Click here to listen to the Young Jazz+ 22 album and get detailed information about the album content.

In its 20th year, Young Jazz has changed its name in order to support creative young musicians in a broader framework, and a '+' sign has been added next to Young Jazz to mean 'more, beyond'. Young Jazz+ is open to applications from all young musicians who make music in the genres of jazz, funk, R&B, neo-soul, electronic music, hip-hop or inter-genre music. The ensembles selected for Young Jazz+ had the opportunity to perform at the 29th Istanbul Jazz Festival and recorded the Young Jazz+ 22 album after the festival. The album was released on 16 December on local and international digital platforms such as Spotify, Apple Music, Deezer, YouTube Music, Fizy and Muud with Sony Music Turkey label.

The Young Jazz+ album series was launched last year in cooperation with Sony Music Turkey and with the support of the Mehmet Uluğ Fund that keeps alive the memory of musician Mehmet Uluğ, who passed away in 2013. This second album brings together the original works of the ensembles selected to perform in Young Jazz+ concerts in 2022. The album series aims to support the creativity and career development of young, talented and promising musicians and to enable them to make their voices heard in the world.

The Young Jazz+ 22 album was produced by Volkan Öktem, Korhan Futacı, Selen Gülün, Deniz Taşar and Ayşe Tütüncü. Each of these skilled musicians shared their musical experiences with the young artists during the recording process of their tracks. The album thus served as a bridge between jazz generations. In addition to being a musical document that takes a photograph of the jazz performed by young musicians who are hopeful with the revival of life after the pandemic, the album is also extremely enjoyable.

As in the previous year, every band and musician who took part in the album was offered an unconditional, free production space, provided that their compositions were original. Since each track was recorded at a different time, there was no possibility for the musicians to be influenced by each other. The reputation that the 2021 album gained in music circles was a source of motivation for the participation of young musicians this year. The opportunity for originality and freedom given to the musicians paved the way for the creation of an album that does not confine the music to any genre boundaries, is completely unfiltered and in a sense has an eclectic beauty. With an open-minded perspective, classical, blues, funk, rap, rap, soul or jazz-influenced local music and similar styles were also included in the album in addition to classical or contemporary jazz genres in order to make sense of today's music.

Considering that music is a culture that is created and sustained through intergenerational communication and the transfer of knowledge and experience, we can understand how invaluable the experience that young musicians gain from master musicians is. These experienced musicians' extremely sensitive touches, wise advice and the young musicians' respectful acceptance of this information, from the tempo of the pieces to the control of emotion, emphasis points, nuance differences and even the way they play their instruments, is an indication that the musical climate of the future will be in a spring-like atmosphere. Even if there are many years between the ages of young musicians and their mentors, the differences in understanding between them are easily overcome through 'musical' conversations. It is a great chance for a young musician to be in the same studio environment with an experienced musician who is generous in sharing her knowledge with humility. The fact that İKSV, in partnership with Sony Music Turkey, will also undertake the promotion of this album should be considered as a great opportunity for young musicians at the beginning of their careers.

The fact that Young Jazz+ 22 was recorded at Babajim Istanbul Studios, which is arguably one of the best studios in Turkey in terms of equipment, engineering and final mix, also increased the musical value of the album. In the recording and mixing process, sound engineer Burak Serter and recording assistant Altuğ Poyraz achieved wonders with their experience and solution-oriented discipline. The mastering was entrusted to the recording and mastering engineer Güven Ersoysal.

—Burak Sülünbaz

You can watch the backstage video in the below.