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Okay Temiz

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Born in 1939, in Istanbul, Okay Temiz was deeply involved in music from his early years. He got his first musical inspirations from his mother, Naciye Temiz, who had gone through classical Turkish music education. Again with the support of his mother, he started taking percussion and tympani courses at the State Conservatoire of Classical Music in Ankara. Launching his professional musical career in 1955, Temiz continued his studies at the Tophane Art Institute, where he gained the musical knowledge and skills that allowed him create his own drum- a drum with a unique sound and features entirely different from conventional ones.

Between the years 1959 and 1967, Okay Temiz performed in several programs and shows, accompanying dance music groups in Turkey. In 1967, he joined Ulvi Temel’s group and appeared in some of the most outstanding music halls of Europe. It was then when the Swedish saga started. There he met trumpeter Maffy Falay, whose artistry in improvised music had a strong impact on the artist . The two formed the group “Sevda” and were highly acclaimed by their fascinating music which fused the striking agility and rhythm of Turkish folk melodies with western jazz in a pulsating manner. In the years to follow, Temiz provided a prismatic musical palette to the Stockholm radio channels and the symphonic orchestra, adding new sonic colors as a percussionist.

In the meanwhile, he met the American trumpet master Don Cherry, also known as one of the pioneers of world music, then settled in Sweden.

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