Students gathered at the Knight Spot in support of Amnesty International on Friday April 24. Jamnesty 2015 began at 9 p.m. and ran late—continuing until 1 a.m. Hosted by Amnesty International at Geneseo and Geneseo Late Knight, the event sought to raise awareness of global human rights violations by bringing students together with live music, poetry and free food. As the bands and poets took the stage, members of Amnesty tabled presentations regarding current human rights issues.
An unnamed quintet started the night off with a pop-rock blend. Featuring a guitarist, bassist and vocalists from the University at Buffalo and Matt Lawniczak ’14 on drums, the group played through a few original songs as well as a cover of Lorde’s hit “Royals.” It took a throwback tune—Third Eye Blind’s “Semi-Charmed Life”—to get attendees up and dancing.
Between sets, members of Geneseo Poet’s Society read and recited slam poems, inspiring a few shouts and snaps from onlookers.
Following performances from three poets, local blues-rockers Exile on Court Street took the stage. Succeeding a strong set that showcased its skill, the band made way for more poets to perform.
The final group of the night—reigning Battle of the Bands champions Soft Cough—closed the event in style as they took the stage.
Though the bands took center stage, the focus of the night was on the various tables arranged around the Knight Spot’s back wall. Geneseo Environmental Organization tabled an exhibition that explained the consequences of tropical environmental degradation. Meanwhile, Alpha Delta Epsilon tabled for the “Bring Back Our Girls” campaign—a movement working toward taking action against Boko Haram for the abduction of over 270 schoolgirls in Nigeria in April 2014.
Emcee junior Paige Kelschenbach considered the event to be a big success for Amnesty International at Geneseo. “I am extremely pleased with the way the event turned out. It’s been a long time in the making,” she said. “We filled the place, had a lot of participation in the activities we set up and a good crowd for the bands.”
Kelschenbach also pointed to the hard work Amnesty Geneseo’s treasurer sophomore Taylor Vishion contributed in making the event run smoothly.
Following the success of Jamnesty 2015, Kelschenbach said that she looks forward to continuing the event in the future.
“I’m definitely excited to keep having this event and improving it every year,” she said.