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'I Save Babylon' a benefit concert

The Warfield

Saturday, July 17, 2010 at 8:00 PM - Sunday, July 18, 2010 at 12:00 AM (PDT)

San Francisco, CA

Ticket Information

Ticket Type Sales End Price Fee Quantity
General Admission Ended $25.00 $4.87
VIP Ended $100.00 $8.99
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Event Details


The 'I Save Babylon' benefit concert featuring Bay Area world music bands will provide western instruments to community and youth centers in Iraq to help bridge the gap between cultures through music. Some of the Iraqi children have never touched a musical instrument due to poverty, the area in which they live, and the war.  We hope to bring inspiration to the children of Iraq so they can envision a brighter future for themselves and their community through the unity of music.  

Proceeds from this concert will go towards purchasing and shipping both western and eastern instruments to predetermined community centers selected by the Levantine Center located in Los Angeles, CA.  For more information about their mission you can visit their website at

This will be an unforgettable evening you will not want to miss! 

MC Rai

MC Rai was born in the southern Tunisian city of Gabes. As a youth he was immersed in the folk music traditions of chabi, or mizoued, as it is known in Tunisia. At the age of eight he was performing live on the local radio station. In 1995, he began to turn his attention from chabi to rai music, and realized that he could develop a style of rai distinct from that emanating from Algeria, and infuse it with the traits of his Tunisian music.

While many of his contemporaries relocated to France to garner an international audience, MC Rai chose instead to move to San Francisco in 2000. He has performed with well-known rai musician Khaled, and appeared on stage with artists such as Bonnie Raitt and Joan Baez. MC RAI appears in the soundtrack to the movie Rendition and released his album Raivolution in 2006 on Embarka Records. Currently based in Los Angeles, MC Rai is in the studio working on his latest work 'De Gabés a Los Angeles' to be released in the summer of 2010.

"This SF-by-way-of-Tunisia album stands as one of the most mind-blowing local releases...taking the traditional music of North Africa and affixing it to a contemporary template which fused dub, electronica, hip-hop, and dancehall into one trance-inducing package." - East Bay Express


Cheb I Sabbah

Cheb i Sabbah was born in Algeria of Berber (Amazigh) descent and moved to Paris as a teenager and became a DJ by chance. By the late 1980s, residing in San Francisco, he was internationally pushing boundaries on the dance floor, seeking ways to infuse Asian, Arabic and African sounds into the mix. Then as the “world music” movement unfolded, Cheb i Sabbah took the inspired step of recording traditional and classical musicians from India, Pakistan and Africa, effectively transforming those compositions into sonic landscapes, thus creating a new style of electronic music “composed” by a DJ.

With seven landmark recordings on the Six Degrees Records label, Sabbah remains a DJ at heart, but he is also something more.

“As a DJ you have ears,” says Sabbah, “this is my instrument, you know what you want to hear on the dance floor or in producing music.”

An innovator in one of the most contemporary musical realms, he is clearly committed to creating new forms.

“But at the same time,” says Sabbah, “the most important focus for me is to keep the musical tradition alive. For example, folk, trance and healing musicians are struggling to make a living and teach the young generations. Once those musicians go, it's over, then what?”

As an “Outernational” DJ to defender of ancient traditions, Sabbah is a true musical iconoclast and visionary in the electronica scene.

From the crowded confines of nightclubs to major festivals, Cheb i Sabbah enjoys a worldwide reputation as a magician of the dance floor. On stage he often spins accompanied by live musicians, dancers and massive projected visuals, interwoven and juxtaposed as the spirit moves him. 



As a child growing up in a small village in Kenya, Sila remembers tuning in to a shortwave radio for the latest pop offerings from the West. By way of a faint, crackling radio signal, Sila first became acquainted with the guttural howls and shrieks of the Minister of Funk - James Brown.

“One of the first James Brown songs I remember hearing on shortwave radio was ‘I Feel Good.’ Growing up very poor in my village and having a song like that play on the radio was very inspiring,” Sila, 36, says.

His exposure to James Brown, along with such artists as the Beatles, Jimi Hendrix and Bob Marley, inspired Sila to pursue music, which he says was far from a well-respected profession in Africa.

