December 31, 2013

MaNga BLUE JEAN JANUARY 2014 Interview

"A New Era Begins"

There is a in-depth interview with maNga by Sadi Tirak in Blue Jean Magazine's January 2014 issue. This is the first interview of the new album. They have finished recording and are waiting for the mixes/mastering from abroad.

Sadi Tirak (of Blue Jean mag) visits maNga at their new studio for this interview. He is welcomed by Cem at the entrance of the two-storied studio. He says, "Come on in! The guys are upstairs!". This is almost like a headquarters of the band. He greets Yagmur. He says, "Bro, you make yourself at home, I have some work to do, then I'll be right back!" and he gets inside the control room, with two sound technicians. Cem fixes some coffee for him. Because it's freezing cold outside. And Ferman enters with a bottle of wine in his hands, "I didn't keep you waiting long, right?" he asks. "Have some wine, let's get warm".

Ozgur isn't around. Ferman and Sadi start chattering. Ferman's vocal are heard from the next room where Yagmur is. "Sari saclarini deliii gonlumeee...". Sadi gets startled and asks Ferman what Yagmur is doing. He smiles and explains that they covered "Mihriban" for the tribute album for Musa Eroglu. He says "Yagmur is trying to finalize the recording".

5-10 minutes later, Yagmur finishes the urgent portion of his work and gets out the room. He says, "Bro, you can start listening to the album, come inside."

Sadi gets inside. Even though these are not the final version of the album, it's quite enough to get what to expect from the album. During this interview, they haven't decided on the titles of the album and the songs yet. So the titles are like "Track No.01" on the Mac screen in front of him. He starts listening and Yagmur leaves him alone in the room to provide him with a comfortable listening atmosphere. When he listens to the album half way, Ozgur finally shows up. He waves to him.
Sadi finishes listening and goes to the next room where the band members waiting for him to start the interview below.

Here we go...

BJ: When was the first moment you thought "e-akustik is over and we start a new album"? How did it all start?

Cem: In fact, it started with this studio. We started building it slowly in the middle of 2012 and our first recording was in here around November-December 2012.

Ozgur: "e-akustik" was released in the middle of 2012. We spent the summer of 2012 in concerts. I've seen in the photos I had taken here the other day, that we had started drum recording around October-November 2012.

BJ: How do you describe the creation process?

Ferman: For the first time we feel that it all belongs to us in this album. Of course we do not decide on eveything. All in all, it's a process where you sign on with a production company and with all the marketing techniques. But for the first time we feel so free, both in the production and in our creation process. Every one of us feels quite at fact we had some outrageous ideas. Not anything as Duman did like going to Ireland, but maybe go to south, rent a house and give it a try...Because after a while what can you possibly find as an inspiration? In my opinion, I didn't think that this studio would be such an inspiration, but everything was so right...We had recorded drums downstairs at an unexpected moment. Even this shows that how it all was so right...I mean all the architectural designs we came up with provided us with an acoustics and all of a sudden unexpectedly we did all the drum recording downstairs. Many similar examples like this connected us to here.

Cem: We used to come here at night in the creation period and we were doing 3,5-4 hour-recording sessions. And then we reviewed all of them to pick some parts that we thought would be useful, like "this is not bad", "this is nice", "we can use this", etc... Actually we discovered how far we could go during this period, with no limits and no plans in our minds. This is completely how we expressed what we felt in that moment and how we described the energy we created in that moment.

Ferman: During the first albums, Yagmur and I used to bring the 80% of the songs from home and Yagmur did the pre-production of the 60-70% of them at home. Yagmur felt comfortable at home, could provide the necessary environment at home. I was like that, too. We used to gather at the studio again, but not for the creation, just for going through what we did at home. But it's just the opposite here. I mean, everyone started to come here and create something here.
We brought some ideas of 4-5 songs from home this time, too, but not much.

