Amplify Peace: Saving Syrian Lives is a multi-genre tour featuring Arab American artists Omar Offendum, Bassel & the Supernaturals, Kayem and Ronnie Malley & Turath Ensemble. The tour, spearheaded by the Syrian American Medical Society (SAMS), aims to increase awareness of the critical medical relief work being done in and around Syria for those impacted by war. Specifically, the tour highlights SAMS psychosocial programs, helping Syrians at home and in displacement heal from trauma using creative outlets, including art therapy and play therapy.
The artists selected for the tour are deeply committed to the cause, and represent a diverse array of American artists, both in background and music styles ranging from Hip Hop and Spoken Word to Soul and Traditional Middle Eastern Music. Each artist is active both on and off the stage in speaking about their backgrounds and drawing attention to the causes dear to them. With the Amplify Peace Tour, these artists are joining forces and bringing together their combined talents to support and raise awareness and funds for the humanitarian crisis in Syria.
Omar Offendum is a Syrian-American rapper / poet who was born in Saudi Arabia, raised in Washington DC and currently lives in Los Angeles. Known for his unique blend of Hip-Hop & Arabic poetry, he has been featured on prominent world news outlets, lectured at a number of prestigious academic institutions, collaborated with major museums & cultural organizations on several high-profile projects, and helped raise millions of dollars for various humanitarian relief groups.
A graduate of the University of Virginia’s School of Architecture, he’s been able to design a unique path for himself as a thoughtful entertainer able to speak to a multitude of relevant issues & diverse global audiences over the course of his decade-long career.
BASSEL & THE SUPERNATURALS
Bassel & The Supernaturals combines neo-soul and funk with captivating lyrics about love, loss, and a war in Syria that has affected Bassel Almadani’s family along with 10,000,000 others. The soulful Syrian-American vocalist and his ensemble raised over $11,000 during the preorder campaign for their full-length album, Elements (2017), with over $3,000 in donations for humanitarian aid in Syria. Their album was premiered by Noisey (Vice) and led to their involvement in the nationally-acclaimed SXSW showcase ContraBanned: Music Unites featuring artists from the diaspora of the countries targeted by the travel ban.
They’ve since been featured on PRI, Al Jazeera, Reuters, Paste Magazine, Huffington Post, NowThis, and many others. In addition to performing in clubs and festivals across the nation, Bassel partners with universities and charity organizations nationwide to host seminars, workshops, and benefit concerts drawing attention to the crisis in Syria.
Son of a Libyan revolutionary. Kayem is a Chicago-based hip hop artist who was born into the struggle. His father was a political prisoner who helped form a pro-democracy movement after escaping prison. Kayem’s first trip to Libya, after spending a lifetime of advocacy in exile, was filmed in the docuseries “Sing Freedom”. Yahoo! Music listed Kayem’s showcase at South by Southwest 2017 as “The 6 Best Things We Saw at SXSW” and he was listed as one of CNN’s “Most Interesting People”.
He has also been featured in Rolling Stone, Billboard, Complex Mag, The New York Times, and more. Kayem relaunched his career with a name-change in 2017 after having to step away due to government restrictions. He detailed his experience on “Intercepted”, where he was a guest along with Edward Snowden. With a story fit for a Hollywood script and a loyal, hungry international fan base, there’s no question Kayem’s time is now.
Ronnie Malley is a multi-instrumentalist musician, theatrical performer, producer, and educator with a back ground in Global Music and Performance Studies. His selected credits include: composer and sound designer for Great Expectations (Silk Road Rising), musician on A Disappearing Number (Timeline Theatre), author and solo performer of Ziryab, The Songbird Of Andalusia (Silk Road Rising), musician on The Secret Garden (Court Theatre), musician and consultant on Disney’s The Jungle Book (Goodman, Huntington), and co-composer and musician on The White Snake (Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Berkeley Rep, McCarter, Goodman, Guthrie, Wuzhen Theater festival –China ,Old Globe), composer and co-sound designer for The Who And The What (Victory Gardens), associate producer and actor for The Sultan’s Dilemma (International Voices Project), and The Arabian Nights (Looking glass, Berkeley Rep, Arena Stage).Ronnie is an artistic associate with International Voices Project, teaching artist with Chicago Arts Partnership in Education (CAPE) and Global Voices Initiative (GVI), and a faculty member at the Old Town School of Folk Music. He performs with the music groups Allos Musica, Baeoa, EMME, Lamajamal, Surabhi, Turath Ensemble, and the University of Chicago Middle East Music Ensemble.
Beginning her DJ career at the age of 18, it didn’t take Tamara, aka Bella Loki long to establish a strong name in the West Coast music scene. Coming from a 15- year dance career, and growing up in the B-Boy scene, Bella Loki was bred for an undeniable passion for music. Her style is deeply rooted in underground Hip Hop, Jazz, Neo-Soul, Funk, Boogie, House, world rhythms, and more.
Bella Loki began DJing in 2007. Within a year, she defined herself as having a well-rounded knowledge for unique rhythms. In 2008, Bella Loki became a member of the Dojo Soundz family – a collective of DJs, artists, and urban clothing companies dedicated to creative expression. Since then, Bella Loki has spun regularly in the company of well-respected DJs such as Dj Question, Charlie Rock, Cros One, Freddie Joachim, Kidragon, MZA, and many more.
Bella Loki’s unique style of beautifully blended old and new, authentic and unexpected music has been inspired by artists such as Erykah Badu, Outkast, Bonobo, Earth Wind and Fire, Buena Vista Social Club, and many others. Bella Loki has also made appearances at both Los Angeles’s and Chicago’s Beat Swap Meet, Vibes & Stuff Radio, Soul Circle Radio, Qualcomm’s Snap Dragon unveiling in New York, Chicago’s Cumbia Sazo, The Virgin Hotel in Chicago, and venues in her home town, San Diego.