Yılmaz Ö: We have to work hard, and always bring out newer things. I would like to thank our readers and followers who never left us alone
Exclusive interview / Yılmaz Ö – POP&KÜLTÜR Owner
POP&KULTUR, The magazine that you started publishing in 2016, has been presenting interviews of worldwide famous stars for the music lovers mainly in Turkey but also in the rest of the world. You have worked with so many names such as Maluma, Pitbull, J Balvin, Martin Garrix, David Guetta, and Luis Fonsi. This is a first in history if we look at Turkey’s magazine past. How did creating this magazine start out for you, and what were your first steps?
Thank you for your beautiful words. Yes, I think we have done something as a first. Actually, we have more roads to go, however I can tell you we are on the right track. This is how the idea of creating this magazine occured; when I checked magazines from all over the world they were hosting interviews of big names, and I would enjoy following them. I found the name and the concept of POP&KULTUR while on a vacation in Turkey. We published interviews online on our website since day one, and we received so many good feedbacks. I love adjusting to innovation, and that is why we put together so many new ideas. Before POP&KULTUR, we had our website “The Music of Now” publishing in English where we hosted big names such as J Balvin, Sean Paul, etc. We have a strong communication with everyone. Knowing we were more local, somehow they still trusted in us. I just cannot thank enough for this.
Since I love innovations and doing different things, I started thinking how I could take “Pop&Kultur” even a little further, something that has never been done in Turkey, right then and there it hit me in like 10 minutes. I wanted a Turkish magazine to be read in the world music game. We never thought negatively, just wanted to put out a beautiful magazine there, and you know the rest.
A lot of experts think that the digital world will have even more importance in future. You also brought your magazine to the digital world in 2018, and started to bring out a new issue every month. How important is it for you to be in the digital world, and what are the positive and negative effects of technology for your magazine?
I think it has been good for everyone that everything started to be more digitalized. That’s how we can easily reach out to anything we want, also on the other hand that’s why we consume faster. The more things start being digitalized the easier it gets for us to do what we do. We serve the magazine for free so that it could address to everyone. We could have done it differently, however, unfortunately just a brand name is not enough. Content, representation, time, and most importantly what the readers look for is highly significant. These are important details. For us, our dialogues with people are important, We have to be thinking for everyone. We have to work hard, and always bring out newer things. I would like to thank our readers and followers who never left us alone.
You actually collaborate with many artists other than just musicians. You interview and surface many directors, famous photographers, stylists who work in the background. Unfortunately these people stay in the background when they are highly important for musicians. Do you think you have stepped up for them?
I do think we stepped up for them because people don’t even realize there are other heros behind the scenes, or they just don’t know enough about them. This is why I wanted to give them the stage. I think we have a beautiful concept here. I wanted to focus on their memoirs and difficulties during photoshoots and video-making before they serve us all those beautiful works. I wanted to support them of course.
‘We have to work hard, and always bring out newer things. I would like to thank our readers and followers who never left us alone’
Besides Pop&Kultur, you also publish “Just Dutch Pop” and “Pop Xtra”. Could you give us further information on these two magazines?
Actually, I did not have another project in mind. Eventhough the project “Pop&Kultur” consumes a lot of time, I still had ideas and they would not just stop, there were many other things I wanted to do. Honestly I still have many other ideas, I don’t ever let my brain rest, I mean I just can’t. I wanted to bring out newer things, and sometimes we work so hard we forget about the outside world, but isn’t this how you keep up with a good work? So many new ideas gathered together and that’s how we gave birth to Pop&Kultur Xtra.
Because we wanted to give more content on Pop&Kultur Xtra, we published the first issue on February. There is a difference between the two magazines; we do not publish Pop&Kultur Xtra issue every month.
Just Dutch Pop is a magazine that will be published only for Holland music industry. We noticed that there were no magazines like Pop&Kultur in Holland, and started thinking how it would be if we worked on a project like this. Since our team members are from Turkey, Germany and Holland we thought “hey why not!” And we worked on. I think it will be a great experience for us if we can succeed here what we succeeded in our country.
There are so many steps and so much work before a magazine is published. Could you tell us about the process of preparing an issue of your magazine?
The process of preparing an issue is always nicely planned. First we get together with our team and decide which artists we are looking forward to collaborate with. We are generally one or two issues ahead of the readers. Sending the interviews, receiving the artists feedbacks and responses to the interviews, these take a lot of time, but once we know the names that will be on the issue things go smoother. When the readers have the new issue, we rapidly start working on the next issue losing no time. Discipline is important for our work. This is our respect to ourselves, artists, our team and the team behind the artists. We will be celebrating our second anniversary in April, and we are always thankful to Allah for we can do this.
What are the most important details of a magazine for you?
I believe good communication comes first. Then knowing the right content, and then managing the steps correctly for what we want.
Why a music magazine?
I love music so much, I may be spending 24 hours with music. As my mom says I have been with music since I was a kid, following everything that has something to do with music. I enjoyed following music sites always.
Can you tell us about your next projects? What should we be expecting?
Our priority is of course managing the Just Dutch Pop and Pop&Kultur + Xtra projects beautifully, and hopefully succeed new achievements with them. I think the production will never stop. Only Allah knows what we will encounter in future. We fully trust in him. I would like to thank once again to everyone who have been with us throughout our journey, sending messages, supporting us with beautiful feedbacks, people who are happy with us, and the people who are a part of this success; Thank you all! That’s all for now.