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Many Came Along Many Passed By

In the sixties and early seventies in Turkey, the term “arajman” (derived from the word arrangement) was used to describe pop music. Pop songs of that time were mostly Turkish cover versions of English, Italian, Spanish and French radio tunes. Even if we look at it in a differentiated way today, this musical movement initiated by the efforts of Fecri Ebcioğlu holds a relevant place in Turkey’s cultural heritage. Songs like “İki Yabancı” (the Turkish “Strangers in the Night”), “Once Upon a Time” and many other “arajmans” are still the background music of our life in Turkey. 

Even though at some stagei people like the song composer-writer duo Çiğdem Talu & Melih Kibar worked on creating a Turkish sound in pop music, the tradition of covering European light pop continued way into the seventies; the legendary lyricist Fikret Şenes for example is known for songs like “Many Came Along Many Passed By” / “Kimler Geldi Kimler Geçti” which was originally composed by Tony Hatch, and “Bir Başkadır Benim Memleketim”, a wee bit too patriotic song, which became very popular during the invasion of Cyprus in 1974. The original tune is a Yiddish song about a drunken Rabbiner.

In the first episode of  “The Background Music of Our Lives”, popular artists like diva Ajda Pekkan, lyricist Fikret Şeneş, singers like Alpay, Seyyal Taner, Nükhet Duru, Erol Evgin and İlham Gencer reflect about the great “arajman” music period in the popular music of Turkey.


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