Who is İlhan İrem?

Who is ilhan irem
Who is ilhan irem

📩 04/01/2023 09:07

İlhan İrem, with his birth name İlhan Aldatmaz, was born in Bursa. (April 1, 1955, Bursa), Turkish singer, composer, lyricist, poet and writer. He started to take solfeggio and singing lessons in secondary school, but he entered music life in 1969 (at the age of 14) when he was selected as a soloist in the school orchestra by the seniors. In 1970, the Meltemler Orchestra, of which he was a member, won the first place in the Marmara region in the High School Music Competition organized by Milliyet Newspaper. During this period, he received offers from many professional music groups in Istanbul, but he preferred to stay in Bursa until 1972. With the same staff, she continued to sing dance music at Bursa Çelik Palas Hotel and Uludağ discos until 1972.


İlhan İrem calls the 70s the "romantic period" in her art life. During this period, he produced singles records and romantic hits, he did not achieve the success he expected with his first 1973, Unite All Hands - Sometimes Joy, Sometimes Sorrow, which he made in 45 with his own means for the Disco company. Record companies of composing after you turned down the request on said other artists made clear in his second 45 that the "Pity Was Tomorrow - Come Clear eyes," the young artist has made one of the most popular singers in a moment Turkey. He continued his success with his third 1975, "Anlasana", which was published in 45.

The fourth 1976, released in 45, was taken from the market by the record company as a result of pressure from the song "Uncle Puppeteer", in which he questioned God. In 1976, İlhan İrem, his first long play, was published in 1973-1976. He became the top of the 45s list, such as “How Weather”, “Here's Life”, “Last Greetings”, “Separation Evening”, “You Know”, “Honey Mouth”. He published a total of 1973 1981's between 10 and 45, and he took a new path in his music life with an academic work for the first time with the arrangement of Esin Engin, with the symphonic song "Valentine", which he published in 1979. For the first time in the Valentine album, he composed Nazım Hikmet's poem "Welcome Woman", apart from the lyrics he wrote, and sang it with the title "Welcome Woman".


The 80's coincides with the process of getting away from popular culture that started with a window album. In his works in this period, it is observed that his sensitivity to social problems increased. In this period, Ilhan Irem started to withdraw from the scenes by claiming that the process of destruction of artistic and human values ​​started with the coup d'état of September 12, 1980 and the ensuing "American-Arab mixture liberalism" and reacting to this. First of all, he distanced himself from "sincere, pale, living and meaningless crowds he judged to be" and "popular culture more interested in shapes than they produce". “He was closed to his house in Tarabya for a retreat that would last until 87. During this period, he learned, in his own words, "to make deep journeys within himself, into his inner spaces".

His break in music started a process ranging from the theme of sadness in his songs of the 70s to peace and metaphysical themed songs. During this time he wrote a rock symphony. After publishing “Bezgin” consisting of his compositions in his military service in 1981, the 1983-minute symphonic rock trilogy, Window (150), Köprü (1983), Ve Ötesi (1985), which was the product of a seven-year study, was released in three separate albums. Window, the first album of the rock symphony consisting of an uninterrupted musical structure, received the Golden Plate in 1987 when it was released. “Window”, along with İlhan İrem's “Corridor” and “Seni Seviyorum” albums, were chosen “Best Album of All Time” many times.

In 1984, Turkey was represented at the Golden Orfe Competition in Bulgaria. He won the Journalists Special Award.

In 1985, the second album of the trilogy “Köprü” and İlhan İrem's first book “Window… Bridge… And Beyond…” were published. The book includes the story of İlhan İrem's musical narrative in the Rock Symphony and the lines of this story visualized by Nuri Kurtcebe, and a comprehensive research by Burak Eldem, İzzet Eti and Adnan Özer on İlhan İrem Music. Again in 1986 he wrote the words "Halley" was composed by Melih Kibar and brought to Turkey in the Eurovision Song Contest until he received the best rating of the year. In 1987, the last part of the trilogy was "Ve Ötesi" and his second book, "Uzaklar Biri Var" (Experiments). Next was Yesterday's Day, and in 1989, Uçun Kuşlar Uçun was released. The Ministry of Culture gave broadcasting permission for the album “Uçun Kuşlar Uçun” on the condition that the song “Blues For Molla” was removed from the album.

