Ney's (reed flute) Voice Comes to Life Here

Manufacturing Ney is a very troublesome job. A young person from Şanlıurfa Neyzen (flute player) Ahmet Ateş unfinished: 'When I realized that there was no Ney production in the city, I wanted to make up for this shortcoming'

Manufacturing Ney is a very troublesome job. A young person from Şanlıurfa neyzen (flute player) Ahmet Ateş unfinished: 'When I realized that there was no Ney production in the city, I wanted to make up for this shortcoming'. Ateş, who transformed the canes cut from Hatay city into Ney in Şanlıurfa, shared his experiences about Ney production and music with our journal. Ahmet Ateş, who started chatting with Şanlıurfa about the history of beliefs and explaining that It is a very important city for three celestial religions in terms of Abrahamic religions, continues his words as follows: 'This has a rich religious tradition in terms of religions and prophets whose name is called Şanlıurfa. In this rich belief structure, Islam has acquired a very large place in Şanlıurfa over time. Şanlıurfa Sufi and sects are most frequently mentioned with Kadirilik (Qadiriyya) and Rufailik, while Mevlevi (Mawlawiyah)  is 18th and 19th centuries with developed sects in Şanlıurfa. In this respect, there was Mevlevihane (Lodge used by Mevlevi dervishes ) in Şanlıurfa before 1920. Mevlevihane, which was still used as a mosque as well, was able to reach to the nowadays.

One of the greatest features of Şanlıurfa is musicality, curiosity and predisposition for music. The love of this music is lives and is still alive today.Şanlıurfa is a city that has a promise in Sufi music, Turkish art music and Turkish folk music, especially in Tekke (Dervish convent) music. Although Şanlıurfa people are at the forefront with their voices, Şanlıurfa also has a rich belief and musical culture, so that the curiosity of the instrument is handed out and "Ney" Besides this, there are also names such as Oud virtuoso Mehmet Emin Bitmez, Kanun virtuoso deceased Halil Karaduman, guitar virtuoso Ahmet Kanneci, Neyzen (flute player)  Abdulkadir Karakuş and Kanun producer Semih Rastgeldi. Ahmet Ateş responded sincerely to the questions those we had directed to him:

 First of all, can we know you?

 I am Ahmet Ateş, I came to the world in Çiftehan neighbourhood of Şanlıurfa. My mother was a housewife. I graduated from high school. Our families are known and known families of Şanlıurfa. My grandfather is Hacı Ahmet Hastaoğlu who is well known.


How did your curiosity with music started?

My grandfather and my father were listening to Şanlıurfa music masters (Tenekeci Mahmut Usta, Culha Hafız, Halil Hafız, Ahmet Uzungöl) at home like many Şanlıurfa's, also were listening to gazelles, hoyrats, folk songs and recordings, so I grew up listening to their music thanks to them. Later in 13-14 years old an association called Şanlıurfa Mevlevihanesi was opened and I started to go there. I met there with mysticism and classical Turkish music. I was interested and wondered.  I got theoretical lessons and methods from my elders Şanlıurfa music masters such as Mercan Ozkan, Bakır Karadağlı and Abdurrahman İnan. As I grew older I noticed the dominance of music on myself.

How did your curiosity with Ney start?

People came from Konya city Mevlihane to Şanlıurfa and Ney voice has always been interesting since I was a kid. I went in to the concerts together with them, I was just playing tambourine for that time. My interest in Ney has increased more during these concerts. I started to take lessons to play Ney. I started to take Ney lessons from one of a Ney master Abdülkadir Karakuş. When I realized that there was no Ney production in Şanlıurfa, I began to learn about Ney production so that this deficiency could be eliminated by me.

 What have you done in this phase?

 In Istanbul, I interviewed with neyzen (flute player) Gökhan Özkök and I got his ideas. In Konya and Bursa city, I interviewed with Ney producers. I started to produce Ney by do puzzling and by trial and error method. I have not been successful for a while, I have been persevering my works with desperation and I took cane and materials from Hatay city. I faltered  about a year, then I succeeded slowly.


What is Ney? Will you tell us?

NEY(flute); It is the only musical instrument of Turkish Classical Music and the chief instrument of Turkish Sufi Music. Ney is the only musical instrument that sees the music together with Bendir (tambourine) in all Tekke (Dervish convent) music. The Mevlevi orders are made with the participation of  Neyes and Kudüms (a percussion instrument). If found, one of the other instruments is also included. Ney is one of the closest instruments to the human voice in colour. It is possible to perform all kinds of musical motifs. The three octaves can give all the voices in the sound genius in terms of changing the angle of breathing or the angle of the mouth with the headpiece.

 How do we know if a Ney is good or not?

 First of all, the selection of Ney reed should be very good. They must be proportional to each other in the nine knuckles. Completion of the drying of the reed requires that it has been dried for at least two years.

 What is being done to make the voice come out correctly so that the ney is fit to the other instruments?

 According to Diapason (A small U-shaped vehicle made of steel, one of the main voices that makes a sound at a certain height when vibrated.), we are trying to find the right voice by applying various color tones at a frequency of four hundred forty hertz. In this way, we are able to make sounds compatible with other instruments.

How many Ney have you produced so far? Where do you market them?

 I guess I did it over two thousand. Mostly I gave it as a gift. When I realized that it needed an economic power, I began to sell it in small numbers of price. The Neys that I produced went to almost every province of Turkey immediately. I sold it to Egypt, Iran, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Israel and many countries in Europe.

 Do you have an official work on Ney production?

I entered the instrument making exams and successfully won the exam that our Ministry of Culture and Tourism opened in Ankara in 2016. I was certified by the government as a Ney production artist and I got the identity card from the Ministry of Culture and Tourism.

I am offering Ney production lessons and Ney playing lessons in Şanlıurfa provincial culture directorate.

I also have a workshop called "MAHFINEY", I continue to work in this workshop and give private lessons.

How many students did you teach so far?

 I do not know the count, but I have raised hundreds of students and we continue to grow.

Finally, what do you want to say about Ney?

First of all, you need to overcome the fear of not being able to hear a person who is curious about how to play Ney. He must be careful when choosing an instrument. I suggest that you take lessons from who knows the job. To be aware of Ney and other blowing instruments, it must be understood that Ney is directly addresses the human soul.

 Finally, is there anything you want to say?

 In fact, if you are dealing with what kind of music you are dealing with, you will realize that music is indispensable to human life as a hobby, not a professional sense. For this reason, I believe that every person has a special ability.

 Would you open this up a little?

 Especially in Şanlıurfa, there is a very large music foundation and background. Since I wondered about music, I practiced at least two hundreds of five hundred ninety mode in style and manner.

A person who desires can also succeed in the sense of enforcement by voice as well as in the instrumental sense.

The young population of this city is at the highest level in Turkey average, and if it is supported by our young people in this respect, it will be a very successful achievement.