I don't like Turkish music, or do I?

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I've never really liked most of the Turkish music I've heard, and have sold off or tried to sell off some of the CDs I have. I have at times liked the instrumental passages in Turkish music, but even so, my overall impression has not been favorable.

However, I am just now checking out a CD someone loaned me: "Gazel: Classical Sufi Music of the Ottoman Empire," and this is a different matter. The vocals here are much closer to the style of Qur'anic recitation, closer then to Arabic singing. This is by far the most appealing Turkish singing I've heard. Since I am enjoying the vocals, I can also more fully enjoy the instrumental background, particularly the gorgeous ney and kanun playing, performed by the Kudis Erguner Ensemble, which appears on one or two CDs I've put up for sale.

DeRayMi, Thursday, 5 September 2002 00:17 (nineteen years ago) link

I'm surprised you hadn't been more taken already with Erguner's playing. I really like the disc he recorded on CMP -- can't remember the name. Do you have/have you heard his Preludes to Ceremonies of Whirling Dervishes on the JVC label?

Phil (phil), Thursday, 5 September 2002 01:43 (nineteen years ago) link

It's generally the vocals that kill it for me. I had Vocal Masterpieces of Kemani Tatyos Efendi, on Traditional Crossroads, but sold it. I also have a CMP release on which Nesrin Siphai sings, which I like somewhat better, but will probably also sell, since I've had it long enough that I'm pretty sure it's not going to suddenly grow on me. I don't have the title you mention. I'd be interested in hearing anything all instrumental by them, or anything featuring the sort of vocals that are on this CD I listened to tonight (featuring Yusuf Bilgin, Fevzi Misir, and Aziz Bahriyeli), which is also on CMP, incidentally.

DeRayMi, Thursday, 5 September 2002 01:51 (nineteen years ago) link

Oh, do try some of Ilhan Mimaroglu's magnificent electronic / music concrete instead like 'Wings of the Delerious Demon' - one of the great electronic releases of the last century.

phil turnbull (philT), Thursday, 5 September 2002 03:52 (nineteen years ago) link

do try some of Ilhan Mimaroglu's magnificent electronic / music concrete instead

Why? I'm really not very interested in electronic music at the moment. I listened to lots and lots of it (along with other types of music) for around ten years, and it's not something I am drawn to at the moment, though I would like to revisit it eventualy. What else can you tell me about this piece?

DeRayMi, Thursday, 5 September 2002 11:02 (nineteen years ago) link

The Erguner Ensemble is pretty much top-drawer, at least among modern ensembles I've heard. Kudsi's brother Suleyman put out a disc of solo ney a few years back that's pretty nice as well.

That said, it sounds like you might want to investigate Turkish Rom or "gypsy" music. CMP put out a pretty nice disc of Turkish Rom stuff called Tzigane by the Erkose Ensemble--I think it might be out of print, but I still see it second-hand now and then. It's very much a studio recording, but it's a little less dolorous, a little more peppery than the more courtly Turkish repertoire. I like that Siphai disc too, but I like Tzigane more. (I should point out before I go any further that I am a total amateur going on bits and pieces of info and listening I've picked up during a trip to Turkey and on my own.)

Even better, the Traditional Crossroads label (same one that did those Udi Hrant and Udi Yorgo Bacanos sets a few years back) put out a great disc called Sulukule: Rom Music of Istanbul that is just plain hot. It's a reissue of an old cassette-tape release from the '70s, as I understand it, and it's basically party music--lots of speedy tempos, chanted female vocals (most often about love and/or getting drunk), and plenty of fiery violin and kanun interplay during the long instrumental breaks. The kanun player keeps doing this thing that surely must be the Turkish equivalent of the heavy-metal guitarist pick slide. Madness. And the whole thing is swaddled in that deep reverb that producers from the region so love, which only makes it sound more exciting somehow.

In fact, TC has put out lots of great Turkish discs. In addition to Sulukule and the archival stuff they're known for, they did a very nice solo kanun disc from Goksel Kartal and a recent disc of Rom music from nearby Thrace performed by Selim Sesler--also pretty lively, hard-hitting stuff, albeit better behaved than Sulukule.

Lee G, Thursday, 5 September 2002 11:34 (nineteen years ago) link

Sorry to sound so fussy, but I haven't heard much Rom music that I have really liked, and I'm pretty sure I've heard some of the Turkish variety. However, I probably haven't heard the specific recordings you list.