The song satirizing Khomeini's death fatwa given to writer Salman Rüşdi was brought to light by the artist on October 29, 2008 on the 85th anniversary of the Republic and distributed to the radio. his trilogy was released as a comprehensive concept in a single album.


It is the process that started with the Ilhan-ı Aşk album and continues with the albums "Corridor" and "Seni Seviyorum". During this period, as a silent resistance to the insensitivity he felt he felt in the society and art environment that started to wear blacks, he completely withdrew from popular culture and took a break between 1992-2006. The process of physical disappearance that İlhan İrem started with the description of "the corridor opening to the light and new dimensions" is the period when he continued his album works and concentrated his book and literature works. This period is the years when the artist's music turned into philosophical dimensions and met with the crowd. Also during this period, İlhan İrem released a very comprehensive "Best Of" series consisting of 4 albums, making his entire repertoire accessible.)

In 1992, he released the album İlhan-ı Aşk. The fourth book “Delirium” (essays) was released in the same year, along with the Koridor and Romans albums published in 1994, Valentine's Day / The Best Of İlhan İrem 1995 in 1, The Best Of İlhan İrem 1997, 2 Hayat Öpücuğu / The Best Of İlhan İrem 1998 album and the fifth book titled “Millennium / Virtualization Rats, Bats and Others” (Trials) reached the reader. Again in 3, his old works "Bezgin", "Window ... Köprü ... Ve Ötesi ..." albums, some parts of which were remixed and renewed. Released with the names ”.

Composed of new songs, "I Love You" was published in 2001. The artist released the albums "Bir Meleğa In Love / The Best Of İlhan İrem 2003" in 4 and "Işık ve Sevgıla 2004 Yıl" in 30.

After 2006

It is the process that started with the album "Heavenly Hymns" in his art life. İrem defines this period with the concept of "heart magic", which is also the name of a concert. He returns to the stage and gives rare solo concerts. During this period, various books were published about him, various researches and panels were made about his music. In addition, the political writings of İlhan İrem intensified in this period.

İlhan İrem's album “Cennet İlahileri” consisting of new songs was published in 2006. His sixth book, "The Song of the Black Swan", was published in 2007 with the subtitle "Symphonic Poetry". In 2008, he released an album named “Tozpembe / Progressive Çocuk Şarkları” for children. Ilhan Irem, what happened recently in Turkey, penned from his window, "People of the Sun Dark Country" is the seventh book was published in 2014.

In an interview with Olcay Ünal Sert from Akşam Newspaper on 17 September 2013, İlhan İrem said, “I never produce my works within certain patterns. Each of them is alive. Each of them has a dynamic within itself. They sound like a symphony. As soon as I produce, I am completely in trance. " He said.

The artist continues to work on his new album today and has been giving concerts every year in big cities such as Istanbul, Ankara and Izmir since 2006, and after 30 years he gave a concert in Bursa, his birthplace on June 4, 2016.

Eurovision Song Contest

Ilhan Irem, 3 times Turkey participated in the Eurovision Song Contest finals. "One Star" has stayed composed by Turkey in 1979 Eurovision final. But he was drafted before he could compete. Although Ilhan Irem was given special permission from the Turkish Armed Forces to compete in the finals, the record company to which the artist was affiliated released the "Valentine" album, which included the song "Bir Yıldız", and was disqualified due to the rules. İlhan İrem participated in the Eurovision contest two more times with her compositions named "Peace at Home, Peace in the World" in 1988 and "Comedy" in 1990.

Ilhan Irem, representing Turkey in Norway in 1986. "They Clips and" voiced the group's compositions Melih Kibar "Halley" said the author of the song.


İlhan İrem received many awards including 6 Golden Plates during her artistic life. He was deemed worthy of "male artist of the year" and "artist of the year" awards many times by various magazines, newspapers and institutions, including Hey and Ses. Many of his songs and albums have been selected as "song of the year / album of the year" by various magazines, newspapers and institutions.

