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Published: 2008/03/17

Body of War at SXSW

Thursday night Ben Harper, Rage Against the Machine guitarist Tom Morello, System of a Down vocalist Serj Tankian, Billy Bragg, Kimya Dawson,

Mason Jennings and rising California singer/songwriter Brett Dennen shared the stage at Austins Stubbs BBQ as part of the SXSW music conference. The strange bedfellows united to promote the new documentary Body of War, which tells the story of paralyzed Iraqi war veteran Tomas Young, who Harper and Eddie Vedder brought onstage at the close of Lollapalooza last August.

Harper played a mini-set consisting of Well, Well, Well and Amen, Omen at Stubbs, before bringing out Morello for a version of Gather Round the Stone. Morello then offered a short set, highlighted by an acoustic take on Rage Against the Machines Guerrilla Radio. Bragg, who reinterpreted a number of Woody Guthrie songs with Wilco as part of the Mermaid Avenue project, also collaborated with Morello and Mason Jennings on a politically charged version of Guthries This Land Is Your Land.
While in town, Harper also joined Tom Freund at his official showcase at the club Pangea. Harper, who produced Freunds new disc, played lap steel guitar throughout Freunds set, while Dennen joined in on vocals for a few songs. Body of War hits stores tomorrow.

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