An artist who is highly admired for his unique style and is as humble as he is successful, Gökhan Türkmen. His concerts in Türkiye and abroad always attract great attention and we were delighted to enjoy a sincere interview with him about music, himself, and his family…
Gökhan, you are an experienced, successful, productive artist who has released many albums and singles, achieved dozens of hits and is admired by so many fans. How do you have such a special place in the hearts of your fans, what is different about you?
I think I’m too real and sincere to be perfect. I’m the man they see, the man they come across and the man they listen to. Neither more nor less and I will always stay that way as a human being. I think that’s why.
You have a unique style. For example, if a band is playing your song when we walk into a bar, we can say “They are playing Gökhan Türkmen” just by listening to the intro of the song…
Everyone has their own way of doing things, as they should. Producing, interpreting, seeing things in new perspectives, creating a character and being specific. These are the qualities that art should have, and I try to live and practice art as much as I can. When that happens, my own style emerges. That must be the reason.
You studied industrial management at university. What caught your interest in that subject? And at what point did you decide to put music first in your life?
Actually, I started studying industrial management because I passed the exam and I studied it to please my family a little, a golden ticket, you know. (laughing). I also took the Conservatory exam and the day I made a song and said, “this is my work”, that’s when I decided to commit to this. “This is how I will live my life, whether I make money or not.” When I was studying at Kocaeli University, I actually had a lovely, comfortable and successful two years in Kandıra, because I was always saying “I won’t be doing this in the future, I will be a musician, I will write songs and sing”. On the weekends, we were making music with my friends, and I was writing songs. What I experienced, what I saw and what I felt always contributed to my music. Likewise, that period also contributed a lot to my music becoming what it is today.
I think I’m too real and sincere to be perfect.
You often give concerts. You have given concerts almost everywhere in Türkiye, including the East. Have you ever observed differences among your audience?
The people of my country are the same in most places; however, the farther away, the more longing there is, of course. Since they are full of longing -although social media brings us closer – the interests of those who are far from us are always different. For example, our fans and followers abroad. Nevertheless, the most important thing is we meet on common ground of respect and love for each other. Wherever we are, we are always at our best.
How has your music evolved from your first album to today?
I think the most accurate development is the one that makes you change. Of course, without compromising yourself and your style, and as long as you can see the dress tailored for you in the mirror and see if it’s beautiful or not… I tried to improve by changing every day without staying at the same point. I try to evolve like this, to walk my path. I worked, listened, lived, experienced, learned, always learning… I was hungry for information, I continued to learn. I’ve evaluated what I can apply to myself. I’ve always been aware of my limits. I always knew what I can do, what I can handle, what I can’t do and what I can’t bring to an end. If you have this in your life, it is inevitable you will evolve.
I worked, listened, lived, experienced, learned, always learning… I was hungry for information, I continued to learn.
You always work with Murat Joker in your music videos. What kind of communication do you have? What kind of results do you think your harmony produces?
As two people who get along well and have the right timing, we can appreciate each other problems in terms of performing our art accurately. When you come across people like that in your career, you don’t want to leave them. You don’t need someone else when you can be understood very quickly and make very good decisions together. I try to make changes so that I can do different things every once in a while, but it doesn’t happen all the time.
As a producer, how do you evaluate the present Turkish popular music and how do you see its future?
There are beautiful names who are very talented, young, and they know what they want and make it happen. I trust them and I sincerely believe that we will not be disappointed, both musically and in terms of stance and character, they’re very valuable. Of course, there are a lot of other people who are trying to do this properly and there are also those who are confused… as well all this, there are those who consider this with a business view and well, if we are talking about art, they are not our concern. (laughs).
Finally, you gave a special concert called ’Kontekst’ at Zorlu PSM. How did that go?
It was a beautiful concert. As I wrote in the posts, it was a night where we were connected, and felt touched from the heart. Our fans sang our songs so beautifully that I thought “I should stop singing for now”. (laughing). I love them.
Could you tell our readers a little about your future plans?
To make quality projects, to meet our loved ones at even better concerts…Our concerts will continue and our songs will continue to be released every 1.5 months, other than that, our idea of trying to be a good and decent person will continue until death (laughs).
How did your love start with your wife? What if we simply asked you to summarize the secret of a happy marriage?
Oh, thank you. Ours is a high school story. Something I can’t explain in any way, as it’s a story where I say, “I’m glad I didn’t” and I believe the right life and place will be at the right time. The secret is just respect, as happiness is inevitable as long as you don’t lose respect for each other.
Nil Rona is 7 years old, and Leyla Ada is 5. What is it like to be the father of two daughters? What kind of relationship do you have with your children?
Being a dad is a feeling I cannot describe. The part where I feel so good, I try to take every step right. It’s a feeling that should be, it’s a process where you can’t think like a mother, but you also can’t feel like a father right away. I am glad for it every single day. I’m so happy for every day, every second I spend with them, I am glad to have them.
We know that you are sensitive about the environment. How do you think our world will survive?
We should not wait for others, but we should worry about our own door as well as the whole neighborhood, then I think we can be happy and breathe easily. If we think minimally and in a narrow the framework, we can grow from here. Everything on earth is for us. It is for us as we have already settled as guests and are destroying nature, at the very least we should take good care of it, however the priorities of humanity are always different. It is a shame!
Being a dad is a feeling I cannot describe. The part where I feel so good, I try to take every step right.