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Folk, Turku, Fasil & Gpsy


Turkish folk music is more immediately appealing to Western ears, Instruments and lyrics reflect the life of the musicians and village so they will be slightly different from village to village .


Türkü, a sort of halfway house between folk and pop, directly reflects experiences common to Turks.It became very popular in the 1990s.


Fasıl has been likened to a nightclub or lightweight version of Ottoman classical. This is the music you hear at meyhanesi(taverns), usually played by gypsies. The music is played with clarinet,kanun (zither),darbuka (a drum shaped like an hourglass) and often an ud ( a six-stringed Arabic lute), keman (violin) and a cumbus ( similar to a banjo). It's usually hard to distinguish between fasil and gypsy music.


Until the 1960s and 70s it was still possible to hear Turkish aşıklar ( troubadours) in action. Although radio, TV, video and CDs have effectively killed of their art, the song of the great troubadours - Yunus Emre (13th century), Pir Sultan Abdal (16th century) and Aşık Veysel (1894-1973)- remain popular.


If you are lucky you may spot wandering minstrels playing the zurna ( pipe) and davul (drum). They perform at wedding and circumcision parties and also congregate in bus station on call- up day to see off the latest band of conscripts in style