenian genocide that was perpetrated by the Ottoman Empire during World War 1. During this first genocide of the 20th century–1.5 million Armenia’s were annihilated and hundreds of thousands deported from their ancient homeland. April 24 was chosen as the date for the concert as this year it commemorates the 90th anniversary of the Armenian genocide.

The members of System of a Down–who are of Armenian descent–all lost family members and family history to the Armenian genocide. "Because so much of my family history was lost in the Armenian Genocide," said Malakian–"my grandfather–who was very young at the time–doesn’t know his true age. How many people can say they don’t know how old they are?" Tankian–Dolmayan and Odadjian all identify their grandparents’ memories as the only links they have to their respective family heritages–as most of their families were obliterated during the Armenian genocide.

Why should System Of A Down fans be concerned about the Armenian genocide–something that happened nearly one-hundred years ago and far away from the United States?

"It’s important for people to be aware of the Armenian Genocide," explained Tankian–"and that those actions continue to be covered up by the Turkish government–the US State Department–Turkey’s allies in the defense and oil industries–and by our present US Administration. Had the Armenian Genocide been acknowledged as a Crime Against Humanity as it was–Hitler might not have thought he could get away with the Jewish Holocaust. History does and will repeat itself–unless we stop that cycle."

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