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Turkish Poetry and Literature

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Âşık Veysel
1.       Roswitha
4132 posts
 14 Oct 2007 Sun 08:29 pm

Âşık Veysel

Veysel Satiroglu - in Turkey better-known as Asik Veysel - was born in the Anatolian village of Sivriala in 1894. His peasant parents already – before his birth – lost two daughters because of the smallpox epidemic. At the age of 7 he got the virus and had gone blind. From this time onward his life was full of misery. His only consolation was the ‘saz’ (a long-necked lute, traditional instrument of the musician-poets) which he got from his father who liked the Bektasi dervish songs, and who often visited the tekke (the place where Alevians held their service). Asiks and Ozans – wanderer musicians - were frequent visitors in their house.

Veysel took his first lessons from his father’s friend called Asik Ala who told him about the great Yunus Emre, Pir Sultan Abdal, Karacaoğlan, Dertli and the others. His first famous poem was about Kemal Atatürk and it was written in 1933. (that year was the 10th anniversary of the announcement of the republic.) He wanted to show it to the ‘saviour of Turkey’ as he called Atatürk, so he set up with his friend and went to Ankara on foot. The meeting didn’t take place but his poem was published.

With his devoted companion Kücük Veysel – who also helped him in singing – wandered tirelessly in the Anatolian villages. His self-written songs were known and liked by many. Through such a journey in 1956 he was introduced to Alain Gheerbrant – the excellent French ethnographer- with whom he made local recordings in 1985. These recordings were published in Paris by OCORA.

My attraction to him was drawn by this publication which reflected his humanity and artistic grandee. The encounter with him was brought into existence by Sabahattin Eyüboğlu who was the tireless organizer of the Turkish literature and wrote about Asik Veysel: “This man educated himself with great patience and suffering. He represents ancestral traditions in his poetical world and instrumental play. Perhaps he is the last authentic figure of the musician-poetry, lute poetry. He was conscious about his age and kept an eye on the events of Turkey and the world. He created a new poetry accompanied by the ancient saz. His thoughts - risen from a world that sank into obscurity – can be a help in finding solutions to problems of modern man.”

Asik Veysel died in 21st March 1973. His birthplace is now a museum. CD-s and tapes of his songs sell really well, recently the Kalan Müzik Yapum Ltd. broadcasted a wide selection of his songs.


2.       Müjde
 14 Oct 2007 Sun 08:33 pm

Because of his humanistic ideas EVERYbody loves him.
He is from Sivas as well

3.       Deli_kizin
6376 posts
 15 Oct 2007 Mon 12:08 am

For those who love Pir Sultan Abdal, you might want to see this

It is Kadir's dayı, Hüseyin Beydilli, who has recently published an album on which he performs songs such as from Pir Sultan Abdal, Gedayi, Aşık Meluli and Aşık Veli. I think it is a very successful and talented work, worth for all those who love the old poetry and alevi-styled music.

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