Rage, Indigo Girls May Show At Rally For Mumia Abu-Jamal

Organizers of the May 7 event in New York say both bands have pledged their support.

Rock-rappers Rage Against the Machine and folk-rockers the Indigo Girls are lending their support to a May 7 rally in New York for death-row inmate Mumia Abu-Jamal and may appear at the event, according to organizers.

The event, A Day For Mumia, is scheduled to take place in the Theater at Madison Square Garden. Rage and the Indigo Girls, who have both publicly supported Abu-Jamal in the past, are "lending their name to the event to help us get others," organizer Monica Moorehead said.

Both acts have other commitments May 7 but are attempting to alter their schedules so they can participate in the rally, Moorehead said.

A spokesperson for Epic Records was unable to confirm the bands' endorsement of the event but said that it wouldn't be surprising, given both groups' history of support for Abu-Jamal.

Abu-Jamal, a journalist, has been on death row in Waynesburg, Pa., since he was convicted of the Dec. 9, 1981, murder of Philadelphia police Officer Daniel Faulkner. Abu-Jamal has proclaimed his innocence all along, and his supporters claim he was set up because of his work as a political commentator and his involvement with the Black Panther Party, a black-activist organization.

Abu-Jamal supporters say Faulkner's real killer escaped on the night of the shooting and that evidence that would have exonerated Abu-Jamal was withheld during his trial.

Rage, who played a controversial benefit concert for Abu-Jamal in New Jersey last year, mention the case on their single "Guerilla Radio" (RealAudio excerpt), from their latest album, The Battle of Los Angeles (1999).