Tufan Derince, at the crest of a wave of young Kurdish musicians who have swept over the corridor linking Diyarbakır—the capital of Kurdish culture in Southeast Turkey—with urban centers of Kurdish migration along the Eastern Mediterranean, has performed at hundreds of weddings across Turkey. Recently relocated to the Netherlands he has already made a major impact on Kurdish music scenes in Europe, collaborating with refugee Kurdish musicians from Syria, creating a novel blend of electronic pop and heavy electrified Kurdish folk music.
Having been outlawed for more than a decade, Kurdish music, culture, and language was gradually decriminalized in Turkey through the 1990s. An explosion of creativity resulted in new interpretations of traditional Kurdish folk music central to Kurdish community life and cultural identity. The most influential new genre is called ağır delilo (slow, heavy delilo—a Kurdish folk dance) or in a more pure Kurdish expression—granî (slow and heavy), characterized by heavily distorted elektrobağlama—an electrified long necked lute, which bridges the sonic aesthetics of the shrill reed pipe traditionally used to accompany folk dances with hard rock sounds.
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