"Sulukule" in particular sounds interesting. I heard that solo kanun recording and found it a bit dry or something. I tend to prefer the Arab approach to kanun playing (not that I can define what that is), I think, though I did like the kanun on this "Gazel" CD. "Gazel" is actually very stately, and in some sense so are the vocals, but as I said, they are close to Qur'anic recitation, which I generally like.

Udi Hrant I enjoy, if I am in the right mood, but I prefer the way, say, the Egyptian Riad el Sounbatti handles the oud. (Or Mohammed el-Qassabji in the backgroound on the Oum Kalthoum song "Ana fe Intazarak"! The last 20 minutes they just go out. Not "out" compared to free jazz, but definitely out in some sense.

DeRayMi, Thursday, 5 September 2002 11:51 (nineteen years ago) link

Ghazals are grate! If you hear in person you should rear up from your seat like a madman and shower $$ upon the performers. Now why don't they do that in rawk?

Mary (Mary), Thursday, 5 September 2002 20:17 (nineteen years ago) link

(yes always claimed to be big on mimaroglu)

mark s (mark s), Thursday, 5 September 2002 20:23 (nineteen years ago) link

Who's mimaroglu mark?

Showering money: yes, I once made the same mistake I have seen others make in a certain middle eastern restaurant in Philadelphia: helpfully picking money up off the floor, when it's being left there for the belly dancer.

When I saw Syrian pop star (somewhat fallen out of favor, I think) George Wassouf perform in Atlantic City, some audience members showered him with money.

DeRayMi, Thursday, 5 September 2002 20:29 (nineteen years ago) link

he just got mentioned upthread, the electronic music guy: that's really all i know about him (so i said it)

mark s (mark s), Thursday, 5 September 2002 20:39 (nineteen years ago) link

How quickly I forgot. I thought it was some sort of singer of gazels or gazals. If Mimaroglu is a Turkish musique concrete composer name-dropped by Yes, then maybe I will look into him after all.

DeRayMi, Thursday, 5 September 2002 20:51 (nineteen years ago) link

three years pass...
The oud and ney installments of Kalan's Masters of Turkish Music look tempting to me:


Turk I. Turk, Wednesday, 12 October 2005 18:11 (sixteen years ago) link

Awesome, a ney player is called a neyzen.

N Z, Wednesday, 12 October 2005 18:14 (sixteen years ago) link

seven months pass...

Rockist_Scientist (RSLaRue), Sunday, 11 June 2006 01:24 (fifteen years ago) link

one year passes...

oh wow just found the Edip Akbayram reissue on Shadoks, this is great stuff. Anything else like it I should check out?

rizzx, Saturday, 3 May 2008 15:58 (thirteen years ago) link

there's another akbayram cd (edip akbayram & dostlar) - i know some of the songs crossover, but i think the performances are different.

and of course erkin koray, selda, fikret kizilok, 3 hur-el, bunalimlar, etc., are all recommended. all different, though, edip had a pretty distinct combination of miserableness and funk.

GOTT PUNCH II HAWKWINDZ, Sunday, 4 May 2008 09:25 (thirteen years ago) link

you cant beat Baris K's 2 Turkish Cosmic mixes.

find them on the intertubes.

Hamildan, Monday, 5 May 2008 08:31 (thirteen years ago) link

three months pass...
two months pass...

New Baris K mix, the 3rd and final part.


Mmmmmm thats good Turkish......

Hamildan, Monday, 24 November 2008 16:53 (twelve years ago) link


nikefanatic90: Sup (Z S), Monday, 24 November 2008 17:03 (twelve years ago) link

is that the same eurasia: part 3 that was on beats in space a few weeks ago?

psychgawsple, Monday, 24 November 2008 20:34 (twelve years ago) link

Yeah I think so, I didn't listen to the BiS mix, the Etrafta blog has some other mixes etc on it.

Yeah, Selda is the good stuff too.

Hamildan, Tuesday, 25 November 2008 12:58 (twelve years ago) link

one month passes...


"80s Baby" (Z S), Thursday, 8 January 2009 03:51 (twelve years ago) link

Srsly though, Electronic Turkuler, and specifically "Cemalim", is making the socks fly off of my feet.

"80s Baby" (Z S), Thursday, 8 January 2009 03:52 (twelve years ago) link

Whoa, there's a youtube video!!!

"80s Baby" (Z S), Thursday, 8 January 2009 03:53 (twelve years ago) link

There is sooooooo much Ottoman-era classical music, it's bonkers. And so much of it is so great.

ian, Thursday, 8 January 2009 05:34 (twelve years ago) link

six months pass...

