Sunday, 16 January 2011

Ajda Pekkan

Ayşe Ajda Pekkan (February 12, 1946, in Istanbul, Turkey) is a Turkish pop singer and actress. Through a career spanning five decades, Ajda has released more than 20 albums and is the most commercially successful female Turkish music artist with the sales of over 30 million copies worldwide. She is nicknamed the "Superstar" of Turkish pop music. Although famed for her music, Pekkan started her career as an actress with appearances in almost 50 films. During her music career, Pekkan has recorded songs in 9 languages. Apart from Turkish, she is also fluent in English and French. She also speaks Azerbaijani and Italian.

With the help of her sister Ajda began singing at the popular Istanbul nightclub Çatı in 1962. The following year, Ajda won a Cover Star contest sponsored by the Turkish music magazine Ses and was launched on a professional career.
Between 1963 and 1967 the statuesque actress appeared in 47 films opposite popular Turkish actors. Ajda Pekkan’s first recording, Her Yerde Kar Var, brought her great success in 1965. Ajda’s continuing success resulted in invitations to international festivals including the Apollonia Music Festival in Athens (1968 and 1969) and the Mediterranean Song Festival in Barcelona (1969).
The success of her songs resulted in a series of Turkish-language concerts with Enrico Macias at the Paris Olympia in 1976. In 1977 Ajda participated in the Yamaha Music Festival in Tokyo with a melancholic ballad with a catchy chorus called A Mes Amours which finished 12th in the Grand Final and won an Outstanding Song Award and an Outstanding Performance Award.

On April 19, 1980, Pekkan represented Turkey with the song Petr'Oil at the Eurovision Song Contest in Den Haag, the song came only 15th. She then decided to take a break and temporarily moved to the USA. After returning to Turkey she released Süperstar III which she followed with Süperstar IV. Superstar III was a huge success.

In late 1989, she began working on her new album with famous Turkish musicians including Fuat Güner from MFÖ (the band which represented Turkey in the Eurovision Song Contest in 1985 and 1988), Şehrazat, and Metin Özülkü. The album, simply titled Ajda. 1990 was a new breakthrough for Pekkan, with sales of over a million. In 1991, she released Seni Seçtim which was an even greater success. In 1993, she released Ajda ‘93 which was recorded in Switzerland, Turkey and United States. She worked with Atilla Şereftuğ on this album, a famous Turkish musician who had written the Eurovision ’88-winning song Ne Partez Pas Sans Moi for Celine Dion. After many successful albums she decided to release a best of album, and in September 1998, she released The Best of Ajda. Two years later, in 2000, Pekkan released another studio album, simply called Diva and enjoyed sales of over two million copies.

In 2001, she started performing in an Istanbul club Catwalk and her performances were all sold out, with the help of an eager audience looking forward to see The Superstar after a three year hiatus. The performances were so successful that Pekkan postponed closing the show by about six months. In 2002, she also began making a movie called Şöhret Sandalı. After several years of financial setbacks, it was released in 2006.

In the summer 2003, she released her single Sen İste, written by her friend Şehrazat, the popular songwriter. Six years later,in August 2006, Ajda released her latest album Cool Kadın which was a huge success in Turkey.
In the summer 2007 she began a completely sold out concert series called Ajda goes Disco performing her songs in disco rhythms with Turkey's most famous DJs live on stage. After that, Ajda began to work on a new studio album, Aynen Oyle, which was released in Turkey, German and USA in 2008. To promote it, Pekkan began touring in Turkey.

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