Erkan Oğur was born on 17 April 1954, in Ankara, Turkey. He spent his childhood in Elazığ, eastern Turkey, where he became interested in violin and the Turkish bağlama (lute) and started to practice them frequently. He graduated from high school in Elazığ, then moved to study physics at Ankara University Faculty of Science from 1970 to 1973. As a result of encouragement to be a scientist by his father, he started to study chemical engineering. He was introduced to guitar education in 1973. Since the beginning of the year 1974, he continued his education at The Ludwig-Maximilians University Munich, Germany, for three years. However, he chose to be a musician instead of being a scientist. Since he needed detailed sounds from a guitar in order to obtain Turkish melodies, he modified his guitar and invented the fretless classical guitar in 1976.

In 1980, he returned to Turkey and started to study at the State Conservatory of Istanbul Technical University. After his military service, he worked as an oud lute teacher. He had live performances with Fikret Kızılok and Bülent Ortaçgil where he contributed to scene with the fretless guitar. He released his first album in Germany called Arayışlar (“Searches”) in 1983. In 1989, he went to the U.S. to work with numerous local blues artists, foremost of which was Robert ‘One Man’ Johnson. He introduced fretless guitar into blues. A year later, he released his first album in Turkey, Bir Ömürlük Misafir (“A Lifetime Guest”), which was ranked 4th in European lists. He still performs concerts throughout the world and in Turkey. He works with Kemal Eroğlu on technical improvements on bağlama lute; and continues his performances with Fahir Atakoğlu and Bülent Ortaçgil. In 2004, he played on Yansımalar’s album Pervane (“Moth”). He is a member of the Telvin trio, which mainly performs Turkish folk music in improvised jazz style, with İlkin Deniz and Turgut Alp Bekoğlu, and has released an album called Telvin in 2006.

His soundtrack for the 2004 movie Yazı Tura by Uğur Yücel won two awards: the 2004 Golden Orange for “Best Music” at the Antalya Golden Orange Film Festival, and the 2005 award for “Best Music” at the Ankara International Film Festival.

Discography
Chronologically, subsections by the date of their first item:

Early works and collaborations
1982 – Istanbul’da Bir Amerikalı
1983 – Perdesiz Gitarda Arayışlar – small-distribution cassette
Soundtrack albums and collaborations (by film date)
1989 – Sis OST – Zülfü Livaneli film soundtrack
1996 – Eşkiya OST (The Bandit) – with Aşkın Arsunan, Yavuz Turgul film Eşkıya soundtrack (Kalan, released 2000)
2003 – Yazı Tura OST – Uğur Yücel film soundtrack, (Kalan, released 2005)
2009 – Mommo (Kız Kardeşim) – Atalay Tasdiken film soundtrack
Solo and collaboration albums
1993 – Fretless (Feuer und Eis)
1996 – Bir Ömürlük Misafir – reworked reissue of Fretless (Kalan)
1998 – Gülün Kokusu Vardı – with İsmail Hakkı Demircioğlu (Kalan)
1999 – Hiç (“Nothing”) – with Okan Murat Öztürk (Kalan)
2000 – Anadolu Beşik – with İsmail Hakkı Demircioğlu (Kalan)
2001 – Fuad – with Djivan Gasparyan
2006 – Telvin – in Telvin trio
2007 – The Istanbul Connection
2012 – Dönmez Yol
2014 – Dokunmak – with Derya Türkan, İlkin Deniz
Featured on albums
1989 – Mideast/Midwest – recording of live performance with Robert ‘One-Man’ Johnson
1995 – The Other Side of Turkey – compilation, includes Oğur (Feuer und Eis)
2004 – Pervane (“Moth”) by Yansımalar – studio album, Oğur on four tracks (Kalan)
2009 – Kıyıların Ardı by Fatih Yaşar – Oğur plays on “Sirlarumi Söyledum”
2011 – Bahçeye Hanımeli by Ayşenur Kolivar – Oğur plays on the title track, “Bahçeye Hanımeli”
2013 – Sabah Rüzgarı by Hüseyin and Ali Rıza Albayrak – Oğur plays on “Böyle Buyurdu Aşık”
2017 – Encounters by Katre – Oğur plays on the title track, “Existence I. Underwater World”

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