This is the best mix I've heard in AGES:


I seem to have Baris K's mix I and now mix III - was there a mix II and how can I get it?

Also, to repeat - yes - SELDA - I thought Elvis Telecom and I were the only Selda freaks on this board.

I'm contemplating starting a course in Turkish at SOAS in order to be able to understand the lyrics, it's just so amazing and so passionate, I want to understand what she is saying, beyond looking up the occasional misheard lyric in the dictionary.

Your Mother Smells Of Elderflower (Masonic Boom), Saturday, 25 July 2009 08:28 (twelve years ago) link

I really recommend a record by Bulent Ortacgil called "Benimle Oynar misin". He's sometimes called the Turkish Nick Drake, and it's not far from being true. Beautiful melancholic pastoral pop.


J4mi3 H4rl3y (Snowballing), Saturday, 25 July 2009 08:44 (twelve years ago) link

No, not really feeling the Bulent Ortacgil track. I don't like sensitive singer-songwriter types in English, why would I like them in Turkish?

Cemalim up there ^^^^^^^ is great. I have some Erkin Koray, but don't have that track or that album, will have to dig around and try to find.

Your Mother Smells Of Elderflower (Masonic Boom), Saturday, 25 July 2009 08:50 (twelve years ago) link

the 2nd side of that album (elektronik turkuler) is pretty amazing, has cemalim and turku, which is an epic, dark thing. also highly recommend his 4th album "tutkusu," backs away from the orchestral stuff he tried on "2" and just kicks out the jams.

dim samosa... lost samosa (GOTT PUNCH II HAWKWINDZ), Saturday, 25 July 2009 14:20 (twelve years ago) link

Afacan Soundsystem playing that Turkish Psyche on Beats in Space.


my opinionation (Hamildan), Saturday, 25 July 2009 16:06 (twelve years ago) link

I have decided that it's all about Hele Hele Yar which makes me bounce about like a demented feret.

Your Mother Smells Of Elderflower (Masonic Boom), Monday, 27 July 2009 09:52 (twelve years ago) link

I have (or had) a Turkish brother-in-law, we used to all live together in a house-share.

But, long gone. So, can't help, bit of a shame...

Mark G, Monday, 27 July 2009 09:57 (twelve years ago) link

Then again, I wonder if perhaps the not understand is part of the appeal. When Erkin Koray chants "BIZIM DOSTLAR" over and over again, it sounds like it should be something profound and amazing and dripping with meaning.

Which would be kind of lost if he was actually reciting "children brush your teeth" or something. Not that I think that's what he's saying (or that what he is actually saying is *that* profound) but maybe part of the beauty would be lost.

Your Mother Smells Of Elderflower (Masonic Boom), Monday, 27 July 2009 10:06 (twelve years ago) link

His tastes, for the most part, were modern, naturally (i.e. Prince, The Times (as in the bunch from Purple Rain film, not Ed Ball), oh and one time bought a Cure album because he loved "Lullabye", only to find the rest was nothing like it..

Oh, and one strange CD of music that whirling dervishes would meditate to, just before going into a whirl. Each track about 20 mins long, plinkyplonky, slow, etc. Quite interesting..

Mark G, Monday, 27 July 2009 10:10 (twelve years ago) link

It makes me feel really stupid that I didn't know that 3 Hur-El was a pun.

Your Mother Smells Of Elderflower (Masonic Boom), Monday, 27 July 2009 10:56 (twelve years ago) link

I have this Turkish friend who's a big Anadolu pop fanatic, literally worshipping artists like Cem Karaca, Baris Manco and Koray. The most impressive thing is how deeply he feels about this music, how much it means for him in terms of cultural belonging.

Marco Damiani, Monday, 27 July 2009 13:21 (twelve years ago) link

is this baris k's mix II?

and what's the 3 hur-el pun?

jaxon, Monday, 27 July 2009 15:40 (twelve years ago) link

Right, I googled.

They are three brothers with the name Hurel. Omlettes on the u.

Mark G, Monday, 27 July 2009 15:42 (twelve years ago) link

In Turkish, hür = "free" & el = "people/tribe"

so it's like a pun on their surname. 3 Free People as well as 3 Hürel brothers.

Not much of a pun, I know, but, erm.

Not sure if that's mix I or II - the song titles look familiar, but that might be because I've been listening to so much of this stuff.