Yagmur: 2013 was very busy year for us. Especially many things have happened here in Istanbul. We also went through a series of happenings among us in the band. This is an album where we disentagled ourselves, because we had really got tangled up. We had over-professionalized and our communication with one another got weaker. For a band, that is one of the worst things that could happen. The next step is breaking up. We saw that danger and we had to make some decisions.

BJ: Can we say that this album saved you from breaking up?

Yagmur: Kind of. Even if we didn't break up, we could've started doing bad work or working just for bread and butter. After a while the people wouldn't buy and then maybe we might have broken up. So we think that this is completely "a comeback album".

BJ: How did you get that "comeback" feeling?

Cem: In fact, we go full circle and come to the studio again. It created an aura to be full time at the studio. It has enabled us to connect and hold on to one another.

Ferman: This is like our coffee shop. There is this thing about the bands who play live; after the album release, as the number of concerts increase, you start to change the songs. Because you reach a different vocal technique and you freshen up the song. Yagmur disarranges the usual melody and makes some improvisations. So do Cem and Ozgur. The songs evolve. We always went through this evolving process after the release unfortunately. It's an incredible luxury to have a rehearsal studio, because we record, play, after playing we delete (?) the recording and record again. We start to change it playing over and over again.

BJ: So you say that you had this evolving process at the studio before the concerts, right?

Ferman: It's a great luxury, very nice experience. In that way, the songs kind of brew.

BJ: How free are you when you create the songs? For instance, do you practice self-censorship in the lyrics? Or how effective is the desire to grab people in the process of creating songs?

Yagmur: If you appeal to the general audience, there are some rules of the game. Not only in Turkey, but all over the world. But now WE create these rules by ourselves, without someone forcing us to comply, such as "What should we do?", "Which song should we launch with?", "Which song would be a better promotion for the album?", etc... For that matter, since we know now the marketing part of the deal, we can make reliable decisions now. But in the beginning, we don't think about any formula, or something else. In other albums, there was some formulation, but this time we have put forth our feelings without any initial filtering. You can't insist like "I wanna play it this way!", because you make polyphonic music and your area should be compatible with the areas of the other members. And also, for the first time, we didn't think like "Let's make it short so that it would be appealing for the radios.". But we didn't do the opposite, either. We didn't feel like "We'll make our hardest album!", either. We let it to be hard where it should be hard and also soft where it should be soft. The most important thing about the sound is that we recorded everything as much as possible. We wanted to use synthetic sound as less as possible. Especially we did a very detailed drum recording. And this was reflected in the sound immediately.

Ozgur: I'd like to add to what Yagmur said: Since we make "group music", at some certain points we have to use our personal performances to allow other fellow members to breathe, even if this don't work this way in Turkey. What we'd like to do is, since we're a vocal-based band, not to put the instruments forward, but to make them serve the song in the right way. Previously we couldn't use to do recordings in so much detail. It gives you this comfort to have your own studio, because there is no time limitation. We worked with pleasure on all the recordings and we had this opportunity: Before getting into the actual recording of the song, we rehearsed it and worked on the "where and how can we play it?" part easily. It was fun in that sense.

BJ: Ferman, what did you do? You wrote all the lyrics again, right?

Ferman: Almost yes. The 80-90% of them belong to me.

BJ: Do you think "how does people get them?" after writing one verse?
Do you change the verses thinking that they may be taken amiss?

Ferman: I am free enough, but since I have lots of concert experience, I have this in mind unintentionally: How can the audience join us singing along? Sometimes this causes me to change the lyrics. Especially in the launch song, there is a chorus part and I have written that part imagining the audience's accompaniment. How can we sing this part easily together with the audience? But these are very small changes and don't affect the theme of the song. I put any subject that comes to my mind into lyrics.

BJ: The general "it was always that way" kind of mood of the lyrics in this album somewhat mirror the feeling of negativity. "You suffer something and you sing about it" kind of situation...

Ferman: We always had that...

BJ: This became somewhat your style, right? You write like this...

Ferman: Yes yes...I think this is how I start writing lyrics. When there is a problem. I'd rather write lyrics than tweet. When I see some problem, I can't squeeze it into 3-5 sentences. I'm not good at that.

