Cem Karaca

Müzisyen, Yazar, Şair

05 Nisan, 1945
08 Şubat, 2004
Robert College
Diğer İsimler
Muhtar Cem Karaca

Musician, rock artist (B. 5th April 1945, Istanbul – D. 8th February 2004, Istanbul). His full name was Muhtar Cem Karaca. He was one of the important artists of the Turkish rock music and he created a strong Anatolian rock cult. His mother was Toto Karaca, who was a theatre player of Armenian origin, and his father was Mehmet Karaca who was also a theatre player, of Azeri origin. He grew up in touch with art between these two artists as his mother and father. He studied his secondary education in the Robert College. He started to sing to impress the girl he used to like when he was in the adolescence. He found himself in the music market as a result of the events that kept going after this starting point. The discovery of his voice was accomplished by his mother. In his first periods, he started to sing popular rock’n roll songs by making unprofessional works with groups such as “Jaguarlar” and “Dinamitler”. One of his biggest supporters in this period was İlham Gencer and he considerably improved his musical experience in his orchestra. Cem Karaca, who was also interested in theatre in the same years, also participated to several plays.

During his military service, Karaca realized that Anatolia was not as it was explained in the elementary school books. The musical instrument bağlama, which was played by his friend from the military service, took him to a whole new land. He realized that the music he found primitive and boring previously, would give voice to his own feelings. He joined the group Apaşlar in 1967. They came in second with their song “Emrah” in the competition “Altın Mikrofon” established by the newspaper “Hürriyet” and they tried to produce songs representing the synthesis of East-West music. Apaşlar, who achieved a great success with their song “Resimdeki Gözyaşları”, went to West Germany and the association of Cem Karaca with this group lasted until the end of the year of 1969. After that, he founded the group “Kardaşlar” together with Seyhan Karabay who was the bass player of Apaşlar. Meanwhile, he went again to Germany and he recorded four extended-plays with the Orchestra of Ferdy Klein. His aim in doing these practices was to realize his works without being in financial difficulty.

They had a great success with their first extended-plays “Dadaloğlu”. He parted with Kardaşlar in 1972 because of disputes they had with Seyhan Karabay. During this time, he banded together with the group Moğollar who was the strong voice of Anatolian rock. Meanwhile, Kardaşlar banded together with with Ersen Dinleten who could not get along with Moğollar.

With the disbanding of Moğollar, Karaca founded the group “Dervişan”, with which he would live the most important period of his career. “Dervişan” played an important role in the meeting of “progressive rock” with Turkey, as well as political rock. At the same time, he released his first studio album in the strict sense named “Yoksulluk Kader Olamaz” with this group. After the disbanding of Dervişan, he founded the group named “Edirdahan” that was a synthesis of the first letters of Edirne and the last letters of Ardahan. Their long-play record named “Safinaz” was one of the numbered symphonic rock albums together with the album of Barış Manço-Kurtalan Ekspresi named “2023” released in 1975. He went to Germany after this album and he became obliged to live a kind of life of exile until 1987. The theme of his works in this period was generally the homesickness. He released the album in German named “Die Kanaken” which was his best album during that period. He treated subjects such as the hostility against strangers and the life of the expatriates. He recorded the Turkish version of some songs of this album in his later albums.

After returning from Germany, Cem Karaca released his first album “Merhaba Gençler ve Her Zaman Genç Kalanlar” in the year 1987, together with his old friend Cahit Berkay. One year after this, together with the arranger Oğuz Abadan, he realized another work named “Töre”, in which he emphasized on the orchestration and the stringed variations were dominated, as it was the case in the works he accomplished by the end of the 1960’s. He returned a little back to his old days with his albums “Yiyin Efendiler” and “Nerde Kalmıştık” that he produced in the years of 1990-92 with Uğur Dikmen and Cahit Berkay. He achieved to be popular again with the song “Resimdeki Gözyaşları” that he sang in the movie “Ağır Roman” shot in 1997.

Karaca released the album named “Bindik Bir Alamete...” with the support of Cahit Berkay, Engin Yörükoğlu, Ahmet Güvenç ve Uğur Dikmen in the year of 1999. This work that might be counted as his last album was a successful work in which the old Cem Karaca of the old days returned with a gurgling sound. He recorded three songs for the movie “Kahpe Bizans” and he played a small role in the movie. He made several poetry works in the 2000s. He gave concerts associated with the legendary group of Barış Manço, Kurtalan Ekspres. Finally, he took the stage with the group Yol Arkadaşları and recorded his final album “Hayvan Terli” and the song “Göç Yolları” in the album of Murathan Mungan with this group. Cem Karaca also took some roles in television series. His wife İlkim and his son Mehmet Emrah gathered together his poetries in a book named Gazal (2002). He has also a book named Döndümse Vatanıma Döndüm. He died on 8th February 2004. He was buried in the Cemetery of Karacaahmet.

SOME OF HIS ALBUMS: 1973 - Kardaşlar – Apaşlar, 1975 - Nem Kaldı (Yavuz LP 1012), 1977 - Parka/İhtarname, 1991 - Bu Son Olsun, 1992 - 25.Yıl Özgürlük Resitali, 1994 - Cemaziyel-Evvel, 1996 – 2002 - The Best of Cem Karaca (Vol. 1- Vol. 5), 2005 – Ölümsüzler (1-2); 2005 - Mutlaka Yavrum (Cem Karaca Tribute Album), 2009 - Cem Karaca Anısına.

KAYNAKÇA: Metin Solmaz / Türkiye'de Pop Müzik - Dünü ve Bugünü ile Bir İnfilak Masalı (1996), Gökhan Aya / Bir Cem Karaca Kitabı (1998), Cem Karaca / Gazal (2002), Vural Sözer / Müzik Ansiklopedik Sözlük (2005), İhsan Işık / Resimli ve Metin Örnekli Türkiye Edebiyatçılar ve Kültür Adamları Ansiklopedisi (2006, 2007) - Ünlü Sanatçılar (Türkiye Ünlüleri Ansiklopedisi, C. 5, 2013) - Encyclopedia of Turkey’s Famous People (2013) - Erkin Erkal / Türkiye’de Rock’ın Tarihi (2012).


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