Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Serj Tankian's new album & the origins of hummus.

Last night Serj Tankian (System of a Down) celebrated his new solo album, Imperfect Harmonies, with a preview hosted by Logitech at Downtown's Watermarke Tower. Up in the penthouse suite, Serj, his band, and about 50 guests enjoyed an intimate listen to the new tunes.

Sure, we think Tankian's music is amazing, but the real reasons we love the artist...

* He's political. In addition to the many organizations Serj stands behind, he and fellow musician Tom Morello (Rage Against the Machine) founded their own, Axis of Justice, to fight for social justice.

* Tankian's concern for others knows no species-defined boundaries. He's a vegetarian.

* He's well groomed. In pictures, videos, and certainly last night, Tankian's facial hair is always styled just so. And we can't help but to respect a man who respects himself and his goatee.

Things that defined the party...

* A view that inspired even the fearful to step onto the small ledge for a look at the city below.

* Military cut jackets. Serj was sporting a beautifully cut one himself and some guests followed suit. No pun intended. Okay, maybe a little bit intended.

* Multinationalism. Serj is Lebonese, born to Armenian parents who fled the genocide, and moved the family to Los Angeles in the '70s. His band hails from Armenia, Italy, and Indiana. His security is from Brazil via the UK. I am from Long Island. The list goes on.

* A recurring conversation about the cuisine of Armenia. Okay, to be fair, this wasn't necessarily organic conversation. I kept bringing this one back up. To everyone I talked to. Why, I asked, is hummus served by Armenians, Russians Greeks, Lebanese, and Israelis?! I would not give up on the quest for truth at the party as I figured--if not here amongst so many Lebanese and Armenian, where would I ever learn the answer to the most pressing culinary question I've ever almost cared a lot about!? As it turns out, at least according to one guest who spoke with the semblance of great authority, hummus originated in Lebanon. The proof? The word 'hummus' is actually Arabic. And according to Serj's brother, the best Lebanese food in LA is to be found at Carousel in Hollywood and Skaf's in Glendale. You're welcome.

* A look at the new Ultimate Ears by Logitech custom in-ear monitors. These rad earbuds are saving musicians' hearing by creating molds customized for each user. An audiologist was even on hand last night to take custom measures of guests' ears. And for those of us who don't need the $1000+ models, UE has now launched a series of earbuds for consumer use, starting at just $19. Count me in please.

To order Serj Tankian's album, Imperfect Harmonies, click here.

[This post orginally appeared on Stuff I Like]

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