BJ: But you have some pissed-off tweets...(Laughters...)

Ferman: I sometimes try. That's quite another story. Tweeting is a little tricky...

BJ: Let's talk about the sound...I found this album much more electronic. For instance, one song goes on about 3-3,5 minutes just electronically. You don't have a thought such as "maNga is a rock band.", right?

Ferman: I think this is the most open-minded album of ours. We broke down all our prejudices. We have this song, "Once Upon A Time" or whatever the name will be... The song that we don't know its name yet...(he laughs.) I think that everyone will scrutinize its lyrics. I don't know what it is. I don't call it "grunge", but it started in that mood.

Yagmur: It's about being minor scale or major scale. The most of our songs have minor tonality; that is, sad, gloomy, depressive. But for the first time in this album we have 3-4 major (bright or joyful) songs. We tried something even a little like Seattle major and we were very surprised. This was something that we didn't have in our general structure. I can say in my field that we used a lot old school guitar sound, even a little grunge...or something a little more blues. We think that this is the most optimistic album we've ever made. Of course there are some darker timbres and lyrics in some songs.

BJ: In this respect, I think it's closer to the first album...

Yagmur: Yes yes... It makes you feel enthusiasm. It's certainly very different from "Sehr-i Huzun". We can say that.

BJ: For example, "Does Anyone Have Extra Love?" has the same format with "You'll Draw A Woman"...

Ferman: Yes yes, it has that mood.

BJ: Is that why you want to launch the album with it?

Ferman: We wanted to pay homage to the past...

Cem: But it's not the idea behind the song. It wasn't written with that idea in mind. But later, we kind of thought "Oh yeah, it goes there." And we thought we can pay homage.

Ferman: After we decided on animation for the music video, we actually thought about it as a whole. I mean, it was going to be an animation; it wasn't a song that will be played only on radio or player; it would have a visual aspect to it, so we tried to put timbres that suits it and tried to change its form.

Yagmur: But we're doing it deliberately now, since because it's our own formula. Sometimes I say to Ferman, "Bro, you perform haven't done it in a long time." We had our signatures. He was that way in the first album, but in the second he moved away from rap. "e-akustik" hasn't that sound at all. We missed our first version; we missed our formula, so we'd thought let's go back to the way we were, when we were 23-24 years old.

BJ: Let's talk about the post-production after the recording...You've sent the recordings abroad...

Ferman: We have sent the mix for the first time. There was a time we had sent it for the mastering before, but the mix is a first.

BJ: Why?

Ferman: It can't be done here. (Laughters...)

Yagmur: The mixing is very personal and also very artistic. You send the album to 5 different sound engineers and you get utterly different versions from each of them. It's up to you to evaluate them as good or bad. For instance, I naturally listen to the album constantly all throughout the year. The other day I made a calculation and came to a conclusion that I listened to it over 2000-3000 times. And then you're starting to be subjective. Some things settle in your ears and it becomes something like a law. You don't want to hear anything else.

Cem: You think that everything but that form sounds very ugly.

Yagmur: This is a danger. I didn't want to take this risk. I said in the first place, "Let's allocate a budget for mixing and we don't let anyone of the team do it." Because I did the mixing of "e-akustik" myself with the sound engineer in the next room. It turned out to be good, but we thought that we had to give it a try. Because the professional bands generally get someone else do the mixing and the mastering.

Cem: Also, they do the recordings in separate studios.

Yagmur: They record the drums here, guitars there...

Ferman: Because they have a lot of money... (Laughters...) They're like "Where the hell should we spend it?" (Laughters...)

BJ: In a nutshell, we can say "It's a new beginning for maNga", can't we?

Yagmur: Yes... In the first album, we tried and tested everything. Some people liked it, some people didn't. In "Sehr-i Huzun", we were like "let's get matured and do some slow songs". In this one, we have a bit of both; there is the mood of "Sehr-i Huzun" where the lyrics were romantic and well-written and the mood of the first album where the songs were energic. With that, in this one there is a better sound than the first two.

