Published Nov 11, 2013In what is surely one of the most horrifying stories of musical rivalries we've ever heard, two members Brooklyn-based band the Yellow Dogs were killed in a shooting spree early this morning (November 11), with a third musician also killed in the attack and a fourth person injured.
The shooter reportedly entered the East Williamsburg building where the band members lived and came armed with a rifle, fatally shooting guitarist Soroush Farazmand and drummer Arash Farazmand, as well as another musician. He also shot a man named Sasan Sadeghpourosko, who survived and is apparently in stable condition. The shooter then took his own life.
UPDATE: The initial version of this story indicated the shooter was a former member of the Yellow Dogs, but it turns out that the early reports that circulated were inaccurate. The killer wasn't in the Yellow Dogs, and various sources report that he was a member of another Iranian group called the Free Keys. Furthermore, only two of the deceased victims were in the Yellow Dogs.
Here is a statement from the Yellow Dogs' manager Ali Salehezadeh [via Pitchfork]:
The shooter was not a former member of the band the Yellow Dogs, he was in another band from Iran and the two groups were acquaintances in the past. A personal conflict between the guys resulted in the dissolution of their relationship in 2012. The shooting resulted in the death of two of the members of the Yellow Dogs, Sourosh Farazmand (guitarist) and Arash Farazmand (drummer), along with a friend of theirs, fellow musician and author Ali Eskandarian. The shooter died from a self inflicted bullet wound on site.
The New York Times reports that the Yellow Dogs formed in 2006 in Tehran, Iran, operating in secret before eventually seeking asylum in the U.S. They appeared in the award-winning 2009 film No One Knows About Persian Cats, about Iran's underground music scene.
Watch a mini-documentary about the band below. It tells the story of how they formed in Iran and eventually pursued their musical dream in America. They released the EP Upper Class Complexity last year.
Following the shooting, in a blog post, eMusic editor-in-chief J. Edward Keyes wrote, "Everything about Yellow Dogs screamed hope. When I first met Koory, Looloosh and Obaash they radiated joy and excitement. They were so happy, so excited by the opportunity to make music, so thrilled to be living not only in America, but in New York. I remember the excitement in their voices when they talked about playing shows at Brooklyn venues like Glasslands, the sly glint in their eyes when they talked about American girls. They seemed eternally optimistic, driven by belief in their music and powered by the opportunities living in Brooklyn gave them."