By Louis Chan, AsAmNews National Correspondent
Rock Against Hate 2 announced today that the highly-acclaimed Darro and St. Lenox will take the virtual stage on April 28 to benefit Stop AAPI Hate.
Concertgoers will gain free admission but are encouraged to RSVP to receive an email reminder and to get a direct link to the steamed event.
St. Lenox is the music project of Andrew Choi. In 2021, Rolling Stone named Choi the Artist You Need to Know. The iconic publication noted his “sharply evocative and richly imagined tales that…expand the definition of what gets to be considered an American narrative in the singer-songwriter tradition.”
AllMusic notes that Choi’s “creative pursuits have resulted in some of the most unique and unconventionally thrilling pop music in the late 2010s.” St. Lenox is a regular on independent writer Best of Lists and in 2022 was featured on the cover of the Princeton Alumni Weekly.
Darro is an Asian-American Emo and Pop-Punk artist. In 2017, days after graduating from Berklee College of Music, doctors told him he had been diagnosed with a brain tumor and had to undergo surgery. After months of grueling recovery, Darro continued to produce and release music that has been featured in Billboard, Alternative Press, and New Noise Magazine, as well as placing on the iTunes Rock Charts.
“As a filmmaker and artist, I really enjoy organizing #rockagainsthate which offers a voluntary and free platform for up and coming AAPI artists to perform and raise awareness for AAPI Heritage Month,” said producer Quentin Lee of Asian American Movies. “I’m loving it as a volunteer, bringing me back to my roots as a community organizer when I was attending UC Berkeley.”
Produced by AsAmNews, The Slants Foundation, and Asian American Movies, Rock Against Hate 2 will be a night of art and activism to promote the resources available to Stop AAPI Hate and to encourage concertgoers to make a donation to the national hate reporting center.
“From day one, AsAmNews has put the spotlight on Bad Ass Asians such as musicians who are blazing a trail for others to follow,” said Randall Yip, founder and Editor of AsAmNews. “It’s only natural that we assist in producing this wonderful festival.”
The bill will be rounded out by a number of both well-established and up-and-coming Asian American music groups. In addition, more special guests and performers will be added.
“I’m excited to see the return of Rock Against Hate, especially with a new class of performers,” said Simon Tam, band leader of The Slants and President of The Slants Foundation. “We’ve worked with many of them at The Slants Foundation and love the passion, energy, and talent that they bring. As a lifelong musician and activist, it fills my heart to see a new generation of artists using their craft to support important causes like Stop AAPI Hate.”
Othertones is the solo project of Nashville, Tennessee based musician Iman Nadeem. In addition to lending her powerhouse pop-rock vocals and songwriting to Othertones, Iman is a producer, arranger and multi-instrumentalist. Othertones explores the blurring of many rock subgenres, such as pop-punk and emo rock. The project also utilizes Iman’s unique intersection of marginalized backgrounds, which provides a rare perspective of lyrical content in a white male-dominated scene. Iman’s goal is to help young people of all identities feel seen and heard, and she aims to provide a safe haven and sense of belonging for those who feel othered in their daily lives.
Milford, Connecticut Pop-Punk band Cometa has shared the stage with New Found Glory, Rise Against, and Sevendust. Their electrifying live show has been featured on the Vans Warped Tour.
Fronted by Filipino-American twin brothers, their songs foster positivity, diversity, and never giving up on your dreams.
The band has won several Battle of the Bands and was nominated for Best Hard Rock at the NEMA Awards. They are currently recording their next EP and planning tour dates for 2022/2023.
Qui-Shawn Tran, 20, writes & performs spoken word poetry and creates audiovisual content. As a 3rd year student at UC San Diego studying Interdisciplinary Computing, Music, and Technology, he’s made YouTube Videos on his college experience, poetry about his first-generation, Asian-American college experience, and live performances for UCSD’s Department of Music, TEDx, and Alumni Association. His work springs from his lived experiences and ambition to contribute to the creative legacy of his Asian-American community in the San Gabriel Valley. In 2020, his entrepreneurial spirit helped him raise $1,500 for the East West Players, a Los Angeles-based Asian-American theater. In 2022 his artistic journey is continuing through spoken word poetry.
Often recognized for their soulful vocal harmonies and charming performances, The Complements are an award-winning singer-songwriter duo who sound like they walked off the set of a Disney / Glee crossover show.
Comprised of best friends Greg & Aleesha, their music has been described as “the sonic representation of a smile,” (LEX the Lexicon Artist) and as having “an expensive sound.” (Award-winning composer and producer James Gardiner)
They have traveled throughout the US and Canada to delight audiences with their signature sound and arrangements. Their recent EP release “Songs from Hamilton” features some of their favorite numbers from the hit musical, reimagined in their own style.
The festival begins on April 28 at 8:30 Eastern/5:30 Pacific Time and can be viewed on AsAmNews and The Slant Foundation’s Facebook pages. You can get a link and an email reminder of the festival by RSVPing here.
JuJu Chang, who had previously been tapped as an emcee, will no longer participate due to circumstances beyond her control. She says she is sad not to be able to take part in the festival.
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