Your Mother Smells Of Elderflower (Masonic Boom), Monday, 27 July 2009 15:56 (twelve years ago) link

i've been listening to 3 hur-el for like ten years now, i had no idea. I LEARNED SOMETHING!

dim samosa... lost samosa (GOTT PUNCH II HAWKWINDZ), Monday, 27 July 2009 16:55 (twelve years ago) link

yay! So trying to learn Turkish has actually been good for something - apart from the haggling for elektrosazzes I am expecting to have to do in Istanbul.

Your Mother Smells Of Elderflower (Masonic Boom), Monday, 27 July 2009 16:57 (twelve years ago) link

one month passes...


He is so awesome words cannot express it.

Evren Kader (Masonic Boom), Thursday, 10 September 2009 10:55 (twelve years ago) link

Seconding Rocket Scientist's praise for Aynur Doğan (aka just Aynur) a few years back. I discovered her through the Crossing the Bridge documentary a few years ago. Technically Kurdish music, but by an Istanbul artist and her ensemble. The albums Keçe Kurdan (2004) and Nûpel (2005) are findable online.


Fraught with conscience. (Derelict), Thursday, 10 September 2009 15:39 (twelve years ago) link

On the offbeat side, I'd be remiss if I didn't mention Baba Zula, a self-described "Turkish psychebelly" band, produced by dubmeister Mad Professor. YMMV.


Fraught with conscience. (Derelict), Thursday, 10 September 2009 15:45 (twelve years ago) link

Ha ha, I actually have some Baba Zula on a compilation of contemporary Turkish dance music - a song called Zaniye Oyun Havasi (which I think is actually better than the clip there.)

Evren Kader (Masonic Boom), Thursday, 10 September 2009 16:04 (twelve years ago) link

Regrettable lad's magazine cover aside, I thought this widely available dance comp was pretty good (probably the best of this Petrol label series):


missing fingertip (Derelict), Thursday, 10 September 2009 16:53 (twelve years ago) link

Oh dear. This is one of the ones I got:


Been slowly trying to make my way through the back catalogue of the artists I liked. Thing is the one I liked best (Harem) went back and forth between amazing darjouka jams and frankly regrettable trance remixes with an annoying girl squeaking "watch me belly dance!!!" in between orgasm noises. Um, no.

Evren Kader (Masonic Boom), Thursday, 10 September 2009 17:03 (twelve years ago) link

I'm enjoying the Erkin Koray video posted upthread. I came back to check out all the stuff people have been posting here over the last year or however long it's been. I still don't really click with the more classical end of Turkish music, from what I've heard anyway, but that may be all the more reason to check out this other material where the turquianidad (that's bogus Spanish, incidentally, not bogus Turkish) gets twisted into new arabesques. Also, I think some of this Turkish stuff under discussion was minimal techno, which I'm suddenly curious about since my conversion to minimal techno (or rather, since I found out I liked the new Pantha du Prince anyway). More later. Downloading something or other obscure off a blog link from this thread as well.

_Rudipherous_, Thursday, 4 February 2010 13:45 (eleven years ago) link

I have no recollection of either listening to or posting the links for those Aynur Doğan mp3s (nor do I have any recollection of her name), but they are not bad. My favorite thing on this thread is probably that Erin Koray video way upthread. Some of the mixes people have linked too are just mixed (ahaha).

_Rudipherous_, Saturday, 6 February 2010 06:05 (eleven years ago) link

And I must have read about Turkish minimal techno in some comments Masonic Boom made elsewhere.

_Rudipherous_, Saturday, 6 February 2010 06:09 (eleven years ago) link

I thought I had mentioned Seyfettin Sucu, who I do like to some extent, on this thread. I only have one of his cassettes, bought without any clue as to who he was (aside from a Turkish singer), but there's a lot of music by him on youtube:


Oh, hey, there (in the video) is the cover for the cassette I have, I think: Bulbul Oter.

More. . .


_Rudipherous_, Saturday, 6 February 2010 06:33 (eleven years ago) link

That second one is very vocals-oriented, sorry. Not really my cup of tea. I generally like the ones that are heavy on electric bazouk/guitar.

_Rudipherous_, Saturday, 6 February 2010 06:58 (eleven years ago) link

I could swear I posted at least once on ILM about Seyfettin Sucu, but I can find nothing. Maybe it was a different board or a newsgroup.

_Rudipherous_, Saturday, 6 February 2010 07:02 (eleven years ago) link

Found it. I had two letters wrong in his first name.

