19 Turkish Album Covers From The 1970s

On January 13, 2018 by Tim Newman

I’ve been getting into Turkish pop from the 70s and 80s recently. When I say “getting into,” I mean I occasionally pop on a Spotify playlist that has some Turkish tunes from the 70s and 80s on it. That’s not the same thing as really “getting into it,” I know, but it’s the modern world, and I’m a modern man.

Any how, as wonderful as some of the tunes are, I noticed that the album covers were just as fresh, if not fresher.

So, I’ve collated a bunch of covers from Turkish rock and pop albums released in the 1970s. Now, there may be some from other countries, and if there are, I apologise, just let me know.

Just to be clear, I’m not making fun, I am simply enjoying the aesthetics. After all, the 70s and 80s were a pretty epic time for fashion across much of the world.

Here we go:

Arif Sağ is an influential folk singer/musician in Turkey. He taught thousands of young musicians at his personal music school, and also spent some time as a an MP in Turkish parliament.

Barış Manço was a Turkish national jewel. He was a musician, singer, songwriter, composer, actor, television producer and TV host. He died in 1999 of a shock heart attack. The country reeled in horror, and tens of thousands of mourners attended his funeral.

Özel Türkbaş was a model, actress, singer, and belly-dancer. It was her smooth moves that helped popularise belly dancing in America. The album above sold a million copies in Turkey and 150,000 in America. She died in the US in 2012 at the age of 73.


Cem Karaca was one of the biggest movers and shakers in the Anatolian rock movement. As Turkey entered unrest in the 70s, Karaca was accused of being a Communist rabble rouser and eventually left the country to live in West Germany.

Although the Turkish authorities invited him to return a number of times, he was always too afraid of what might happen to him; Cem even missed his own father’s funeral.

He was eventually stripped of his Turkish citizenship. However, in 1987, an amnesty was issued and he returned to Turkey where he died in 2004.

Erkin Koray, you’ll be pleased to hear, is still alive and kicking and releasing new music. He was incredibly influential in the Turkish rock scene at the time. Once, he was stabbed for having long hair. He also met John Lennon when playing on the streets of Paris.

Derdiyoklar, although of Turkish origin, did most of their playing and recording in Germany and were popular in both countries.

Nükhet Duru is a Turkish pop singer who’s also performed in musicals and hosted TV shows.

Sabahat Akkiray sang Turkish folk songs and managed to fit in a stint as a Turkish MP from 2011–2015.

Selda Bağcan was imprisoned three times because of the political nature of her songs. She now runs a music production company in Turkey. Her music has been sampled by 2manydjs, Mos Def, Oh No and Dr. Dre.

Yeşim Yılmaz came 5th in the 1975 Eurovision showdown.






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