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Saturday, May 05, 2007

Tarkan's Airport Report

By Adelind Osmanlı reporting from Munich, Germany

Arriving at Antalya airport two days ago for a special 3 May concert aimed at Russian tourists spending their Spring and Labour Day holiday in Turkey, Tarkan was greeted by journalists eager to interview the artist. Provided below is the edited video footage of the impromptu report that took place, released yesterday by news portal HaberTurk:

Here is the complete transcript of that filmed conversation, translated into English for the blog's readers (kindly provided by Ali Yildirim):

My Best So Far

Tarkan speaking to reporters outside Antalya airport before that evening's private show, May 2007

Reporters welcome Tarkan as he comes out of the airport. He stops to greet them. A lady hands him a bouquet of flowers.

T: (Taking the flowers) How nice...
R: Welcome Tarkan..
T: Hi..
R: You have a concert in Antalya soon?
T: Yes it's a private concert.
R: Russian tourists?
T: Yes we've come by special request.
R: Russians really love you...
T: (Laughs fondly) Yeah, it's like our second home over there.
R: Your [new Turkish pop] album is coming out...
T: Oh yes we're excited over that... we're in the studio day and night.
R: When [is its release]?
T: Hopefully this summer, we don't want to miss this summer, but because I'm hard to please there may be a last minute delay. [Cut in footage]

Tarkan pictured with long term partner Bilge Öztürk (right), and with his musician friend Kenan Doğulu at Tarkan's 2003 birthday party (left)

R: [About Eurovision Turkish entrant, musician and friend] Kenan Doğulu? [See pic above (right)]
T: I hope all goes well. He's my friend so of course I want him to be successful, hopefully to return having made us proud.
R: What did you think of the song?
T: I think its good...good, the hook is catchy. Though as long as he likes it what we think doesn't really matter.
R: Okay so what about the presidential elections-?
T: (Interrupts with a grin) No comment on such issues. (Smilingly protests as the reporter continues with his question). No, no comment. No. No coment, no comment.
R: Did you get some songs from Sezen Aksu for the album?
T: Yes there are [some songs], really, really great ones, one in particular is a really great song, it's going to affect all of us deeply - move us, it's going to make us think... a great song. Most of the songs are mine on this album, and we've got a few more surprises in store, and to me - I shouldn't really say it - but to me this is my best album. My best.
R: Sounds like it's going to leave its mark on this summer...
T: Ye-ah, the summer and Turkish pop music in my opinion, it'll open a new avenue, pave a new way in the sector, because it's different with its sound, lyrics and composition. Because I think we've got stuck the last few years...
R: In Turkish pop?
T: Yes in Turkish pop, we're stuck in a loop, just doing the same things. We'll see how it goes, [trying to do something] in our own way...
R: What things are repeated?
T: For one thing lyrics are important, and we're saying the same old things now in music, repeating the same old phrases and in my opinion people... the public are tired of it and so albums aren't selling as much they once did. [Cut in footage]

Tarkan speaking to reporters outside Antalya airport before that evening's private show, May 2007

T: (In the back of his SUV) Well really in my view people really shouldn't do us this injustice [about music piracy]. Because we work really hard, we work day and night and then to inadvertently have them support the pirates seems a bit unfair to me. I think it's more about internet downloads now, that's where the problem is, everyone is downloading for free. They should take a little care to do the right thing, because this is our life, this is what sustains us. Music is our work, our life and I really want that respected more. And hopefully with this'll sell more than the bootleg copies if all goes well.
R: How are things with [long term girlfriend] Bilge? [See middle pic (left)]
T: Excellent, we're super. I love her a lot. She's one in a million.
R: But not marriage? [What about] marriage?
T: If all goes well, of course we want to get married and have kids and a family. I'm [nearly] 35 years old now - I can't believe I've been [in this profession] for 15 years... (laughs)
R: This is your second visit to Antalya in such a short space of time, you've been here a lot-
T: Yes, just recently-
R: There are rumours you're looking at houses here [to buy]?
T: In Antalya? No it's too humid here, I can't stand the heat in the summer. I come to my mum's summer house, that's enough for me.
R: If marriage, what about children?
T: (Laughs) If that happens it happens naturally, but I'm really happy in my relationship, I have someone in my life who really understands me, plus someone who has a lot of special qualities too. Bilge is really multi-talented, though you don't know her too well, very respectable, honest, well-mannered - what can I say she's a great person. She's never tried to take advantage of this fame thing - always kept a step behind it, I really admire her for that and I wish everyone deserving to have a love like that.
R: Are you going to return to America?
T: No, I've become a little tired of America y'know. It's enough. Yes, I've missed my country, I've missed my people, I've missed singing Turkish music, so I'll be here for a while. (Blows a kiss)

One reporter asks whether there are any other concerts in the near future, but the car door closes and Tarkan is driven away.

Footage of the evening's concert begins.

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