“The missing component in the history of Turkish pop and one of the earliest exponents of Turkish electronic music alongside İlhan Mimaroǧlu and Bülent Arel…” (Finders Keepers)
The experimental and pioneering sounds of Gökçen Kaynatan has had a deep effect on the musical development of his homeland and yet he remains practically unheard of in the wider world.
Born in Istanbul in 1939, Kaynatan first came to prominence as a teenager, playing alongside Turkey’s legendary Erkin Koray. His early sound was defined by an infectious fusion of rock’n’roll and surf, with first single Firtina b/w Moda (issued in 1966) a glorious example of earlier sound!
When his musical interests began to evolve in the early 70’s, it was his fascination with emerging technology that really fired his imagination. Working from his own private studio (the first electronic music studio in Turkey), he revolutionised the industry with his pioneering use of electronics.
Kaynatan is one of the first Turkish musicians to make electronic music and there’s no doubt that without him, Anatolian rock may never have existed….nor Anatolian krautrock for that matter! Utilising the new-found effects that the Echoplex and Rhythm’n’Sound created, he pushed music into new realms….new and very cosmic realms!.
Yet, despite a reputation for innovative live performances, his long-standing distrust of the record industry prevented him from releasing more than just two singles. However, his talents were not wasted, and he began producing numerous theme tunes, incidental music and jingles for Turkey’s first television channel, TRT 1. Despite having a modest discography of only four 7” singles to his name, his visionary compositions and desire for exploration and experimentation has helped shape 50 years of Turkish pop culture. It’s impressive to say the least and if this post helps to bring attention to this understated artist, all the better!
In 2017, Finders Keepers Records released a fantastic compilation simply entitled, Gökçen Kaynatan. Compiled (as described by Finders Keepers) “with unparalleled access to his private studio vault, this is the first-ever collection of Gökçen Kaynatan’s pioneering early electronic works” The label goes on to explain how this collection features a “selection of his experimental pop and rock recordings dating from as early as the 1968 as well as previously unheard archive material and songs recorded for and broadcast exclusively on TRT 1 – most of them never to be repeated. In helping Gökçen end his self-imposed 44-year exile from the record industry”
In other words, if it wasn’t for Finders Keepers, I may never have heard today’s song! Translating as, Our Heavenly World, Cennet DüNyamız appears on the above mentioned compilation – which I’ve also pasted below so that you an have a listen.
Featured track, Cennet Dünyamız is heady and dreamy with its hypnotic loops and otherwordly textures, I love it! But if you want to get the full benefit of this track, I recommend that you listen it in the context of the whole album. This just makes it sound even better as each song melts into one continuous, cosmic experience! Enjoy…..