Personally, I witnessed all the phases of the album the most as the producer of the album. I'm thinking that this is the best work of maNga where the band discovered terms of music and lyrics, as well as in attitudes... And we'd like to celebrate it with good videos and many concerts.

Ozgur: Sometimes it's really hard to make sense and put it into words. You think you can't express it sufficiently. So I'd like to give a good example. It was a pleasant album. In short, this is the only album where we could express ourselves with our blood and sweat. And I find it very sincere because I know and feel how the guys felt during the creation process; and what kind of feelings those lyrics and music arose from. Actually the most important thing for me is, no matter what work of art is, sincerity. Don't we deal with all these to express ourselves in the end, right? It was fun in this respect.

Cem: I want to tell a complete outsider's observation. I'm not a type who can easily like and say "I fell in love with this song, great!". In any case, I always remain aloof and nitpick minor faults. Someone who observed me from the outside and knew me for a long time said to me "This is the first time I see you so excited about something you did". This summarizes all for me.

Ferman: In short, for me this is the most honest work of ours.


The one of the bombshells of the maNga's new album, is the duet with Kenan Dogulu. The meeting of the two parties is thanks to Yagmur's wife, Nathalie. Because she is one of the choreographers of Kenan Dogulu. When the band offered the duet to Dogulu, they got a very enthusiastic feedback from him who likes maNga very much. They wrote the parts Kenan performed jointly. During this interview, the name of the song wasn't certain yet, but it will probably be the second song they'll make a video.


- They see the parting with their previous production company Gergedan as a regeneration the both parties needed. They emphasize that it turns into a family relationship to work together with the same people for a long time and causes some blockage.

- As for the contract with Poll Productions which is mainly known for the deals with pop singers, they say it was because of the fact that they always wanted to appeal to the general and the owner of the company Polat Yagci's friendly attitude towards the band.

- They explain that the partition of Efe was because of the musical dispute among them. Ferman says, "Efe's primary function was scratch sounds, but in this album there is no scratch sound. Yagmur has been already creating the electronic sound". Yagmur adds, "I don't wanna say anything negative about the people we worked before, because they helped us a great deal reach this day. But maNga is reborn now".

- They don't want the people to perceive the parts with the electronic timbres as a challenge to Efe.

- They used a line from the old Turkish movie "A Time To Love" for a song that they plan to name "Hint Kumasi" ("Indian fabric" in Turkish, idiom: the bee's kness), but if they can't solve the copyright issue, they may remove that line.

- In the album, there is a song that Yagmur wrote and did backing vocals. It's one of the outstanding songs of the album in terms of the music and the lyrics. Yagmur wrote this song for his wife. After the first listening, Ferman said "we should put this one in the album!".

- There is another song in the album in the format of a folk song. When Ferman went to Sivas for his TV show Kulaktan Kulaga that he made for TRT Muzik, he found this folk song. And maNga turned it into something interesting with an ambient mood. The folk song belonged to Ferman's great grandfather. The song doesn't have a name yet. Ferman called it "Yaranmaz Ask". His uncles said "Call it whatever you like". And he thought this name would be appropriate for a song that was sung 20-30 years ago.

- They picked Michael Patterson for the mixing of the album. Yagmur have done an extensive reseach on the internet and believed he would be the right name. Patterson has worked with various bands such as Limp Bizkit and Nine Inch Nails before.

- MaNga has concentrated on the man-woman relationships rather than the songs with social references like "I'm a Clown" or "Alisirim Gozlerimi Kapamaya / I Get Used to Close My Eyes". Ferman thinks that this is more suited to the overall fairytale-like sound of the album. When pointed out that everyone expected from the band some protest songs after the Gezi protests, they expressed that they supported the protests directly going to the park. They believe that this is a big social movement and a beautiful explosion for a democratic future and it has an aspect to it so romantic that it just can't be attributed to one wing. They don't find it sincere to make a song about Gezi saying "Come on, let's make a song for Gezi!". Nevertheless, Ferman says "There is still some lyrics in the album that touch the subject like "I turned on the TV and things are crazy again!" or "nonsense to be united, everyone got his cut".

