February 17, 2007


We came across an interesting article in Today's Zaman that deals with the musical genre called "Anatolian Rock".

If focuses on the upcoming instrumental album of one of the pioneers of the genre, Cahit Berkay. Back in the early 1970's he and others started to turn to Anatolia for musical inspiration, fusing these traditional melodies with the sensibilities of 1960's rock.

Interestingly enough, a major force in this field was a popular singer named Cem Karaca, who's mother was an Armenian theater actress in Turkey. Cem Karaca, was ultimately forces to flee Turkey due to his leftist political leanings and lived in exile in West Germany until his return to Turkey in the early 1990's.

In the late 1960's and early 1970's there were many such attempts to fuse the traditional and rock genres , some of the better known being Pentangle and Fairport Convention in England, Planxty and Moving Hearts in Ireland, etc.

Then too we have the ground-breaking album "ZARTONG", the one and only LP by a group of young French-Armenians of the same name in the late 1970's. But don't go looking for the album. It was privately produced and the last time I saw a copy being sold on e-Bay it was going for quite abit of money. Luckily I still have a cassette that the band gave me. (Pokr Mher)


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