_Rudipherous_, Saturday, 6 February 2010 07:04 (eleven years ago) link

Clicked on the second Sucu video you posted and I like both the cool sounding "bazouk/guitar" and the vocals. Vocals like this, like other middle-eastern ones I've heard, and those on Youssou NDour's Egypt, also remind me of certain Jewish cantors i've heard in synagogues. The ethnological similarity is interesting. I also want to say the vocals feel "bluesy" but that is kind of as wrong as saying certain Malian things sound bluesy when it is likely more the other way around.

curmudgeon, Saturday, 6 February 2010 15:22 (eleven years ago) link

There are definitely connecting threads there. I don't have the terminology for it, or the knowledge for it (for that matter), but I tend to think of middle eastern vocals on a spectrum. I have to admit that I tend to prefer what to me is the less harsh end of that spectrum. I would put a lot of the traditional Turkish vocal styles on one side, along with Syrian classical vocals, classical Iraqi vocals, and the vocal styles that seem to have been more popular much earlier in the 20th century in Egypt and maybe the Arabian peninsula, and maybe also cantorial vocals (though I'm not all that familiar with that sound); all of which are not so far removed at times from qawali to my ears. I tend to prefer the somewhat smoother sound that became popular in Egypt (with singers like Mohamed Abdel Wahab, Farid el Atrache, and later Abdel Halim Hafez) and the Gulf (a good contemporary example being Mohamed Abdo) at a later point. But I don't know enough to know whether that sound was there all along and the different sounds went in and out of style. I'm also not quite sure how to fit female singers into this. Oum Kalthoum, for instance, to me straddles the line between the two extremes I'm talking about here. (I'm attempting to do cross-cultural comparisons here without being an expert in even one of these national cultures. So I admit this may be mostly bullshit.)

Diamanda Galas always has intriguing things to say about the connections you were bringing up:

DIAMANDA: Interestingly enough, since 9/11, a lot of people coming from the Middle East are saying there would be no blues if there were no muezzin singing, and I said, “Well, you know, the reason I won’t argue with that is that music comes from Byzantium, from the mixture of all these cultures in the Middle East, including Anatolia, Turkey, Greece.” Where did the music of Islam come from? Well, it came from the Arabs, originally. Who did the Arabs get it from? The Arabs took it from the Greeks. They all changed music together in that melting pot of the Black Sea and Egypt and Turkey; in all those Arab countries, there was this exchange of music. So you have this bending of the tones, and you don’t just have a five-note scale—what is that? All these taqsims and the makams, all these scales.

And that is what I hear when I listen to most interesting blues music, which I feel is from Somalia and Ethiopia right now, because they have to get up there and be really good qaraami singers—the improvised music of that whole part of the world—and then they have to be pop singers and blues singers, too. So they get up and they start the solo with the qaraami, then they go into the song, and they go back into the qaraami. The qaraami is sung by church singers also. But these are real singers—I hear it and I think about where the blues is, what the Americans have done to it since then, which is just: repeat.

ARTHUR: Though they seem to specialize in it, that overly reverent regard for musical genres’ classic forms—stylizing them till they petrify hard enough to put them up on museum shelves—is not an exclusively American problem.

DIAMANDA: But when people try to get into this ethnic purity thing, like with Wynton Marsalis or Stanley Crouch, it’s the same thing that people do when they think about Armenian music—“Well, this scale or sound here is probably Turkish.” And I say, “How do you know if it’s Turkish or not?”

ARTHUR: A lot of musical idioms and techniques do get called Turkish; Western music critics use “Turkish music” as a big umbrella term.

DIAMANDA: That’s what Turkish imperialism is. They are a very rich country—in between what they get from America and what they get from Israel, they do real good. They can afford to have plundered the Assyrians, the Kurdish, the Greeks, the Armenians and many Arabic cultures and call it Turkish. They have borrowed from everyone, and other cultures as well have taken from them. But there is no such thing as a united Turkish music. That is just a bunch of shit.

This whole thing about insults to Turkish people, in Turkey they put people in jail for it. If you say you’re Assyrian, that means you’re insulting Turkish people; if you speak Greek, that’s an insult to Turkishness. And still, those two cultures melted into music that is now called Turkish music. Anatolia was a huge area that was inhabited by many cultures, and now they call it Turkey. And they say it’s “The Land of the Turks”—only because they killed everybody else off that lived there before.

ARTHUR: Of course, modern Greek musicians frequently refuse to sing certain songs because they think the song’s roots are in Islam. But in reality, they don’t know where that song came from.

