A Mediterranean Neighbor

WE HAVE AN INTERNATIONAL GUEST THIS MONTH. OUR MEDITERRANEAN NEIGHBOR, AYLİN PRANDİ IS SOMEBODY WHOSE LIFE WAS CHANGED IN A FLASH BY A BIT OF NOSTALGIA SHE CAME ACROSS ENTIRELY SERENDIPITOUSLY.

We interviewed Prandi, who gave a special performance in early October in Turkey.

Did you know that Aylin is also a common name in Turkey?
That really surprised me! Aylin is actually my stage name. I found out it was also used in Turkish when I came to Istanbul. I was told it means the halo around the moon and I loved it.

Your first song, 24000 baci, is actually a song by the legendary Adriano Celentano. Why did you choose such a well known piece? Weren’t you afraid of being compared with him?
I first listened to that song on a trip I made from Italy to France on my little motorcycle. As an Italian, I was very embarrassed not to know that song. I relived the Italy of the sixties through that song.

Is there a special story behind your album of the same name?
Baci actually means little kiss in Italian. At the same time, it’s a lively song that makes a person feel all happy inside. That’s why we wanted the album to have the same title. I love it when my fans always yell ‘baci, Aylin, baci’ at my concerts.

To make a popular album you have to create popular songs. How did you choose your songs? Are any of them your own?
Yes, there are two songs that I wrote with my musician friend Marco Pessin. I also got a lot of ideas from my friends and close circle. We worked together for days on a yacht in France. I realize now how important teamwork is.

You travel a lot. Where do you feel most at home?
Actually, because of my roots sometimes I think I’m French at heart, and sometimes Italian, but when I was in Istanbul I realized that I’m a lot like you too. We have many things in common, I think.

Toto Cutugno and his song, L’italiano, are very popular in Turkey too. But the new generation of music lovers who listen to you may not feel the same nostalgia for that song that we do. Does that worry you at all?
That song is never going to get old because of the feelings it evokes. It will always have meaning. I hope people will also like the way I sing it. I believe that music can bring people closer to one another. I think music can be defined as the most powerful force that brings people together and enables them to feel the same emotion.