- They covered the folk song "Mihriban" for the tribute album for Musa Eroglu which will be out soon. They say that they added some color to the song without spoiling the song's original chemistry.

Last note: The new album is expected to be released in January 2014.

Interview by Sadi Tirak, Blue Jean Magazine
Translated humbly by Inci

December 18, 2013


Some highlights from the interview:

This idea of #BensizSen (YouWithoutMe) belongs to Birol. Birol and maNga was on stage together for another project before. He thought that Ferman's voice matches with his music very much and offered him to perform in this song of him. 

Q to Ferman: This is the first project for you to take part in, separately from maNga. Why did you lean towards this project?

F: Birol's offer came at a time that I was thinking about doing something different. I wanted to be in a project for myself, apart from maNga, do some electronic music. And Birol came with this project. We had previously worked with him already and had quite fun together. Birol's offer made me rethink what I wanted so much. That's why I accepted his offer.

 Q: Is the reason why you wanted to do something outside the band, you desiring to be in the forefront?

F: No, every musician ultimately have a lot of ideas that he can't dam up. I also had some ideas from time to time. I love electronic music, too. But I have to do it right, because I shouldn't hurt maNga. So I am wary of everything. This project of Birol was unique and special. And maNga will release a new album very soon.

Birol says that he wanted to do a song with a male vocal. They came together on a project and this changed everything.

Ferman: It changed everything to work on "Cevapsiz Sorular".

Birol: When I started playing CS, it received incredible response. After I played it at Rock'N Coke, I couldn't help sending my thanks to him saying "Thanks to Ferman with my love!".

We're now putting an end to staying away from the spotlight. We'd like the young people to know that we can produce this kind of music and lyrics in this country. We represent the music of the future.

Ferman: Some melodies or lyrics have their own time to come. Some parts of this song's lyrics were some little notes I had put aside 7-8 years ago when I was preparing for the album. I have always them in some hidden corner. I always believe that some day something will complete this. Not today maybe, but 10 years later definitely. They occured to me all of a sudden for no reason and then I added some more to them.

Q: After a relationship is over, what is that the women will be missing of you?

Ferman: If that person sees a person who is not in the music business after me, she'll miss the fun part she'd have with me. I'd miss the same thing in fact. Because when we create something, our women are the first people to experience it. That test phase turns into fun. We'll be missing this part the most.

Birol: I'm a creative person. I live a passionate life. Both sides have to be creative and meet each other half way. If the other drags behind, she misses something. Both sides have to be passionate in love.

Q: Tell us a bit about your Turkey Tour.

Birol: It'll start in January. We plan to go to 3-4 university towns every month. We aim to have fun and dance. Because our society feel a lot of pressure almost constantly. I feel very lucky, because I have someone like Ferman who is loved by the people very much. I believe it's going to be very good.

Q: You have only one song right now. Do you play maNga songs on tour?

Ferman: We think to make new ones, too. Maybe some covers. MaNga songs will form a small part of the program.

Birol: And before us, a good DJ will take stage, possibly a female DJ. Because female DJs are not given any chance to show themselves.

Q: Why can't female DJs show their abilities?

Birol: The music perception of the women is quite different.

Ferman: I think some names watered it down.

Birol: They highlighted the sex appeal, too. They presented the venue, but the music was left behind. You can do it just once, not a second time around. But of course this is a male proffession.

Ferman: You don't have to be a musician. The control settings of a TV set or a car are mostly interests of men.

Birol: But if a woman really loves this, she can easily surpass a man. Because the women are very good at observing the details and they have very good visual perception. And this also brings professionalism.

Q: What did maNga fans think about this?

Ferman: We got good comments on the internet. Of course there will be some fan base who won't embrace this, but there is nothing to do.

Q: When people see you in a different project separately from maNga, they think that maNga is left behind...

