Monday, May 28, 2007

Burhan Öcal

The percussionist Burhan Öcal works with different projects "between Roma jazz and electric folklore", as Marc Wilhelm reports ( die tageszeitung ). He rails against the use of ethnic folklore in pop or electronic music. Öcal who was born in Istanbul, played Beatles songs, bebop and Roma music in his first bands and revolutionized the darbuka, an oriental hand drum, "by using it as a drum set in rock music".

In the 90s he moved to Switzerland, worked with musicians such as Maria Joao, George Gruntz, and Joe Zawinul. In several projects he approaches the musical heritage of his home which contains Greek, Albanian, Bosnian and Turkish elements. His hopes are on the youth: Two thirds of the Turkish population are younger than 30; they might solve the economic and ethnic problems of the region within the next 10 years.

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