Sunday, September 20, 2009

Cem Yilmaz Portrait By Firuz Kutal


A message from Firuz Kutal in Norway,

Dear colleagues,

I send you a portrait that I did. Usually we do portraits of either
celebrities or people who are known by us in a context.
The person I did a portrait of is not a famous person. He is a kind of
insubordinate and remonstrant.

cemyilmazmycountry His name is Cem Yilmaz and works nowadays as a music producer.
He will be known from now on as a person who did a very interesting
protest against the military coup d'etat which took place in Turkey in 1980.

After the military came to power he was arrested and tortured for three

One of the torture methods used against him and others was to force political prisoners to listen to a song named ''Turkiyem'' (My country Turkey) from loudspeaker while they were either under torture or they were in their room.

After he released later, in 1993 he decided to establish a music
production company and searched for the copyright owner of the song he heard in prison. The song was sung by a lady singer Muserref Akay and was written by her husband. By mentioning that he needed this song in his private archive, he managed to buy the song for a cheap price.

Yilmaz explained that every time this song was played in prison soldiers were giving a hard beating to all prisoners. He adds that his song recalls very bad memories to all prisoners who were in the prison that time.

''It was almost a responsibility to buy copyright of this song. This song was a milestone for my friends in prison, to my identity and my dignity. Our song should never used as a torture material.''

It seems this song will not be heard any more without his permission.
I have no connection in any form to Mr. Yilmaz. I have heard his name just today with his act reported in the newspapers.

The way he faces his sorrows gets some sympathy from me and I thought he deserved to be drawn as an ''unnamed-heroe'' as they say in Turkey.

Best to you all
Firuz Kutal

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