The Turkish Ambassador: Candan Erçetin

Candan Ercetin 1Candan Erçetin (that’s Jandan Erchetin for people who don’t speak Turkish) is a Turkish pop singer and song writer. As it turns out you don’t need to speak or understand Turkish to enjoy her music. From a foreigner’s point of view it sounds like Turkish pop musicians create a fusion of classical music (Turkey has a long tradition of classical music that rivals that of India or Persia), western style dance floor beats and sinuous middle eastern rhythms.

Candan is one of the most popular singers of pop music in Turkey. She doesn’t have the widespread support enjoyed by a diva such as Sezen Aksu, nor her deeply emotional delivery, yet her appeal is broader than arabesque singers such as Kibariye or pop stars like Izel.

Between 1995 and 2005 Candan released 10 CDs, having a hand in the composition of most tracks after 1995’s Hazirim. Many of these were the best selling albums of their year. The albums are:

• Hazırım (1995)
• Sevdim Sevilmedim EP (1996)
• Çapkın (1997)
• Oyalama Artık EP (1998)
• Elbette (2000)
• Unut Sevme (2001)
• Neden (2002)
• Chante Hier Pour Aujourd’hui (2003) (In French)
• Melek (2004)
• Aman Doktor (2005) (In Turkish and Greek)

With parallel careers as a TV hostess and a music teacher, Candan is not your typical pop star. She has a degree in archaeology from Istanbul University and has studied opera. She has performed in several successful musicals and tours extensively. Known for the unlikely shade of red in her hair, Candan, born 10 February 1963 in Kirkareli with family roots in Macedonia and Thrace, has a rare ability to cross national boundaries and capture the adherence of a very diverse audience.

I’d recommend any Turkish people who travel overseas to bring some Candan Erçetin CDs with them. Even if they themselves don’t like her music, their foreign friends probably will.

©2009 Original material copyright Phillip Kay. Images and other material courtesy Creative Commons. Please inform post author of any violation.


2 thoughts on “The Turkish Ambassador: Candan Erçetin

  1. Candan Erçetin is my favourite female singer! What makes her stand out as the Dame among other artists, to me atleast, is her muti-facetedness. Love that you’re promoting her to the non-Turkish masses; I think she deserves to be more of a household name!

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