An influential British record label known as Young Turks announced Tuesday that it changed in its name to Young, given the association its previous name had with the perpetrators of the Armenian Genocide.
In a lengthy Instagram post, Young founder Caius Pawson explained that he was “unaware of the deeper history of term” back in 2005 when he founded the company and took the name from a Rod Steward song of the same name.
For years activists and organizations, especially the Armenian Youth Federation, has been protesting the Turkish-American media personality and Armenian Genocide denier Cenk Uygur, who runs the The Young Turks platform to change its name. Uygur has insisted that he recognizes the Genocide but has consistently refused to change the name of his brand, chasing to identify with genocidal murders instead.
Pawson, the founder of the newly-named Young record label, said in the Instagram post that “we were unaware of the deeper history of the term and, specifically, that the Young Turks were a group who carried out the Armenian Genocide from 1915 onwards.”
“Through ongoing conversations and messages that have developed our own knowledge around the subject, it’s become apparent that the name is a source of hurt and confusion for people. We loved the name for what it meant to us, but in retrospect should have listened more carefully to other voices and acted more quickly. We have always tried to affect positive change and knowing what we do now, it’s only right that we change our name,” said Pawson on the social media platform.
“April 24 is the day of commemoration of the 1915 Armenian Genocide. In memory of those who were killed and those who survived, we have made a donation to the @armenianinstitute, London, a cultural charity that explores contemporary Armenian diasporan life in all its global diversity through research and the arts,” explained Pawson.
Among the artists who have released music on the Young label include FKA twigs, The xx, Sampha, Kamasi Washington and Arlo Parks.