Table Of Contents

Review of Data

Counts of songs from each artist:

Half of the songs from Cem Karaca's album have overtly leftist lyrics.
Five out of twelve of the songs on Selda Bağcan's album have overtly leftist lyrics.
One of the songs on Barış Manço's album has overtly nationalistic (perhaps rightist) lyrics.

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10 20 nature Barış Manço 27 family 13 future 11 friendship 5 love 5 past 3 class 9 family 8 neglect 6 poverty 6 love 5 nature 17 family 10 death 6 love 5 allah 4 neglect 3 love 17 friendship 13 allah 3 nationalism 3 nature 3 family 19 love 12 friendship 8 death 6 poverty 4 aşık 3 nature 3 neglect 3 neglect 15 class 13 death 13 love 11 family 8 friendship 5 nature 5 violence 5 allah 4 Cem Karaca Edip Akbayram Erkin Koray Ersen Selda Bağcan

Looking at overall thematic element counts, there are a lot of similarities between the artists.

Love is the theme that is overall used the most by the artists combined. It is also Erkin Koray's most commonly used element, probably skewed by the song "Hele Yar." This comes as no suprise, due to the seeming universality and popularity of love songs.

Nature is the second most commonly used theme. It appears extremely often in the works of Barış Manço and Edip Akbayram, and less commonly in those of the other artists.

Family is one of the top themes for every artist except Erkin Koray, who does not make a reference to it. This may be due to the high number of instrumentals on his album.

Death appears in each artist's songs, except for Barış Manço. It has an important role.

Friendship is also important and is a commonly used element throughtout. Dostluk is important in Turkish culture.

Neglect appears most commonly in the songs of Selda and Cem, as well as the works of Ersen and Edip, albeit less frequently.

Allah / Islam - Religious references are most common in the works of Edip, Erkin, and Selda. This does not appear to have any obvious relationship to their politics.

Aşık - Ersen and Barış Manço make the most use of this element, most likely to highlight their statuses as the rock versions of Turkish folk singers.

Overall, leftist artists like Selda and Cem are more likely to explicitly talk about governmental policies in their songs. All artists addressed socio-political issues, but our rightist artist seemed content with the status quo.

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The narrator tag was used to examine whether or not singers referred to themselves using singular or plural nouns or pronouns. The hypothesis was that a more overt political sentiment, possibly associated with leftist ideals of collectivity would lead the singer to use more plural nouns or pronouns to refer to themselves. Our results were the following:

Using the political sentiment marking described in the introduction, we can differentiate between the overtly political and non-overtly political songs from Selda and Cem.

From an examination of the data, it appears that Selda does adhere to the hypothesized patten. She refers to a narrator considerably more in her protet songs than in her non-protest songs. Additionally, her protest songs show a more frequent use of plural narration than singular, while her non-protest songs show no discernable difference.

Cem Karaca, the other left-wing artist with protest songs does not follow the same pattern. In fact, he refers to narrators more often in non-protest songs, and uses singular narration considerably more than plural narration. One reason why this may differ is because of Cem's use of lyrics from earlier folk singers, or from poets.

There are no apparent conclusions that can be drawn from the rest of the data.

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To look at the effect of artists and politics on instrumentation, we divided the instruments into two groups, 'traditional' and 'western.'
Traditional instruments include the violin, düdük, ney, bağlama/saz, kavan, quanun, cümbüs, çığırtma, and oud.
Western instruments included the guitar, organ, synth, bass, mellotron, trumpet, saxophone, and piano.
It is important to note that one of the main features of Anatolian Rock is the blending of traditional and western instrumentation, though the singers' folk-like identities lead to the additional presence of folk songs featuring more traditional instrumentation.

Overall Results

Overall, 64 instrumental breaks contained traditional instrumentation. 18 solos used traditional instruments.

111 instrumental breaks contained western instruments. This includes 28 solos.

If we divide the information up by the types of instrumentation contained within a song, we get the following results:

Selda's political songs do not differ in instrumentation in any special way from her normal songs.

Differences in Thematic Elements Based on Instrumentation

There are a few differences in the themes each artist uses in songs based on instrumentation. Though they are probably not significant due to the small sample size, the most interesting results are the following:

There is limited data on how lyrical content of the songs vary with instrumentation for Ersen, due to the fact that the majority of his songs contain both types of instrumentation. He's good at that. The same applies to Cem Karaca, due to his use of almost entirely Western instrumentation.

Instruments Most Often Used By Artists

Instruments Used By Each Artist

Major vs Minor

Overall, the artists tended to prefer using minor scales. Although all artists recorded songs with both scales, only one song contains both.

Again, there is no discernable difference in instrumentation between Selda and Cem's protest songs and non-protest songs.


Selda 6 Cem 8 Edip 2 Erkin 13 Barış 0 Ersen 17

This graph contains the number of solos by artist with dividing lines by political affiliation. Right-leaning singers were somewhat more likely to include solos. As noted above, most of the solos were done on traditional instrements. This data could indicate a sentiment of individualism against the communist minority.

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Overall Address Counts

These are the overall counts of how many songs contain formal addresses, informal addresses, or both from each artist. For Cem and Selda, they are also divided by the presence of overt political sentiment.

The overall counts of addresses show important distinctions within the artists' identities. Generally, the informal address is most popular. Protest songs from both Cem and Selda contain more addresses than non-protest songs. Selda uses formal addresses much more often during protest songs, as shw is often addressing the priviledged, or making commands in an ironic fashion.

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Another element common to many of the songs is the place element. The artists refer to a variety of places in their work, including geographical locations, the nation of turkey, villages, cities, the cosmos, or abstract concepts. The artists reference distinctly different types of places in correspondance with their political identites.

10 turkey 10 foreign 6 region 4 rural 3 world 2 general 1 abstract 1 world 2 rural 2 general 1 turkey 1 general 1 world 1 turkey 2 rural 2 foreign 1 region 1 home 1 rural 6 world 2 urban 2 general 1 turkey 1 rural 8 urban 5 world 4 general 4 foreign 3 turkey 3 abstract 2 home 1 Selda Bağcan Ersen Erkin Koray Edip Akbayram Cem Karaca Barış Manço

Overall, the artists tend to make the most references to rural places, correlating with the image of the folk singer.

Barış Manço makes an unusually high number of references to the republic of Turkey. These can be traced back to a highly nationalistic song that describes how the Turkish republic will continue to exist in a hundered years time. The pro-nationalist political sentiment is linked to the higher number of references to Turkey.

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Concluding Remarks

These artists represent a key period of Turkish history; it is a violent period where yet another military coup has taken place and political violence is affecting thousands. While this is but a small sample size, popular songs represent the voice of the populous in ways few other mediums can, since even the illiterate hear music. Also, journalists were persecuted and surpressed, so we must dig to find the voices of the people. With this in mind, we see those who are oppressed by the government have more of a reason to discuss and critique the government, versus those who hold the power in the status quo. We also see even in more political music themes like love and family, which are universal. We see ideology perhaps indirectly reflected in the use of solos, but the cultural influence of traditional instrementation and minor scales remained about the same for both sides.

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