Serj Tankian Revisits ‘Elect the Dead’ Artwork, Teenage Trade for New Jewelry Pendants
Though Serj Tankian has been busy with a pair of music scores arriving over the holidays, he's also found another venture that speaks to his history -- jewelry. The musician has offered up the Elect the Dead "All Seeing Eye" pendant in both silver and gold, as well as silver Elect the Dead "Dog Tag" pendants as well.
During our recent chat with Tankian about his film scores, the singer also opened up about his history in the jewelry business and how he learned quite a bit from his uncle, who put him to work at an early age prior to his music career taking off.
"Growing up I've worked with my uncle since I was like, 11-years-old. I would go after school and go to downtown -- he had a place downtown at the time -- and I would basically take a bus, go downtown and work like an intern and learn his business. It was a way of keeping me engaged and learning about real life, how to earn a living and all of that stuff," recalls Tankian. "Throughout the years I would work for him part time until I graduated university and then I went to work for him full time. It was at a time where I didn't know what I wanted to do in terms of a career and I was doing music, but it was at home and by myself before I even met the guys from System. So I started working for him for years full time, so I knew the jewelry business really well."
Tankian adds that he even developed a vertical industry software for the jewelry business and had his own company in the early '90s before the Internet really took off. "I did that for about four or five years. So the experience of working in his business led me to really know that business really well. I started the software company, funny enough, because I wanted to do music and I wanted to get out of working in a business where I could be my own boss, where I could have more time to do music, etc. Then I ended up selling that business because it was starting to take up too much of my time."
The singer says he's always looked up to his uncle, who has become one of the premiere jewelers with his Leon's of Beverly Hills business, and recently while visiting he noticed a number of beautiful pieces his uncle had and it inspired him to design his own pieces. "I've never given it a shot but I would love to design my own jewelry," says Tankian. "It would be fun to have my own piece based on something that I've done and the eye came to me. The eye from Elect the Dead, my first solo record that is part of the artwork. It's very much kind of like the Egyptian Rah eye, that kind of thing. I thought of a beautiful woman's pendant at first that is like, free-floating. Almost like a free-floating eye with the two sides of the eye the top and the bottom and the actual eye being stone. My uncle and I got a sketch pad, drew it out, talked about it and talked about dimensions. We did a few experiments and made molds until we were happy with the weight, the look, the size, shape and everything about it."
He continues, "We did another one which is a simpler one to do because it's been done many times before, but it's a silver dog tag of Elect the Dead. The artwork on one side and the eye on the other, unisex kind of thing. I'm like, 'Whoa, this is really cool.' I don’t know if people are going to like it but I hope so because I really like it. I think it's really great."
Serj Tankian Elect the Dead Pendants
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