LOS ANGELES–The Los Angeles-area band System of a down staged a benefit concert last Saturday at the Palace in Hollywood–benefiting the recognition of the Armenian Genocide. The band raised some $20,000 for the Armenian National Committee of America.
On November 7–Spin.com published a concert review–which we publish below.
System of a Down Raises 20K
More than 1,300 people turned out in Los Angeles this weekend for "Souls-A Benefit for Recognition of the Armenian Genocide to Stop Crimes Against Humanity," a benefit concert organized by hard-rockers System of a Down.
Because of the high attendance level at LA’s The Palace–which also featured a performance by Buckethead–System of a Down successfully raised a whopping $20,000 for Armenian Genocide Recognition. System members–all of whom are of Armenian descent who lost relatives to the Armenian Holocaust that occurred during World War I–treated the crowd to 10 brand new songs likely appear on the band’s forthcoming album–which frontman Serj Tankian told Spin.com recently should be out next spring.
"The purpose of the concert is to make kids aware of the atrocities of the first major genocide of the 20th Century perpetrated by the Turkish government," explained Tankian last week.
"We’re aware of our past and our history. It’s our family tree." The band put on the concert in an effort to heighten awareness and garner funds for the Armenian National Committee of America–which lobbies for Congressional legislation that would officially recognize the Armenian Genocide.
One particular piece of legislation that supporters like System of a Down are pushing for is House Resolution 596- a measure that would officially recognize those victims of Armenian genocide–which Tankian says has been covered up not only by the Turkish government as well as the United States government. The resolution was momen’s away from passing recently–but then President Clinton asked that the issue not be brought to the floor–saying it could potentially pose a threat to national security as well as the lives of American soldiers stationed on US bases in Turkey.
Tankian believes Clinton withdrew the resolution not because of the delicate situation in the Middle East–but rather because he does not want to anger the Turkish government and endanger their military and oil ties to the US At any rate–the benefit concert began with the screening of a brief documentary–hosted by Peter Jennings–exploring the case of 1.5 million Armenia’s either murdered or deported from their country between 1915 and 1923 by the Ottoman Empire.
In addition to the $20 ticket fee to the show–funds were raised through donations made by American Recordings–Columbia Records–ARTISTdirect.com–Velvet Hammer Music & Management Group and StreetWise Concepts & Culture–Ecko/Physical Science–Paiste–Tama–Vans–DVS Shoe Company–Kik Wear–Vic Firth–Arnette–ux4 productions–and Fed ‘Em All Wear. Oh yeah. Axl Rose was there. He was.