Ferman: These are totally different formations. We play in different venues. This has its own flavor, and maNga has its own. So both will feed each other eventually.

Q: When will the new maNga album be out?

Ferman: In January.

Q: What other projects do you think you'll be in together?

Birol: I like stability. The important thing is the response we'll be getting. We'd never played in English yet. Who knows, maybe we do that.

Ferman: I think electronic music is one of the easiest musical genres to spread widely. So there is an open door in front of us.

Birol: Why not go international?

Ferman: I think it's the beginning of a nice change, both for us, and for the beginning of the electronic music in Turkey. We love this music.

Birol: I see people surprised and I like it so much.

Translated into English humbly by Inci

December 1, 2013



The excitement that usual trips give us was a bit different for us this time. The only thing that lingers on our minds before we fell into sleep during the 9-hour flight to New York was CMJ Festival and the meetings scheduled with the production companies. The funniest guys in the flight were us, as always. Even though it's gone a little bit too far sometimes. :) 

We were welcomed by a nice gesture of our managers when we first set foot in New York. A white limousine was waiting for us at the exit of the JFK Airport. As if we were born in a limousine, we jumped on our white horse and off to New Jersey. We were about to run out of batteries when we arrived at the flat where we were going to stay. Without asking about the sleeping arrangements, we fell asleep in the first place we've found, accompanied by the stunning scenery of Manhattan. Before going to sleep, the memory of the 9/11 terror attack has flashed before my eyes. The ghost of the Twin Towers would appear among the buildings now and then...

First thing in the morning was putting out feelers about CMJ Festival. After a few interviews at the meeting point, we dived to the streets of New York. The most usual action in this type of festivals is the efforts of the musicians, managers or producers to meet one another wandering from party to party. We also lost ourselves in this river and ended up going to every single place until 2 p.m. The typical astonishment at these introductions is as usual. "Wooow! Turkey??" Yes, some people was still quite astonished by us who didn't arrive on camels. After this hustle and bustle, we ended up in the Ultra Sound Studios where we would rehearse. This was an old apartment which consists of a lot of rooms. The biggest difference from the studios here, that they were charging for jack, too! :) Surprisingly just the internet access was free. There was a vending machine for some small needs like plectra or plugs. This is one of the machines that we couldn't think of and put in the studios here. We made a setlist which consists of new songs both in Turkish and English and started working. To tell the truth, we all missed playing new songs. We all were playing with great enthusiasm. And of course with delicious American beers, it was not hard at all to get in the mood. As soon as we finished rehearsing, the parties started again. After meeting here and meeting there, we went home to charge our batteries. Our home was in New Jersey where located across Manhattan. The neighborhood didn't have a brilliant history. But the most exciting aspect of it was that "The Sopranos" was taken on the streets just where we walk. I remember James Gandolfini on this occasion who died at an early age.

We were at Gibson Guitars' headquarters at 11 a.m. where we would make one of the most exciting meetings. Rooms full of incredible limited guitars, studios set with the most expensive state-of-the-art equipment, rooms where Michael Jackson's recordings took place...we were like we went to Disneyland. Gibson Germany kindly supported us after MTV Awards and sent us Explorer and SG model guitars. Gibson USA kindly accepted to give us equipment support during all our US tours. Like kids in a toy store, we just picked up the guitars we want and left. After that, we rehearsed for the last time before the show. We were ready for the CMJ Festival. In the evening, we went to a friend's restaurant, La Lisse to meet the owner of our management company, Margo Lewis. We found out that Margo was once one of the members of the first girls' band in the music history, Goldie and the Gingerbreads. We saw that the bright light is still in her eyes when she showed us old photos of her. We were face to face with a real star. We left the restaurant of our friend Ozgur who always gives us a hearty welcome to listen to one of Margo's bands.

Finally came the day of the concert. I spent the day giving my voice a rest. The concert was really fun. There was a crowd which consisted of Turkish and foreign fans. It's a good feeling to play your songs for the first time to a lot of people. It's up to you to grab them or lose them at that moment. The adrenalin this feeling gives me, I would not trade it for anything.

