violin and zither virtuoso (B. 1858, Ortaköy / Istanbul – D. 16th
March 1913 Istanbul). Tatyos Efendi, of Armenian origin, was an Ottoman
Classical Music composer. His real name was Tateos Enkserciyan, and he was one
of the greatest Ottoman born Armenian composers. He was the son of Monakyan, of
the musical scholars at the Ortaköy Armenian church. Having finished the
Ortaköy Armenian Elementary School, he started an apprenticeship at a locksmith
and later became an apprentice at a clock workshop. Due to his deep interest in
music, Tatyos Efendi began to receive his first music lessons from his uncle
Movzes Papazyan. He played the zither with amateur groups for a while, but then
quitted it. Later, he took violin lessons from Kemanî Kör Şebüh and
lessons in singing and theory from Andon and Civan Aga and Askid Aga. He practiced
singing with Andon, Hanende, Astik and Civan aga.
After gaining fame, he made friendship with Ahmet Rasim Bey, Civan and Andon brothers, Şevki Bey, Kemençeci Vasilaki, Tamburi Cemil Bey and co-performed with them. With the help of those co-performers, he succeeded in playing the saz (T. N: a stringed instrument) as well. For many years, together with Hanende Karakaş, Tanburî Ovakim, Kanunî Şemsi he directed fasıl ensembles at music halls like Pirinççi Gazinosu in Galata. In spite of his command of musical notation, many of Tatyos Efendi's works were not written down and were lost in time.
Tatyos Efendi also wrote the lyrics of most of his work. He composed saz instrumental music and songs in accordance with modern music aspects and successfully reflected the traditional aspects of the melodic forms. His compositions are the peşrevs in the karcığar, Suznak, Rast maqams (melodic form), the saz semais in the Hüseyni, Süznak, Rast maqams and more others are very well known.
Tatyos Efendi who was a very successful composer composed mostly songs. Most of his peşrevs (T. N. preludes) and saz semais still extant today are among the most precious pieces of Turkish instrumental music. His songs were well liked by the public and presented in fasıls as soon as they were composed. His major songs are; Gel elâ gözlüm efendim, yanıma (suzinak), Çeşm-i cellâdın ne kanlar döktü Kâğıthane’de (rast), Bir gönlüme bir hâl-i perişanıma baktım (rast), Mey-i lâlinle dil mestane olsun (rast), Çektim elimi gayri bu dünya hevesinden (hüseyni), Bu akşam gün batarken gel (uşşak), Ehl-i aşkın neşvegâhı kûşe-i meyhanedir (kürdilihicazkâr), Gözüm hasretle giryandır (hüzzam), Gamzedeyim deva bulmam (uşşak) and his major instrumental musics are; Karcığar Peşrev, Rast Peşrev, Suzinak Peşrev, Kürdilihicazkâr Sazsemaisi, Hüseyni Sazsemaisi ve Suzinak Sazsemaisi. Tatyos Efendi made a living playing the violin and zither in various music halls. Upon his ailing health, he was alone except for the company of a few dedicated friends like Ahmet Rasim. Even though he was an important artist in Turkish music, he was recorded as an instrumentalist in death registration book of the church. Ahmed Rasim Bey gathered fifteen friends of him for his funeral and was buried in the Kadıköy Uzunçayır Armenian Cemetery. Tatyos Efendi, who contributed a lot to Turkish music, have eight peşrevs, six saz semaisis, one composition and forty seven songs composed in various maqams and tempos. Süleyman Erguner released “Tatyos Efendi -Traditional Crossroads” an album composed of his compositions in 1996.
Tatyo Efendi is described as beetle-browed, easygoing, short and chunky man having a bushy moustache with a squint eye. His most famous compositions are “Mani oluyor halimi takrire hicabım” and “Gamzedeyim deva bulmam” which were also one of the songs Mustafa Kemal Atatürk loved most. Many famous artists performed “Gamzedeyim deva bulmam”. This song is performed by artists like Barış Manço, Müzeyyen Senar, Cansu Koç and Kubat.