Awdil Shakar

It is almost impossible for a musician born in the cosmopolitan geography of Mesopotamia, which is regarded as starter point of the history of civilizations, to be filled with a standardised musical form. Shakar’s musical adventure started as a multi-instrumentalist musician within this cultural vision. According to Shakar, Mesopotamia is a place with endless depth, science and aesthetics, created by Kurdish Armenian Byzantine Syriac Persian and Arab musicians with thousands of years of intellectual touch. Mesopotamia has survived from the ancient world to the present without losing its spirit. He calls his music “Avant-garde Microtonal Bass Art” with the elements of the modal-microtonal music system of Mesopotamia “MAQAM” and the classical music harmony, which is a genius design of west, and the universal music of the modern world, Jazz, built on these values.
Awdil mentions about the ancient city Amida (Diyarbakır) which has a 9000-year-old city tradition where he was born;
“When I look back at the narrow streets of the city where I spent my childhood, it makes me feel tremendous to be able to see the war scars of Byzantine and Persian soldiers 1800 years before me, and to touch the world’s first sundial made by the inventor İsmail Al-Jazari, who lived in the same city. Two of the four holy rivers mentioned in the Torah gave life to this city. To walk on those magnificent walls surrounding the city, which Emperor Constantine helped to repair and to keep it intact until today, and to reach the lands where the first wheat of the world was planted in Çayönü 12,000 years ago and watching the blue sky… It removes the notion we call “time” and takes me on a spiritual journey at that moment. What I brought with me on my way back from this journey inspires my music and I owe every expression that adds value to my art to that land.”
The legendary musician Jaco Pastorius, the miraculous inventor of the fretless bass guitar, is the person who caused the end of the long shifts that Awdil Shakar spent with various musical instruments in his early musical years, which formed the basis of his multi-instrumentalist identity.

As time progresses, musical ideas parallel to his imagination change and develop, as do every researcher and experimental musician. There is no doubt that the need for a bass guitar with a much wider sound range is inevitable, and Awdil has also searched for a luthier to make a bass guitars that can meet his musical ideas. It was designed in 2008 as the Awdil Shakar Signature model of Murat Sezen Guitars, who is considered the most important guitar luthier of Turkey. The seven-string fretless hollow-body bass guitar named “Siberro” became the first extended-range bass guitar of Awdil’s Avant-garde musical adventure with its magnificent design and tone. The first and greatest turning point in Awdil’s musical life was when Pastorius watched a concert video cassette and became fascinated in 1999, 12 years after his death. The idea of combining the expression methods of all the musical instruments he can play with the bass guitar by blending the sound timbres and sometimes techniques with the Maqam-oriented musical ideas in his mind was also with the four-string fretless Jazz bass guitar at the same time. The seven-string fretless acoustic bass designed by Yazıcı Guitars for Awdil Shakar dazzles with tones reminiscent of both a contrabass and an oud, as well as with its exquisite design that combines “baroque and contemporary” lines. The final reflection of Awdil Shakar’s experimental music works is the nine-string ERFAS-Bass, which will take its place in the world music literature for the first time in 2020, with a range of 6 and a half octaves, and the most comprehensive acoustic bass guitar ever developed to serve microtonal music. Yazıcı Guitars has built this design of Shakar’s dreams with perfect engineering calculations and has revealed a unique wooden artwork with high aesthetic details. With this work, Yazıcı Guitars receives well-deserved praise from the international music community.