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review Mama’s Bag

Founded by luthier – finger picking master Çağlayan Örge (banjo-guitar), Suna Suner (vocal, tambourine) and Sarp Keskiner (vocal, electric lead and slide guitar, kazoo, harmonica, tambourine, snare and cymbal) in 1996, MAMA & FRIENDS is known as “the ever first combo in Turkey based on pre-war blues styles, gospels and spirituals.” This album presents an unreleased bundle of materials taken from the live sessions of the trio, recorded directly to a cassette recorder by in house sound engineer Kubilay Gürol, between June and August 1997, at Eylül Müzik Kulübü.Gospels and spirituals performed here are also known as secondary examples ever recorded in Turkey. Thus, enjoy this rare audio documentary featuring covers of Robert Johnson, Jesse Fuller, Leadbelly and Bessie Smith. Other than displaying a naïve authenticity, “Mama’s Bag” captures a historical time frame of the local blues scene in Turkey, when any event representing those styles was able to pull together hundreds of people, enjoying the diversity of the blues inventory.

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review Mama & Friends from the UK

this one just came in:

Mama & Friends — Mama’s Bag / Bone Union Records
Well here’s a turn-up for the books. A group of Turkish musicians whose music reflects the early roots of the blues and gospel music, as with a high degree of authenticity, they bring to life the music of Robert Johnson, Jesse Fuller, Leadbelly and Bessie Smith and others. The musicians in question are Çağlayan Örge (banjo- guitar), Suna Suner (vocal, tambourine) and Sarp Keskiner (vocal, electric lead and slide guitar, kazoo, harmonica, tambourine, snare & a cymbal). The band was formed in 1996 and these recordings were made in 1997 at various live gigs in Turkey, recorded on a cassette recorder by in-house sound. But don’t let that put you off—this is a revivalist band par excellence! Take a listen to ‘This Little Light of Mine’, the old spiritual. It comes with vocals that sound like they emanate from a church in rural Mississippi and with a slide guitar that constantly reminds me of the very best ‘sacred steel’ work by the likes of Sonny Tredway, Willy Eason or Aubrey Ghent. These folks have done their homework! This is an album that is replete with authenticity taking some old favourites like ‘CC Rider’, ‘Trouble In Mind’ and ‘Careless Love’ and presenting them with a verve and panache that takes them to a new place. I really like this one, it has a nice feel about it and a certain je ne sais quoi which puts it in a different place than many of the revivalist groups I hear.

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review Mama & Friends from Germany

Haben die Türken den Blues? Jedenfalls Caglayan Örge, Suna Suner und Sarp Keskiner haben ihn. Er schlummerte über 20 Jahre auf einer Kassette. Man kann von einer fabelhaften Entdeckung sprechen, die dem Vergessen entrissen wurde und nun auf Digitalplattformen verfügbar ist. Als Mama & Friends zeigen die drei auf „Mama’s Bag“ (Bone Union Records) wie extrem tief sie in Delta-Blues und Gospel eingestiegen sind.

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new release Bone Union Records

today we released on Bone Union Records

BUR 1107 – Mama & Friends – Mama’s Bag

Founded by luthier – finger picking master Çağlayan Örge (banjo-guitar), Suna Suner (vocal, tambourine) and Sarp Keskiner (vocal, electric lead and slide guitar, kazoo, harmonica, tambourine, snare & a cymbal) in 1996; MAMA & FRIENDS is known as “the ever first combo in Turkey, based on pre-war blues styles, gospels and spirituals.” This album presents an unreleased bundle of materials taken from the live sessions of the trio, recorded directly to a cassette recorder by in house sound engineer Kubilay Gürol, between June and August 1997, at Eylül Müzik Kulübü.1 Gospels and spirituals performed here are also known as secondary examples, ever recorded in Turkey. Thus, enjoy this rare audio documentary; featuring covers of Robert Johnson, Jesse Fuller, Leadbelly and Bessie Smith.3 Other than displaying a naïve authenticity; “Mama’s Bag” captures a historical time frame of local blues scene in Turkey, when any event representing those styles was able to pull together hundreds of people, enjoying the diversity of the blues inventory.

Sarp Keskiner: guitar
Suna Suner: vocal
Çağlayan Örge: banjo-guitar

The album is released digital and available on all the download and streaming platforms.