Singer Defne Şahin has long been part of the music scene in the German capital. She was born in Berlin to Turkish parents and grew up speaking both languages at home.
During trips to Turkey when she was young, she got to know the musical traditions of her parents' homeland. Her latest CD combines lyrical compositions with verses by Turkish poet Nazım Hikmet.
Defne Şahin loves freedom
His lines have accompanied the young singer since childhood. They inspired her to compose and sing in Turkish – her, as she puts it, neglected mother tongue. It was exactly these verses that lent the album its name, "Yaşamak" - in English: "to live".
Freedom was a central issue for poet Nazım Hikmet, who lived to be 62 years old but spent 16 years of his life in jail. And freedom is also a key concept of the kind of music which Şahin feels most at home with.
Şahin grew up on classical, pop and r&b, but in a high school exchange to the United States she felt in love with jazz, its room for improvisation and artistic freedom. Her musical approach to the famous poet Nazım Hikmet makes her feel entirely connected to his words.
What Şahin does on stage has been influenced by her experiences at PopCamp, a workshop for up and coming musicians sponsored by the German Music council.
Author: Katrin Wilke/ suc
Editor: Rick Fulker