Serj Tankian Guides Anthony Bourdain Through Armenia in ‘Parts Unknown’
Travel journalist Anthony Bourdain recently took his Parts Unknown show to Armenia and was joined on his adventure by System of a Down vocalist Serj Tankian. The CNN series found Tankian and Bourdain first meeting at the Dolmama restaurant in Yerevan, where they discussed the country's issues with their neighbors, Tankian's own history with the country and heritage and more.
"Serj is Armenian. Like most Armenians around the world, he wasn't born in Armenia. Armenia remains a dream, a subject of stories, yet against all odds, a place," Bourdain says as the episode opens, setting the tone for the rest of the feature on the country.
Tankian speaks about his heritage, revealing that he was born in Beirut and grew up in Los Angeles, but both of his parents are of Armenian descent and his grandparents were forced to flee the country with the genocide. The singer also discusses his first visit to the country and feeling a "mystical connection" upon his time spent there.
The visit also includes a family dinner, a trip to the Yerevan Cascade memorial, a look at a youth program for musicians, the country's focus on education and more. Bourdain also travels to Gyumri, the site of one of the country's most powerful earthquakes, and the second largest city in the country, while Tankian takes him to Lake Sevan as well. Watch the full Parts Unknown episode above.
Tankian has long been involved with the movement to have the Armenian genocide recognized and recently offered his support to the peaceful protests going on in the country. The singer also recently shared a demo of a new song called "Electric Yerevan" that was inspired by what he saw from the protests that were occurring in 2015. Check out that song here.
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