Who else is loving "Save Me" from the incredibly talented Mahmut Orhan? It's the perfect song to get down to on a Friday night to get your weekend officially started.
Mahmut Orhan: I started to work at a sound recording company when I was 16. I learned how to create sound system, then I came to Istanbul and took the harmony course. I really worked a lot for coming this level.
iEDM: Hard work always takes people where they are supposed to be. I am curious, how did you become the music director at one of the most popular clubs in Istanbul, Chilai?
Mahmut Orhan: Seems like a very high title! It was a big opportunity for me. That was in 2012 and I was only 19 at the time. I had self-confidence and I believed that I can achieve whatever I wanted to. Gökhan Aydoğmuş, who is an important musician, helped me a lot for my personal development. Then, I worked there as a music director in 5 years. I am always ready to continue advising Chilai’s music.
iEDM: Very impressive my man. Dream big and shoot even higher. That leads me to my next question--Who were producers and industry players that influenced your current sound?
Mahmut Orhan: Karmon, Luis Leon, Robin Schulz influenced my music style. Their style helped me find my current sound.
iEDM: Nice. Let's talk about your sound for a quick second. What were some of your favorite songs that you have rearranged? Word on the street is that you gravitated to memorable 80s and 90s songs.
Mahmut Orhan: I always like the 80s and 90s since I started listening to music. I always listen to the music. I like the soul of those decades. I think these periods were the production periods in my life. I like “Missing” which also my first remix. Also, I like “Self-Control” which is an old and really good song. I remixed this song with Sena Şener who also has amazing vocal in the song.
iEDM: Great choices. One of my favorite remixes that you did was for SOFI TUKKER. Anybody who likes SOFI TUKKER is cool with me. Why did you decide to remix the song "Drinkee?"
Mahmut Orhan: It's one of my recent favorites. I think “Drinkee” has an amazing energy. When I first listened to "Drinkee," I knew I wanted to make a remix for it. Then, when I had the chance, I made the remix with great pleasure. I like Sofi Tukker’s vision--I think they are really successful.
iEDM: Music fans are all grateful for your spin on their song. Another great song is your latest single, "Save Me." "Save Me" has a vibe that transcends countries. The worldly element really pulls the listener in! What were your cultural influences when putting the track together?
Mahmut Orhan: "Save Me" has a different kind of soul which influenced me. The sounds of the violin, the ethnic beat and western vocals. Eneli also did an amazing job--she made this song special. I think we harmonized East and West culture successfully.
iEDM: You guys totally did. Eneli's vocals really add a special element to "Save Me." How did you two find each other and make the song a reality?
Mahmut Orhan: I liked Eneli’s most recent song. I always heard her name in Romania and learned that she also listened and liked my songs. Then we came together and our energy could harmonize. I think we had a good job.
iEDM: What was your involvement in creating the music video? It captures the spirit of "Save Me" quite nicely.
Mahmut Orhan: The process of putting it together was very enjoyable. Cappadocia is an amazing place where is one of the most beautiful spots in Turkey. Generally, I don’t have good relations with cameras but I felt comfortable in the casting process. I think the final product is really good thanks to Hasan Kuyucu’s efforts.
iEDM: Totally. This is a loaded question but what is your biggest accomplishment to date if you had to pick one?
Mahmut Orhan: Absolutely! It would have to be “Feel.” I think this song is one of the biggest hits in 2016. Every person knows the melody of "Feel" and they love the vocals. A big thanks to Sena Şener’s perfect performance!
iEDM: I would be one of those people. Because the season is right around the corner, what are some festival goals that you want to accomplish in your career?
Mahmut Orhan: Tomorrowland, Ultra and Coachella without question
iEDM: Those festivals are a ton of fun and I am sure we can all expect to see you there soon! Before I let you go, what can EDM fans expect from you in the future? Any exclusive announcements you can make for iEDM.com?
Mahmut Orhan: With my next projects, people will feel "Mahmut Orhan’s soul" in the music. Also, all of the different sounds will meet new audiences. I hope they like my songs because I am making music that brings me a lot of joy. I want my fans to follow along because in the near future, there will be more music for them to enjoy as well!