DIAMANDA: There are a lot of people who refuse to perform certain music because they think they’re performing music by the enemy tribe. And they’re not. It’s part of their own music. The Turks employed Greeks, Armenians, Assyrians and Jews to compose music for the sultans. Then they called it “Turkish music.”


_Rudipherous_, Sunday, 7 February 2010 01:55 (eleven years ago) link


lol @ 'folc'

Snop Snitchin, Sunday, 7 February 2010 02:30 (eleven years ago) link


curmudgeon, Sunday, 7 February 2010 02:35 (eleven years ago) link

Incidentally, curmudgeon, do you ever check out the Greek music thread? I think you would like some of what I have been posting to that.

_Rudipherous_, Sunday, 7 February 2010 03:06 (eleven years ago) link

Once in awhile but not in ages.

curmudgeon, Monday, 8 February 2010 04:21 (eleven years ago) link

A lot of that Sakir Oner Gunhan album linked to upthread is good, although I still prefer the instrumental aspect over the vocal aspect. (Not that he isn't a strong vocalist--he is! But Turkish vocals tend to put me off a little. Maybe it's even Turkish itself.)

_Rudipherous_, Saturday, 13 February 2010 01:07 (eleven years ago) link

And I must have read about Turkish minimal techno in some comments Masonic Boom made elsewhere.

Onur Özer is the bloke I was talking about.


I never did get to go to Istanbul last year. :-(

Masonic Boom, Friday, 19 February 2010 11:53 (eleven years ago) link

Thanks. I like the colors there, but the rhythms are too close to regular "dance music" type stuff for me, on first listen anyway.

_Rudipherous_, Friday, 19 February 2010 13:38 (eleven years ago) link

Well, it is Minimal Techno after all! Just done by a Turkish person. I couldn't find his better e.p. on YouTube, unfortunately (Red Cabaret) but it is still Techno more than Turkish.

For the Middle Eastern music with dance elements (rather than techno with Turkish elements) I still prefer Harem and Natasha Atlas and stuff like that. I definitely mentioned Harem above, and Atlas I think has her own thread elsewhere.

Of the Finders Keepers stuff, it's funny, I loved the Ersen stuff but wasn't that keen on Mustafa Ozkent. I think the latter really didn't live up to the promise of its cover.

Masonic Boom, Friday, 19 February 2010 13:44 (eleven years ago) link

p.s. I think half of my love of Turkish music is that I love the sound and feel of the language so much.

Masonic Boom, Friday, 19 February 2010 13:45 (eleven years ago) link

Well, it is Minimal Techno after all!

Well, yeah, I was just hoping that somehow the Turkish side of it would blunt the techno side a little, and since getting into Black Noise I now realize that minimal techno can work for me sometimes, unless that album is just a complete anomaly. (I think one reason Black Noise works for me is that there are a lot of other rhythmic things going on besides the sort of foundational techno rhythms.)

_Rudipherous_, Saturday, 20 February 2010 00:57 (eleven years ago) link

one year passes...

This rocks the funky beats:


I think I came across this singer while I was searching for Samira Toufic youtubes, which makes sense because she seems like a Turkish equivalent. I haven't listened to enough Turkish music to feel sure about where she falls in terms of relative virtuosity though. But anyway, a good discovery.

_Rudipherous_, Sunday, 20 February 2011 02:08 (ten years ago) link

two years pass...

Liking this Turkish soundtrack (I think it's a soundtrack but now I don't see whatever I saw that gave me that idea) more than I'd expect:


European chamber music, some Turkish instruments, low-key singing, dashes of electronics.

_Rudipherous_, Wednesday, 12 June 2013 02:13 (eight years ago) link

Sorry, for the Spotifyless, that is Taner Okyol's album Birds of Passage.

_Rudipherous_, Wednesday, 12 June 2013 02:15 (eight years ago) link

Akyol not Okyol. Let's not get Omme Kalsomme about it.

_Rudipherous_, Wednesday, 12 June 2013 02:16 (eight years ago) link

I might actually like Traveller/Yolcu more, but I've been in the music for instrumental music lately, which might explain it. The bazouk (I guess it's bazouk, or something very close) is in the spotlight on this one.

_Rudipherous_, Wednesday, 12 June 2013 04:00 (eight years ago) link

Rhythm track getting a bit too Bill Laswell now, unfortunately.

_Rudipherous_, Wednesday, 12 June 2013 04:01 (eight years ago) link

Lame thread title, imo.