Despite his career choice, his parents supported his decision and sold cows and goats to raise money for his send-off to the U.S.

Sila’s pursuit of musical stardom was met with the heartbreak of rejection and he eventually found himself lost, an imposter of sorts, singing pedestrian pop tunes while trying to mask a heavy Kenyan accent.

It wasn’t until he stumbled upon a sold-out show by African artist Baaba Maal at the Fillmore that he realized he needed to change course.

“This was the first African artist I saw in concert singing in his own language. He was so full of life. This was the most touching experience for me and I was almost in tears. I had really forgotten who I was,” he says.

Embracing his African roots and his love of funk, Sila channeled James Brown for inspiration and six years later, with the help of his renowned cast of bandmates, he’s achieved success without having to compromise his heritage (he sings in both Swahili and English) or his musical tastes.

“James Brown has always been someone who’s influenced me quite a bit. From his perseverance to his political life and his very poor background, it’s all been an inspiration to me. … His determination and the fact that he never gave up — I see that in me,” Sila says.“When I came here I never imagined I would sell out venues and entertain people in a way that James Brown entertained me. Believe me, I’m not saying I’m the next James Brown, but I do feel he’s in the soul of music.”


MJ GREENMTN (hamsa lila)

MJ GREENMOUNTAIN's music carries Reggae, N. & W. African, Brazilian and Asian flavors woven with trance rhythms and healing vibrations, while captivating vocals shine through pulsing polyrhythms. Both organic and electronic, he makes use of looping and dub elements into an otherwise sacred, rootsy mix. MJ is a lead vocalist and founding member of the widely acclaimed and pioneering world fusion band HAMSA LILA, & has also shared the stage with Ozomatli, Azam Ali, Michael Franti, Hassan Hakmoun, Jai Uttal, & Babatunde Olatunji.





DJ Pheeko dubfunk

Originally from Oran el Bahia in Algeria. Pheeko Dubfunk has been residing in San Francisco since 2002, he has been dishing out the best funky electro and tribal house tracks from Miami to SF as well as taking his music with him internationally. It was the works of Aretha Franklin, Delegation, and Alexander O'Neal that filled the ears a budding DJ with funk, reggae and R&B.  At his first US home in West Palm Beach and Miami, Pheeko was further exposed to house music and became a resident DJ at Club Bliss. He also graced the decks at Florida's hottest destination in South Beach Miami. After moving to San Francisco, Pheeko further had the chance to showcase his trademark silky smooth, dub filled funky house. He quickly acquired coveted residencies at clubs like Ruby Skye, Vessel, 1015, DNA Lounge and Harlot. The increasing recognition and acclaim of Pheeko’s talent by the industry and house lovers alike, lead to the success of his track “Closer to Me” with Hideo Kobayashi and “Sahara”, which had the honor of gracing the late night mixed cd of the well-renowned group Groove Junkies.  “Closer to Me” made it to the top 10 download on beatport in 2006 and was chosen as one of the top secret weapons at the Winter Music Conference in Miami by Swank Recordings.


Kristina Nekyia

Erupting from the molten core of California’s arts inferno, Kristina Nekyia burns bright across the star-studded skies of stage and screen. Showgrrrl, belly dancer, circus contortion dancer, burlesque queen, pin up nymph, actress, fire eater, director, and writer, she is a Renaissance Femme in the technicolor world of show. Kristina was the 2010 First Runner-Up for the title of Queen of Burlesque at the Burlesque Hall of Fame competition in Las Vegas, and has won awards for innovation and fusion in burlesque and belly dance. She trained with the Mongolian Circus in Ulaanbaatar and develop the first ever belly dance contortion fire duet with world-famous contortionist Serchmaa Byamba. Her eclectic career has enabled her to work, on stage and on screen, with major talents including George Clinton, Margaret Cho, David Arquette, Rachid Taha, Peaches, and DJ Shadow.














Have questions about 'I Save Babylon' a benefit concert ? Contact The Warfield

When & Where

The Warfield
982 Market Street
San Francisco, CA 94102

Saturday, July 17, 2010 at 8:00 PM - Sunday, July 18, 2010 at 12:00 AM (PDT)

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