İrem Vineyard

In 1985, the association called “İrem Bağı” was established by the audience who brought İlhan İrem's philosophy of “With light and love” to their lives.

Painting and writing studies

İlhan İrem, who works on abstract painting, occasionally opens personal painting exhibitions. He writes columns in Cumhuriyet Newspaper, Aydınlık Newspaper and Oda TV.

İlhan İrem, who is regarded as a modern bard; As a result of the mystical, metaphysical, supernatural and mystical connotations he reflects on his works, he has a unique audience.

İlhan İrem defines his worldview as secular, democratic, Kemalist and anti-imperialist. He is a founding member of the Green Party.

İrem, who married her husband Hansu İrem, a psychology graduate of the Middle East Technical University, on October 1, 1991, writes the poems of many of her recent works and also takes the cover photos of her albums. Hansu İrem is also the art director of İlhan İrem. The couple has no children.

İlhan İrem Plaques

  • Unite All Hands \ Sometimes Joy Sometimes Sorrow (1973)
  • It's a Pity to the Tomorrow \ Come on, Wipe Your Eyes (1974)
  • Understand \ Look, Living Well (1975)
  • Once Upon A Time (Puppeteer Uncle) \ My Longing for You (1975)
  • Give Your Hand, My Friend (1975)
  • How Is The Weather? I Love Your Eyes (1976)
  • Lives Without You (Here Is Life) \ Last Salute (1977)
  • Evening of Separation (Taking Off from the Reeds) \ You Know (1978)
  • Once Upon a Time \ A New Song (1979)
  • Private Letter Seen \ Honey Mouth (1980)


  • Lover (1979)
  • Weary (1981)
  • Window (1983)
  • The Bridge (1985)
  • And Beyond (1987)
  • From Yesterday to Tomorrow (1988)
  • Fly Birds Fly (1989)
  • İlhan-ı Aşk (1992)
  • Corridor (1994)
  • Romans (1994)
  • I Love You (2001)
  • Heaven Hymns (2006)
  • Tozpembe / Progressive Children's Songs (2008)


  • 1973-1976 (1976)
  • Window… Bridge… And Beyond… (1990)
  • Valentine's Day \ The Best Of İlhan İrem 1 (1995)
  • Love Potion & Witch Tree \ The Best Of İlhan İrem 2 (1997)
  • Hayat Kiss \ The Best Of İlhan İrem 3 (1998)
  • I fell in love with an angel \ The Best Of İlhan İrem 4 (2003)
  • 30 Years with Light and Love (2004)

New edition

  • Hidden Letters of Bezginin (2000)
  • Pale Blue Window (2000)
  • Bridge to the Clouds (2000)
  • Dreams and Beyond (2000)


  • Window… Bridge… And Beyond… (Story / 1985)
  • There's Someone Far Away (Essays / 1987)
  • Catastrophe (Poems / 1990)
  • Delirium (Essays / 1994)
  • Millennium / Virtualization Mice, Bats and Others (Trials / 1998)
  • Song of the Black Swan (Symphonic Poem / 2007)
  • Dark People of the Land of the Sun (Essays / 2014)

Books written about 

  • "In Tales Like Exile" Michael Kuyucu (2008) Pegasus Publishing
  • "İlhan İrem with Love of Light, Mystical God of Music" Özlem Süyev Zat (2008) Black and White publications
  • "Immortal Ozan İlhan İrem" Hakan Taştan, Ersin Kamburoğlu (2008) Cinius Publications

Saying goodbye to the scenes and returning

İlhan İrem withdrew from popular culture after the concert he gave in Gülhane Park on 8 August 1992 and said goodbye to the stages. 14 years after this concert, which was watched by forty thousand people, the artist returned to the stages with a big concert that entered the almanacs of that year at the Istanbul Open Air Theater on September 29, 2006. İlhan İrem, who withdrew from the scenes and all popular promotion channels in the intervening 14-year period, continued his album works without interruption during this period.

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