San Francisco, California
London, United Kingdom
click here to reserve online
6010 Pico Blvd
Los Angeles CA 90035
next door to the Levantine gallery
Rock, metal, heavy metal, hip hop, jazz and blues are all-American music originals, but they are genres that are constantly being challenged and reinvented by swingers in the Middle East—by singer-songwriters and musicians who are both natively Middle Eastern but strongly western in their tastes and travels. Turkey spans the European and Asian continents and is a bridge culture between east and west. Kutsal is an Istanbul, Turkey born-and-educated rocker with four recordings to her credit, and Band Twenty7 is a top indie band; both Kutsal and Twenty7 rock the house singing in both English and Turkish. This is one in a new series, "The Middle East Rocks," and is a collaboration between the Levantine Cultural Center and The Mint—LevantineMint. Tickets are $12 or $15 at the door, available now online.
Listen to Kutsal's rockin' song Never Wanna Kiss a Girl and her Turkish love song, the ballad Resimler. Watch her rock out on Turkish television. Listen to Twenty7s acoustic number, Valley of Fire. Also check out Second Mind and other songs on their channel. Find them on Facebook and Twitter.
Music writer Ebony Band describes Kutsal's style as "a unique dichotomy of pipes that rival Melissa Etheridge or Shea Seger, with a sexy and contemporary look that Marc Jacobs or Betsey Johnson would kill to take credit for. Lyrically, her intensity is razor-sharp and unrelenting." Says Music Connection, "The unbridled emotion and dark psychological overtones that fuel this artist's music may elicit comparisons to Evanescence, Alanis Morisette and maybe PJ Harvey, but Kutsal is exploring a realm all her own."
Band Twenty7 is a 3-member rock and world-music fusion band that was named a top unsigned band by Music Connection. Twenty7's "No Chemical Love" from their Papatya EP was nominated for Best Indie Rock Song at the 2011 Artists in Music Awards, and its single "Second Mind" was featured in the recently-debuted film About Cherry, starring James Franco and Heather Graham. Twenty7's next move is a 3-song EP, currently being recorded with an award-winning producer.
Turkish rock bands perform Feb. 23 at The Mint
MORE ABOUT KUTSAL
Istanbul-born-and-raised Kutsal is an international artist and a dynamic rock singer and songwriter with powerful lyrics who lives in Los Angeles and has released four albums so far. Kutsal formed several cover rock bands and sang lead in shows in clubs and concerts all over Turkey. Soon she thought it was time to fly with her own wings and began writing songs for her own album. Her debut album: "Susuzlugun Gecti Mi" was released in September, 2001 from TMC Records. Two songs from this album: "Gozlerim Agliyor" and "Birak Kirilsinlar" hit the charts and the videos were played on the music TV in Turkey. Her third single, "Ruya," was loved by crowds and became her biggest hit.
Kutsal performed in "Gokten Dusen Hazine," an Austrian-Turkish movie as a rock-star and two of her songs: "Birak Kirilsinlar" and "Bu Kadinlar Askin Degil" was selected to be on the soundtrack.
Right after moving to Los Angeles in late 2003, she started working on her second & third album, at the same time. This was a huge challenge, since she decided to record the album in both Turkish and English. After so much hard work, her second album: NAKED which was produced by Jimmy Waldo and Alper Cakir was released in 2008. She has worked with several great musicians and GRAMMY-winning sound engineers on this album. And with songs from NAKED, she performed at the famous writer Reza Aslan's book release party in Los Angeles. Kutsal then released her third album "Çırılçıplak" in Turkey, and she has played gigs both in the U.S. and in Turkey for her two albums: "Naked" & "Cirilciplak". She shot two videos from this album and her second video to her song "Resimler" was shot in downtown Los Angeles.
In 2010-2011 Kutsal worked on her 4th release, an EP and it is soon to be released. This EP "Kalbimin Aydinlik Yuzu" has been recorded both in the U.S. and in Turkey, by producers Emir Isilay and Orkun Tunc. The EP is mastered by the GRAMMY-winning sound engineer, Evren Goknar. Kutsal has shot three videos from this album; her first being to the Paul Anka song "Papa" covered in Turkish. In the video, she is walking in her wedding dress on the streets of Los Angeles.
Kutsal is proud to be an international artist and her songs are being listened to in many countries. She divides her time by promoting her albums in both the U.S. and Turkey through press releases and concerts.
MORE ABOUT BAND TWENTY7
Late last year, Los Angeles-based world music/rock band Twenty7 was named one of the top unsigned bands by respected trade publication MUSIC CONNECTION, and early this year, the band's "No Chemical Love" from their Papatya EP was nominated for Best Indie Rock Song at the Artists in Music Awards. Now, Twenty7 is breaking into the movies as their single "Second Mind" is featuring in the recently-debuted film ABOUT CHERRY, about a teenager who gets tangled in the pornography business. ABOUT CHERRY stars James Franco and Heather Graham and is slated for major exposure thanks to a distribution deal with IFC. Twenty7's next move is a single titled "Valley of Fire," currently being recorded with an unnamed but Grammy-winning producer. —Kevin Wierzbicki, Campus Circle, July 2012
Formed in Los Angeles in 2007, Twenty7 primarily plays rock with a fusion of ethnic music influences from around the world to its songs. Its material has been described as "intelligent that seemingly creates a whole new genre... taking on characteristics of East meets West, the old world meeting the new" (MUSIC CONNECTION, July 2011).
Twenty7 self-released its first EP entitled PAPATYA in December 2010 and signed its single SECOND MIND to be featured in the upcoming motion picture CHERRY, starring James Franco (127 Hours), Heather Graham (The Hangover), and Dev Patel (Slumdog Millionaire). In 2012, the band's song NO CHEMICAL LOVE was nominated for Best Indie Rock Song in the All Indie Music Awards.
Its live performances have been described as "playing to your senses to give you an experience usually reserved for large venues by mainstream artists" (THE EXAMINER, March 2011). In other reviews, the band's live shows have been compared to the likes of U2, Queen, and Muse with the ability to make a small club feel like an arena (MUSIC CONNECTION, November 2011). In December 2011, the band was also named a top unsigned act by respected national trade publication Music Connection in its 2011 "Hot 100 Live Unsigned Artists & Bands" list.
Over the last few years, Twenty7 appeared on national television networks (e.g., MTV and VH1), performed at several festivals (e.g., Sunset Strip Music Festival), toured in Turkey for three consecutive years, and gained praise in a variety of magazines and online publications. Currently, the band is working on its first full-length album, while playing one major show in Los Angeles every month. Although some of the bands' songs are in Turkish, the band has enjoyed a surprising following among non-Turkish speakers.
When & Where
Levantine Cultural Center
The Levantine Cultural Center champions a greater understanding of the Middle East and North Africa by presenting artistic and educational programs that bridge political and religious divides. In a search for common ground, the Center fosters discussions among artists and thinkers and offers classes and workshops that serve diverse ethnic communities.