Monday, November 21, 2022
HomeTaoismTurkish jazz in London | Stephen Jones: a blog

Turkish jazz in London | Stephen Jones: a blog


In the London Jazz Festival, to comply with the radiant gig by Andrea Motis I sallied forth to swinging Exmouth Market to pattern a mini-festival of Turkish jazz curated by Turquazz in celebration of the twentieth anniversary of Nardis jazz membership in Istanbul. A “pop-up venue” * in the identical nice corridor that final yr hosted Veronica Doubleday’s entrancing live performance to launch the re-creation of Three girls of Herat, amongst a collection of gigs was Female voices of Turkey, in addition to an intriguing discuss on Thomas the “Black Russian” and Maksim tavern.

I relished the Anatolian fusion ensemble, led by Ozan Baysal on bağlama plucked lute. Rather as the one phrase that makes any sense in the “Hengshan Daoist Music Troupe” is “Daoist”, I wasn’t hung up on the Anatolian connection or the fusion, however the ensemble was exhilarating.

My ears having turn out to be attuned to the bağlama by its use to accompany the nefes hymns of Alevi ritual (click on right here, and right here), I admired the creativity of Ozan Baysal (YouTube; and e.g. this intro), enjoying with Tolga Zafer Özdemir on keys and synth, Bora Bekiroğlu on electrical bass, and Burak Ersöz on drums, all presently primarily based in London.

Ozal gig

While Ozan stays steeped in the standard model, * the double-necked bağlama opens up new prospects for him in a rock-based vibe, as he explores the şelpe model with a number of left- and right-hand methods. Being eager on free-tempo preludes, I appreciated his high-quality taksim intros, unfolding into lengthy numbers in exhilarating dialogue with Tolga Zafer’s funky keys and synth. The band clearly loves enjoying collectively, and I’m All Agog (a full gog, or maybe ğöğ—cf. kösk) to listen to extra from them.

* * *

* In extra conventional mode, right here’s Ozan Baysal at SOAS earlier this yr with the totally different lineup of Anatolian Groove, together with the Kurdish/Alevi singer Suna Alan, and Melisa Yıldırım on kamancha fiddle (web site, YouTube):

For my belated schooling in Turkish tradition, see beneath West/Central Asia: a roundup. And click on right here for a roundup of posts on jazz, together with not simply the Golden Age but in addition Ethiopia, Poland, and Japan.


* The tabloid Leitmotif “pop-up brothel” has just lately segued seamlessly into “pop-up Prime Minister”

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