_Rudipherous_, Wednesday, 12 June 2013 12:39 (eight years ago) link

every time you update this thread i think about posting a list of the turkish albums + rereleases i've been digging this year but i think i've mentioned them all on the world thread already.

Mordy , Wednesday, 12 June 2013 15:31 (eight years ago) link

Rachel Devitt did a playlist on Rhapsody last week; even if you can't listen to it, you can see what she included:



xhuxk, Wednesday, 12 June 2013 16:44 (eight years ago) link

One of my all-time favourite songs, Turkish or otherwise: Sezen Aksu's "Kavaklar".


breastcrawl, Wednesday, 12 June 2013 20:27 (eight years ago) link


cool album cover too. on spotify:

Mordy , Sunday, 16 June 2013 22:49 (eight years ago) link

one year passes...

It's the off-brand Türkvizyon Song Contest tonight. Various Turkic-language-speaking countries / regions, from Gagauzia to Kabardino-Balkaria, will be fighting it out.


Not sure if it's being streamed internationally but might be fun.

Wristy Hurlington (ShariVari), Wednesday, 19 November 2014 15:51 (six years ago) link


disconnected externalized and unrecognizable signifying structure (nakhchivan), Wednesday, 19 November 2014 16:16 (six years ago) link

seven months pass...


I probably listen to less Turkish pop than i should given that the only places remotely near to me that sell CDs stock nothing else, but i've been playing this a lot.

who epitomises beta better than (ShariVari), Saturday, 4 July 2015 20:38 (six years ago) link

Speaking of "Bangir"s, this one is a real jam:


Ayse Hatun Önal ft. Onurr - Güm Güm

breastcrawl, Monday, 6 July 2015 00:41 (six years ago) link

two years pass...

I'm enjoying that book Anadolu Psych by Daniel Spicer. The expansion on a Wire primer he wrote a few years ago. Apparently he familiarised himself with the music to write the article and has immersed himself i it much farther to write this.
Could do with something similar on African psych stuff.
POssibly some other areas music of similar era too.

Stevolende, Tuesday, 12 June 2018 11:18 (three years ago) link

Does Sami Baha's Turkish trap music that's fresh out on Planet µ count? I'm digging that a lot.

octobeard, Tuesday, 12 June 2018 20:44 (three years ago) link

two months pass...

Şome Türkpop traçks İ’ve been diğğing thıs year:

Hande Yener • Beni Sev: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pqU29nHc-U0

Edis ft. Emina • Güzelliğine: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JB7kxLltNyk

İdo Tatlıses • Sen: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rv3mZNzZ6PI

Aleyna Tilki ft. Emrah Karaduman • Yalnız Çiçek: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gi80-tmEduI

breastcrawl, Monday, 13 August 2018 21:01 (three years ago) link

hypnotic oriental psychedelia

Ich bin kein Berliner (alex in mainhattan), Tuesday, 14 August 2018 09:44 (three years ago) link

Could do with somebody picking up a few more Anadolu Psych titles for reissue. Seems like a few of the ones reissued a few years back have gone OOP again.
BUt I picked up a bunch of stuff in the wake of reading that Daniel Spicer book. Also find loads of it's up on Spotify.

Interesting to see that Stewart Lee's making a deal about picking up Turkish funk in his latest show. THough I wouldn't think that Bunalim were too metal. Great lp that.

Stevolende, Tuesday, 14 August 2018 10:24 (three years ago) link

eight months pass...

I need to find out more about the recordings on here, specifically recording dates (as I don't think all are from 1925)


Can anyone think of anyone I can at least ask? Have tried to contact the record company, but have had no reply.

mfktz (Camaraderie at Arms Length), Thursday, 9 May 2019 19:50 (two years ago) link

It’s quite possible you know all this already, however, on the outside chance that you don’t:

Going by Discogs, it looks like the Istanbul-based Kalan Müzik label obtained a license to release this album in Turkey the next year (1995).

Over the past 25+ years, this label has acquired quite a reputation for curating and releasing all kinds of early and mid-20th century music from Turkey. The cd’s of theirs that I have (late 90s/early 00s releases) all came with quite lavish hardcover booklets, although unfortunately the information provided on recording and release dates is scattershot at best.

