It’s not easy to write about Turkey and its culture without falling into cliches and stereotypes. So let’s get going: the crossroads between East and West, the hinge between Europe and Asia, the bridge between the Occident and Orient, the heritage of the Byzantines and Constantinople—yeah, this is Turkey exactly and especially Ûstanbul, the city between minarets and skyscrapers, its silhouettes made by the domes of mosques, synagogues, tops of churches and, last but not least, from its increasing shanty towns which unify all of the contradictions and diversities which Turkey has to offer.
Although the music scene in Turkey has dramatically changed in the last few years, just at the beginning of the 90’s young pop singers like Tarkan brought a breath of fresh air to the scene with an easy-listening, accessible pop music which reflects a certain young, urban and western way of living.
Especially in Germany, Turkish music is thought to be oldfashioned, an image from folklore and the second-class “Gastarbeiter” culture. Only a few people in Germany have contributed in the last few years as much as DJ Ipek Ipekçioglu
to breaking down the frozen notions and prejudices of how people see Turkish music. As a star of the monthly “Gayhane” nightclub at SO36, an institution of the night life of the migrant district of Berlin-Kreuzberg, she really helped to improve these faulty notions by smashing unusual sounds into the ears of migrants and Germans. If she now wants to offer a contemporary overview of moods, developments and sounds of the Turkish underground, you could not have a better guide. Thus: happy travels!
Daniel Bax (SPEX Magazine)