When you first encounter Ôzlem Bulut’s captivating gaze, don’t be too disturbed by the playful and maliscious twinkle in her eyes. Her expressive face and childlike charm compliment the raw power of her voice and lyrical singing, propelling the traditional melodies of Anatolia towards new and unforeseen horizons. Her new project, “Aşk“ (or “Love“ in Turkish), is the result of Bulut’s strong desire to mix genres and the various influences, both traditional and modern, that have thus far marked this young Turkish singer’s musical journey.
Özlem Bulut. Born in 1982 in a small village in Eastern Turkey, Özlem Bulut grew up immersed in the sounds of traditional Anatolian music. This would inevitably greatly impact her interpretation of jazz music later on.
At the age of 15 she began studying Operatic singing in Mersin and then in Istanbul. In 2006 she received a scholarhip to study with the Vienna State Opera, the Opera Bastille in Paris and the Vienna Volksoper, where she has remained as a key singer ever since.
In 2008, Özlem Bulut founded the “Özlem Bulut Band.” Today the ensemble is complete with Marco Annau as composer and pianist, and together they develop a jazzy musical universe where lyrical singing and oriental rhythms and melodies are subtly and compellingly intertwined.
Aşk. Her first album, “Bulut,“ appeared in 2011 and her second, Aşk, was released in Astria in March of 2014. The latter entered the World Music Charts Europe at number 13 in October, 2014. Catchy choruses and lively oriental rhythms are enriched by profound jazzy improvisations and Özlem’s powerful and virtuosic voice.
Founded in 2008, the band immediately won several awards such as the Development and Audience Prize at the Austrian World Music Contest, which marked the beginning of Bulut’s international career. She was also the recipient of the MIA-Award in 2013.
Özlem Bulut represents oriental-jazz at its best. Fusing jazz, pop and soul elements with her own oriental touch, the Özlem Bulut Band revolutionizes traditional Anatolian music, creating a whole new sound, both timeless and extremely personal.
With this project, Özlem Bulut succeeds in reframing the conventional picture of oriental music, bringing together elements from the East and the West while portraying the beauty and providing a new understanding of the Turkish language.
« A clear, bright and charming voice(…). Ask (« love »), is a pop-oriental album open to jazz (…), full of mischievousness and tenderness. » Télérama
« The young Kurdish singer releases « Ask », an album where traditional melodies from Anatolia are turned into a very modern and lyrical mix of jazz and pop music. » FIP Radio
« The voice of Özlem Bulut is fascinating, expressive and has a strong character.» Alpen
« A strong, rich and fascinating album that can be played nonstop. » Music Austria
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