Still, I’d say it’s definitely worth a shot getting in touch with them. As it says on their website:
“Kalan Music has, with the assistance of expert musicologists, compiled and issued albums of unusual and ethnically varied works that are considered important to Turkish music history. As well as being appreciated by classical Turkish music lovers, academics have found these records invaluable for use as sources in international studies of ethnomusicology.”

breastcrawl, Friday, 10 May 2019 22:22 (two years ago) link

Furthermore, many of the tracks on that Istanbul 1925 album can also be found on other compilations (in some cases with slightly differing spellings/transliterations for artist names and/or song titles), giving you perhaps another inroad.

These two for example are both on FM Records, a Greek label:

Music of the Balkans, Vol. 2: Bulgaria, Turkey 1930-1945: Spotify link

Balkan Medicine: The Early Recordings: Spotify link

breastcrawl, Friday, 10 May 2019 22:27 (two years ago) link

Thanks breastcrawl, sorry I missed your reply earlier - that's really helpful.

mfktz (Camaraderie at Arms Length), Monday, 13 May 2019 11:56 (two years ago) link

one year passes...

Great collab, instant number one in Turkey. Why can I hear Britney do this?

Gülşen & Edis • Nirvana

No mean feat. DaBaby (breastcrawl), Friday, 28 August 2020 22:29 (one year ago) link

They have that dance-pop formula down

curmudgeon, Sunday, 30 August 2020 14:15 (one year ago) link

seven months pass...

Edis is back, singing about seagulls:

Edis • Martılar

Blick, Bils & Blinky • Let's Skip The Shaker Intros (breastcrawl), Saturday, 3 April 2021 16:19 (six months ago) link

six months pass...

I thought I had mentioned Seyfettin Sucu, who I do like to some extent, on this thread. I only have one of his cassettes, bought without any clue as to who he was (aside from a Turkish singer), but there's a lot of music by him on youtube:
Oh, hey, there (in the video) is the cover for the cassette I have, I think: Bulbul Oter.
More. . .
― _Rudipherous_, Saturday, 6 February 2010 06:33 (eleven years ago)

Incredibly important in the east, alongside Nuri sesigüzel, celal güzelses etc. All the folk pop sensations like Tatlises of the 70s-80s were cribbing tips off them. That region is just as much Kurdish though, so it escapes the critical gaze of most western commentators — it's all very traditional and doesn't have the gazino glamour of istanbul belly dance music. Another thing is sucu's stuff was recorded pretty badly - turkish production only really started to improve in the mid 70s and even then it was restricted to more anadolu pop and turkish classical sensations, not so much folk music. Although that bad quality adds to the charm, of course.

RobbiePires, Thursday, 14 October 2021 02:26 (one week ago) link

Interesting to see that Stewart Lee's making a deal about picking up Turkish funk in his latest show. THough I wouldn't think that Bunalim were too metal. Great lp that.
― Stevolende, Tuesday, 14 August 2018 11:24 (three years ago)

No, Binali Selman is closer to metal in terms of sheer noise, although not in terms of electrification and amplification. Very close to moroccan trance music of course. Very hard pounding davul on some of his stuff.

RobbiePires, Thursday, 14 October 2021 02:29 (one week ago) link

A lot of that Sakir Oner Gunhan album linked to upthread is good, although I still prefer the instrumental aspect over the vocal aspect. (Not that he isn't a strong vocalist--he is! But Turkish vocals tend to put me off a little. Maybe it's even Turkish itself.)
― _Rudipherous_, Saturday, 13 February 2010 01:07 (eleven years ago)

lol thats racist m8.

RobbiePires, Thursday, 14 October 2021 02:34 (one week ago) link

Onur Özer is the bloke I was talking about.
I never did get to go to Istanbul last year. :-(
― Masonic Boom, Friday, 19 February 2010 11:53 (eleven years ago)

There are quite a few. Jammin Unit and Kahn/Gizz TV from the 90s still did it the best. That Murat guy in the states. This new guy Tolga baklavacioglu isn't too shabby either if you like more abstract gear. Lot.te on the Bunker New York. Gantz if you like dubstep with old arabesk samples. Murat Tepeli for house. merve öngen (howl) is a good weirdo/industrial/hardcore dj from istanbul. I heard Pixi in Istanbul is a good club for jungle, dubstep, dnb, that kind of thing but as I don't go to that side of Turkey and don't go clubbing anymore I couldn't say.

Berlin clubbing is still a stupid racist and islamophobic affair though which probably explains why something like the hardcore continuum never developed there, despite germany having a good 3 m Turks in the 90s. Reynolds insight about germans using techno to reconnect to an disavowed patriotism is spot on, I think.

RobbiePires, Thursday, 14 October 2021 02:55 (one week ago) link

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