The Guitar in Turkey: Erkan Ogur and the Istanbul Guitarscape

Dawe K., Eroglu S. C.

ETHNOMUSICOLOGY FORUM, vol.22, no.1, pp.49-70, 2013 (AHCI) identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 22 Issue: 1
  • Publication Date: 2013
  • Doi Number: 10.1080/17411912.2013.774157
  • Journal Indexes: Arts and Humanities Citation Index (AHCI), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, IBZ Online, International Bibliography of Social Sciences, Index Islamicus, MLA - Modern Language Association Database, Music Index, Music Periodicals Database, RILM Abstracts of Music Literature
  • Page Numbers: pp.49-70
  • Istanbul Technical University Affiliated: No


The authors' ethnographic research on the guitar in Turkey has begun to reveal the instrument's multi-faceted role within Turkish music, culture and society. We discuss the emergence and development of unique playing styles alongside several customisations of the instrument, focusing on the work of Erkan Ogur who is known as the inventor of the fretless classical guitar. As well as Ogur's ongoing contribution, several other Turkish guitarists continue to expand and deepen the role of the guitar within the Turkish soundscape. This has been accompanied by a growth of local interest in the guitar, guitar making, pedagogy and retail, all of which are bound up with wider historical, cultural and technological changes and developments, and issues and tensions, within Turkish society.