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Istanbul Sessions: Night Ride

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iTunes Review

Night Rider is the second release by saxophonist Ilhan Ersahin’s Istanbul Sessions project, and the album features the same core group that performed on the debut. Ersahin, who’s of Swedish and Turkish descent, is backed by three Turkish musicians: bassist Alp Ersonmez, percussionist Izzet Kizil, and drummer Turgut Alp Bekoglu. The saxophonist has played with several jazz artists, including George Cables, Eddie Henderson, and Wallace Roney, but this band’s music leans toward funk, rock, and Turkish stylings. Ersahin uses electronic effects on his horn at times, creating a vibe that evokes Eddie Harris’ late-‘60s electric sax recordings. The distorted horn and other elements also imbue the album with a quality recalling late-period Miles Davis. “Etnik” places a wah-wah riff next to rock drumming and percolating Turkish percussion, creating an energized backdrop for Ersahin’s intriguing melody. “One Zero” combines heavy metal drive with woodwind lyricism; the odd combination gives the track a distinct feel. The warmly atmospheric “Gece Inerken” makes a fine closer.

Customer Reviews

Night rider Ok

I'm new to jazz so feel free to concur; but I like the culture element fused together with jazz sound.


I saw those guys live in Istanbul ..killer set ! Got the album and it's as good or even better. It's not jazz , it's jazzy but it has it's own thing . They got their own sound ….I really enjoyed it ! ..still I am…wish more jazz artists took it here instead of relying on set ideas and approach.


Saw this band in Southern Italy of all places this summer. They rocked an audience of at least 1000 people…never seen a jazz band/instrumental band do this. Maybe last was weather report….great record !


Born: September 3, 1965 in Turkey

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '90s, '00s

Born in Stockholm to Swedish and Turkish parents but raised mostly in Turkey, Ilhan Ersahin fell in love with jazz growing up and moved to the U.S. after high school to pursue a career as a jazz saxophonist. Ersahin studied at the Berklee College of Music in Boston in 1983 before studying with saxman Joe Lovano and making New York his permanent home. Ersahin, whose influences on the tenor include John Coltrane and Joe Henderson, soon found himself gigging regularly in Manhattan and has played with...
Full Bio
Istanbul Sessions: Night Ride, İlhan Erşahin
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