We had very important meetings today. We met with some copyright companies and attorneys who might pave the way to the production companies and play important roles for us to get good deals. It was impossible not to get thrilled when we looked at the gold record awards on the walls. It was like Lil Wayne on one side and Amy Winehouse on the other invite us to a new adventure. We invited everyone to SOB show two days later and moved to Fader Magazine's party. There was a British band on stage playing Brit in contrast to the black rappers in the crowd. Needless to say that nobody was interested in the stage I suppose. After introducing ourselves to the mag's owner, we had some photos taken and left. We went to FADA Restaurant for dinner which was founded by a Turkish and French couple in Brooklyn. It was fantastic in one word. We went home after Ozgur took a picture in front of the Bruce Lee photo.

I can say that Cem and I did nothing. We rested at home all day enjoying the view. Ozgur and Yagmur were in the streets enjoying New York. We met for dinner at Sindicato which was owned by a Turk again in Brooklyn. It was a nice Italian restaurant. It gave us pride to have friends who had 3 boutique restaurants in a tough place like New York. We got energized by them who looked happy to have us around them in the city.

We took stage at a place called SOB. It was a show out of the festival and announced at the last moment. We welcomed the big name brothers and sisters at the concert. This was a good opportunity to have longer conversations and play for them live. Then we had a nice long chat with everybody backstage and left the place.

It was the time for the trip to LA. A six-hour flight awaited us. This was our first time to play in the City of Angels. We went backwards again because of the time difference. We settled into homes. After some rest, we went out to dinner. Nathalie, Yagmur and I found a Thai restaurant which its walls were covered with posters. Apparently it was a famous restaurant. We had our meal by a movie poster signed by Tarantino. 

We spent the day to the fullest. Firstly we were welcomed by Gibson LA. Again, like spoilt kids, we picked up our colorful guitars and left. I left with a blue GT series guitar this time. We were invited to the party that night. And then we moved to the Guitar Center and met with the heads of the artists' department. They were impressed by our songs, especially by "All We Need is Everyone". They offered us to play on their stage at a festival in the coming months. After hanging around for a while, we went to Gibson party which we were invited. Just as we thought "it's over, let's go!", Ozgur said that one of his favorite DJs would come to play and we should see him. Thanks to him, we got a chance to listen to Photek and an incredible MC accompanied by him. I haven't seen any rapper this good for a long time. We went to Laugh Factory to meet famous comedian George Wallace and Lisa Johnson who just published her book "108 Rockstar Guitars". Their interest in us when they heard that we were from Istanbul, was incredible! The jokes made us all laugh. 

We played at a club called Satellite. We were welcomed by a mixed and amusing crowd again. We had very important guests again. We got acquainted by Jimmy Pargas, founder of X Games and Jojo Baghdasarian, Backside Burbank music store's owner, among others. I have survived the night off safe and sound in spite of the fact that the oysters I ate before the show put me in trouble a bit on stage. :) But before the show I will never eat oysters again (I think). 

And our first CD signing in the USA... This was a last-minute arrangement with Jojo. We introduced ourselves to the people who came to buy CDs and LPs to the store and took pictures with them and gave them tshirts as gifts. Our friend Jojo of Armenian origin took very good care of us and played our songs all day. Then we all came together again at his home party. We spent great time at his ranch which was built on a huge land.

I can say that I spent the whole day with shopping. I went to a big outlet mall outside the city and bought bags full of clothes again. I rather do shopping all at once than constantly shop. It's less strenous this way.

The last day we did photoshoot with Maneki in Venice Beach.

We had a lovely adventure for 2 weeks. I feel like we're having a similar one to our trip from Ankara to Istanbul. I think we'll spend more time abroad from now on. But don't worry. When you read these lines, our new Turkish album will long gone to printing by then. Or perhaps it will be out. Thanks so much to everyone to open their hearts to us during our tour. See you at the concerts...

Translated into English humbly by Inci